Thursday, January 17, 2013

Justified: Where's Waldo?

The second episode of Justified continues to set the stage and moves the pieces forward. Secrets and confidence, as with the first episode, remain the two predominant themes in this episode. The Boyd/Billy storyline is going in an interesting direction, given Boyd's past. He was, as he stated, in the same spot as Billy in season one before events shattered his faith. Maybe Billy is what he seems to be, but this wouldn't be an Elmore Leonard story without some kind of hidden agenda, now would it? That agenda is being run by his sister. Now, they say they are brother and sister, but is that really the case? I wonder. After the Waldo twist in an earlier scene, I wouldn't be surprised if they do it again.

The "Waldo" storyline has its own unique twists and turns. We get to see Raylan and especially Art deal with the bottom of the barrel (if there is such a thing) in Kentucky and we get a few funny bits. The dead guinea pig, like all great comedic moments, is funny and disturbing at the same time. I'm still trying to figure out what exactly we're dealing with here apart from drugs. It's important enough to a semi-senile Arlo to kill over. Will it tie back to the cartel from season 1 or is there a different, more personal angle at play here? It'll be interesting to see.

Raylan is clearly not his old self and the scene with the MMA-style guy who turns out to be Lindsey's husband is a bit of a cheap cliffhanger, but nonetheless effective. I hope this story doesn't drag too long.

As for Ella Mae, she is not long for this world, but you probably already knew that. Her death will serve as the catalyst for what happens next between Billy and Boyd.

The wild card: Wynn Duffy, who makes his glorious return. He also shows the psychotic edge we'd seen in seasons 1 and 2 with an almost throwaway gesture. It is implied, a bit too obviously, that he may have a stake with Billy and his preaching. He also has a stake with the dead man Arlo killed and whatever he's hiding may be worth big money to the ever-ambitious Wynn.

The cycles keep spinning, but we shall see if it amounts to anything. One thing's for sure: The cast needs to be trimmed before the stories get stretched too thin.

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