Timothy Olyphant, Walton Goggins
[WARNING: The following story contains spoilers from the Season 4 finale of FX's Justitfied. Read at your own risk.]
Justified's season finales have generally lived up to their names. Just as "Bulletville," "Bloody Harlan" and "Slaughterhouse" were as violent and intense as you'd expect, the Season 4 finale, "Ghosts" was at times often hauntingly quiet. But that's not to say that no bullets flew.
Having pretty much wrapped up the season-long search for the mysterious Drew Thompson (Jim Beaver) in this season's penultimate episode, trigger-happy Deputy U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens (Timothy Olyphant) was eager to settle into his 30-day suspension by spending some quality time with his pregnant ex-wife Winona (Natalie Zea). Unfortunately, Winona was being held captive by the thugs of Nicky Augustine (Mike O'Malley), the Detroit mobster who had hoped to catch (and kill) Drew Thompson first.
Justified Finale: Will Boyd and Ava get their happy ending?
Though Raylan quickly dispatched the thugs with a few slugs to the chest, the only way to ensure Winona and the unborn baby's safety was to settle his beef with Nicky once and for all....
Justin Bartha and Andrew Rannells
Too soon. We always feel that way when a season of FX's marvelously entertaining Justified comes to a close. It can't be easy sustaining that high-wire act of violent tension and wry bourbon-smooth humor, while staying true to the voice and tone of Elmore Leonard's creation of the laconic yet steely U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens, but they sure make it go down easy. The fourth-season finale (Tuesday, 10/9c) is titled "Ghosts," and it's a haunted hour, all right — haunted by what-ifs, by dreams deferred and hopes crushed by the weight of bad acts and Harlan County's history of bad people — but it's also a truly badass episode when it needs to be, with fateful confrontations and crazy twists, some satisfying and others troubling.
Margo Martindale and Jake Johnson
What kind of family must it be where slacker bartender Nick Miller (Jake Johnson) is seen as the responsible one? That answer becomes clear in a sporadically amusing road-trip episode of Fox's New Girl (9/8c) that takes the roomies to Chicago to lay Nick's scoundrel of a dad (former guest star Dennis Farina) to rest. The formidable Margo Martindale (Justified, The Americans) presides over the ridiculous antics as Nick's gruff but needy mom, and cable clown Nick Kroll hams it up as his emotionally volatile brother. As usual, Schmidt (Max Greenberg) hijacks the proceedings with his death neuroses, and while he wonders "What's with this open casket thing?" it's his encounter with said coffin and its contents that provides the episode's biggest laughs.
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.
He had us at "Kablam!"
From the first time Justified's retro lawman Raylan Givens (Timothy Olyphant) did his Gary Cooper walk into the frame and — within the pilot episode's opening three minutes — laconically disposed of Miami hit man Tommy Bucks, we've loved him. After being transferred to his home state of Kentucky, the deputy U.S. Marshal has had to put down his share of scofflaws and ne'er-do-wells in Harlan County. But Season 4 has...
Under the familiar heading of "shows gone too soon," ABC's robust, though at times berserk, military thriller Last Resort is the only failed freshman series from this season's underwhelming fall crop that I would argue deserved more of a chance — or at least a tryout in a more appropriate time period — to catch on as it figured out its sprawling narrative. With the great Andre Braugher and the appealing Scott Speedman leading a strong and (on the island at least) exotic cast, this action drama about a rogue nuclear sub standing up against a homeland gone haywire is unlike anything else on network TV. Which made it a risk, though one well worth taking, and at least ABC let the producers complete the initial 13-episode order, which now comes to a too-early, but let's hope satisfying, end (Thursday, 8/7c).
Some television shows suffer when they pull the focus from their leading man or woman. That's not true of FX's Justified, thanks in no small part to the endlessly watchable Walton Goggins and his backwoods kingpin Boyd Crowder.
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Originally conceived as a white supremacist with a penchant for blowing things up, Boyd was supposed to die in the pilot at the hands of the show's hero, Deputy U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens (Timothy Olyphant), one of Boyd's childhood friends. Once the writers saw fit to postpone Boyd's fate, he's spent three seasons vacillating between being a reformed preacher, a faithful lover and a self-interested crime lord — all the while trading barbs with Raylan while (usually) managing to keep his dirty hands out of Raylan's cuffs.
But in Season 4, the old friends and sworn enemies have yet to share a scene. (And according to executive producer Graham Yost, they won't until Episode 5.) Instead, Boyd's once again trapped in a Bible battle with snake-handling Preacher Billy (guest star Joe Mazzello), who has moved into Harlan with the intent to save the souls of Boyd's Oxycontin-addicted customers....
Timothy Olyphant, Erica Tazel
Deputy U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens' signature Stetson isn't the only hat Timothy Olyphant wears on the Justified set in Santa Clarita, California. He's got his proverbial producer's cap on as he peers at a monitor and shakes his head.
A week's worth of notable TV has been crammed into one very busy night. Let's take it from the top.
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.