Lets Talk Justified


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Justified Season 5 Review Episode 4: Over the Mountain-Did you miss this episode? Watch it here

By Penny Clift

raylan over the mountain

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The fourth episode of Justified “Over the Mountain” found the series falling back into some familiar patterns. Too many storylines running in one episode and some plots that seem all too familiar.

I counted at least seven running storylines in this one episode. Now call me picky but that is just a few too many to leave any one story satisfying. You can only slice a show into so many pieces before it becomes a big ol’ mess.

over the mountain tim & raylan

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This week featured Raylan and Tim tracking down a missing informant, Ava having a nasty encounter in prison, Dewey trying to commit murder, Lee Paxton being conned into thinking Boyd is dead, Boyd tracing his troubles to cousin Johnny, Art trying to get dirt on Raylan for Nicky Augustine’s death and Raylan and Allison’s bedtime romp. Confused yet?

I had several problems with this episode. Let’s go through them!

Number One – I don’t think Dewey has what it takes to be a killer. I was extremely surprised when he actually pulled the trigger. This is just completely out of character for Dewey. Dewey likes to talk big but when it comes down to it he just doesn’t have the balls to be a badass. So this whole scenario did not ring true to me.

Number Two – I doubt very seriously if anyone especially evil undertaker, Lee Paxton, is going to accept a hand as proof Boyd is dead. His head maybe, anything else is a leap of faith.

Number Three – Plot number one that seems a little familiar, Johnny is sabotaging Boyd. We have been there and done that. Seems it doesn’t take six seasons to start repeating yourself.

Number Four – Art starting a whole investigation into Augustine’s death as if Art himself has a vendetta against Raylan. Shades of Art believing Raylan stole money from the evidence vault. Shouldn’t Art know Raylan a little better by now? Raylan may do things that are a shade in the grey area, but being on a mobster payroll is something we will never see Raylan doing. It would go against his black and white ethic rules. Raylan doesn’t see things in shades of grey, just wrong and right. Plus, Art doesn’t have any qualms about beating a man suspected of killing his friend, but Raylan shouldn’t step over the line to protect his family from a mob hit.

Number Five – I am not in the Free Ava camp. Ava somehow evolved from a decent woman who wanted to be free of her abusive criminal husband to a cold hearted murdering madam. She made her bed, she can lie in it and justly so as far as I am concerned. She is hard and cold. I also had a little trouble with the guard choosing Ava to harass out of all the inmates at hand. I am going to go out on a limb and say there were probably younger, more attractive women to catch his attention.

raylan boyd over the mountain

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Once again Justified has taken some old and very familiar roads. I really feel that the decision to keep Boyd alive in Season One has crippled the show in a lot of ways. The plot always has to have a connection to Harlan. That limits the plot possibilities and sometimes stretches belief just a bit. I just don’t think Raylan’s job would constantly take him to the little town of Harlan. Not to mention the fact he no longer has any family left to connect him to Harlan. But since we have to cling to Boyd’s character, the writers have to contrive a plot that does exactly that, keeps Raylan in Harlan.

So all in all this wasn’t the best episode of Justified. Crowes are best done in small doses. They seem to be the Bennett clan clones of the season. The problem is Mags Bennett was no fool. The same can not be said for any member of the Crowe clan. I have to admit I have never been a Michael Rappaport fan and he has done nothing to change my opinion. I don’t believe the dimwitted Crowes are a suitable match for Raylan.

good intentions

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I do like the chemistry between Raylan and Allison. They have a wounded warrior bond that could form a strong relationship. However, Raylan’s removal of the youngest Crowe could bring trouble to Allison if she is involved in that removal. It is nice to see a love scene involving Raylan, so I will hope for more of that storyline.

Favorite line of the show and it is oh so true – Johnny to Boyd “Blah Blah Blah. You use every word in the Webster’s and don’t say a damn thing.”

