Longmire season 6 episode 5 had the tough challenge of following up the best episode of the season, but it nonetheless did also deliver an intense, exciting case anchored by and large by one of the best mysteries of the entire season.
Can you make a quibble about the motive behind the central murder? That all depends on how you look at it.
Let’s start things off with this: Tucker Baggett is dead. The lawyer who was ready to bring Walt Longmire down once and for all was found on the reservation not too long into the episode, but after a failed round of courtroom drama with Walt, it led to him getting hammered at the Red Pony. In a brief sequence that appeared almost straight out of one of the Hangover movies, it didn’t appear as though he had much of an alibi or the means to really prove he was innocent. He was missing a block of time.
Unfortunately, Vic also was without an alibi and to make matters worse for her, there was a missing bullet from her chamber. Her reason for that was incredibly heartbreaking. Following the miscarriage she suffered in episode 4, she went on a drive and came close to killing herself — she had the bullet locked and ready to go, but she emptied it out when she realized that she couldn’t go through with it. The pain of losing her child, (probably coupled with the pain of loving someone who wasn’t showing an interest in sharing those feelings) were enough to bring her close to the edge. This is rock bottom for her and we hope that someone is able to bring her back.
With the Mayor and basically all law enforcement not tied to the Sheriff’s department circling Walt like vultures, he was desperate to find the true guilty party in killing Tucker before he was behind bars. He eventually found it, interestingly enough in Lucian Connally who he previously believed to be one of his biggest supporters. Lucian and Walt’s history goes back for decades, and what Barlow’s brother decided was that he was willing to risk his own future to ensure that Walt had one. He never thought that he’d be caught and also felt confident enough that Walt couldn’t be pinned down for it. To him, this was the best of both worlds — we’d say that this was a questionable motive for Lucian to want to kill someone, but he and Tucker have their own history and even beyond that, we just think that Lucian was at the point in his life where he just didn’t care all that much anymore. This is why, in the closing minutes, you saw him opt to throw himself off of a cliff to his (apparent?) death rather than be arrested. At first he tried to force Walt to kill him, but that didn’t quite work out.
The flaw with Lucian’s plan here seems to be his own ability to mask being detected. He apparently didn’t think anyone would ever know what he did and didn’t have a backup plan that was adequate because of it. Because Walt was the only witness to what happened here we can easily see a scenario where someone claims that Lucian learned that Walt killed Tucker and Walt therefore killed him to keep the secret safe. Our beloved Sheriff isn’t out of the woods yet.
Longmire season 6 episode 5 was another great episode of the show complete with some great performances. We do wish that Henry and Cady had more active roles in the story but we’re only at the halfway point and there are many loose ends to tie up still with Malachi and Jacob Nighthorse. As of this writing we haven’t watched ahead, but we have to imagine that there are more surprises coming up for the two of them.
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