Everyone’s chasing drugs, money and revenge as Justified struggles to entertain heading into the final quarter of the season.
Let’s bitch it out…
‘Wrong Roads’ plays a bit like a screwball comedy (minus the funny bits): it’s constructed like a long chase scene with multiple players all pursuing the same goal in a series of out of control circumstances. That may sound like fun, but unfortunately it plays out like the series just spinning its wheels. The hour mostly consists of watching Raylan (Timothy Olyphant) and his Memphis equivalent, Special Agent Alex Miller (Eric Roberts), track Hot Rod (Mickey Jones), whose death then prompts them to track Roscoe (Steve Harris) and Jay (Wood Harris), who are themselves tracking Boyd (Walton Goggins) and his crew, who are waiting for Dewey (Damon Herriman) and Danny (A.J. Buckley) to arrive from Mexico with the heroin.
It’s not nearly complicated or satisfying enough, though. The entire episode plays like an extended series of confrontations without any bite, danger or comedy. It is just repetitious: we’ve seen these types of encounters so many times on this show (and done better) that they’ve become a little boring. I can honestly say that very little in this episode held my interest until the final few minutes of the episode when three new developments occur:
- Ava (Joelle Carter) is told to kill “Mother Superior” Judith (Dale Dickey) if she wants nurse Rowena to smuggle in the heroin. It’s not a great twist, but at least it makes the prison storyline a bit more of a moral quandary since Judith just saved Ava’s life. I’m still not overly excited for these scenes, though.
- Art (Nick Searcy) and Raylan – round two. This feels like the only real emotionally sound part of the episode. Never mind the phoney tension when Raylan and Miller walk in on the UN meeting of assholes at the whorehouse, the tension in the air when Art and Raylan interact is palpable. I love that Art doesn’t back down when Raylan tries to charm his way back into his good graces. Raylan still doesn’t feel bad about what he’s done or what it means for Art and his attempt to placate his boss is insulting. I’m with Art: stick it out for a week and a half until retirement and wash your hands of this troublemaker.
- Finally, Dewey can’t take Danny any longer and runs both him and Miller down after they are caught by the DEA because his idiot cousin refused to stay off the highways. This can only mean trouble for Dewey since both Danny and Daryl Jr (Michael Rapaport) have stunning tempers. With that said, however, you’ve gotta cheer for the little guy who gets pushed to the limit, snaps and refuses to take any more shit. I’m proud of Dewey, even if his response did potentially involve vehicular manslaughter.
- Jere Burns’ Wynn (requesting another pot of coffee from room service): “Because this one tastes like my ass on Sunday” Obviously that’s bad and yet…I still don’t understand.
- Boyd’s employee (after he’s been tied up and left gagged): “Goddamn, what the hell kind of place is this?!”
What are your thoughts on the latest episode? Were you bored throughout most of it like me? Were you hoping Art would just forgive Raylan? Has Dewey gotten himself in too deep? Will Wendy (Alicia Witt) and Kendal (Jacob Lofland) ever escape the oppressive shadow of their family? Sound off below.
Justified airs Tuesdays at 10pm EST on FX