Justified Review: Ice Cream or Cigarettes?

at .  Updated at . Comments

The tensions building on all fronts finally exploded on Justified Season 5 Episode 11.

Individuals were shot, blown up, honored, blackmailed, and manipulated. It started out somewhat positive with Ava getting away with murdering Judith, Boyd drinking away his broken heart and a light-hearted fun conversation between Art and Allison.

It quickly shifted when shots were fired and Art's life was on the line. That life or death situation set the morose tone for the rest of the hour.

Art and Raylan have been at odds all season long. Raylan's disobedience and belief that he doesn't have to follow the rules was too much for Art to tolerate. When Art went to protect Allison, it was nice to see him outside the office with someone he could  talk with about Raylan. His joke about her taking custody of Raylan was pretty funny.

Of course, that light-hearted chat ended quickly when Art was shot. Who shot him? Was he the target or was Allison? The Marshals believed Theo Tonin had ordered a hit on Art, while the more likely scenario put the blame on Darryl Crowe. Both men had reasons to shoot to kill.

Tonin named Picker has the shooter, but Wendy Crowe called to work out a surrender for her brother. As usual, nothing is ever simple in Kentucky on these cases. The conflicts run deep and it's complicated when people are playing both sides. The end results was quite shocking.

Wendy set Raylan up. She had him come to meet her to keep him away from Darryl. While Raylan was out of the office, Darryl and Kendal turned themselves in. I have to say that was a slick move and unexpected from the Crowes. They aren't stupid, but that level of cunning was more than I expected.

After Darryl beat up Wendy, I was disappointed that she stood by his side and let her own son take the blame for shooting Art. Of course, it is possible that Kendal pulled the trigger. I re-watched the shooting scene a few times and I couldn't tell for sure whether the shots came from Kendal or Darryl's height.

Either way, Kendal was the patsy. He took the Crowe blood pact seriously. It's not too late for the truth, whatever it may be,  to come out. I had high hopes that Wendy and Kendal would find a way to escape the Crowe family. They could have had a somewhat normal and honest life out of constant danger.

I'm not quite sure what to make of Wynn Duffy and Katherine Hale right now. Since Ava dumped Boyd, he's taking chances he would probably not otherwise make. He had a death wish when he told Jimmy to take the drugs and hide them. On the surface it appeared to be a way to guarantee he wasn't killed, but it was the opposite.

With Katherine Hale in the game now, it will be interesting to see if this fight finishes this season or if it carries over to a big war next season. I was surprised that they were taken into custody and then released so quickly. What

Boyd betrayed the deal, caused problems in Mexico, and really the whole thing was a disaster. Picker was furious. And Duffy just wanted the drugs, but Boyd had other plans. He would give them half of his half the shipment (Raylan took that other half). The result, Boyd blew up Picker with a bomb in a pack of cigarettes.

The Old Boyd is back! No more messing around. It's a dangerous new world.

In prison, Ava seemed to be in the clear for killing Judith. While the officials haven't been able to connect her to the murder, the inmates knew she was responsible. She was worried that Judith's disciples would turn on her, but instead they gave her ice cream. We'll have to see what exactly that means, but I took it to be them pledging their allegiance to her now. Though, it could just have been a sign of gratitude.

I'm still not loving the prison storyline, but it has the potential to get more involved if Ava becomes the Queen Bee. I'd still rather she get out and get back to Boyd in time to save him. With next season being the last, it would be disappointing for them not to be reunited. As much as Raylan is the center of the series, Boyd and Ava became the heart of it.

The final moments of Raylan outside Art's hospital room were heartbreaking. Their relationship became so broken and it would be a shame if they weren't able to clear the air. While I don't want Art to die, I love the idea of Rachel taking his place. She'll have a difficult time handling Raylan, but she can do it. Perhaps, Art can recover and retire in peace with his wife leaving Rachel in charge.

Who shot Art?



Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
  • 4.5 / 5.0
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
User Rating:

Rating: 4.4 / 5.0 (24 Votes)

Carla Day is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter and on Google+.


I'm loving this season. It may not be my favorite but not as bad as everyone is saying. And I like the Ava storyline.


I gave the episode 4 stars. I will not give it 5 until Ava gets out of jail. That storyline has sucked the life out of Season 5.


Great episode made up for the last few which have dragged a bit.
Hope Art survives.


This episode was great, despite Art getting shot. Who shot him? Kendall? Don't think so. He kept his eyes down as he was talking, as if he knew he'd not be believed. Then there's Wendy the train wreck. Letting her loser brother use her and her kid after he beat her bloody was morally reprehensible.
Boyd was awesome once again. Will any of these knuckleheads ever understand that he's always the smartest person in the room? This is why he continues to be my imaginary boyfriend.
Rachel being the interim chief didn't make sense to me. She's never displayed any strength or ability to lead. Will the writers suddenly give her a spine?
How will she deal with Raylan, who evidently studied under the Machiavelli school of thought that "the end justifies the means" to get things done?
I cannot say that I remember much about Ava's story line. Too boring.

@ Hooligan

I believe what you mean, she has never had a storyline. Even Art has had a storyline. She is just there. She teamed up with Raylan a few times but he usually dumps her to pursue the case on his own.


To watch Wendy Crowe just sit and allow her son to take the blame for shooting Art was disgusting. She is definitely not going to win any Mother of the Year awards.
Did anyone else notice that when Boyd handed Picker that cigarette, Duffy and lady company moved away from them? I think they knew Boyd was going to kill Picker.
I've seen enough death of leading characters lately. I hope Art survives and rides off into retirement peacefully.


Rachel is a really poor choice as she's never shown any real ability to put things together and she doesn't know Harlan County or the people and history of crime families in Kentucky whereas Raylan knows just about everyone in the law breaking business. He may go his own way quite a bit and not have too much patience with authority figures but his instincts and abilities are exceptional. Art really let him down when Winona and the baby were being threatened by Augustine. Raylan found a way to 'fix' that and Art knocks him down when Raylan tells him he was there when Augustine got his. Art didn't have a plan to protect Winona and really didn't seem that interested. He's been a big disappointment since the end of last season. You don't need to put a leash on an exceptional leader who gets things done and that's Art's failing. I hope he pulls through though but Rachel as the Leader - no way that will work.

@ Charliebrown

Raylan is not a leader. He is a loner. And besides, the show doesn't take place in just Harlan County. Raylan, along with the rest of the Marshal's live and work in Lexington. Rachel has shown in the past and in this season no less, that she is deferred to when put into a leadership position, not to mention she is able to control Raylan.


Wow! Picker getting blown up was a surprise! I did not see that one comming. I love Justified but the whole Ava in prison is so boring. I like Ava but her being in jail is so wasted. I'm pretty sure it wasn't Kendal who shot Art. He (I think) said Art saw him.

Tags: ,