Review: 'Justified' - 'Money Trap': Know when to fold 'em

Raylan deals with a vengeful escappe, and Ava and Boyd go to a party

<p>Timothy Olyphant and Raymond J. Barry in &quot;Justified.&quot;</p>

Timothy Olyphant and Raymond J. Barry in "Justified."

Credit: FX

I'm on vacation this week, but I got to see tonight's "Justified" early, and have a few quick thoughts on it coming up just as soon as I don't use the diphthong...

"Money Trap" wasn't as busy as last week's episode, yet parts of it — particularly on the Raylan vs. Jody end of things — still felt more rushed than they needed to be. I liked Chris Chalk's simmering performance as Jody, was glad to see Michael Gladis away from "Mad Men" yet still wearing a '60s hat, and quite liked Shelley Hennig as the very Elmore Leonard-y Jackie Nevada (whom I imagine we haven't seen the last of), but a lot of the story's movement didn't quite make sense. Notably, a week after Raylan says it's been a while since he shot someone, he pumps a whole lot of bullets into Jody, the first person he's killed in a long time (depending on what you think happened to Icepick Nix and/or Dickie Bennett).

Boyd and Ava at the swingers' party hung together better, but I'm not sure how I feel about the idea that a cabal of rich guys from two towns over have been allowing the Crowders and Bennetts to run crime in Harlan all these years. The way Harlan has been drawn until now, it's a place non-locals don't understand, can't navigate and aren't welcome in (which is why Raylan has proven so useful to the Lexington field office, even with his many deficits as an employee). These people at Napier's party aren't exactly outsiders, but they're also not people who spend much time in hollers. We'll see how this plays out, but I'm intrigued by the idea of Sam Anderson (Bernard from "Lost") being Drew Thompson.

Also, I love just how much absolute venom can be contained in such a brief Raylan/Arlo scene as what we got at episode's end. Olyphant + Goggins is the show's most powerful combination, but Olyphant + Barry is awfully good, too.

What did everybody else think?

Alan-sepinwall-sm
Alan Sepinwall
Sr. Editor, What's Alan Watching
Alan Sepinwall has been reviewing television since the mid-'90s, first for Tony Soprano's hometown paper, The Star-Ledger, and now for HitFix. His new book, "The Revolution Was Televised," about the last 15 years of TV drama, is for sale at Amazon. He can be reached at sepinwall@hitfix.com
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