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Justified “Debts and Accounts” 

Photo Credit: Prashant Gupta/FX

This episode was a bit meandering, so forgive me, but I’m going to mosey a little, too.

So much with the relationship angst! First, I’m pretty sure Art broke up with Raylan. Raylan and Winona, I think, should break up now because they’re sliding back toward the things that made them divorce. Mags and Helen agree to a detente of sorts that there will be no retaliation against Raylan for Coover’s death, but Dickie pulls a “nyah, nyah, nyah, I can’t hear you” move about it after Mags cuts him loose from the family (and the mine moolah), because he’s stupid that way.

Boyd and Ava break up before they can start (more on that later, or here, if you’re antsy) so Boyd can dive headlong back into everything that’s bad and wrong and dark and dangerous about Harlan County. This involves a visit to cousin Johnny, who I’d forgotten about. Johnny’s bitter, drunk, and disabled from his gunshot wounds last season and not really keen to listen to Boyd until he makes the sales pitch that the Crowders will avenge or rise or some such.

So, Johnny’s in, and they go rob a poker game and pick up another co-conspirator. Dickie comes in long enough to threaten them and they laugh him out of the bar. Dickie goes back to the barn to lick his wounds and enlist a new lieutenant to help him with the only thing he has left–the weed trade–and he clues in the poor, dumb SOB that the job will get complicated.

On the Raylan front, he has a chat with Art that’s all kinds of awkward as Art essentially washes his hands of him, telling Raylan rather plainly that he expects he’s not going to live that long, so why muddy the waters with apologies and excuses. Raylan really has no response for that but I’m presuming it’s something he didn’t expect and it rattles what he thought his place was in the Marshal’s service. This relates later to his chat with Winona about their next steps.

Raylan is summoned to counsel Loretta, who’s having trouble with the idea of a group home placement until Raylan tells her she’ll be a big sister to kids who need one, and that that scenario is light years better than the one in the rearview mirror. She admits that she misses her mom more than her dad, who had descended into a sad state, and she’s childlike for a moment when she asks Raylan if that’s wrong of her. He tells her no.

Back at the office, Winona drops by, carrying with her even more awkward as she’s been dodging Raylan’s calls but needs him now that she’s car-less. Weak-ass plot devicing, but it throws them into a car together long enough that they have to air things out a bit. He’s still not past that she took the money to begin with, and she’s finally pulled the trigger on her divorce by beginning the paperwork. Their heart to heart segues into Raylan suggesting that he could go back to teaching firearms and they could get the hell out of Kentucky, to which Winona responds noncomitally. Their conjecture is interrupted by a car chase and some gunplay that has the two holed up in a warehouse dodging bullets until Raylan takes the shooters out.

Finally, back to Boyd and Ava. As I covered in my relationship recap on them–they can’t seem to function apart from each other because of the bond they have formed, regardless of all indicators that it’s a bad idea. After his evening with the dregs of Harlan, he returns to Ava’s house to stand outside and watch and wait. Knowing Boyd, I think it would have ended there and he never would’ve darkened her porch. But she comes up the road behind him and they have to admit that they’re sort of stuck with, and stuck on, each other now. We’re left with them in a sweet embrace that feels like both of them finally have a home.

So–happy Boyd and Ava; pissed-off and possibly dangerous Dickie; awkward Raylan and Winona; awkward Raylan and Art; hopefully-safe Loretta; a possibly-brewing Kentucky Mafia war. Just enough balls in the air to leave us breathless on the dash to the finale.

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