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The Tuesday Playlist: Justified, New Normal Finales; Another Look at Phil Spector

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.

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The Tuesday Playlist: Family Affairs on New Girl and NCIS

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.

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Justified Executive Producer Graham Yost Talks Season 4 Homestretch

Justified

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. read more

TV's Best Dramas Right Now: Hats Off To FX's Justified

Timothy Olyphant

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... read more

The Thursday Playlist: The Last Resort, Big Gets for Katie, Kimmel, Archer's Bromance

Last Resort

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).

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Justified's Walton Goggins: Boyd's Religious Experience Has Come Back to Haunt Him

Walton Goggins

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.

Winter TV: Get the scoop on your favorite returning shows

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.... read more

On the Set: Timothy Olyphant Talks Justified Season 4

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.

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Tuesday Playlist: The Return of Justified and Cougar Town, Jimmy Kimmel's Move, More

Justified

A week's worth of notable TV has been crammed into one very busy night. Let's take it from the top.

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Justified EP Graham Yost Teases "More Mystery... And a Big Fugitive Pursuit" in Season 4

Timothy Olyphant

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.

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Exclusive Clip: Justified Season 3 DVD Reveals That Timothy Olyphant is a Klutz!

Timothy Olyphant

Justified's Raylan Givens, played by Timothy Olyphant, is one of the most effortlessly cool characters on television. He downs Jim Beam like water, wears a Stetson like nobody's business, and drops bullets on his enemies while growling, "Next one's comin' faster." But as we learn in this exclusive teaser below for the show's Season 3 DVD/ Blu-ray sets, Olyphant's a little more prone to bouts of klutziness.

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Justified: Elmore Leonard, Timothy Olyphant, and Graham Yost Live at the Paley Center
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