Leave us your thoughts on this week’s episode in the comments. We love to hear from other fans.


Spoiler Alert


Justified Season 5 Episode 3 “Good Intentions”


Did you miss this episode?  Watch it now
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Catch up on Justified 

Justified Season Five Episode Three aired January 21st.  This week’s episode was titled “Good Intentions”.

I enjoyed this week’s episode.  Raylan feels like he is getting back to his old self.  The wise cracking, ladies man that we love was in full swing this week.  Raylan literally was in full swing as he takes a bat to a man in the name of chivalry.
There was a lot of dealing and double dealing going on in this show.  I am sure it will take the whole season to find out who is playing who.
Raylan and Allison’s relationship heats up as they get hot and heavy on the stairs in Raylan’s new digs.  It was reminiscent of his scene with Katie Holmes in “Go” minus the cat.  The ladies get a treat when Raylan removes his shirt later in the bedroom.  More of this please!
 good intentions


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Their tryst is continually interrupted.  First by a phone call from Art and then by an unwelcome visitor with a bat.  We get to hear Raylan recall playing Ding Dong Ditch when he was a boy.  He tells the intruder as he goes back to the house. “If I have to come down again you better not forget to ditch.”
Their union is not to be completed much to Raylan’s surprise.  Allison tells him she has to go when he returns, leaving him with an astonished look on his face.
I both love and hate it when Raylan gets romantic.  Let’s face it Raylan does not show good judgement when it comes to women.  He tends to pick users of questionable moral character.  So we are left to wonder about Allison.  Was she using the guy to lure Raylan out of the house leaving her alone to retrieve something stashed inside?  Rachel points out that very possibility to a reluctant Raylan.  This leaves us to wonder if Raylan is getting lead down the rosy path once again.
 good intentions 2


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Later Allison tells Raylan the man is the father of a child she has placed in protective custody.  This prompts the white knight in Raylan to visit the man and use his own baseball bat on him.  He warns him to leave Allison alone after a few whacks, but not before the man accused Allison of planting drugs in his house.
Meanwhile, the owner of the house, Monroe,  is released from prison.  He sends his “maid” to the house on a pretense of checking the coy pond.  Raylan and Rachel discover that she has opened a safe containing gold.
This discovery inspires Raylan to hatch a plot in which she calls and tells Monroe that Wynn Duffy has taken the gold.  He then proceeds to visit Duffy to tell him he is going to help him because Monroe is going to kill him.  This prompts Duffy to state “So you are going to help me out of a situation you created?”
Outside Duffy’s man Mikey shoots and kills a man that he says drew a weapon on him.  So is this Monroe’s man?
In the Ava and Boyd saga portion of the show, Boyd’s drug shipment is stolen.  Dead bodies are all that are left behind.  Boyd is left wondering who is stealing his drugs.  His partner Duffy or one of his dealers.
Boyd also snaps at Ava when she accuses him of not doing enough to get her out of prison.  He tells her there is nothing legally he can do.  She did kill Delroy and she was caught moving his body.  Ava then leaves the room in anger but not before Boyd asks her for the second time to help him with finding a whore named Candy.
 raylan for good intentions post


Meanwhile Boyd and the Russian lady seemed to be headed for a tumble in the sack.  Guess we will see how this plays out.  Is she really double crossing her husband or is she playing Boyd?

Amongst all this action, Dewey tries to rid himself of his cousin to no avail.  Looks like Dewey is headed for more trouble when his cousin tells him to kill his bartender for stealing.  Seems he has  been skimming money for Boyd or so he claims.
There is a myriad of cross and double cross in this episode.  We can see the stories building up to the inevitable collision of all the players in one big showdown.  But even though we know where we are going we still enjoy the ride.
This episode was a strong one.  It seems Jusitified has found its old stride and is off an running again.  Even though they have obviously decided to step up the violence this year, it didn’t seem forced or over the top this time.
I can’t wait to see what is in store for us in next week’s episode “Over the Mountain”.
Favorite Line of the Episode.  Art to Raylan “Were you working out or something?”  Raylan – “Just Bowling”
Give us your thoughts in the comments.  We love to hear other fans take on things.

