Justified, “Hatless”

I watched this week’s Justified early this morning and loved every second of it. And then I spent most of the day wondering what exactly I’d say about it in a post other than “Hey! I loved every second of it.”

Even though I’m writing something now, I still don’t have much else to say other than that.We know that Raylan cannot work cases that are related to his ex-wife every week, but “Hatless” was enjoyable because we got to see him do just that. The relationship between Raylan and Winona is intriguing and charming, especially because we’re still not completely clear why they got divorced in the first place. We know Winona dumped him and it’s probably work related, but I like that the full details are being kept from us. Obviously we’re supposed to see that there’s a possibility of something still being there between them, and though that’s to be expected, it’s been handled nice and slowly.

This episode also showed the lengths that Raylan will go to do what needs to be done, whether it’s protect his ex wife’s new husband or get his hat back after losing in a stupid bar fight he started just because he was pissed off about being suspended. I felt like we were told in the pilot how angry and dedicated Raylan was and then we spent the subsequent episodes drawing back on his character, getting to a more light-hearted center. There was still some of that here, especially with the hat, but that dedication to the job is a fun trait to play with in Raylan. I imagine that it will continue to power the series once the story with the Crowders returns.

Justified has had a nice first season full of episodes that keep the cases grounded in some connection to the lead characters and for a series with dominant procedural elements, that’s all I can ask for. Just like every episode, I really liked “Hatless.” Give the show a chance if you haven’t yet.

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