"Justified," Season 3, Episode 8

Season 3, Episode 8


  • Courtesy of FX
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“Get a pen and paper and write down all the shit you shouldn’t’ve done,” a lawyer suggests Raylan do if he wants to know what’s in his official file. This episode, “Watching the Detectives,” shifts focus from the Harlan County power struggle to pause and consider the things that Raylan — and fictional law enforcement officers in general — should and should not do. Having skirted (not to say flouted) police procedure on multiple occasions, Raylan abruptly finds himself held accountable for some of his actions on the season’s smartest, shiftiest episode so far.

“Watching the Detectives” mostly finds Raylan trying to outmaneuver some bogus charges concocted against him. First, Sammy the Junior mob boss (the Godson?) claims Raylan’s in Boyd’s pocket in a phone conversation, knowing the FBI’ll intercept it. More horrifically, Quarles and Duffy pull up to Winona’s old house and remove her ex-husband Gary from the trunk, a hook over his face. They explain that he’s there to send a message to Raylan Givens, and shoot him on the front walk.

Knowing Raylan’s history with Gary and Winona, the Lexington homicide detectives find Raylan to be a likely suspect, especially when they discover Raylan’s fingerprints on a shell-casing they find at the scene. Raylan figures out it was the bullet he threw at Duffy earlier this season, with the remark, “The next one’ll be coming faster.” Raylan just shouldn’t throw his bullets around willy-nilly when crafty crooks can use them against him. (I hope you’ve learned your lesson about keeping track of your belongings, young man.)