Spoiler alert

Justified Review Season 5 Episode 2: The Kids Aren’t Alright

Did you miss this episode?  Watch it here.

Raylan kids aren't alright

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Raylan Finds Romance in The Kids Aren’t Alright

“The Kids Aren’t Alright” was the second episode of Season Five of Justified. I thoroughlly enjoyed this episode. After being very disappointed with the season premiere, “A Murder of Crowes”, I was pleasantly surprised with this week’s episode.
The writer’s seemed to get back to the roots of the show with this one. Raylan was full of witty banter. He even shared a story with one of the drug dealers. A little insight into his troubled childhood he likes to share with the bad guys every now and then. Things he would never consider sharing with people in his life. Raylan hasn’t done that for awhile and I was glad to see it in this episode.
raylan kids aren't alright 3

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This week’s episode finds Raylan confiscating a man’s house and possessions as he is hauled off to jail. In the midst of the arrest he gets a phone call. Raylan then gives Rachel a rather cryptic explanation for leaving. A sheriff has accused him of being responsible for selling his son drugs. Raylan then leaves in the man’s confiscated car.
Later we find that Loretta is the reason Raylan received the call. She has landed in jail for selling drugs to the sheriff’s son. Raylan seems quite put out that she has used his name thinking he is her get out of jail card. Much to Loretta’s surprise he informs her he is going to let her ride the rap.
raylan kids aren't alright 2

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On his way out he runs into Loretta’s new social worker. She is an attractive blonde, so Raylan’s interest is stoked up. He tells her he will deal with Loretta’s boyfriend, her partner in crime, and then get back to her.
Tracking down Loretta’s boyfriend proves to be more than Raylan expected. He finds the boyfriend in the clutches of two thugs. Raylan convinces them to leave and tells the boy to break up with Loretta. Of course that confontation isn’t over.
Loretta shows up at the marshal’s office crying. She is desperate for Raylan to find her missing boyfriend. This leads to Raylan’s confrontation with the same two thugs from earlier. When their boss shows up, Raylan shares a childhood story with him. This is followed by his explanation of how it taught him to defend himself. As he states so matter of factly “I can drop four of you before you clear your weapon and have a good chance at the other two. And see this star that makes it all legal.” This ends the confrontation.
I love the scenes with Raylan and Loretta. Loretta sees Raylan as a father figure and typical for Raylan, he struggles with this role. He obviously feels tender toward Loretta and yet he holds himself back. Raylan has difficulty letting anyone inside his armor.
I have a feeling we will probably see more of the troubled Loretta. Raylan can’t seem to break free of his responsiblity towards her.
Raylan also gets new digs when he is allowed to move into the confiscated drug house, a mansion complete with bowling alley. He has Loretta’s social worker, Allison, over for food and conversation. A budding romance for Raylan, it will be interesting to see where it goes. We can only hope it turns out better than his last one.
I am not a fan of the Boyd and Ava saga. I think they take up too much of the story and interupt the flow making the show feel like two separate shows.
Seems Ava is finding that the criminal life isn’t all big houses on a hill. She is experiencing the reality of living outside the law. She becomes ever more frustrated that Boyd hasn’t gotten her out. This seems ridiculous to me. She has already been on probation for killing her husband. I can’t imagine in what scenario she walks free on this one.
In reality she would already be in prison. Even abused wives don’t get off on premeditated murder. There was some mention of an ankle bracelet in season one but even that disappeared in season two.
We will probably see Ava doing some soul searching while in jail. Meanwhile Boyd continues down his path of no redemption.
raylan kids aren't alright 4
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All in all this was a good episode. Raylan was back in full form. The dialogue was witty and the characters were rich. We can see trouble brewing for Raylan as Art has decided to poke around in Nicky Augustine’s demise.
Favorite Line of the night.
Allison to Raylan “This is not going to end up with us waking up together”
Raylan – “You’re just going to use me and go home?”


