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Sons of Anarchy's Season 5 Premiere: Regime Change



Sons of Anarchy S05E01: "Sovereign"

After Season 1 of Sons of Anarchy laid out the backbone of the series in its debut, subsequent season premieres found themselves defined by specific moments. The gang rape of Gemma in Season 2 still stands out as some of the most brutal television I've watched. Season 3's opener took its time before a van full of trigger-happy thugs unloaded on Half Sack's wake and Jax made some dude taste pavement. Last season, a joyous wedding was capped by a shower of bullets in lieu of throwing rice, because that's the kind of stuff that happens at a biker wedding.

There's a common thread to a Sons premiere, and it's marked with considerable violence after many minutes of stage-setting, refamiliarizing the audience with the life of SAMCRO, and attempting to iron out the show's incredibly complex storylines. Tonight's "Sovereign" sticks very close to that model, which is a comforting feeling for longtime fans even if it doesn't offer anything terribly new except for new ways to show people suffering. Yes, an innocent woman being burned alive in a pit full of corpses was comforting. Sons of Anarchy is back, baby!

But before we get to that good stuff we need to look at what happened before. It's now more evident than ever that the Season 4 finale was just as interested in setting things up for Season 5 as it was with closing up Season 4. This year's bad guy* appears to be Damon Pope, played by that guy (Harold Perrineau) whose Lost dialogue was 75-percent "Waaaaaaalt!" The advantage of essentially starting this storyline last season is that we can get right down to the business of burning an innocent woman alive in a pit full of corpses. The disadvantage, well, the Season 4 finale was definitely the lowlight of an otherwise stellar season of Sons of Anarchy.

(* "bad guy" is obviously relative in this series, but if you've made it to Season 5 then you are probably more or less okay with SAMCRO's less-than-legal extracurriculars.)

So it wasn't long before we got an idea of how this Pope fella operates. The way this guy runs things, he makes the other Pope look like a prankster. It was his daughter that was manslaughtered by Tig in what can only be described as a rage-fueled-but-brain-absent decision in last season's finale, and Pope's not going to let that slide. He went after SAMCRO and cleaned up his own staff in the process, murdering Leroy (Tig's intended target) by chopping him into pieces, shooting his lieutenant Darnell in the head pretty much just to send a message (he went to the Gus Fring school of thuggery, apparently), and pouring gasoline on Tig's daughter Dawn (does that mean no more Rachel Miner?) for the aforementioned human BBQ. (If you want to get technical about it, it was actually Pope's right-hand man August Marks that did most of the killing under orders from Pope so Pope can keep his hands clean.)

But aside from his horrible actions, does Pope really give us the bad guy we want in this season? There's no doubt he's dangerous and his crew is a formidable opponent, but Pope himself lacks the charisma of past Sons of Anarchy villains. Lincoln Potter was fascinating because he was a chocolate-milk-drinking weirdo, Ethan Zobelle had the whole super-smart white-power thing going on, but Pope, apart from a penchant for human flambé, seems pretty run of the mill by baddie standards and will need to build a legacy of hatred through vicious actions instead of interesting character quirks and a commanding presence. Pope doesn't seem like a hardcore gangster yet to me, he seems like an actor playing a hardcore gangster. It's not a good start for Pope when I'm more scared of his buddy August than I am of him.

That will likely change when Pope finds out what Tig did. Instead of going quietly off to jail, Tig strangled an Oakland detective on Pope's payroll and killed the cleaner that was there to scrape Dawn off the sides of the pit. This is Tig at his unhinged best. Love this guy, and love Kim Coates' performance through that whole scene.

Elsewhere, the club is in shambles as Jax deals with all sorts of fallout and desperately tries to Scotch tape SAMCRO together. Clay, or the ghost of Clay, is haunting the headquarters looking more like a monster than the ferocious villain he was last season. It's satisfying that he's become the new Piney, burdened with tubes in his nose and unable to ride with the kids, but the guy still deserves a million papercuts and a lemon juice bath. I applaud the effort to repair his broken image, especially his confession at the table and his attempts to talk to Gemma, but after what he did last season, he's beyond repair in my eyes even though I had to reprimand myself for feeling sympathy for him for a millisecond there. He doesn't seem like a threat to Jax at the moment, and I think that makes him especially dangerous. His balls may be cut off, but his claws aren't.

