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Justified: Watching the Detectives

"You can't go wrong with taupe."

Yes, he got himself into the trouble that eventually killed him, and yes, he was complicit in the attempted murder of Raylan and Winona. But Gary was a likable schmuck who got in way over his head, and he died because he wasn't wary enough, tough enough, or bright enough. I was actually a bit sad at his passing.

Raylan and Boyd seem to go through things in parallel, and they were both framed in this episode. Even though Raylan is our hero and I knew he'd get out of it somehow, the suspense definitely got to me. Raylan managed to mostly keep his cool as practically every law enforcement type in the state of Kentucky dragged him over the coals. Wasn't it lovely that Art, Tim and especially Winona all came through for Raylan? I certainly didn't expect it, since Art once told Raylan he was waiting for him to get killed, Tim has been crabby about Raylan offloading work on him, and Winona has always been resentful of the fallout associated with Raylan's job.

It was clever of Raylan to hang on to that gun. Will he find a way to plant it on Quarles? That might not be twisty enough for this show, though. We shall see.

Sheriff Napier was more devious than I imagined, because blowing up his own car was the perfect way to frame Boyd. And Limehouse has betrayed Boyd and allied himself with Quarles. I'm sure Limehouse backed the losing horse there, although maybe he's just positioning himself to take over when Quarles goes down. Because Quarles is definitely going down. I couldn't believe he was nuts enough to nearly kill Sammy Tonin in cold blood. And he's popping pills, too.

I used to find Wynn Duffy intensely creepy, but now I think I'm starting to like him. Compared to Quarles, Duffy is a pillar of sanity. The Raylan/Duffy face off in the formerly incriminating taupe bedroom was so wonderful that it ranks up there with the best scenes in the series. I loved how they did it with the two of them in profile and practically nose to nose, no camera cuts. "Deputy, are you accusing me of being a fake blond?" Hilarious.

Was Raylan really warning Duffy to jump ship? It was almost like Raylan preferred Duffy's practical and predictable sort of criminal behavior to Quarles and his madness. Actually, it was probably more likely that Raylan was hoping Duffy would take Quarles out for him. And I can see that happening, now that Detroit has cut Quarles loose.

With all of the assorted guest villains and the returns of FBI agent Barkley, AUSA Vasquez and Judge Hammer, this episode was like an outstanding character actor extravaganza. It's delightful that Justified is doing so well that they can keep bringing back such terrific actors. It's such a guy show, though. Couldn't they bring back Carla Gugino, too?

Bits and pieces:

-- The opening shot was of Sammy Tonin cutting into too rare meat. "It's still got a pulse."

-- Boyd was still in prison at the end of the episode. How many times has he bounced back to prison in the course of the series? Maybe I should start keeping track.

-- Dropping that bullet on Duffy's chest was so cool. Too bad it came back to bite Raylan. I have to say, continuity on this show is excellent.

-- There was live country music at the bar where Raylan now lives. What song was that? I heard something about "one drink too many" as Gary was getting himself killed.

-- Tanner is still alive and kicking, and he was smart enough to confront Quarles in a public place. Quarles even put him to work helping Sheriff Napier. Maybe Tanner will live longer than I thought.

-- Wynn Duffy really does love watching tennis on television, doesn't he? I thought he was kidding.

-- Nice performance by Natalie Zea as Winona. She keeps leaving. I wonder if it's eventually going to be permanent?

-- Lots of scenes in the Lexington office. Where was Rachel?

-- Justified has been renewed; we're getting a fourth season. I am not surprised.


Limehouse: "I likes to back the winnin' side."
His accent seemed exaggerated to me. I wonder if he deliberately made himself sound like a lackey so he would appear less threatening?

Detective: "How is throwing a bullet at him gonna accomplish that?"
Raylan: "Told him the next one might be coming a little faster."
Detective: "Deputy, that might just be the coolest thing I've ever laid ears on."

Vasquez: "... which now includes Givens's father Arlo, a lifetime criminal... is that a fair description?"
Raylan: "I'd add 'petty' to be more accurate."
What's funny is that this wasn't just a dig at his father. It really was a more accurate description.

Raylan: "It's bullshit and you know it."
Art: "Is it?"
Raylan: "Is that a real question?"
Art: "It had a question mark."

Raylan: "The S.S. Quarles is going under. You'd best swim like hell to get clear, or the whirlpool will take you down with it."
Duffy: "I believe they disproved that on Mythbusters."
I don't know why, but this one made me laugh like a loon.

Four out of four taupe paint jobs,

Billie Doux loves good television and spends way too much time writing about it.


  1. Although not a quote, I'm surprised, given the abundance of black humor in this series, that there appear to be no comments re the pill popping by Bobby Quarles following his demotion (I've searched). Maybe I've missed something earlier and perhaps this is Mr. Obvious territory, but it seems that Bobby was literally and figuratively swallowing a "bitter pill" while traveling down his new road.

  2. I did mention the pill-popping briefly. It hasn't been mentioned before, but it certainly might explain how manic Quarles is.

  3. Raylan is too cool for this world. He'll always be misunderstood.

    This season is going great. The dialogue is sharper than ever and the cast is tremendously great. And it has something I really like in fiction: the characters (at least the great players) are smart.

    Hey, one of my students is called Rylan. It's a girl. That's Brazil for you.

  4. The song is called "Jack and Coke" by a singer called Linda Kay. She certainly looked and sounded an awful lot like Patsy Cline and I love the character beat that Raylan likes old country music.

    A Quarles/Limehouse partnership scares me to death. These are two very, very frightening men and I can only imagine what they will come up with together.

    Not sure how I feel about Winona driving off into the sunset again. While I really like Raylan and her together, I can't see him as husband/father material.

    But, bless Art for stepping in -- again. I loved listening to him take on both the LPD and the FBI. I also liked his line at the end about Raylan giving him a stroke. The looks on both of their faces were priceless.

  5. I'm running with the assumption that Quarles hasn't popped pills before, based on nothing but the slight reluctance on his face before he chewed on the oxy. He was already loony when he was sober so I like the idea that this means he's gonna get even wilder when he's strung out.

    Gary :( Good night sweet prince. Would that your ex-wife share similar fate, although I'm fine with her living if this is the last we see of her.

    1. Gross, why would you wish that on anyone let alone Winona? She's a great character and adds much needed balance to Raylan's gun slinging ways.


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