“Burned,” this week’s episode of Justified had less of the emotional violence of last week, but a lot more explosions and bodies as Boyd’s (Walton Goggins) heist went horribly wrong, and Raylan’s (Timothy Olyphant) conviction that working with Avery Markham (Sam Elliott) to take down Boyd also seemed increasingly suspect. Also, RIP Uncle Zachariah (Jeff Fahey). Or maybe not! But best of all, we got a meeting between Art (Nick Searcy), Raylan and Wynn Duffy (Jere Burns) in his skivvies. As much as Art disliked that view, I salute Jere Burns for his willingness to let it all hang out there as an actor!
We open with Rachel (Erica Tazel) and Art interrogating Raylan on his hunch about Ava’s (Joelle Carter) turning. Raylan can’t explain it precisely, but I think they should defer to his better understanding of Crowders and people in Harlan. AUSA Vasquez (Rick Gomez) is disgusted at the loss of a valuable asset, coupled with Raylan making sure that Boyd got $100,000 of Avery Markham’s money last week and sarcastically asks where they’ll find another CI. (He also gives us a little rundown on RICOH statutes — the CI actually has to witness Boyd committing crimes, which was why Ava was so perfect.) Art Mullen, always awesome, has an idea about another potential CI.
This leads to Art and Raylan visiting Wynn Duffy; Art’s facial expression as they open up Wynn’s portable tanning bed and spot him in his full glory of thong bikini and nothing else elevates this scene to high art in my book. It turns out that the rat in the Grady Hale case was neither Katherine Hale (as Avery Markham suspects) nor Avery Markham (as Katherine Hale suspects) but Wynn Duffy himself. (Which also explains why he was so anxious that Katherine continue to believe that it was Avery.)
At first, Wynn doesn’t want to cooperate with becoming CI Verson 2.0, but Art and Raylan persuade him by pushing him headfirst into the tanning bed and holding the lid down on him. I guess it feels like a very well-lit coffin, because Wynn eventually agrees to work with the Feds (much to Mikey’s disgust.)
Like Omar Little before him, Mikey (Jonathan Kowalsky) believes that a man’s got to have a code, but Wynn tells him that it’s better to be a live rat than a dead lion (or words to that effect). For good measure, he points out that Avery, Katherine (Mary Steenburgen) and Boyd would all betray Wynn and Mikey without a second thought.
And speaking of the devils we know … Avery and Katherine discuss their big upcoming party in Harlan, and Avery promises that although this event does seem very similar to electioneering, his campaign for the hearts and minds of Harlan County ends here, and Katherine doesn’t have to kiss any babies. Just as well, because based on what comes later, Katherine would probably bite them or something!
There’s a knock on the door, Katherine answers, and is confronted by none other than our disloyal friend Seabass (Scott Grimes), who took a bunch of Avery’s money to betray Ty Walker, and now feels that he’s owed even more for the pain and suffering that betrayal cost him. Katherine offers up that she has a tennis bracelet in her purse, and when Seabass tell her to get the purse, she shoots him through the purse right in heart. Seabass dies quickly and Katherine calls up whatever room service number you need for “disposal of dead bodies.” Interestingly, she speaks in French, which maybe means there’s a ninja team of French people on hand should you wish to dispose of some bodies. Or else it’s just a bit of local color.
At Boyd’s bar, Ava and Boyd discuss the fact that she told Raylan about Boyd’s plan to come up through the floor of Avery’s basement. Ava says she had no choice, and that she had to give Raylan something. I’m starting to suspect Ava’s now a triple agent. And possibly a goner.
Wynn arrives to jump start his CI career by telling Boyd that Avery is planning to move his money out of the Portal’s basement that very night. Boyd realizes that unless he blows up the safe immediately, he will lose his chance.
Ava and Boyd are at the bar, discussing what she told Raylan. Wynn arrives and tells Boyd that Avery plans to move his money that very night, so Boyd’s plan of blowing up the vault has to happen immediately. Of course this is a setup by Raylan.
Boyd tells Zachariah they have to move tonight, something Zachariah isn’t too happy about because he’ll have to speed up his “kill Boyd Crowder and avenge my beloved niece’s suffering at the hands of the Crowder clan” plans.