Gemma, meanwhile, was a broken woman from Clay's dickishness and was spiraling down into a world of Jack Daniels for breakfast and drunken sex with strangers for fourth meal. But she still has a long ways to fall because she's holding the biggest secret (her involvement in JT's murder) now that the truth is out about Clay. And if I were her, I wouldn't feel too confident that Clay is holding that secret with her.

There's definitely a feeling of regime change here, with Clay and Gemma shells of their former selves and Jax and Tara doing everything but pose for a photograph in the shape of young Clay and Gemma (like they did at the end of Season 4). Clay's grip on power is non-existent, and Gemma, once a perfect example of strength, is at the weakest point we've ever seen her. It's obvious she and Tara are going to scratch each others' eyes out at some point this season, but the question will be how Clay finds his way back into the swing of things, because there is no way he can be done.

And what of Opie? The gentle giant said he's done with the club, even putting a "For Sale" sign on his Piney's bike. Ouch. But the real dagger came when he told Jax "I'm more afraid I'm going to turn into you." Double ouch! And you know what? He's right. Though Jax had the best for the club in mind, it wasn't the best for his BFF Opie. With Clay, the man who murdered Piney, still at the table because Jax needs him there to keep the CIA partnership going, there's no room for Opie.

It's a good start to Season 5 as the tenuous game of Jenga started at the end of Season 4 continues in Season 5 with all new levels built on top. But everything is one sneeze away from falling down, and when it does come down, it's Jax who is going to get crushed underneath.



NOTES

– What is up with the new SAMCRO members from Nomad? We were led to believe that they busted into Wayne's apartment at the end there and roughed him up, but why? Is Clay orchestrating something we don't know about and ordered them to beat the crap out of Wayne? Who else would want Wayne beat up?

– I imagine the conversation between Jimmy Smits and Kurt Sutter about casting Smits as Nero Padilla went something like this... Kurt: "Well, when we first see Padilla, he's banging Gemma from behind in a sea of naked escorts, drugs, and booze, and— " Smits: "I'll take it!"

– I'm a big fan of Nero so far ("I'm a companionator. I bring folks together, I'm all about the love."), which obviously means he's going to end up being a huge pain in the ass.

– I'm really glad the CIA storyline wasn't that prominent in the premiere. I'm okay with it being used as a way to keep Clay alive and in the picture, but the more it stays in the background, the better.


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Also, some great writing in this episode... the scene where the sheriff is talking to the guys right before Bobby returns and Happy makes the comment "angry pirates" really made me laugh!
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* The Gus Fring school of thuggery- AWESOME reference and FANTASTIC review Tim!



I was stoked when I saw Rachel Miner's name come across the screen... and then they killed her off. Disappointed.

-I also am not so impressed with Pope as the new bad guy this season, the villains of previous season were much more interesting. This guy reminds me of the Leviathans from last season's Supernatural... they may have looked good on paper, but they don't translate that well on screen. I'll give Pope the benefit of the doubt though, seeing as this is only episode one.

-Tig's performance towards the end was gut wrenching and I REALLY felt for his character... well done Kim Coates!

-So far, I'm a very big fan of Nero, and besides the 'companionator' line I also really dug :

Gemma: "Thanks for not being a dick."

Nero: "My life's ambition."



This was an excellent premiere and I cannot wait to see what happens this season
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Couple of things...



-Yep, Rachel Miner's done - you just cannot come back from going darker than Tanning Mom. So, unless her sister turns out to be her twin or something... later, Miner.

- Dawn's death is actually on Pope's hands - he threw that cigar in the pit, didn't he?

- So far, I do not see Pope as truly villainous, since I completely see where he's coming from. Even if you back SAMCRO in this feud (which I myself do), it's not hard at all to understand the reasons behind any of his actions thus far: he senselessly lost his daughter and the criminals responsible for her demise, criminals he doesn't want to be associate with in any form, now are starting to harass him... So now, he wants to destroy them. I've heard of worse reasons to start a vendetta.

- I do not, however, underestimate, like you did, Tim, how formidable a foe Pope truly is. Yes, right now he doesn't seem as badass as Zobelle, who came in Charming as a dick and left as a dick, or as Potter, who sees everybody as chess-pieces easily dispensable. He's not at all like those guys, both mentality, financially and connection-wise. You're wrong, Surette, when you compare Pope to Gus Fring. I my book, he's way more like a Michael-Corleone-level Don - so cool, he's actually cold-as-ice, and willing to sacrifice pretty much any human life to get his way. Sounds like a pretty awesome character to me.

