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Justified “The Trash and the Snake” 

Photo Credit: Byron Cohen/FX
Photo Credit: Byron Cohen/FX

This is one of those episodes that makes me realize how much I’m going to miss this show.

Let’s start with the good.

Tim and Raylan

Any time we can buddy these two up, I’m on board, and I loved that while Raylan’s running his mouth about the possibility of legalized weed in Kentucky, Tim’s actually investigating and finds the residue around the windows that is a telltale sign the couple who died of carbon monoxide poisoning had a little help.

I also love that we’re down for some sort of Tim-ism when these two are together. When the dog jumped them last year and Tim made the comment about his Calvin’s, I was on the floor. This time, when the topic came up of how they’d like to die, Tim said he’d like to be choked out by Sigourney Weaver’s thighs. And I was on the floor. Again.

When they’re finally face to face with Markham and creepy Ty, I love that there’s no fear there. They’re marshals.  Despite the fact that it was possible (on any other show) for that dining table to become a bloodbath, Tim just stood back and let Raylan talk Avery down, but did get in one zinger. So so good.

Photo Credit: Byron Cohen/FX
Photo Credit: Byron Cohen/FX


This is one of those cases where I wish the opening credits didn’t give things away. Loretta’s relationship with Raylan was one of my favorite things about the season of Mags Bennett and I’m always glad when she rolls back through. How fantastic that she was caught in the crosshairs of the Avery Markham business. I love that she was calm, cool, and collected, and perhaps about to poison Ty when Raylan and Tim showed up. And she held her own with Avery when he sauntered in, too. Now that she’s aged out of the foster care system, she’s intent on making as much a play for the legal weed business as anybody else.

Boyd and Wynn

The boys go see Wiz, an explosives expert played by a terrifically blissed-out Jake Busey, to get a leg up on blowing the safe at the pizza place. Wynn warns Boyd outright that he will want to punch him when they meet, and he does but he refrains. They all throw down some verbal threats before heading over to a backup safe to test the weapons-grade C-class explosives. Wiz takes Wynn and Boyd’s phone and then prattles on while he rigs the bomb, but he forgets his own phone, and as soon as it rings, we flip angles to Boyd and Wynn just as the bomb goes off and they’re sprayed with bits o’ Biz.

Art and Raylan

It’s interesting that Art is more amenable to advising Raylan from a civilian’s standpoint than a superior. Raylan comes calling at breakfast as Art is surreptitiously frying eggs while his wife is out, and he reminds Raylan that Boyd is supposed to be his one and done and then he’s off to Florida. Their exchange is what gives us the episode’s title. Boyd is the trash, and Avery is the snake, and Raylan can’t very well walk by the snake and leave him there. Art tells him to just be careful he doesn’t get bit.

Now for the bad/icky.

Ava and Katherine

We know Katherine is complicated, and dangerous, and that she’s been suspect of Ava’s release. When she lets herself into Ava’s room while Ava’s meeting with Raylan, Ava’s caught off guard. Katherine invites her to lunch, and of course, that gets complicated really quickly. On the face, Katherine is friendly and sociable, and then she starts in on a sly interrogation that gets increasingly more menacing. She asks Ava what it was like to kill her husband. Next, she offers off a few lines of pharmaceutical cocaine.

When we pick up with them again, they’re pulling a bait and switch in a jewelry store. At the end of their long day together, Katherine talks about the thrill of taking Avery’s money because in all likelihood he had her husband killed. Ava’s almost out the door when Katherine asks about the guard who recanted, allowing her to go free, and whether she’d want the chance to thank him. Ava says she wouldn’t want to see him again because she’d probably kill him. She scoots the hell out of there and races back to her room to pack, calling Raylan in a panic. She has to talk Boyd into going home and he agrees to leave the hotel, but steps out to take a shower first. She does all she can to hold it together.

I so do not like where this is going. I’ve been saying since the season started that I want Ava to get the upper hand at some point. A caged, cornered Ava is a dangerous thing, for herself and everybody else. I’m starting to wonder why she doesn’t just run on her own (which the preview indicates she may well do next week). I also feel like we’re setting up Ava to die, and Boyd to rage, or Boyd to be the one that kills her. Seriously, this is the season of Alka-Seltzer. Regardless, Joelle Carter needs to be recognized this year.

I told you in the preview that almost the entire hour was quotable. Here’s my list:

  • “Murphy’s Law. The simplest explanation is usually correct.” “You mean Occam’s Razor.” “Occam’s Razor. Thor’s Hammer. Who gives a sh-t?” “If he and his coadjutors want to seize an opportunity in the land of the Christmas Tree weed, who are we to fetter progress?”
  • “When are you going to tell me? “What?” “The story of Mrs. Hutchins. Was she the teacher who cared? Did she water little Raylan so he could blossom?” “I hated her. She hated English. Nearly turned me off of books.”
  • “A million dollars does afford a lot of a sex wax.”
  • “Hey does it swing right or left?” “I’m assuming you mean the vault door?” “Well, I ain’t talking about your little white pee-pee.”
  • “I told you a–holes to  leave your cellphones in the car.”
  • “You were so hot to start a feud with me that had long since ended that you sold your ancestral land to Loretta McCready?”
  • “I like to drink when I think.”
  • “Loretta, do me a favor. Take a big old step to the right.”
  • “I knew Crowder, too, but no one by the name of Givens.” “Arlo’s wannabe kingpin ass would be heartbroken.”
  • “I think I’ll burn one on the way out. Helps me think.”
  • “I doubt his money’s going to feel as good as he does, but I cannot wait to get my hands on it.”
  • “Stop acting like a badass older than you are. You’re a kid. Enjoy it. No need to take over the Godd-mn world with your ambition. I don’t even know how you’re thinking on this scale.”
  • “You’re gonna sell dope whether it’s legal or not.”
  • “Next couple weeks, just put two big guys out front. Help me sleep at night.”

Justified airs Tuesdays at 10/9c on FX.

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