Raylan Givens (Timothy Olyphant) finally got his man out of Harlan alive on the Tuesday's episode of Justified, but the end of the Drew Thompson mystery/pursuit doesn't necessarily mean an end to the case — there are still two episodes left this season, after all. TV Guide Magazine called up executive producer Graham Yost for a preview of the homestretch.
Timothy Olyphant, Jim Beaver, Erica Tazel
How long has the Justified fan waited for someone to ask this question to Boyd Crowder: "Where did you get all of those teeth?" You'll likely be grinning yourself, while cringing at the edge of your seat, as the pleasures just keep multiplying — a high-octane Justified highball of great banter, tremendous suspense, clever twists and reversals — in a harrowing, hilarious and fantastically entertaining episode, so eventful you might mistake it for a season finale, but thankfully there are still two more episodes to go (Tuesday, 10/9c, FX) in this terrific fourth season.
It has all been building to this violent showdown between the forces of good (the U.S. marshals) and evil (everyone else, from Boyd's crew to an army of thugs and snipers representing the Detroit mob). The target is Drew Thompson (the great Jim Beaver), a 30-year fugitive in sheriff's clothing, currently in the marshals' custody, although they feel like sitting ducks, outnumbered and outgunned in Harlan as they calculate several desperate escape maneuvers while awaiting rescue. The episode, written by exec producer Graham Yost and Chris Provenzano, is titled "Decoy," and revolves around a series of standoffs, confrontations and subterfuges that leave few unscathed and unbloodied. Special props to Patton Oswalt as the loyal and lovably resilient Constable Bob, who even Raylan has to admit is a "tough son-of-a-bitch" by the time the dust settles, following a tense encounter outside a (metaphorically apt) high-school principal's office.
Deputy U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens (Timothy Olyphant) has been shot, strung upside-down and beaten with a bat, and left twice by the woman of his dreams (and now mother of his unborn child), but seldom have we seen Justified's hero as down in the dumps as when his scofflaw father Arlo (Raymond Barry) shot and killed a man he believed to be Raylan at the end of last season.
It's in that low state — living above a dive bar and moonlighting as a sort-of bounty hunter, a big no-no for Marshals — that we find Raylan at the start Season 4, which premieres Tuesday, Jan. 8 at 10/9c on FX. But rather than go the Big Bad route of previous seasons, executive producer Graham Yost says Raylan's biggest beef this season will be with a 30-year-old case whose perpetrator is not as dead as previously thought. "He's of great value to both the forces of good and the forces of badness," Yost says, before adding that any more information might lead into spoiler territory. However, the showrunner did give TV Guide Magazine a few other hints about the season.