- Another interesting thing about Pope: he got zero satisfaction out of burning Dawn alive. None. Re-watch the scene - he actually look kinda piss that he had to do this. But it HAD to be done, so he did it. Yet, when it was done, he just move on to his next task: to give popsicles to kids. If someone told me he didn't cry at all when he learned his daughter got killed, I would completely believe it. Can't wait to see more of him this season.

- Jimmy Smith's intro to the show is banging Katey Sagal, and their next scene involved Smith's real-life wife, Wanda de Jesus, showing up to pick up the girls Gemma was 'playing' with... and all this was written by Kurt Sutter. Weird...

- Another super-weird thing: Chuck Zito is in the show now!? So all you have to do to get a role in "SoA" is sue the show with bogus allegations, and Sutter will write you a part!?!? LMFAO... There's just no lawsuit in Hollywood that cannot be settle with a role in a good show!

- Kinda sad to see Tara and Gemma on the outs again - I really enjoyed their weird mother/daughter/frenemy/clone relationship. Seeing them going back to be all catty with each other again, yeah, I get where that comes from, but just not down with that. Kiss and make up alright, ladies.

- Will Thomas ever grow up? He's been a baby for a while now - more than time to make him an actual toddler...

- Opie's coming back, that's a certainty, so, when he does, it better be for one hell of a badass reason, something in the ballpark of: "if Ope doesn't help us out here, the whole club is DEAD." Hell, I'm even done with a Opie-centric episode following him outside SAMCRO. The man's such a great character, he can do no wrong in my book. I just wish Sutter would use him more, but I trust he got a great arc for him this season.

- Will Tig just go completely RENEGADE an d start killing every black folks in a suit he sees in Oakland? Dont laugh - you know he's crazy enough to do just that...



"SoA"'s back indeed. Yes, watching a girl going completely KFC does kinda feel like going home...
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Brutal episode just brutal, IMO their is more to Nero, other than a escort service, I do believe Clay is up to something Clay would not be Clay if just rolled over!!! and what was Tig thinking going alone bring back up Tig, I also think the Sheriff (Rock Dunbar drawing a blank on char name) knows something is up!! my conclusion I would tell Tera to take her boys and get out of Charming because the Sons and Charming may not survive
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Definitely one of the best reviews I have read on the show thus far. I definitely respect all of the points made. I think that the show is trying to prove something with Pope, though: Nice time is over. The only funny moment in the premiere was Happy's comment about "Angry pirates blowing up SAMCRO's truck." Things were not as heated when Zobelle was in the picture so they could make him into a charismatic sort of person. Damon Pope comes with the new setting of Sons of Anarchy. Play time is over, and things are going to be shaky from this point forward. Anyone can get hurt, secrets could come out at any time, and things are probably going to get more dangerous, deadly, and diabolical for the rest of the season. Pope is further setting that theme by being cold and calculating. Emotion is not in his realm. And the fact that he seems to have built such a loyal group that will kill anyone on his order shows how much of a threat he is and lets us know that SAMCRO is in for a lot of trouble this season.
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Even though you think Pope isn't as charismatic as past villains, I find him quite scary because he's opposite of what we'd expect: Business dress, soft spoken, appears pretty educated, then he offs and dismembers his gang leader, offs the next gang leader, burns Tig's daughter, all while maintaining his gentlemanly persona. Gus Fring, but so much worse, and all that in just one show!



Jax trying to be diplomatic and cunning is driving me crazy! I can't wait to see Clays reaction when he learns of Gemma and Nero, especially now that he's just a husk of his former self.
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I had the same feeling about Pope. I got the vibe that he's more a cerebral "villain" than past foes of the Sons. He's coming at them head on, sideways, and from behind. At the end when he burns Tig's kid it was just the kind of cold blooded vengeance I'd expect from a guy at the top of his game showing he's not some dime school thug we've seen the Sons take on before.
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Ron Pearlman deserves an Emmy.

This fixed what was wrong with the season 4 finale, which I didnt like one bit.

