'Justified' Showrunner Talks About the Survivors in Series Finale

Graham Yost who created the FX series says the ending could have gone a different way if only to give himself a sense of closure.

AceShowbiz - "Justified" ended its six-season run on Tuesday, April 14. Leaving [SPOILER ALERT!] the main characters alive, the show at one point almost led viewers to think that Raylan (Timothy Olyphant) died after a confrontation with Boon (Jonathan Tucker). Fortunately, Boon missed and his bullet only grazed the top of Raylan's head.

Boon showed up while Raylan was transporting Ava (Joelle Carter) to jail. Earlier in the episode, Boyd (Walton Goggins) saved Ava from Markham (Sam Elliott) and his men, before Raylan came and arrested the two. Ava managed to escape while Raylan engaged in a duel with Boon.

The show later flashed forward four years and showed Raylan working in Florida. He had a good relationship with his ex Winona and his daughter Willa. By a chance, Raylan saw Ava in a picture of a pumpkin patch and went to apprehend her in California. It turned out Ava had been pregnant with Boyd's son Zachariah when she escaped. Raylan agreed not to turn her in and further helped her by telling Boyd that she had died in a car accident three years ago.

Speaking about the decision to keep all three of them alive, series creator Graham Yost tells The Hollywood Reporter, "It's not the kind of show where we'd kill off Raylan," and, "There was no way we were going to kill off Ava." He adds, "So it came down to Boyd. We felt Boyd might deserve [to die], but it wouldn't reflect well on Raylan. It would show he hadn't grown. We wanted Raylan to have a small, incremental growth over the series."

In another interview with Variety, Yost says he would have killed Boyd if only to give himself a sense of closure, but "it wouldn't serve Raylan, and Raylan would then not have grown over the course of the show. That was his little bit of growth."

Olyphant is pleased with the ending, admitting, "I liked the last episode - it's pretty good." He says "there was an elegance" to the last 30 minutes when he read the script. On his character's showdown with Boyd, he comments, "That scene, tonally, wasn't how I imagined it, but broad strokes, I liked the way it went down."

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