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Rewind and Repeat: Raylan Takes on Fletcher “Icepick” Nix in Justified “The Gunfighter” 

Photo Credit: FX

If you’re like me you’ve been anticipating the start of Justified‘s third season with a mixture of impatience, excitement, and just a little pinch of dread. I only say dread because while I believe in Graham Yost and his extremely talented staff of writers, I knew it would be hard to top the show’s stellar sophomore season. But from the first moments of “The Gunfighter,” I knew I was in good hands. There were a lot of great moments in the episode but the most tense, most frightening moment comes when Icepick shows up at Raylan’s and wants to play his little game.

I was genuinely worried for Raylan and Winona. We saw how Icepick dealt with Delmar Coats and that poor pizza delivery guy. Not only was he brutally violent, but he taunted his intended victims before making the kills. To have someone count you down to your end (or in the case of Raylan and Winona to have someone you love have to do it) is incredibly heartless. But it’s all just part of the game to Icepick. He’s incredibly vain, but I love Desmond Harrington‘s pretty face so part of me doesn’t want him to wear a mask either. That nice packaging can’t hide the killer inside though. So when I saw his yellow cab parked outside of Raylan’s hotel room I knew things were about to get ugly.

With Raylan wounded and still technically on light duty, we know his ability to draw his gun quickly and shot it with any accuracy is seriously compromised. And is it just me or is the way Icepick talks really creepy? He’s so slow and deliberate. I’m sure all his victims thought they’d find a way to avert their deaths, but only Raylan is able to outthink this criminal. As the count down starts – with Raylan’s blessing – I wondered how Raylan would be able to get to the gun quickly enough. I love that he pulled the tablecloth to him to get the gun and then apologized to Winona for ruining it after he shot Icepick. Raylan’s back. Even when he’s wounded and people think he’s not up to the challenge he still proves them wrong. I’m so excited for the rest of the season.

Justified airs Tuesdays at 10/9c on FX.

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