I am loving the new FX show, Justified. If you haven't seen it, it began only last week and the second episode airs tonight (Tuesday). It stars Timothy Olyphant, who was the most interesting character in a stable of intensely interesting characters in the late-lamented Deadwood (I still can't forgive HBO for not even wrapping that fascinating series up).
Olyphant is an interesting juxtaposition of a sweet-faced deranged lunatic. He could kiss or slap you and either way you wouldn't be able to back away or take your eyes off him -- it's like, I guess (having never been), mesmerized by a snake - is it deadly or a 'good' one?
This modern western was taken from an Elmore Leonard story. It's been described as having taken a haunted lone gun-slinger from the 19th century and popping him into the 21st century. He does seem ill-at-ease in the world, and his mannerisms and speech are slightly stilted. He has to move home to Kentucky, and our hero, Raylon Givens, is reluctant to face the demons of an impoverished past, an ex, a jail-bird dad, red-necks and the neo-Nazis that await him (who wouldn't?). But it's not just drama. The writing is witty and humorous. *
Leonard was interviewed on NPR last week and sounded remarkably humble, considering his knack for creating characters as hubristic as Chili Palmer from Get Shorty. This new-style western is going to be one of the best shows on TV. Now that Burn Notice is on hiatus, it couldn't have happened too soon.
*Though I'm already over the blonde white-trash from his past who wants to lure him to bed. She stupidly married a BMOC from high school whose luck ran dry, who then became a white supremacist before she shot him (over his favorite dinner of chicken and gravy and corn, or some such starchy sounding meal). All Ava can offer our hero is sex. Givens needs a sharp-tongued, femme-fatale-type woman in the mode of Myrna Loy or Barbara Stanwyck who can shake things up and keep him on his toes.....(see what I mean? What a mix of characters).