I am a self confessed Justified Junkie. Raylan Givens is the coolest character since Dirty Harry. He is a quick draw U.S. deputy marshal who shoots straight from the hip. He is quick with a gun and even quicker with a one liner.
You get the feeling Raylan was born a hundred years too late. He tends to see justice in terms of black and white. If you do something bad you pay. He loves to share his irrevent wit with the bad guy before he doles out a little Givens justice to them.
So if you haven't watched this great show based on an Elmore Leonard character, you are missing a rare thing. Television rarely gets it this right. So if you aren't watching here are a few reasons you should tune in.
Timothy Olyphant. Olyphant's laid back portrayal of Givens is acting at its finest. He can convey more with a look than most actors can do with 10 pages of dialogue. You can see the inner turmoil going on inside him by the expression in his eyes. It is an understated performance. The small things that convey the big points of the story.
His affable little boy charm and slow sweet smile, mask the cold hard lawman Givens is inside. The fact that Olyphant is easy on the eyes doesn't hurt his case any either. The ladies fall for his sweet southern charm. The men aspire to capture his suave, steely-eyed, cool style. He is a joy to watch. The fact he hasn't won an Emmy atests to the politics that rule the Emmy Awards.
Nick Searcy. I love this guy! Searcy plays Raylan's boss, Chief Deputy Art Mullen. He can deliver a hilarious one liner with a straight face. The banter between Art and Raylan is one of the best parts of the show.
Art serves as a father role to Givens. He is both critical and protective of him. Art is one of the few people whose respect and approval Raylan seeks. Searcy is great in the role. His dry humor and wise old marshal observations are classic.
Searcy is a versatile character actor who can play both drama and comedy. He was hilarious as Rodney Carrington's sidekick on the sitcom "Rodney". He was equally unlikeable as a cruel husband in "Fried Green Tomatoes". If you haven't seen his webisodes of "Acting School with Nick Searcy" you should check them out. Searcy does everything from writing,directing to producing these hilarious little episodes. Timothy Olyphant even makes an appearance. You can find them on his website Nick Searcy. com.
Jere Burns. Burns plays an up and comer in the Dixie mafia, Wynn Duffy. Burns and Olyphant are brilliant together as they play a cat and mouse game with each other. He has that satan eyebrow thing going, that makes him the perfect devilish bad guy. Duffy is more than a little unbalanced and totally ruthless.
Burns has come a long way since his days on the Judd Hirsch sitcom "Dear John". He is truly a brilliant character actor. The audience knows it is only a matter of time before Duffy and Givens square off but it is fun watching them dance to the showdown.
There are other great actors on the show as well. Walton Goggins get lots of adulation as Boyd Crowder but I am not a particular Goggins fan. I think he tends to chew the scenery and I feel his character has become to much an integral part of the show. His storyline takes away from the heart of the story which is Givens. I don't care for the Bonnie and Clyde love story he has going with Joelle Carter. But lots of people like it, I am just not in that camp.
If you haven't watched Justified yet, check it out. The acting and writing are superb. The stories are smart and funny. In a television landscape littered with reality shows from Kardashians to Real Housewives it stands out as a jewel in the desert.
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