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Justified “Whistle Past the Graveyard” Review (5×08)

4 Mar

373068036f8a4146c199176c61603691“You’re both under arrest, because you’re a fugitive…and you’re a dick.”

Justified can still bring the humor, but while this line is, for me, the funniest of the episode, it also encapsulates all of the problems of “Whistle Past the Graveyard”. There’s an ambivalence here that’s creeping throughout the show, and this episode in particular stumbles a bit in that department.

That’s not to say it isn’t entertaining; Raylan and Wendy are charming together–doesn’t hurt that you have Timothy Olyphant and Alicia Witt playing the two characters–and the thought of Dewey Crowe and co. going crazy in the back of a truck is sublime. Yet, as much as we can argue that the lack of direction is befitting of the Crowe family mentality, it’s also detrimental to the show.

There’s a nice relationship to be explored between Kendal and Raylan, but I just can’t help getting invested when we’re over halfway through the season and the idea of going to visit Winona is still sticking out like a sore thumb. Raylan’s paternal instinct is activated here, and he has this natural tendency to connect with anyone but his own family, anyone he feels like he can save from the pain and influence he suffered through. He urges Kendal to get out from under the Crowe magnet while he still can, as he knows all too well what can happen if you don’t.

Kendal’s an interesting character, and his reaction to Wendy being his mom and Jack being his dad is one without surprise; he’s come to the point where he’s not going to be expecting anything from anyone anymore, and that aspect of his life is what Raylan notices and attempts to improve upon. Also, Wendy being the mom is not very difficult to guess in the first place.

Elsewhere, we have the Crowes and the Crowders out in Mexico, and the problem here is that much of the complexity has been stripped away; way too many people were killed off in “Shot All to Hell”, a thrilling episode, but ultimately detrimental in the long run. Nevertheless, this episode also delivers a nice, subtle moment in which Daryl attempts to state that Boyd’s part of his family, to which Boyd responds that he just killed his last living relative. That’s a fundamental difference right there: Boyd’s a business man, but he’s able to take a step back and think for a second. He’s a cunning man, unlike Daryl, who’s dangerous in his unpredictability.

Of course, like so many plots, potentially ripe avenues haven’t been traveled down yet. We’re, as much as I hate the word, stalling a bit, so hopefully we get back on track next week.

GRADE: C+

OTHER THOUGHTS:

-The episode got off to a great start, with Alicia Witt pulling out a huge gun and blasting holes through Michael’s tires. I have an even bigger crush on her now.

-“I don’t care if it’s up your ass or on your back, you’re responsible for getting my dope across the border.”

-“He’s my son. Jack is his father. I just thought you should understand.” “Good lord, why?” Oh, Raylan.

-WHERE THE HELL IS WYNN DUFFY?

-So, Raylan really did take the hacker’s advice.

-I’m still hoping we can get some more out of Ava’s plot; her intelligence and skill is interesting to watch, and I hope the prison environment doesn’t continue to bog things down a bit.

-I like Alison-Raylan, and the break-up is fittingly very nonchalant. Hope to see Amy Smart again sometime.

-I wonder when Art-Raylan will boil over.

-“Can we get a car with AC?” *Cut to interior shot of a car*

-No Tim and Rachel=unacceptable.

-I feel so bad giving this show a C+. Haven’t done so in a while.

Photo credit: FX, Justified

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