Justified's "Cut Ties" had a little bit more Winona than I would have liked, and barely any Ava whatsoever... but the show was kind enough to bring us badass Boyd at his best, as well as some punching action from Mullen (R.I.P. Marshal Bill Nichols), whose adventures in law-settling have become one of my favorite parts of the procedural side of this series.
The silver lining of Winona's babbling about the house and annoying real estate agents was that it nicely opened up Raylan's eyes about how pro of a liar our darling Boyd is -- and highlighted how smooth Raylan is at fake-humility and keeping his frenemies (or whatever oversimplified word you want to use to describe Boyd and Raylan's relationship) close. The convenience of the guard stopping Boyd just before he could do any damage in the prison cafeteria was a little annoying, but otherwise this was a fine story arc -- especially considering everything that's been set up. I will also give credit to Winona's pregnancy for Raylan's excellent take on her sonogram picture: "I think we might be in trouble. Just from this angle, it bears a striking resemblance to the creature from Alien [...] Don't come running to me when it busts out your ribcage." I know there are some interesting things getting developed about Raylan and mortality and having so much more to live for that he'll do anything to protect his future child... but so far -- meh.
My coveted Shot of the Week badge goes to Rachel "Shut Up and Hug Me" Brooks for shooting the scary bald henchman point-blank in the head before he could even think about killing the Witness-Protected mom and her kids (even though little June is a total blabbermouth about being the Princess of Fairyland). The haunting choice of playing creepy, tense music instead of any actual noises from the take was a great, eerie touch.
Oh, and then there was that whole plotline where Boyd hilariously showed of his swastika tattoo with the purpose of getting the crap kicked out of himself, all so that he could get some quality alone time with Dickie. Not only did we get a callback to Mags, but we're also now right back to where Season 2 left off: a master criminal slow-playing his way to the top.
And let's not forget the last few minutes of the episode, where I half-covered my eyes and prayed that I wouldn't have to watch anyone get butchered like a slab of meat or have their hands get melted with lye. Mercifully, my prayers were half-answered.
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