Walt (Robert Taylor) finds himself in a no-win situation in the "Longmire" episode "Tuscan Red." When the Native Americans are on one side of a murder, and a big corporation on the other, that covers two enormous voting blocks for Absaroka County. Neither of them will want to vote for the man whose face pops up the most, and that face belongs to Walt.
The explosion heard round the county
Henry (Lou Diamond Phillips) attempts to get Walt to act just a little more like Branch (Bailey Chase) in his race for sheriff by coaxing Walt to at least admit that he wants the job. But the moment he finally says he wants it, a loud noise in the distance disrupts the men's discussion. It's the sound of an explosion that just may ruin Walt's chances.
A Native American was inside of a house that had been invaded by what his family and other natives believe to be methane from fracking. Oh great, a fracking company up against the Indian reservations, with Walt stuck right in the middle of the argument.
Of course, Walt only wants to do his job. He's the good guy in this, not taking bribes, or even caring who's at fault. When it comes to murder and large sums of corporate money that may be lost if fracking is forced to stop, however, each side is on the defensive. Each side believes Walt is cozying up to the other side.
It doesn't help that Walt's best friend and campaign manager is Henry Standing Bear. It also doesn't help that the department is literally in bed with the fracking corporation, since Vic (Katee Sackhoff) is actually married to one of their underlings. Walt just keeps on, ignoring the protests and insults, until he solves the murder.
The murdered man is Ethan, an Indian who was not "red enough" because he married a non-Cheyenne black woman. When Ethan -- who used to be an alcoholic -- turned down a fellow native for a casino job because he was high on drugs, the man retaliated by forcing alcohol down Ethan's throat until it killed him. He then painted Ethan Tuscan red with his car paint, and hid the crime by causing the explosion with Ethan inside the house.
Cady tries the speed-racing tactic to get her ex's attention
Cady (Cassidy Freeman) can't admit that she wants to speak with Branch, her ex-fiancé, so she speeds past him so he'll pull her over. She somehow keeps running into him. A few drunken escapades later, and she finally tells him what's on her mind, which is about her mother's murder.
Walt can't win, but neither can Branch
Branch can't avoid being involved in the latest no-win case, no matter how hard he tries to hide his face. If he can't escape the case unscathed, he must try another tactic: Bring Walt down using his newfound knowledge about the murder of Walt's wife.
Cady was completely innocent in talking things over with her ex, but Branch will do anything to win against Cady's father. He begins by simply telling Walt that he knows about the murder of Cady's mother, and that Cady needs Walt more than "the county" does. Will Walt give up on being sheriff that easily? Will Branch continue nosing deeper into Walt's business if Walt doesn't hand him the reins willingly?
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