If you’re still buzzing about Justified’s Season Three finale, “Slaughterhouse” then you’re probably wondering about what will happen in season 4. There were no cheap cliffhangers to hold viewers hostage–not that there’s anything wrong with those, but that’s where Justified sets itself apart from many shows, because they can close stories at the end, they satisfy and they know how to build a season from the ground up and start over again. You have to admire that kind of confident storytelling and thankfully, FX recognized that so that viewers could experience it. They already know you’ll come back, but Graham Yost, Elmore Leonard and the rest of the Justified writers wrapped up several plot lines that began in Seasons One and Two in addition to those started in Season 3. Does that mean that they didn’t leave some morsels for us to chew on? Of course not. Here are seven stories that should be touched on Season 4.
Bonnie, Johnny & Clyde
Boyd (Walton Goggins) ultimately got his release from custody at Arlo’s expense and we now know that it was Johnny who told Limehouse (Mykelti Williamson) about Devil’s murder. Was it shocking that Johnny was the leak? No, but you could tell that he wasn’t happy with Limehouse spilling that can of beans, thus setting off a new conflict to square. Johnny can’t tell Boyd because that would show to him that he was the one who told Limehouse in the first place. And now Johnny will have a score to settle with Limehouse on his own but he won’t have Arlo hallucinating about Helen to pawn off suspicion. Ava (Joelle Carter) will surely step up but would Boyd let her take care of family business? She’s a crowder but she isn’t blood. Boyd let Quarles, an outsider, poison the town of Harlan; if anyone’s going to do that, it’s going to be him. Barring another outsider or newcomer from within Harlan, this has to be Boyd’s big season. He’s spent most of Season 3 rebuilding his resources and weeding out obsolete help and Ava will continue to prove herself an equal partner. Which brings us to…
As You Wish, Ma’am
Ava let Ellen May (Abby Miller) know who’s running Audrey’s and how the whereabouts of Delroy need to remain secret. How far is Ava bought into Boyd’s dreams and goals? She was aiming to run it herself and she never ceases to surprise viewers, herself, and those characters surrounding her including Johnny, Boyd, and Raylan. As for the girls of Audrey’s, who thought that things were going to improve for them with Delroy dead? Who’s having second thoughts now?
Shelby For Sheriff
Shelby (Jim Beaver) drew the line in the sand between he and Boyd. They’re square, so says Shelby. But now that Boyd is in the position to scheme once again, Shelby will have to deal with keeping him in line or be caught in the crossfire. Wouldn’t it be ironic if Shelby plays a part in taking Boyd down?
Noble’s Holler and Its Protector
Limehouse proved that he is not clean but aims to do anything that would keep unneeded attention away from Noble’s Holler. I don’t think he’d do anything to be a villain in the purest sense, and even though he wasn’t forthcoming with all the information Raylan, he helped take care of Quarles. One might say he saved his life and for that Raylan owes him another one. Let’s not forget that Raylan’s mother seeked refuge at Noble’s Holler too. Limehouse helped protect and carry out Mags’ wishes to leave the money with Loretta and he still has a relationship–a friendship with Ava– that may come into play. Limehouse has to deal with Johnny’s threat and he’ll need a new right hand man. Is Bernard (Cleavon McClendon) ready to step up his game?
Winona and Her Baby Daddy
Raylan and Winona (Natalie Zea) continue to come at an impasse in their relationship. Telling stories of severed arms don’t help. Raylan is going to want to be there for his kid, especially how everything with Arlo has shaken out. But can he be selfless enough to be there when it counts? Can Winona find some middle ground? C’mon Winona, at least Raylan’s out of the motel (um, but is sleeping with the bartender of the bar he bounces and lives at).
Raylan’s Support Group
Even though he’s been a loner most of his life, he will have a child to worry about soon and will need help dealing with some of the baggage he’s carrying. Will he depend on Art more to keep him smiling? Can he really count on Winona to be the support he needs? Will Rachel (Erica Tazel) and Tim (Jacob Pitts) help in unprecedented ways and is he willing to accept working with others and follow Marshal procedure? Has his fling with Lindsey (Jenn Lyon) fizzled or just started? Speaking of which, will Raylan continue to moonlight and live at the bar?
Dumb and Dumber and Dumbest
We shouldn’t see Arlo (Raymond J. Barry) or Dickie Bennett (Jeremy Davies) among the free for quite awhile, but that doesn’t mean that they’re gone for good. Dickie will likely find his way to Dewey (Damon Herriman), while Arlo is scheduled to rot in prison. Raylan’s father at some point will lay in the Givens family plot, but will there be forgiveness there? How will the events of the finale affect their relationship if at all? Fletcher “Ice Pick” Nix (Desmond Harrington) is someone who could realistically come back and cause trouble And let’s not forget that Wynn Duffy (Jere Burns) and Mike (Jonathan Kowalsky) are still running around as free men. If he’s smart, Duffy should be planning to leave the state for good after playing his last game of Harlan Roulette, but then again, this is Wynn Duffy we’re talking about here. He could come back and try to take credit for Quarles’ death. He could also sell Theo Tonin (Adam Arkin) on the idea of exploiting Kentucky and keeping a thread alive for Detroit means that a window would remain open for Michael Ironside to return as Sarno. I know it’s a stretch, but who doesn’t want more Ironside?
Is there another story you think is going to come up? Is there a scene or detail you think will grow into a major story line in Season 4? Share your thoughts below!