Justified Review Season 5 Episode 1: A Murder of Crowes
Did you miss this episode? Watch it here

Raylan in Florida

Raylan in Florida

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Justified Season Five premiered Tuesday, January 7th with A Murder of Crowes.   I have been a fan of this show since the first episode when Timothy Olyphant strolled across the screen looking like Gary Cooper, Clint Eastwood and John Wayne all rolled up into the coolest cowboy ever to walk the face of the earth.  His cold unflinching stare could make your blood run cold.  His crooked little boy smile could melt any ladies heart.  He was a badass that oozed charm.

The Raylan Givens we met in Episode One, Season One was a troubled man.  Returning to his home state of Kentucky, a place he never wanted to see again, Raylan was forced to deal with all his old demons.  His ex-wife and her new husband, his estranged father, his beloved aunt, his old friend Boyd Crowder and a girl from high school who had harbored a crush on him, Ava.

Raylan Season 5

Raylan Season 5

Shop Amazon – 20% Off $75 on BootsThe viewer got to know Raylan through his relationships with all the people he had left behind. He had witty banter with the criminals he pursued, often telling them personal things he didn’t reveal to the people close to him.  Raylan always had a story and a funny one liner for the bad guys.

Now fast forward to Season Five and Raylan is hardly recognizable as the guy we met in Season One.  For some bizarre reason known only to the writers of the show, every personal storyline has been taken away from Raylan.  What could of  been a very interesting love triangle turned into an unlikely relationship between Boyd and Ava while Raylan went back to being a doormat for ex Winona.  Raylan’s aunt is murdered by Dickie Bennett. Winona makes the mystifying decision to leave even though she is carrying Raylan’s child.  His father is killed off in Season Four.  And that leaves Raylan with no storyline at all.

I believe Justified went wrong after Season Two.  So much was made of Mags Bennett and her clan being the most interesting baddies ever.  And so every season since has tried to top the baddest of the bad guys.  It has ruined the show in a lot of ways.

Justified is like two shows in one now.  You have Raylan and then there is Boyd.  Boyd’s story has taken over too much of the show and it interrupts the flow of the story.  I have never found Ava and Boyd’s relationship to ring true.  Why would a woman who hated her husband and his criminal life and his abusive ways so much so that she killled him, why would this woman turn around and get involved with his brother who is cut from the same cloth?  Totally out of character in my opinion.

So now the show is split into three parts.  Raylan, Boyd and the new crop of bad guys..  We hardly ever see the marshals, the people the show was supposed to follow.  So lots of wasted talent most notably the gifted Nick Searcy.

Season Five’s first episode seems to be about the body count.   Graham Yost has stated many times that they did not want to show to be just about violence and yet A Murder of Crowes was full of gratuitous violence.  10 count em 10 dead bodies in this episode.  More than a whole season in some cases.

Raylan in Florida

Raylan in Florida

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We find Raylan testifying in court as to what has happened between himself and Dewey Crowe.  It seems somehow Raylan has become responsible for Dewey’s prison escape and subsequent mishaps. This is a surprise to me as I don’t recall Raylan having anything to do with Dewey’s prison escape.

 But then we have to set up the unlikely scenario of the Crowes coming to Kentucky.  Dilly Crowe sets this in motion by killing a member of the Coast Guard.   Art then sends Raylan to Miami on a mission that is never quite clear.  It seems Raylan is the only person in the marshal service that can locate a Crowe in the swamp.  Once there he teams up with another Marshal whose purpose seems to be to explain to the viewers why Raylan doesn’t want to visit his baby daughter.

