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Justified’s Relationship Recap: Women Rule in Harlan County 

Photo Credit: FX

Let’s think about this for a minute. Mags Bennett is the head of her family. She rules with an iron fist and she’s not above hurting her own flesh and blood if she needs to prove a point. Helen is the heart and soul of the Givens clan. She may be Raylan’s step-mother but she loves him enough to fear for his life should he keep tangling with the Bennetts. Ava Crowder is just trying to make ends meet. You know she cares about you when she’s pointing a shotgun at your enemies and/or killing them. Carol Johnson may be a ball buster but she knows what she wants and she goes after it. In this case, it’s land for the mining company and Raylan Givens. 

Mags Bennett. She’s protecting a way of life that’s fast becoming extinct. The coal company wants to own the land around the mines so they can get the maximum profit out of those hills but Mags knows that will just further deteriorate her community. She’s seen what the coal company leaves behind and it’s ruin. They ravage and pollute and they certain don’t care about people. And even though I know what Mags is all about I kind of fell for her speech. She sees herself as the lesser of two evils and I guess she is in a way. And she has people’s love, respect, and fear. She’s a daunting opponent.

Photo Credit: FX

Helen Givens. We don’t see enough of her but every second she’s on the screen I love it. I wonder why she’s still with Arlo. Force of habit or does she still love him? I guess it’s progress that Arlo’s not living in the trailer anymore. But more than that it was nice – and surprising, although I don’t know why – to see Helen so worried about Raylan. She tries to bribe him into staying away from Mags. That situation has me really worried. Yes, Raylan got his butt kicked by Doyle Bennett, but I attribute that to him being hung over. He was off his game. But those Bennetts are dangerous and the fact that Helen is that worried, makes me worry. I don’t think we’ve seen the last of her trying to protect Raylan.

Photo Credit: FX

Ava Crowder. I just love her. She’s fiesty and she’s got her own opinions. She knows her way around a shotgun and she’s never afraid to use it. I’m not sure what was in Doyle and Dickie’s bag of tricks, but I’m glad she shot it before it could get at Boyd. As I’ve said before, I liked her with Raylan but I love her with Boyd. They way those two dance around each other is interesting. I’m already invested and they haven’t even kissed yet. If/when she and Boyd do get together I think she could become a real force to reckon with and I think she might actually convince Boyd to go completely legit. Now that would be interesting.

Carol Johnson. Rebecca Creskoff is only a guest star but she is making a huge impression on me. I like that she’s strong and intelligent and refuses to back down. I like that she isn’t intimidated by anyone and isn’t afraid to tell you what she wants. I used to think Winona and Raylan were meant to be but after that whole stolen money debacle, the bloom is off that rose – at least for me. I don’t want to see Raylan become a cheater but I loved the sexual tension between Carol and Raylan in tonight’s episode. He loses his train of thought when she opens her robe? I laughed out loud. She puts his hands on him and invites him into her bed after the firecracker incident? I’m feeling the heat. I don’t think she’s a viable choice or a smart option for Raylan, but I like that she’s throwing him off his game. Big time

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