“Justified” Season 3, Episode 1

“Boyd, I’ve been to Mexico, and I don’t think you’d like it.”

“How’s that?”

“There’re a lot of Mexicans.”

He’s back! Deputy U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens is back!

You didn’t seriously think self would forget, did ya, dear blog readers? Why do you think self is typing this on her laptop (Operating System: Jurassic Period, which means she doesn’t see all the tags) while positioned on the couch facing HDTV?  The husband has beat a hasty retreat to the bedroom, The Ancient One is curled uncomplaining on her bed in the kitchen, and the dinner dishes are still in the sink.  Amazing how the pain in self’s right shoulder, that had been plaguing her all day, mysteriously vanished at the first sight of Timothy Olyphant wearing the white Stetson!

There are a few shows that bring self back week after week:  One was “Rome.”  Another was “Battlestar Galactica.”  But, alas, both those shows have long since ended.  Now, however, self has “Justified!”  Self could hardly wait for Season 3, which premiered tonight.

It seems there are several new malingerers this Season, chief among them being that guy with the tremendous blue eyes who was in “Minority Report,” Neal McDonough. He is not, however, the most magnetic Bad Guy. That honor goes to a man who looks, at first sight, fairly nondescript, even brain-damaged, like a scrawny Jim Caveziel (which is not to suggest that self — in any way — thinks that Jim Caveziel appears brain damaged, in fact he is gorgeous, but — now, where was she?)

Back to the matter at hand:

The scrawny JC is sitting on a couch in someone’s office, doing a great impersonation of the wallpaper. Over the course of this episode, however, he assumes tremendous definition. The best scene in this episode, in self’s humble opinion, belongs to a face-off between him and Raylan (This show is carving a niche as the go-to television show for face-off dialogue).

Wynn Duffy (guy with the pointy eyebrows from last season) is back, bringing his Spock-like gravitas (“Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go back to watching women’s tennis.”)

Ava looks fresh and perky (Self feared for her at the end of last season, not because she was shot — self was sure she would survive the injury — but because she was starting to seem a wee bit bedraggled) But she has made a startling recovery and when she showed up (appropriately enough, driving a truck) it was like a breath of fresh air! She was wearing something orange, a short skirt, and brown boots. Great outfit, Ava!

Winona seems a little more earthy — self likes her marginally better. Especially in a scene where she is seated on a bed (Black seems to suit her, it makes her look not just thin, but thin and tragic), and has to look mutely at Raylan with big, helpless, melting eyes.

Jacob Pitts’ first appearance is not, at first, the Grand Entrance self was hoping for (as he is so cute). That is, she had to take a moment to get used to his new hairstyle (brushed straight up off his forehead?). But as he was allowed to have an extended conversation (and two scenes), as opposed to just a few throw-away lines here and there, his cute-ness emerged, finally. By his last spoken line, self was sure Pitts had carved out a secure niche for the rest of the season (at least, self sincerely hopes so).

And Nick Searcy, playing Raylan’s boss —  of course self loves Nick Searcy.  An episode of “Justified” can never have too much of Nick Searcy’s self-deprecating, sardonic delivery.

Self wishes she could deliver spoilers, but feels it would be best to restrain herself for now. All she’ll say is, she stuck around for the scenes from next week’s episode, and it seems (Holy Cow!) that Carla Gugino is putting in an appearance (Seriously, this is a very under-rated actress, and quite a scorcher: Self saw her at Chicago’s Goodman, in a spiced-up staging of “Desire Under the Elms,” which featured music by Bob Dylan, great big boulders, an elm of course, an unforgettable naked scene from Pablo Schreiber, and sex) There was a brief clip of Ms. Gugino wearing a bright red blouse, then a cut to Winona looking pissed. Holy way to shake up Winona 🙂

Self unfortunately has to miss Episode 3, as she will be traveling in the mountains of India north of Delhi (Mrinalini assures her it will be cold. The husband never tires of telling self how crazy it is to have picked this time of year to visit India, and moreover to have picked such a destination, mountain towns that no one has ever heard of — no one of our acquaintance except for the people living in India, that is). But she arrives just in time to catch Episode 4, and will faithfully post every week thereafter (until she leaves for her next trip).

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

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