Saturday, December 10, 2011

Sons of Anarchy - To Be, Part Two (Season Finale)

Did you watch the season finale of Sons of Anarchy this week? What surprised you the most? What are you still wondering about? And how are you going to pass the time between now and the beginning of Season 5?

Probably the biggest surprise for me was when Romeo & Company revealed their association with the CIA. We knew that Romeo had “a guy inside” the CIA—he’d told Jax that in the prior episode. What we didn’t know was that Romeo was working with the CIA. That was a great plot twist because it complicated everything enough to tie Jax’s hands and prevent him from killing Clay.

Because of Romeo’s connection to the CIA, the RICO sting that would have arrested many of the Sons was thwarted because the CIA needs the gun/drugs deal to go down between the Sons, the Irish, and the cartel. But the Irish will only deal with Clay. They want nothing to do with Jax. When Romeo revealed the truth of it all to Jax, it became obvious to Jax that Clay had to live to make the deal go down. If Clay died, the Irish would walk away from the deal, the RICO sting would be back in play, and Jax and his brothers would go to prison. Jax was forced to stay in Charming.

We wondered here at home if Jax would tell Tara the truth about the CIA and the RICO sting. We were happy when he told her everything, but we expected her to leave. (And yet, we couldn’t really see Maggie Siff leaving the show.) When Tara walked into the chapel at the end of the show and put her arm possessively around Jax, staring Gemma down, the juxtaposition of Tara and Jax with Gemma and JT was a great effect. Jax is at the head of the table; Tara’s his old lady; Gemma’s looking on from the periphery.

I loved, loved, loved it when Jax prevented Tig from taking the Sergeant-at-Arms position to his right and instead asked Chibs to take that place. It was a brilliant move—Tig is way too loyal to Clay to take that seat, and Chibs is an upstanding dude. The noticeable hole at the table was the empty VP seat. Will Opie show up? Will he take the office? I think he will, but it was cool that they didn’t wrap that up for us in this episode.

We all knew that Jax wouldn’t really be able to kill Clay this season. Ron Perlman’s portrayal of Clay Morrow is much too integral to the whole plot of the show to lose him. But it wouldn’t have been true to Jax’s character to just have him change his mind and not do it. The disclosure of the CIA’s involvement in the deal and the threat of RICO arrests hanging over the Sons was a perfect vehicle to prevent the murder. Jax would never sabotage his club.

The next best thing to killing Clay, though, was Jax stripping the president’s patch from Clay’s cut. It was even better than the minor slice he gave to Clay’s neck. Gemma almost got everything she wanted—Jax is staying in Charming, and he’s sitting at the head of the table. But Clay isn’t dead, and I can’t wait to see what that means for Season 5 of the Sons of Anarchy.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Sons of Anarchy - To Be, Part One - Gemma plots!

Did you really think part one of the season finale for Sons of Anarchy would answer more questions than it asked? I actually thought we’d know … something. Ha! That’s what I get for thinking!

I suppose it did answer one of the biggest questions left hanging in the air from the previous episode—Clay’s not dead. The sadistic part of me that is thrilled by his evil ways is happy he’s still with us. The side of me that sympathizes with all of his victims thinks, “Really? He’s still alive? Really?” We’re led to believe it’s a temporary state of affairs as Jax is determined to do away with his stepdad—with the help of Tara and her medicine bag. But things never seem to go the way you think they’re going to, and I just can’t imagine Sons without Ron Perlman. Can you?

The jewel of the episode, though, was Katey Sagal. Oh my gosh! Gemma is the most manipulative, scheming bitch I’ve had the pleasure to watch on TV. Would she know the truth if it came up and bit her on the ass? I’m thinking not. Last week, we were wondering what was up with the kiss she gave Clay and her telling him that she loved him when only the week before she’d told Wayne that Clay needed to die. Now, this week, she tells the surgeon to keep Clay alive—with about as much interest and enthusiasm as I show for a bologna sandwich (not much)—so that she can manipulate Jax into killing him. It didn’t surprise me that she wanted Jax to kill Clay, but what a convoluted path we took to that point.

Then, we also have Gemma and her double-dealing with Jax and Tara. First, she convinces Tara to cough up JT’s letters and promises Tara that she’ll give the letters to Clay so that he’ll calm down and stop killing people. When Tara asks Gemma if Gemma understands that she and Jax are taking the boys and leaving Charming, Gemma says yes. And she says it without a hint of anger—only resignation evident on her face as if she knows there’s nothing she can do to prevent it.

A couple scenes later, though, we have Gemma walking into the chapel at the clubhouse where Jax is sorting through Clay’s paperwork. She hands Jax the letters and tells him everything—well, almost everything. She conveniently leaves out the part about JT’s death that implicates her and Wayne. After she tells Jax about Clay killing JT, about Clay killing Piney, and about Clay putting out the hit on Tara, there’s nothing left for Jax to do but kill Clay. And then, Gemma says, after he does, he has to take his rightful seat at the head of the table. So much for being resigned to Jax and Tara leaving Charming, right?

Next week—the season finale—will hopefully answer some of our questions. Will Jax kill Clay? I don’t think so. We need him around. Will Jax and Tara leave Charming? Jax won’t, but I think Tara might. Will the ‘Niners retaliate for Tig’s rogue attack that killed Laroy’s woman? What’s gonna happen to Opie, Bobby, Juice, and Otto? And what will my favorite bitch do for kicks next week? Gemma is the epic mother figure, isn’t she? Don’t mess with her family and don’t try to upset her happy home. Hell truly hath no fury as a pissed-off Gemma.

I don’t know what I’m gonna do when Season 4 of Sons of Anarchy ends next week. I guess I’ll have to re-watch the earlier seasons to get me through until next year and Season 5 begins. Maybe we should form a support group or something—share our favorite scenes, lines, murders, laughs. But I digress … we’ve got one episode left and I’ll bet Kurt Sutter’s got a helluva story planned. See ya next week!