This is it, kids! The season finale! The title means something serious is going to go down, but the English major in me is a little disappointed it’s not a play on Kurt Vonnegut…
We open moments after the explosion and learn unfortunately that Trooper Tom did in fact die, which disappoints me a little because I associate the killing of likable supporting characters to see how it affects the main character with comic books and soap operas. I’m not watching Grey’s Anatomy for a reason. Boyd is finally awake and Raylan goes in to talk to him. Boyd’s excuse for what happened is sound: he’s not going to blow up a car he’s standing in front of, and when Raylan demands a name he gives up Lower Level Dixie Mafia Boss Duffy. At this point Arlo arrives seemingly concerned about Raylan because he heard that “a cop in a hat got shot.” Even Raylan is somewhat confused by this, which is understandable given Arlo set him up to be killed once. Boyd and Cousin Johnny then speak to Arlo in private where it becomes very apparently his mental faculties are deteriorating as he says that his late wife Helen has been hiding his pills. Boyd then makes Arlo take his medication then and there.
The state troopers have stopped Duffy and Raylan takes him inside the RV for questioning in the style of the late pawnshop owner, who Duffy sicced on Raylan at one point: Russian Roulette. Needless to say, Duffy freaks out and tells all he knows. Raylan with rules was scary. Without them Duffy realizes his time on earth could become considerably shorter. Roll titles…
Limehouse and Boyd meet on a bridge reminiscent of their first meeting this season, only this time instead of mutual henchmen, Limehouse has a small army and Boyd just has one guy, which Limehouse points out. Limehouse returns Boyd’s deposit, but Boyd makes it clear their business isn’t concluded.
Limehouse returns to his roadhouse diner to find Raylan there waiting for him. Raylan blames Limehouse for how things went down, but Limehouse tells Raylan he’s the one who screwed up, “Know how I know? Because one of yours is dead.” This clearly cuts a little deep as Raylan throws a punch which is blocked and sends Limehouse for his butcher knife, to be met by Raylan twin-fisted with guns…to be countered by that small army Limehouse has mentioned earlier. Limehouse promises utter eradication of Raylan’s body, but Raylan holds fast demanding what he was promised. Limehouse can’t get him Detroit Albino but possibly Boyd. “I’m listening,” Raylan replies, guns still at the ready.
Law enforcement is out looking for Detroit Albino, but unfortunately for the mother out camping with her sons, not where he turns up as he takes them hostage.
New Sheriff Shelby calls Boyd to let him know there’s a warrant out for him for Devil’s death and we know now what Limehouse gave Raylan. He tells Boyd that this squares them for what Boyd has done for him.
Detroit Albino has the family in the van and is questioning them about their lives in that casual way that only uber villains in movies and on TV do before calling Detroit Mob Boss Adam From Northern Exposure. Detroit Albino wants to come home. Detroit Mob Boss Adam From Northern Exposure tells him the price will be half-a-million dollars. Detroit Albino makes mom get out of the van and drives off with her sons.
Boyd informs his rather sad crew of Ava, Cousin Johnny and Arlo of the warrant as he tries to figure out who gave him up to Limehouse. Cousin Johnny is incensed to be suspected, but that’s not an issue when Arlo says he “might have told Helen.” Boyd then tells a tearful Ava that there’s nothing they can do. This is still odd given she killed his brother, who was her abusive husband and made it clear he wasn’t above raping her. Then again, this was before he found God thanks to Raylan shooting him in the chest. The marshals show up to arrest Boyd and when he asks why the marshals are doing it, Chief Marshal Art tells him it’s a join task force due to “local corruption” meaning both Corrupt Former Sheriff Sloan and New Sheriff Shelby. Boyd also points out that processing him that way shows that he and Raylan “aren’t in cahoots.” Art compliments him on the use of “cahoots.” Before he leaves Arlo apologizes to Raylan for how he treated him as child, telling him it was a result of Helen’s nagging.
