New Show Recap

Justified, Episode 3.12 “Coalition”

With only one episode remaining in this season of Justified, the man pulling the strings has a lot of strings to pull. As it turns out, Limehouse is more than up for the task.

We ended last week after Boyd left Quarles tased and confused in the trailer of one of his Ava’s hookers. Let’s pick up right there, with Quarles regaining consciousness and discovering he’s chained naked to a bed. Lucky for him, and unusually stupid of Boyd, he and the hookers have been left with a bottle of Oxy to pass the time.

In his bar/office, Boyd is explaining the situation to Ava and Johnny (and Arlo) when Errol appears at the door, with Dickie in tow. Errol wants to discuss the three-way partnership he has in mind but Boyd’s only interest is in ridding the world of one Dickie Bennett and he’s well on his way to beating him to death when Ava convinces him to stop, if only for Mags Bennett’s $3 million dollars.

Napier’s list of visitors grows when Raylan shows up looking for Quarles. The sheriff doesn’t argue too long before he gives up the information that the Detroit man is selling his pills at Audrey’s brothel. Of course, Quarles *is at Audrey’s but what he’s doing at that moment is smoking Oxy through the barrel of an unloaded shotgun with the hookers, all while stylishly attired in a pretty flowered red kimono. Before you can say, “Who in the hell thought two stoned hookers and one dumbass with a shotgun were enough to guard Quarles?” he has the length of his chain wrapped around the neck of one of the girls.

In the bar, Errol is explaining that Limehouse keeps his money in a safe deposit box (in a bank Boyd happens to have robbed in his salad days) but that the Noble’s Holler boss is planning on moving the cash the next day. Boyd sends Ava and Arlo to check out the bank while he delivers Quarles to the men from Detroit.

"Do you know what the two saddest words in the English language are? 'What party'?"

Acting on Napier’s information, Raylan pulls up about then outside the prostitute’s trailer but instead of Quarles, he finds the two hookers and the man Boyd had left standing guard chained up together. Quarles and his pretty kimono are nowhere in sight.

At the bank, a very helpful bank official gives Ava a tour of the safe deposit vault. While he’s inviting her to have a bite of his club sandwich, Raylan is meeting with Trooper Tom just across the street from the bank. Tom has news for Raylan: (i) Dickie and Errol are with Boyd at his bar and (ii) Ava and Arlo are obviously casing the bank in preparation for a robbery.

Boyd, meanwhile, is bearing the bad news to Wynn Duffy that Quarles is on the loose somewhere and, as might be imagined, such news does not set well with our Man With the Eyebrows. Boyd is unfazed and shares with Duffy his plans to rob the bank that night but also adds one little wrinkle – he suggests the decoy bomb explosion involve a car that Quarles just happens to be sitting in.

At that particular moment Quarles, out of money and in hiding from both Boyd and Detroit, is offering his services to Limehouse. Limehouse just happens to have a job for Quarles: he explains that Boyd Crowder will be robbing the bank that night and that Quarles is to position himself so that when Boyd comes out of the bank with the money, Quarles can kill him and steal the money for Limehouse.

Boyd sends Arlo home with Ava

Ava and Arlo have returned to the bar with the information they gathered. Once Boyd has a grasp of the layout of the safe deposit boxes, he sends Ava and Arlo home, Ava because her visit earlier has put her image on the bank’s security cameras and Arlo because he has a loose grip on his mental facilities (which he proves by referring to Boyd as Boyd in one breath and as Raylan in the next).

While Quarles calls Duffy to let him in on the details of their new opportunity, Raylan stops in to see Limehouse and the two of them play a little Harlan one-up. Raylan scores first when he mentions the bank that Boyd plans on breaking into that night. Limehouse hits back by offering the news that Quarles will be outside, waiting to relieve Boyd of the stolen money. Raylan returns serve by stating he knows Limehouse doesn’t keep his money there and he’s just setting them all up to be arrested to which the BBQ man responds by saying he’s only trying to make sure Nobles Holler is left alone. Raylan gets the last word, however, when he tells Limehouse that no matter who gets arrested that night, government officials will be digging up Nobles Holler every day until Mags Bennett’s money turns up.

Boyd’s Spidey senses have been humming, too, and when he returns to the bar he puts Errol and Dickie at the business end of a pair of guns and asks them which one is trying to set him up. Dickie, for obvious reasons, isn’t smart enough to try to pull off something like this and it’s Errol who admits that what Limehouse really wants is to send Boyd back to jail.

