"Justified" Episodes 8 & 9: Recap & Review

5/16/2010 Posted by Admin


"Justified" Episodes 8 & 9: Recap & Review

By our guest blogger, Sanela Djokovic


In the eight episode of “Justified” begins with a reunion between Ava and her father-in-law, whose first order of business is to instill some fear into Ava, with his casual demeanor and crass innuendoes cradling the threats he does not need to spell out. Yup, he’s gotta be Boyd’s father. And Raylan’s impeccable timing doesn’t fail as he comes to Ava’s rescue.

The other woman in Raylan’s life, his ex-wife Winona, also is feeling threatened when she comes home to find a polished stranger standing in her kitchen. Wynn Duffy (played by the always-slimy Jere Burns) is in the security business and insists that her husband Gary invited him over. But Winona’s instincts tell her otherwise and she asks the man to leave.

Meanwhile Raylan has to deal with Vasquez, the man investigating his shootings. And, while Raylan plans to be on his best behavior, the task proves to be more difficult when a prisoner named Wallace takes two guards hostage at the station. Givens, of course, is the only one the gun-wielding prisoner wants to talk to, so Mullen gives him the order to take a shot if given the opportunity in spite of Vasquez, who is a witness.

Givens believes he has a ticket into the man’s mind when they discover his tattoo--the name “Simone.” Wallace toys with him, leading them to believe Simone was the name of his estranged daughter, before telling them that it is the name of his first murder victim. His objective is to toy with them. His objective is to pay the guards back for the games they played with him.

A SWAT team in on the way, but Vasquez lets Givens know he is in the clear if he should have to take action. When the SWAT team arrives they want to take immediate action, but Givens thinks he has a better idea—food. Wallace wants some fried chicken, so Givens brings it in, promises to bring the man fried chicken for the next three nights, and he gives him some bourbon. Wallace just wants to be treated like a human being, and the hospitality of free chicken and bourbon must be his criteria for that, because he surrenders.

The issue with Wallace is settled, but the probe into Raylan’s shootings isn’t. Vasquez informs Mullen and Givens that Boyd Crowder has to be released, because they do not have a strong enough case against him.

Givens is there to greet Boyd when he is released, with a message—that he will work hard to find a way to put him back in prison.


“Don’t you usually wear an obnoxious hat of some sort?” asks Raylan’s favorite informant. But the ninth episode of “Justified” starts with (gasp!) Raylan losing his hat…in a bar fight…that he obviously lost. After being suspended, Raylan gets drunk, roughed-up and left hatless.

Winona, however, is there to take him to his hotel and nurse him, allowing us to see their chemistry in a more intimate setting. She also takes the opportunity to fill in Raylan about Wynn Duffy and their encounter, and to ask him to do some subtle inquiring.

Winona’s husband, Gary, in a desperate attempt to clear his mess up, pays an old friend a visit. Toby is an ex-NFL player who boasts a Super Bowl ring he won while watching his team on the sidelines. We learn that Gary borrowed some money from a shady investor and Duffy and his thug are out collecting for him. But the investment isn’t yet as fruitful as it could be and he does not have the money. Toby, a family man now, cannot lend him any money, but he could tag along when Gary pays Wayne a visit. Toby makes his presence felt, but he pays the price when Duffy’s thug beats him dirty in the middle of his own kitchen. Next on their list is Winona.

Raylan Givens also pays Wynne a visit, coming off, as usual, very amicable and harmless--until his last few works indicate something quite the contrary. Then he goes back to the bar in hopes of getting his hat back, but the bartender doesn’t have it. The bartender suggests it would be easier for Givens to buy another hat, but Givens promptly replies, “Maybe. But it ain’t easier I’m looking for.”

Lucky for Givens, the town informant is still stuck in Kentucky and informs him that Wynn Duffy and his washed-up boxer thug work for a former street hustler named Emmitt Arnett, who finds investment scams a more efficient way to make money. Raylan then surprises Arnett’s executioner at his home. He tries to faze Givens, but it is Givens who does the fazing and gets him to spill the beans on their plan to kidnap Winona.

Raylan is able to get Winona out of her home and while he is driving her someplace safe, she confides in him about Gary. She explains that she needed Gary, because of his passion and ambition, because she needed to feel hope again. She also admits that she loves Gary and that she wants her life with him back.

Raylan finds Gary on the vacant property he bought with Arnett’s money--it's the land he wanted to build a shopping center on. He contemplates killing himself, but Raylan gets him to see that the mall, the money—none of it is worth dying for. He then accompanies Gary to Arnett’s office, where Gary presents Arnett with paperwork indicates that the property belongs to him—the land turns out to be exactly what Arnett wanted. But Arnett’s men aren’t pleased, because they were expecting a big pay-off. Tensions boil, guns are pulled, shots fired and the only two unarmed men are the ones who get out unscathed—Raylan and Gary.

Gary comes home to his wife, as Raylan watches them embrace and watches the relief and gratitude on Winona’s face. And we get to see something on Raylan’s face—a love and admiration eternal and unwavering. But Raylan refuses to go hatless any longer. He finds the men who beat him up at the bar, pays for their drinks and with little scuffle and no pain, his Stetson finds its way back to Marshall Givens.

These last two episodes of “Justified” were brought to life by Jere Burns, who plays Wynn Duffy. Known for his effective execution of sleaze, Burns carries menace on his face. It is stretched out in his naughty smile and creeps out of his casual and quiet malice. Eerie.

But everyone likes to see Raylan Givens win at the end, even up against someone as sinister as Wynn Duffy. And although Raylan sported some cuts and bruises on his face, they came courtesy of a very unsober Raylan Givens. What does keep our protagonist so interesting is the way the writers of “Justified” find ways to add layers to the character and to his story--past and present. The last two episodes have brought to light Raylan’s relationship with his ex-wife, and it is more complicated than we expected. Somehow, the idea of him running to Ava and leaving the past in his rear-view mirror is not a likely story.

But what the audience probably is waiting for is for all the little nuggets of Raylan and Crowder moments to turn into a full-blown war. Maybe these small nuggets are small for a reason—an indication that when it comes, it is going to be massive. Or it could be an indication that their story is going to be handled carefully, that it is going to be a staple of “Justified” for a long time to come.

  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Yahoo! Buzz
  • Technorati
  • Facebook
  • TwitThis
  • MySpace
  • LinkedIn
  • Live
  • Google
  • Reddit
  • Sphinn
  • Propeller
  • Slashdot
  • Netvibes


  1. Anonymous said...

    good points and the details are more specific than somewhere else, thanks.

    - Thomas

  2. Anonymous said...

    Finally, an issue that I am passionate about. I have looked for information of this caliber for the last several hours. Your site is greatly appreciated.