The marshals have found the mother and interview her about Detroit Albino. They take off looking for him, while Chief Marshal Art sends Raylan back to the office for the files on Detroit Albino. He never gets that far as Detroit Albino calls him using the boys, instructing Raylan to come to him or he’ll kill them. Raylan meets him in a field and he takes Raylan hostage after making him give up his gun. Raylan says he’s going to want that one back. Quarles then takes the back-up in the small of his back, “This one?” “No,” Raylan replies. “That one you can keep.” Eagle eyed viewers will remember Raylan kept the gun that Detroit Albino used to kill Gary, Wynona’s ex-husband and then tried to plant on Raylan. What are the chances he just slipped it back to Detroit Albino? Man, I love this show. There’s at least half a dozen things in this show so far that reflect back to earlier episodes this year.
At Limehouse’s Roadhouse, he’s giving one of those scary monologues to Earl/Errol concluding in telling him now that Boyd is in jail and Detroit Albino is on the run, he has to get the hell out of Noble’s Holler before dark. When Earl/Errol asks why, Limehouse just glares at him. Again, the reason Limehouse had to get involved in all this is because Earl/Errol tried to start a war between Boyd and Detroit Albino. After Errol leaves, Limehouse gets a call from Cousin Johnny confirming Boyd’s suspicions that he was the traitor.
Ava goes to see Ellie Mae and continues her ascent up to mob boss by questioning her mob style, i.e., slapping her around. She seems satisfied with what she’s learned though not realizing that Cousin Johnny deliberately steered her wrong.
Detroit Albino takes Raylan and one of the boys into Limehouse’s slaughterhouse and demands the half-million. When Limehouse rightly points out the illogic of using two people he doesn’t care about as hostages, Detroit Albino then threatens to kill him. He gets the response Raylan got earlier about the small army. Raylan suggests that this would be the best way for Limehouse to be left alone if he just went along with it. Limehouse acquiesces cutting open a hanging pig, which just happens to have money hidden in it. When Limehouse questions why Raylan would give Detroit Albino the money when he was after him for shooting the trooper, Detroit Albino responds, “You think I killed the trooper?” When he’s about to say just who did, Earl/Errol pops out and shoots him. He shoots Earl/Errol in return and when Raylan grabs the gun Limehouse cuts one of Detroit Albino’s arms off giving us the pay off of a season’s worth of threats he’s been making with it (and living up to the episode’s title but I’m still partial to Vonnegut). As he collapses, Detroit Albino reaches for his arm, which Raylan holds out of reach. Raylan asks again who shot Trooper Tom. Detroit Albino laughs as he delivers the blow: “Your old man.”
Raylan, Marshall Rachel and a trooper awaken Arlo to take him into custody and Raylan can feel the eyes on him as he brings his own father into the office. Chief Marshal Art informs him that the gun taken off Detroit Albino matches the one used to kill Gary. “You don’t seem surprised,” he notes. “I had a hunch,” Raylan replies. I CALLED IT!!! Boyd is in a holding cell and Raylan tells him that Arlo is going down for the trooper and since he was part of Boyd’s crew, he’ll probably be tied to it as well. “Arlo’s not my crew,” Boyd replies, “He’s my family.” Unfortunately Arlo feels the same way as he not only confesses to killing Trooper Tom, but Devil as well. “To protect Boyd.”
Later, Raylan relays this to Wynona, telling her that he wasn’t that bothered by Arlo’s actions because “He was a criminal. That’s all he’s ever been.” He wasn’t even surprised that Boyd didn’t care Arlo was taking the fall for him. When Wynona asks why Chief Marshall Art thought Raylan would be particularly upset over just why Arlo shot Trooper Tom, Raylan points out that Arlo merely saw a man in a hat pointing a gun at Boyd. It takes Wynona a moment to realize Arlo thought he was shooting Raylan. And that’s how we end the third season of Justified.
See you next year! Or whenever these shorter-seasoned cable shows tend to pop up.