Wynn is super pleased with himself for setting this up, but when he meets Raylan and Tim to let them know the plan’s in session, Raylan breaks the bad news that Wynn actually needs to be present when Boyd takes Avery’s money or else bye-bye RICOH prosection. Poor Wynn!!
Loretta’s back, you guys! Yay, I love Loretta (Kaitlyn Dever). Anyway, she arrives back at her home (which may also be Mags Bennett’s home) only to find a headless snake on the floor of her living room. As she’s processing this, an insanely creepy guy shows up and verbally sexually harasses her while showing off his gunslinging skills. I guess Avery didn’t back off Loretta’s land as Raylan asked.
Boyd is laying out the plan for Ava and Errol (Demetrius Grosse). They will start a fire at the pizza parlor while Boyd comes up through the floor of Avery’s safe and steals all the money. They’ve just finalized their plans when Loretta arrives and asks Boyd to go into business with her: she knows about growing pot, and Boyd knows about selling drugs and killing people and other unsavory things. Boyd says he won’t be around in Harlan much longer, but his boys will help protect Loretta and her crop of weed. You know, considering how badly Boyd’s boys have fared lately, that doesn’t sound nearly as reassuring as Boyd means it to.
Everyone who’s anyone is at Avery Markham’s pizza parlor, including Loretta, Raylan, Boyd and Ava.
The menacing guy (whose name, I learn is Boon) comes toward Loretta and talks about gunslinging. Raylan’s offer to ignore Boon (Jonathan Tucker) is, in turn, ignored by Boon. Avery makes a speech about how he’s going to bring prosperity and progress to Harlan, but he’s cleverly upstaged by Loretta, who reminds everyone that she didn’t kill anybody to get their land. Loretta asks the assembled landowners of Harlan who they’d rather sell to — the man who kills those who didn’t give up their land, or Loretta herself, whom they’ve all known from a baby. This girl is either going to end up as governor of Kentucky or get herself killed in the next six weeks. Hmmm!
Raylan is shocked and not a little alarmed that Loretta has aligned herself with Boyd. He tells her he can’t sell her his land now. Meanwhile, Katherine and Grady discuss that “something needs to be done about that girl.”
Back down in the mine where Wynn, Boyd, Carl (Justin Welborn), and Zachariah prepare to blow up the floor, as upstairs, Raylan lets Ava know that he knows she’s turned. Despite the knowledge, or perhaps in desperation because now they really need that money, Ava goes through with Boyd’s plan and starts a grease fire in the kitchen.
Down in the mine, Zachariah hits Boyd on the head and then chaims him to a post to await the soon-to-occur giant explosion. Wynn and Carl get out while the going’s good, but Boyd is trapped, watching the fuse for all the explosives get eaten up by the second. Boyd’s increasingly desparate calls for help are answered by Carl, who frees Boyd just in time.
Boyd, Carl, and Wynn make it out of the mine, right to where Rachel and Tim (Jacob Pitts) are waiting for them. Unfortunately, Boyd’s failure also means the marshals failed at least for the moment. At the pizza parlor, Raylan and Avery go and see the money in Avery’s bank vault again. Avery seems to be under the impression that, just because he donated all that money in the manhunt for Ty Walker, he and Raylan are friends. Raylan just ignores him and goes about his own way.
At Crowder’s bar, Errol brings Ava back from their decoy operation at the Portal. Boyd confronts Ava about whether she was in on Zachariah’s plan to kill him. She manages to convince him that she’s not lying when she says she didn’t know anything about Zachariah’s plans. She asks him whether Zachariah survived the explosion and when Boyd says he doesn’t know, a look of great pain crosses her face. I wonder if she really was in on Zachariah’s plan. Boyd tells her that he plans to take the money when Avery decides to move it.
Someone else is getting a tongue-lashing too — Rachel upbraids Raylan for wasting all this time and money and still not getting to arrest Boyd because he hasn’t really committed any crimes yet. Raylan tells Rachel that both Boyd and Avery are doing “what we want them to do.” He assures Rachel and Tim that Boyd won’t stop, that he’ll keep going after Avery’s money and (implicitly) that that’s how they’ll get Boyd.
Regina Thorne is an avid reader of just about everything, an aspiring writer, a lover of old movies and current TV shows, and a hopeless romantic.