Season 5 season premiere was on point. Jimmy Smits knows how to play a vato.
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I personally don't think Clay has invited the nomads to trade in their Nomad Rockers for California ones, but they have their own agenda, perhaps they want to make Jax believe he needs the extra manpower to protect the old ladies and families. That Frankie stated they were honored to be at the table and they came to help, after having heard SAMCRO took some hits (like the home invasions etc). In any case they don't seem to they the best in mind for Jax and his chapter. Could be that Clay is behind is, but when and how he would have managed getting them over to his side, he was pretty much incapable of doing anything sofar.
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I understood that Sutter didn't kill off Clay but I was never happy about it. But now I finally am because of the great intense moment Clay and Jax had at the table. Clay is far from done!
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Meh. I didn't like this episode as much as I'd have liked. Maybe, being a top 5 show for me, my expectations are sometimes too high... but whatever... the episode was okay -- kinda cool.

I like both Harold Perrineau and Jimmy Smits, so I'm glad that they're both on board this season.

I can understand your dislike for Pope, as he certainly wasn't, uhhh, exciting? Animated? Engaging? Or, as you said, charismatic? Maybe all of the above. And I agree with you that Pope kind of seemed like he was acting like a hardcore gangster. When he first showed up and was talking with Darrell, I had the same thought... he seemed like he was trying to act like a mob boss, rather than actually being one. But I don't attribute that as a negative aspect of Perrineau's acting or Sutter's writing. I like it about the character. SOA has had plenty of charismatic, animated, or engaging bad guys. This conveys a slightly off-kilter character, which is what makes him pretty cool for me. Makes me think Pope's a nerd trying to be a gangster... or a hood thug trying to be sophisticated... or just an odd sociopath. It makes him interesting to me.
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I agree with a point that it is somehow becoming ridiculous to root for Samcro idiots. Everytime we get more evil character to make a comparison for the sake of Samcro. and then ok! they are good guys actually. they don't kill daughters and wives in father's or husband's presence, they don't use baseball bat to kill woman. they just kill in the sake of gun business or drug business or to shut somebody up or to get a revenge. everyone killed someone in SoA even Tara except maybe babies. but who knows? Pope is just a different level of violent type. a mob boss who kills with aid's hands not his own who deals with it like business. Samcro are awful businessmen. Jax awful strategist. I know it is all for the sake of good bad ass TV show to make some shit blows up every show. but it is not doing justice for our characters it makes them look stupid and dumb-violent. I bet Pope's more smarter than anybody in Samcro.

And I never get Juice storyline in previous season. It is just making up out of whole cloth thing. We saw black guys in different state Samcro division in 4 season. so what the hell Juice was so shitting in his pants? it's not a big deal to be black in SoA even so half black. Scottsman told him so. So why? to make a plot out of nowhere i guess. to give Juice something give him something not that ridiculous. 4 season full of plot holes. not mention a foolish super unplausible decision to make Galindo cartel a FBI stool pigeons. WTF?

it's just not that good piling up for the sake of drama. drama for Sutter is to burn somebody alive or to tickle a toddler with knife. pretty sad. next move I guess - drown a baby in bathtub or beat someone' head with a hammer to a pulp. the level of shock already needs to be higher and higher, Sutter. you trap yourself man
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CIA stool pigeons, not FBI. Still badly handled though. I mean the CIA IS in the drug buissness, but mostly because of to make use of the syndicates' ways of big scale money laundry and the main drug the CIA is active in funding and trafficing is the good ol' heroine, not cocaine(anymore). Showing the CIA(badges?WTF?) actually being the head of any mexican drug cartel is stupid...
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Burning to death is pretty much the worst death you can have. I don't think the show really earned it. Seemed sudden and random, which pretty much makes it gratuitous. This is not a word I often use.
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Did you know that burning is the most painful death? A friend of mine is a surgeon and he once told me that when you burn your brain stays conscious to the very last moment. So I'm with you, they shoulda kept it for Clay or Tyg or any of the main characters.
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Yeah, I've heard that. Honestly, I didn't remember who the girl was when she was on the screen. Had to figure it out from the context. It should have been Tyg.
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regardless of my huge sympathies to samcro guys i decided it is time stop letting the other side's terrible terrible villain redeem them and make me cheer for them.

jax keeps making dumb strategic decisions of holding all the information secret...to the point of never revealing anything, never using it to build alliances, gain leverage, or just stir some shit up. tig is in fact a psychopath (also i personally didn't find his 'oh baby no' reaction to dawn burning alive satisfying), and the whole gang is a bunch of murdering - drug dealing - guns running -violent - racist - women mistreating - assholes...



so this season i root for mr. pope (s. bell / g. fring type of villain) to fuck them up. they do kind of deserve it.



questions i want answered:

- why can't unser catch a break?

