Justified Season 5 Review “Shoot the Messenger”

Justified Season 5 Episode 6 Shoot The Messenger (6)

This week’s Justified did a good job of moving the various storylines forward. Boyd continued his quest to become a drug lord, Raylan continued his strategy against the Florida Crowes of seek-and-annoy, and Ava discovered the harsh reality of being incorporated in the general population into the state penitentiary.

I was afraid that we were going to get some offensive rape scenario with Ava in prison, so I am glad that they did not go down that path. Instead, when Ava is integrated with the rest of the hardened criminals, she gets a massive beatdown. Her assailant, Gretchen, is motivated by Boyd’s abandonment of his white supremacist ways. I liked this angle. It reminds us that while Boyd is a bad man, he used to be a lot worse. I also liked the way that Boyd handles the situation. When he learns about the attack on Ava, he recruits Daryl Crowe to brutally beat Gretchen’s brother. Good ol’ Kentucky justice.

The Crowe family drama continues. Dewey is still desperate to get rid of the Florida Crowes. Danny is out of control. He and Dewey come up with a scheme to kidnap Boyd’s man in order to get Boyd to pay a ransom. Of course, those two idiots aren’t successful. Raylan and Rachel show up and discover Boyd’s man tied to a chair. Surprisingly, they do not take Danny and Dewey in, but leave the dispute to be resolved between Boyd and the Crowes. This was surprising restraint by Raylan. I love the scenes with Rachel. She is such a great counter to Raylan. She is able to call him on his bs, but still is clearly loyal to him.

This week’s episode gave an interesting glimpse into inner Raylan – something that we don’t get too often. When Danny goes after Raylan’s quasi-girlfriend, it initially looks like Raylan is going to take the law into his own hands, again. As he stands at the door of the cabin where Dewey and Danny are hiding, you can see the conflict in Raylan’s mind. Part of him really wants to break down the door, but he chooses to turn away. Perhaps it is the Augustine situation that has kind of brought home to Raylan that he’s been going too far. This dovetails with the conversation Raylan has later with Allison. She tries to tell him that he is the hero in the tale, but he doesn’t quite believe her. Her description is perfect that Raylan is the guy who would run into a burning building – but also be the one setting the fire. Raylan wants to do the right thing, but his impulsiveness ends up causing him trouble.

We didn’t get a resolution on Raylan’s assumed confession to Art that he had a role in Augustine’s murder. I am happy that they aren’t rushing this situation. This is a big deal for Art. He shows the extent of his moral crisis when he coldcocks Raylan in the eye. We still don’t know what Art is going to do – if anything. I am skeptical that he’ll be able to just let it go. Art values the respectability of the US Marshal’s office and in his eyes, what Raylan did is a big deal. I don’t know that Raylan will ever be able to regain Art’s trust. I do hope that we see them hash it out at some point.

Next week, we’re going to see Boyd take his business south of the border and there’s no way that’s going to go smoothly. I’d like to see Ava become a prison boss, but she may need more than a haircut to accomplish that. I’m also ready for Allison to go away, and for Winona to pay a visit to Harlan.

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