ELMORE LEONARD – TIMOTHY OLYPHANT – JUSTIFED – 2010- . . .
THE COMPLETE SECOND SEASON – 2010
This second season does not bring
the big surprise we could have expected. The Bennett family who have been
controlling Harlan County for two or three generations, this Bennett family
being in the hands of the mother, with no father available, but with three sons
the mother uses as her direct servants and hit men, let’s say slaves in crime
because that is what it is, this family,has to come to an end one day and
generally it happens with a lot of pain and suffering.
Why does it have to come to an
Because the power of this family
is based on crime: illegal cultivation of marihuana at a very high level, grand
style and all, for tremendous amounts of money. Because the power of this
family is reinforced by one son who is the local sheriff and has turned the
local police force into a gang to enforce and reinforce the power of and the
decisions of the mother. Because the other two sons are plain criminals and
nothing else, killing for fun and torturing for kicks. Because some company
from outside decides that the tremendous amount of coal that is hidden in these
Kentucky mountains has to be taken out and the Bennett family is an obstacle to
this industrial venture and has to be either bought, or even bribed, or
eliminated. Since the sons are die-hard criminal minds there is no other way
but to eliminate them, and get rid of the mother.
The agents of that cleansing
mission will be the Deputy US Marshall Raylan Givens from the Givens family, a
rival family to the Bennetts, and the Crowders, another rival family to the
Bennetts. Raylan is the only one who is on the side of more or less legal
means, the use of force if it is justified. The other members of these two
families are on the side of justice for themselves, vengeance for their dead,
revenge for their businesses and lives. So they want the Bennett empire to be
split up into pieces and the viable pieces to be entrusted, or recuperated, by
So the brothers have to go one
after another. One is shot dead by a girl he tried to molest and whose father
he had killed, the second ends up in prison, the third, the local sheriff, ends
up badly too and the mother has her own fate on her own hands. The chief of a
tribe, or a clan, of a gang deserves some modest reward in their ends, in this
case her end, face to face with Raylan.
The details you’ll have to get
from the 13 episodes, but we knew from the very beginning that this second
season was the end of the monstrous criminal corrupt dictatorship or a dumb
mother and her three slaves of sorts, and sons by name.
There are tricky moments to
eliminate secondary corrupt dummies, and some sensitive moments about the girl
whose father was assassinated by the Bennetts. There are also some surprising
moments concerning the two female characters, Raylan’s ex-wife who became his
new girl friend, and his high school lover of sorts who is connected to one of the
last surviving Crowders. Not to speak of Raylan’s step mother he calls his aunt.
A very strong woman but to be strong is nearly a disadvantage when confronted
to unethical criminals.
But I am sure you will enjoy the
suspense. At the end, which could have been the end of the series, Raylan has
applied for some promotion out of Kentucky
or the Marshall service, he has just learned some good news about his ex-wife
and we do not know what will happen. That’s not a cliff hanger but that will be
a new start next season.
Dr Jacques COULARDEAU