Justified on F/X

Just posted in our online Culture section, a review of the new series "Justified" by Carolyn Buscarino. I've not seen it, but this review makes me want to do so.

Use it or drop it,” U.S. Deputy Marshal Raylan Givens calmly warns a jumpy criminal as they face off, guns drawn, on a deserted road under the blazing sun, in an early episode of FX’s new drama “Justified.”

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Straight-arrow Givens (Timothy Olyphant) always offers the bad guy a choice—to leave town, drop his weapon or take his chances against Givens’s lightning-fast draw. But choices have suddenly narrowed for Givens himself, who escaped hardscrabble coal-mining, moonshining and meth-cooking in Kentucky 20 years ago, only to find himself forcibly reassigned there after shooting a Miami mobster at point-blank range (justifiably, says Givens to internal affairs and his skeptical new boss, played by a dryly bemused Nick Searcy).

Givens is perhaps the first hero—he literally wears a white hat—in FX’s pantheon of popular antiheroes (think “The Shield,” “Damages,” “Nip/Tuck” and “Rescue Me”), but he’s no one-dimensional Saturday matinee lawman. The son of a small-time con artist and an ex-con, Givens rebelled by pinning a badge on his chest, though he’s not above using skills learned at his daddy’s knee, say, to cajole a reluctant witness or cut through the white-supremacist gospel spouted by a coal-mining buddy and suspected criminal Boyd Crowder (a creepily effective Walter Goggins, who dazzled in “The Shield”).

Read the rest here.

James Martin, SJ

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