Unneeded and sent home by Boyd, Arlo is in the midst of a delusion that looks a lot like the now-dead Helen coming back to tell him off for letting Boyd cut him out of the bank job while also letting Dickie Bennett, the man who murdered her, go free. Ava walks in to Arlo’s room while this is happening and immediately knows he hasn’t taken his medication. When she goes to get it for him, he pulls a gun on her. The phone ringing unanswered in the background is Boyd, who adds worry over Ava to the big plate he’s holding. He leaves Johnny in charge of guarding Dickie and Errol and heads off to check on his ladylove.

Across from the bank, Trooper Tom and pals are gearing up for the Big Bank Robbery scheduled for that night. Unfortunately for Tom, he mentions he’s missing his son’s t-ball game for this little party. Note to secondary characters: never talk about missing an event related to your children. It’s the kiss of death.

For the second time in one day, the guard Boyd leaves in charge is overpowered. This time it’s Dickie getting the drop on Johnny before threatening Errol with death by gunshot unless he’s willing to lead Dickie to his money. As the two of them peel out of the parking lot they are watched not only by one of Trooper Tom’s deputies but by one of Limehouse’s men. Trooper Tom gets a call from his man and Limehouse’s watcher calls him. When Raylan’s phone rings, it’s Limehouse who is ready, finally, to discuss the missing $3,000,000.

Returning home to check on Ava, Boyd finds her locked in a basement room while Arlo has disappeared. Just as he rescues her, Johnny calls with the news that Dickie and Errol have escaped but before they left, he heard Errol admit where the money really was – with Loretta in Lexington.

Dickie forces Errol at gunpoint to drive him to Loretta’s foster home in Lexington and when they get there, makes him crawl into the trunk for safe-keeping. When he sneaks into the house, though, the only person waiting for him is Raylan. Do you know how many times I’ve come home, turned on the lights and hoped Raylan Givens would be sitting there? Dickie has all the luck. Well, maybe not so much luck considering he’s on the receiving end of a Come to Jesus speech that ends with Raylan goading the hapless criminal into drawing his gun first which, predictably, means he gets shot by Raylan. (Seriously, that, “Dickie, what choice do I have?” is practically begging on Raylan’s part.) Bleeding from a new wound in the leg that’s already crippled, Dickie lands on the patio right in front of Limehouse.

Raylan finds Loretta where she’s been held at the US Marshal’s office and lets her know that he and Limehouse have reached an agreement that means Loretta will get to keep the money Mags Bennett meant for her to have. Raylan’s forbearance only goes so far, though, and he warns her about spending the money wisely and not drawing attention by, for instance, hiring Van Halen to play her birthday party. As if. I mean, come on. Who listens to Van Halen anymore?

Things I learned from watching Justified: Oxycontin can be smoked and judging by how wasted Quarles is, apparently to great effect. He’s lit up like a bonfire before homecoming but manages (barely) to get his shit together when Limehouse calls with instructions to find Boyd at his bar and kill him. Instead of blowing up the car immediately, Duffy decides to let Quarles kill Boyd first. Trooper Tom’s watchdog sees Quarles arrives at the bar and calls him and Tom, in turn, calls Raylan. Inside the bar, Boyd and Johnny watch Quarles snort something for a few minutes before Boyd decides to take matters into his own hands and comes outside. When the men confront each other, Duffy decides to trigger the explosives in Quarles car. Boyd hears the high-pitched tone that indicates the bomb has armed itself but doesn’t run fast enough – the force from the blast throws him into a metal railing and knocks him unconscious while Quarles’ clothes are set on fire. From a few streets away both Raylan and Trooper Tom see the fireball. Tom arrives first and confronts Quarles and the next thing we hear is a gunshot. When Raylan gets there, Tom is lying on the street, bleeding and fighting for breath. Johnny yells out that Quarles did it.

Raylan is left staring into the darkness surrounding the parking lot but Quarles is no where to be found.

Raylan can point his gun at me anytime.


48/DWF. "I don't entirely approve of some of the things I have done or am or have been. But I'm me. God knows, I'm me." Elizabeth Taylor

2 replies on “Justified, Episode 3.12 “Coalition””

It is so much fun to watch Quarles get wilder and wilder as he disintegrates. That scene with the rifle in his mouth had me on the edge of my seat. He’s become almost likable to me at this point. It’s so interesting the way this show keeps circling back to Loretta. I have to assume she is going to play a role in coming seasons.

I love the way Justified integrates characters from previous seasons.  The old man first showed up way back in S1!

But I also really wonder about Loretta.  She wasn’t exactly on the straight and narrow road before Mags killed her father – with all this money, all those street smarts and the bit of anger and bitterness you can see she carries around with her, what will she do in the next few years?


Leave a Reply