Boyd meanwhile gets to visit Ava in prison.  He assures her he will get her out by any means necessary.  But in the meantime he continues to make drug deals.   The drug deal goes bad and that is our first three dead bodies all before the opening credits.  Boyd shoots one man in the head without blinking an eye. He then travels to Detroit with Wynn Duffy to find out what happened to his drugs.   In Detroit we are treated to an off camera chainsaw mutilation.  Apparently if you owe someone one million dollars and can’t pay, you just cut off body parts with a chainsaw.  Ridiculous.  Here we get our next 3 dead bodies.

But somehow Boyd and Duffy come out alive.  The duo then meet with some Canadians who have the drugs they are seeking.  Then for some reason I still don’t understand they hand over their case full of money without receiving the drugs.  Really?  The man who had just shot someone in the head for attempting to double cross him just hands over his money.

Meanwhile Raylan tracks down the Crowes and makes a deal with them to capture fugitive Cuban Elvis.  The Crowes decide Dilly Crowe has to go so he becomes body number 8.  Raylan catches up with Elvis as he tries to escape to Cuba.  Elvis becomes body number 9 in a shootout overkill when Raylan and his fellow marshal both empty their  weapons when the fugitive draws a gun on them.

Raylan returns to Kentucky where he Skypes with Winona.  Apparently he is ok with seeing his daughter on the computer just not in person.  He assures Winona he will visit soon, not telling her he has just returned from Miami.

Meanwhile Boyd thinks the local undertaker can help him get Ava out of prison.  He visits the man who arrogantly refuses and insults Ava.  Boyd then beats him to death.  Body number 10.   I found this episode very disappointing.  Too much needless violence.  The plot was boring and sometimes just plain confusing.

I don’t think the band of dimwitted Crowes is going to be a great nemesis for Raylan.   I find Boyd and Ava’s characters to be more unlikeable in every episode.  Ava is after all a murderer and belongs in prison as does Boyd.

Justified has managed to take the coolest character on television and turn him into a bit player in his own story.  Here’s hoping they wake up and get back to what made this show great if it is possible at this point.

Favorite quote from this weeks episode

Raylan- “If I start arresting girls how’s that going to look for you Dewey?  You and Wade the only two pussies left in this whorehouse.”

We must note that we loved the tribute to Elmore Leonard at the beginning. What did you think of the episode?

Let us know in the comments.

3 thoughts on “Lets Talk Justified

  1. I totally agree about them spending way too much time on the Boyd storyline. I also hate that Ava went so bad. She was our favorite girl for Raylan. We hated the third season but felt the forth was a lot better although maybe going to far. Our fav line actually being Boyd’s “Goddamn Drew Thompson”. But so far we don’t like where this season is going. Quit splitting the storyline in twos and threes and get back to the heart of the story. That being Raylan Givens.

  2. From the moment I first laid eyes on Raylan Givens, I was in love. Not only was the man smokin’ hot, sweet, funny, brave and sexy, he was genuine. The show, although sometimes over the top, was genuine and completely entertaining. I thoroughly enjoyed the first 4 seasons, even though it seemed to go off-track now and then, but the focus always shifted back to Raylan. I don’t know what happened to this season either. After reading the reviews on this site each week, I have to concur on most points. I tuned into this show because I thought I would like it; Timothy Olyphant was someone who had caught my eye in movies and I wanted to see what he would be like in a TV show. He had me hooked from the start. But now he’s hardly in any of the episodes and it makes me want to scream in frustration. I realize he can’t be in every single scene, but 10 minutes out of 45 is definitely not enough. I think the writers lost their heads when Elmore Leonard died. Maybe they should look up their butts for them, because I think that’s where they are! Fans want MORE Raylan, not less!

    • I am glad to see I am not alone in my Raylan frustration. Not only is Raylan’s screen time down but he has no real storyline. He just meanders in and out of the bad guy’s stories. It has truly been a disappointing season thus far.

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