Justified: Full Commitment

During last week’s episode, Raylan became suspicious that a car was following him while he was driving Winona to her attorney’s office, and the episode ended with the drivers of the aforementioned car chasing Raylan and Winona into an empty factory—with a shootout ensuing.

The result of all this is that both Raylan and Winona are assigned bodyguards, with Rachel attached to Winona, and the unfortunate Gutterson assigned to Raylan (unfortunate in that he’s not only assigned to protect Raylan but also to prevent him from participating in any way in the investigation of the shooting, a task that turns out to be difficult). Joking references to The Bodyguard aside, Gutterson does not seem to relish the task of tagging along with Raylan, especially when Raylan slips away without too much effort. We haven’t seen Tim in an episode in a while, so it was good to have him along for the ride. However, like Raylan’s boss, he seems to have had about enough of Raylan—although that may change after he’s been relieved of the responsibility of looking after him, a job that is bound to put the two at odd.

Although the frequent western allusions that were prevalent during the first season of Justified have been much less frequent in season two, “Full Commitment” offers a number of references to the western. When Boyd Crowder and his brother Johnny visit Raylan’s father, Johnny reminisces about being “Back in the day, when this was really the wild west,” and when his father and Arlo Givens were the outlaws in charge. Boyd Crowder, building on the deal he made with Mags which allows him to take over criminal activity in the valley, is intent on returning Harlan to its “wild west” heyday of vice and illegal drug running, all under the control of the Crowder family—with an assist from Arlo.

When Raylan checks in with Mags just to see whether or not she ordered the hit on him, Doyle Bennett shows up and comments to Raylan, “There’s a chance I might OK-Corral it.” However, Mags intervenes, and there’s no showdown at the OK Corral (or the Bennett grocery, as it were).

There’s also a scene with the combined group of Raylan, Winona, Gary, Rachel, and Tim Gutterson watching a black and white western on television. We see several clips from the film and hear some of the dialogue, but not enough so that I could immediately place it (High Noon? My Darling Clementine?)

That the shooting trouble somehow involves Gary (Winona’s second husband) is a revelation that is probably not surprising.  By the end of the episode, there are two interesting developments. One is that we may have seen the last of Gary. And the other is that Boyd may have seriously underestimated Dickie Bennett.

And, just for Tim:

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