I don't think I'm alone when I say that Season 5 of Justified was a bit of a mess. With too many plots to follow and too many elements to which I just couldn't give any attention, things were just a little too difficult and too annoying to follow. But the sixth and final season of the FX series came out of the gate with a bang on Tuesday night as we finally saw Justified set the stage for the ultimate Raylan vs. Boyd showdown. The Season 6 premiere "Fate's Right Hand," showed us not only how determined Raylan is to finally take down Boyd, but also how desperate Boyd is to leave Harlan and have a better future than the life he lived in a town he says is "dying." The premiere saw Raylan working with the feds and doing whatever he could to put together a RICO case against Boyd, but the law just wouldn't cooperate with him. So what does he do? Whatever he wants, naturally. This is Raylan Givens after all.
As we saw from the Season 5 finale, Boyd's lady love Ava is now working as informant for Raylan, part of the deal she worked out with him to get out of prison. But unfortunately Ava seems to be a bit too conflicted about whether she's more loyal to Boyd or more invested in surviving and staying out of prison.
So what is Raylan to do if his first line of assistance isn't doing her job? Just about anything else. Raylan drives down to Mexico to find Aguilar, the Mexican cop who was involved in Boyd's heroin business so that he can get more information on how to put Boyd away and see if he can get yet another source on his side. After Aguilar shows no interest in helping with the case, Raylan uses his trademark gruff style of justice by crashing into Aguilar's car and kidnapping him to bring him to the States for justice. Aguilar finally cracks and give Raylan a lead, Dewey Crowe who is supposed to be in prison.
Raylan hopes to crack Dewey to turn on Boyd which seems like a slam dunk since the last time Dewey and Boyd saw each other, Dewey was robbing Boyd. Unfortunately, Dewey gets released and settles a case with the feds for $300,000 over Raylan's last round of brutal, physical punishment. Obviously Dewey wants nothing to do with Raylan so he tries to catch Dewey in the middle of committing a crime. However that also doesn't pan out as after Dewey attempts to reconcile with Boyd, Boyd realizes he can't trust Dewey and gives him an unimportant job to do in Boyd's latest bank heist.
Dewey confronts Boyd about the switcheroo and Boyd's distrust of Dewey. And while Boyd attempts to comfort the man who was once as close as family, he shoots Dewey in the head. Obviously Boyd is starting to be distrustful of everyone around him which makes me wonder if he'll start to pick up on Ava's duplicity soon enough.
And what about Raylan? Knowing his determination, he'll no doubt look for yet another way to sneak into Boyd's trusted circle and break his relationships by having people turn their back on him. But will he be successful? How exactly will Raylan finally get the fight he's wanted for so long? And what's going on Boyd and the bank heist screw up? "Fate's Right Hand," certainly brought a lot of interesting plot possibilities to the forefront, and Season 6 looks to be introducing even more characters into the story somehow. Hopefully we won't run into anymore issues of overblown stories for which we have no more time. In fact, even though I liked Dewey in his own stupid way, it's a good thing that Boyd is willing to trim some of the fat in his group. It helps viewers start to see how Boyd and Raylan's showdown will finally take place. Because in the end, all we need is that final, satisfying battle, and an epic way to end this epic series.
Images: Prashant Gupta/FX (2); FX (screenshot)