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Here's Why 'Justified: City Primeval' Villain Boyd Holbrook Was Nervous To Watch The Original Series

As a Kentucky native, Holbrook wasn't sure how the series would depict his home state.

Boyd Holbrook's ruthless and sociopathic Clement Mansell is fantastic as the villain to Timothy Olyphant's Raylan Givens in the FX neo-western Justified: City Primeval — but he almost didn't take the role because he initially thought the series was "making fun of us hillbillies."

When approached by Quentin Tarantino about the part — the iconic director almost came on to direct an episode of the Justified reboot — he thought the series would make his home state of Kentucky the butt of jokes. But when Holbrook (who you may recognize from Narcos, Logan, and Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny) dove into the source material, he fell in love with the part and stuck with the project even after Tarantino left.

"I was really timid to watch it because I am from Harlan County, a county over," he said in a conversation with Michael Shannon in Interview Magazine. "So I was always like, 'Man, it's kind of making fun of us hillbillies.' I thought the show wouldn't hit the tone right, but it's great."

And he's been great, too, garnering all kinds of praise for his turn as the foil to Givens. Erik Kain from Forbes calls him "nonchalantly menacing" and says that he makes the villain from the original series, Boyd Crowder (Walton Goggins), seem like an "affable fellow compared to the murderous Clement." IndieWire's Ben Travers says, "Holbrook lends Clement a haunting awareness; he's never surprised by how far he's willing to go, and rarely are his actions beyond his own control." And Kyle Wilson of The Lamplight Review says he takes the reigns from Goggins "with sociopathic flying colors. Holbrook gives one of the best antagonist performances in recent television history, electrifying the screen with every tense conversation and bonkers mood swing. There's no telling what he'll say or do: at times he's hilarious, at times terrifying - but you'll love every uncomfortable minute with him throughout the season. The character is absolutely fascinating on his own and also brings out the best in Olyphant and his character."

In our own premiere review, we praised Holbrook for playing his new villain with a "vicious appetite."

Watch Justified: City Primeval every Tuesday on FX or stream on Hulu.

READ MORE: 'Justified: City Primeval' Episode 3 Recap: A Return to the Original 'Justified' Form