Being bad can cost an arm and a leg. And in the case of Robert Quarles, well … at least he’s still got the leg!
“Justified” concluded its third season on Tuesday night, bringing the 13-episode conflict between U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens, meat-cleaving money-hoarder Ellstin Limehouse and the bleach-blond OxyContin-popping gangster Quarles to a boil. In the midst of Limehouse’s slaughterhouse, Quarles tried to kill Givens with that way-too-cool gun up his sleeve, only to find his gun — and, by extension, most of his arm — on the floor, cleaved off in one smooth move by a butcher-knife-wielding Limehouse. It was a glorious, gory way to close out the Quarles story while still leaving the door open for the immensely watchable Neal McDonough in future seasons, and an equally brilliant way to deliver on the bloody promise of Limehouse’s butchering skills, all while keeping Timothy Olyphant’s Raylan firmly in the mix.
There was only one ingredient missing from the equation: Boyd Crowder, the most complicated criminal in Harlan County. Played to morally ambiguous perfection by “The Shield” veteran Walton Goggins, Boyd nearly left season three of “Justified” in a prison cell — all-too-familiar circumstances for the pyrotechnically inclined antihero — and, in the process, unavailable for the final showdown between Raylan, Quarles and Limehouse. To a degree, Boyd’s exclusion from the scene was disappointing for fans wanting to see the character get some much-craved justice against Quarles and Limehouse, two of his chief rivals throughout season three. But Goggins sees it another way.
“In some ways, Boyd being in that scene, that’s what you expected. That’s kind of the payoff that everybody was looking for,” Goggins told MTV News in a recent interview about how the “Justified” finale played out for Boyd. “In some ways, we don’t want to rob people of those expectations, but I believe [‘Justified’ executive producer Graham Yost] is always looking for different kinds of angles. Boyd was really robbed of his revenge on both [Dickey Bennett, played by ‘Lost’ alum Jeremy Davies] and on Quarles in a way. I think that’s really going to serve the story going forward.”
You can check out the interview in full over at MTV.com