207 of 232 people found the following review helpful
A.k.a.: "In the Heat of the Night, the Kentucky Edition"...,
This review is from: Justified: Season 1 (DVD)
Well, it is set in Eastern Kentucky, rather then in Sparta, Mississippi; still, Justified is bound to resonate with any fan of the groundbreaking In the Heat of the Night series: small-town-in-a-big-World problems being solved creatively in 60 minutes or less, but without the annoyingly preachy tone that In the Heat of the Night would sometimes assume. A definite positive! You'll have fun making character comparisons between the two shows (can you find a "Bubba"? how about a "Luanne"?).
Let me first note that Justified is a very new show; so far, only six episodes have been aired. However, the episodes carry such an unusually high degree of promise, I feel confident rating the series, even at this early stage, with the top score.
The story is simple: deputy U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens (Timothy Olyphant) brings too much negative attention to himself by killing one Miami thug too many... He is therefore relegated to a remote post to cool his heels. Unfortunately for Raylan, the post happens to be the sleepy Eastern Kentucky, where he grew up and hoped never to come back... Estranged petty criminal father, an ex-wife, an ex-flame, an ex-friend... Well... they do say you can never go back home... Or, was it: you SHOULD NEVER go back home?... Anyway, upon this background, the writers skillfully project a series of surprisingly engaging, multidimensional stories that go beyond catching "the baddy of the week." Yes, there is the usual parade of rednecks (and I hope we'll get to see more eccentric types as time progresses), but often "the baddies" are portrayed as flawed human beings, making some very poor choices, all while doing their best to survive in this World. And that does have the effect of bringing them into conflict with the law.
Also satisfying is the way the writers choose to characterize Raylan: he is NOT some cartoon super hero using secret kung fu moves to dispatch his enemies. Instead, he is a humble man, still dealing with emotional ramifications of his divorce, and still conflicted in his relationship with his father. Occasionally, he allows his foes to gain the upper hand (and rob him of his car, badge, and gun), further proving he is a real person, which makes him very relatable... Kudos to Timothy Olyphant for his portrayal of Givens. Both he and the writers have the character spot on from the first minute of the pilot!
To those who like action though, worry NOT. The stories never get sappy and there is plenty of creative a** kicking (somehow, even a bazooka makes it into the script!). If I were forced to find a pet peeve regarding Justified, it would probably be the unrealistically high number of good looking people with porcelain veneers and slim waistlines the authors have inhabiting the area. From my personal experience involving a five week stay in Lexington, Kentucky, the reality has fewer teeth and a much higher BMI (no offence to the locals intended ;o) ).
And so, keep this show on your radar. I don't watch TV anymore (I have cancelled my cable as it seems to stream nothing more then vile reality shows), but am so enthused by Justified, that I actually pay to watch it on Amazon On Demand... Go figure...
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Showing 1-10 of 10 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Aug 28, 2010 10:42:31 PM PDT
Robert T. says:
In reply to an earlier post on Aug 29, 2010 2:33:20 AM PDT
"Top 500 reviewer admitting to rating an entire season of a series after watching only a few episodes...simply astounding. I expected more from amazon's "top" reviewers. "
Thank you for reading my review, mfx3.
PS: Those "few episodes" constituted half of the series.
Posted on Nov 22, 2010 3:39:43 PM PST
Posted on Dec 13, 2010 12:43:38 PM PST
Posted on Jan 21, 2011 8:06:18 AM PST
I remember seeing the ads and the first thing I thought was "if it has Timothy Olyphant it'll be good on that merit alone" unfortunately FX is one of those channels that flies well below my radar so I never got around to checking this show out.
Posted on Feb 15, 2011 6:32:36 AM PST
Jon Holcombe says:
Posted on Feb 19, 2011 7:29:07 AM PST
Donna Strause says:
Excellent Review!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thanks, Donna
In reply to an earlier post on Mar 29, 2011 9:53:04 AM PDT
Good enough for now says:
Some people seem to be way too focused on that shotgun scene. If I remember it correctly, Raylan made it clear that he would shoot and kill Dewey before Dewey would be able to chamber the round and get off a shot. That might be true, or it might not be, but Dewey didn't want to take that risk so he gave up the gun. In the bonus scenes a retired marshal who works with the show explains some of the gun details.
Posted on Apr 4, 2013 2:07:10 PM PDT
robert k hines says:
Posted on Jun 21, 2014 11:24:58 PM PDT
Lucy Bloom says:
Brevity is the soul of wit.
Maybe you should try it.
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