Walt Longmire (Robert Taylor) is damn near giddy with relief from being out from under the dark prosecution cloud. He grabs a bottle of libation from his office and heads into the next room to celebrate with his coworkers. I’ve often wondered: if TV characters were flesh and blood and actually went through the colossal amount of shit that they do, how damaged would they be?! Mental breakdowns all around, I’m certain.
So, it’s good to see Longmire happy, but of course, it’s short-lived. Already at full throttle: The Ferg (Adam Bartley), working with Zach (Barry Sloane), has discovered the Irish mob are back in town and partnering with Malachi. Also, Vic (Kate Sackhoff) reveals there’s a 17th puncture in the late Ian Whitmore’s body that wasn’t caused by an arrow but by a syringe—and the contents of that injection, heroin, is what killed him.
Henry Standing Bear (Lou Diamond Phillips) interrupts their soirée to reveal a white guy with red hair had bought a bulk amount of arrows at the local shop. All evidence points to an old foe named Eddie Harp. “But Eddie Harp is dead,” Longmire says.
Still, he travels to New England to interview Eddie Harp’s parents. The father, Keith, has disowned his son, and because of Eddie’s notorious activities in Boston, the father and Eddie’s mother had to move away. Keith says with bitterness, “Sheriff, whatever bad thing it is you think Eddie did, I’m telling you now, he did it.” Eddie’s mother gives Longmire a clue in the form of checks Eddie has been sending for years that they have refused to cash because it’s dirty money.
Catori Long is missing, and so is her student Tate Dawson. Mathias shows up quizzing Cady Longmire and looking around her office. These Longmires certainly know how to get into trouble, don’t they? I mean, as much as Cady wants to help the dying child, it is quite a leap to believe she wouldn’t have turned in Catori for kidnapping or at least instructed her to go alone straight to the hospital.
Instead, she goes to the hospital and there’s a mob outside, including Tate’s father, who grills Cady on the whereabouts of his son. In the confusion—because Cady instructed her to park a safe distance away—Catori leaves with the child, who is lying on the back seat. Later, Cady works with Zach to help lead Catori by phone to a mobile medical unit set up on the reservation where the “doctors” inoculate him with penicillin. After, the boy is returned to his parents, and Mathias arrests Catori. Did you like this plotline, or like me, felt it should have ended with the Tribal Council saying no in the previous episode?
Vic pulls over a truck carrying a shipment for the Four Arrows Casino in care of Jacob Nighthorse. Inside are crates of arts and crafts with false bottoms containing 20 kilos of heroin. Longmire goes to the casino first to thank Nighthorse for his testimony in court that saved not just the sheriff’s job but also his reputation, then confronts him saying, “You wanted to do me a favor so I would do you a favor down the line.” You are a “broken record,” Nighthorse replies, and he goes to call security as Longmire begins reading the Miranda rights. The surprise kicker: Mathias, Vic, and Ferg are all outside Nighthorse’s door in support.
Now, Nighthorse is on his way to Tri-County lockup where Malachi’s thugs will undoubtedly kill him unless he can convince Henry to convince Walt that he’s innocent of trafficking drugs. Some shipping invoices and Nighthorse’s penchant for not signing paperwork casts enough doubt in Longmire’s mind that the casino mogul could be telling the truth, or a partial truth. Well written, acted, and directed, but I much preferred a complicated Nighthorse who we knew was a little dirty but doing the right thing by helping Longmire, so it’s disappointing to be going back down the Longmire vs. Nighthorse crossroads this late in the game.
Zach proves his worth again when he sees a photo of Eddie Harp and informs Ferg and Walt that he had just spotted him at the mobile clinic. “The cowboys and Indians,” as Harp calls them, have him surrounded as Mathias and his officers join Longmire and Ferg. Harp takes his coworker junkie assistant doctor hostage and marches him forward with a tourniquet around his neck. His plan is to steal Longmire’s vehicle and escape, but he squeezes too tight, the hostage collapses, and The Ferg gets revenge for the abuse he faced at the hands of the Irish mob by drilling Eddie Harp smack dab in the middle of the forehead. Powerful ending, but overall, it is a step down from the first half-dozen episodes.
David Cranmer is the publisher and editor of BEAT to a PULP. Latest books from this indie powerhouse include the alternate history novella Leviathan and sci-fi adventure Pale Mars. David lives in New York with his wife and daughter.