Monday, March 14, 2011

What I’m Watching: Justified

Justified: Season 2, Episode 5 “Cottonmouth” (B+)

After letting other episodic villains distract him, Raylan is finally getting to the matter of investigating the deadly Bennett family. It’s so interesting to see just how close Raylan gets to illegality without doing anything about it and without having his affiliation with the law strike fear in the hearts of those he nearly apprehends, like with Coover’s marijuana, Loretta’s marijuana, Dickie and Coover’s cashing of the checks, and the older brother’s untrustworthiness as a man of the law. Seeing Loretta becoming more and more incorporated into the Bennetts’ affairs without having any idea of the precarious situation she’s in is both intriguing and disconcerting, aided by Coover’s angry taking of several items from the store and Raylan’s extension of the hand of friendship at the end of the episode to ensure her safety. It’s fascinating to see the road that Boyd is going down, perfectly willing to shoot a criminal in the head but not ready to accept the death of an innocent man. Giving the money to Ava to help her work towards keeping her house is a rather selfless act, and it’s very hard to figure out just what is going through Boyd’s head sometimes. Blowing up the mine would have been a serious, attention-grabbing event, but the way he executed it, with the guys blowing themselves up while they were trying to kill him, was actually rather smart. Where anyone is headed next is a mystery, but there’s certainly going to be trouble afoot in Harlan coming from someone with the last name Bennett, Crowder, or Givens.

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