“If cutting off fingers were enough, Grady would still be alive, wouldn’t he?”

– Avery Markham

Things are not looking good for Boyd Crowder.

Only two episodes into the season and he’s found himself in every major character’s crosshairs. His own partners are skeptical he didn’t find the $3 million in Calhoun’s safe. Ava has him believing she’s back on his side while she’s actually selling him out to the marshals. Both Calhoun and Ava have Raylan one step ahead of Boyd. And Ty Walker now knows Boyd was responsible for the robbery.

Boyd has a history of slipping out of every noose just as it tightens, but as we reach the end game, you have to wonder how he can evade everyone. He has too many enemies and a string of bad luck. Though it seems like he and Ava may have found something in the ledger that will give them an advantage – the fact that Walker’s hideout used to be a bank.

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Speaking of Walker, we are starting to get a sense of just how menacing he can be. He’s described early in the episode as both a peacock and the devil himself. He’s charming and friendly, but just below the surface is something menacing. He tells the old couple he’ll have their land one way or another and, in the end, we see him making good on that threat. And we also see him intimidating the poor bank manager – never directly threatening her as she attempts to get safely inside her house with her groceries, but clearly his offer to make omelettes makes it clear he isn’t leaving without intel.

Walker’s style actually seems oddly similar to that of Avery Markham – the man we see in bed with Katharine Hale. When Katherine asks for advice on how to deal with Boyd (indirectly, of course), Avery says he keeps his people loyal by spoiling them, but if they do cross him, his punishment is severe. That seems to be Ty’s style too – he’s more than happy to buy these houses with stacks of cash, but if the people don’t get on board, there’s nothing he won’t do to obtain it. Is this a coincidence or do they share a similar style because Avery is Ty’s boss?

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Ty wasn’t the only smooth talker in this week’s episode. This was a fantastic outing for Ava, who masterfully plays Boyd and gets back in his good graces. Yelling at him to throw off his suspicions about her taking the ledger was brilliant. And offering the advice about the bank in the end solidified her place back in the gang. I also really loved the shot of the gun down by her hip as she marched toward her shed. I’m so glad Ava is back to being relevant again, instead of stuck in a pointless prison side story.

I also really enjoyed Raylan’s face-to-face with Boyd. The two of them on-screen together is always magic and I like the way they both danced around the facts in order to figure out what the other one knew. It was a great scene all around, full of comedy and intensity. And we do have to wonder if being a father has changed Raylan. He does seem more willing to follow the rules and get Boyd by the book. But will that last? He also seemed pretty willing to shoot Boyd in that hallway if it came to it.

This was another great episode. I’m really excited for the rest of the season. Things seem to be headed in a really fun direction.

And another thing …

  • Like the Elmore Leonard stories the show is based on, Justified is great at giving us colorful supporting characters. Choo-choo is easily one of my favorites. I hope we are in store for a lot more of him.
  • Was it just me, or did Boyd saying he was there to “finish off the railings” sound like he said “finish off the Raylan”?
  • How long until Raylan or Ava discover Dewey Crowe’s necklace in the bar?

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Written by Joel Murphy. If you enjoy his recaps, he also writes a weekly pop culture column called Murphy’s Law, which you can find here. Follow Joel on Twitter @FreeMisterClark or email him at murphyslaw@hobotrashcan.com.

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