- can tara, please, become a self pitying - destructive - junkie this season?! cuz that would be amazing, as having diarrhea is amazing

- or could tara and gemma just fuck their tension out already (now that we know gemma swings both ways ;)

- are they really going to go into racial issues for real? they constantly hint at it juice's story-line, and tig insulting pope...

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Good review Tim, I wholeheartedly agree with your comment on Coates' performance, his disbeleive and pleading, in the "eye for an eye scene" and the utter insanity in his eyes, later when he takes care of the shady cop and the cleaner. A performance that can be right up there with Claire Danes' in Homeland or Bryan Cranston's madness under his house when he finds his money has been depleted. Great acting
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I'm on the fence about Coates' performance while Tig was chained up -- both before and after his daughter was burned alive. On the one hand, it kind of looked like bad acting -- it really didn't seem like true suffering and seemed more like, well, bad acting -- on the other hand, Tig has never been "normal" and has sometimes had reactions that were slightly off. I dunno... maybe seeing your daughter being burned to death creates a reaction stronger and weirder than most other forms of suffering.
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... and don't forget the man was at the bottom. I mean the absolute bottom. But maybe Coates was too much into the role - his daughter burned alive before his eyes(and ears) so I expected him to tear his arms out to help his daughter. King Aerys II wouldn't have had any fun with Tyg ...
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Bizarre. I thought it was totally unconvincing. Downright bad, actually.
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I initially thought that too, but Tig is a really weird guy. For him to react in the bizarre way that he did fit his nutjob character, I thought.



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Nice review but I'm pretty sure the allusion to Tara and Jax portraying a young Clay and gemma was really a young JT and Gemma in the season 4 finale. The old photos were clearly of JT and badass Gemma, not Clay
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I aint no spiderman nigga!
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I think I should watch it again. I wasn't led to believe that the Nomad guys are the robbers.
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Well, to be fair, we're led to believe that ONE of the Nomads (Peg, the guy with the prosthetic) is one of the guys at the end, as they both have prosthetic left feet.



It COULD be just a coincidence that there were three Nomads, and it looked like there were three robbers, but it's also reasonable to assume all three Nomads were the robbers.
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Always great bringing in two character actors from the home of all great television character actors "Oz". How come Perrineau is getting all the props? - "Chucky Pancamo" Chuck Zito is now riding with the "Sons"!



Another fantastic season premiere from Sutter. How come when people write about Emmy snubs towards this show they never talk about Pearlman's performance as "Clay" or long time veteran Kim Coates "Tig"? Both were excellent but Coates - being first sucker punched with no regard from poor oxygen sucking Clay with his "noble" confession and the realization that he killed a young woman FOR NOTHING and then being chained and forced to actually see the consequences this in the form of his own daughter being burned alive - the conversation between Miner and Sutter must also have been interesting - yeah Rachel we need you one more time. Were gonna put Dawn in a pit full of severed corpses and burn her alive in front of Tig. -- That was just such a brilliant way to give the great Coats a story.



Juice was also fascinating in this episode - he is so willing to forgive Clay because he wants everyone to forgive him for something they still know nothing of. Please don't kill off Theo Rossi.



Anxious to see where this season is heading. In the words of the Angus, Malcolm, and Bonn - "Ride On".
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I don't think it's a coincidence that Wayne taking a beating happened very shortly after he informed Jax of his imminent capture. Whoever initiated the attack on Wayne has something to do with Jax and Tig's looming imprisonment and the "witnesses" they found to testify. I have no doubt that Clay has his hand in it somehow.
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really don't agree on Pope!

he''s down right scary - Harold Perrineau kinda rock. While I didn't care much for the character of Lost's Michael, and the writers never really gave Oz' Hill the attention to match the possibilities, Perrineau's performance were great in both cases. And now he appears to be given the script he deserves - Popes little ticks, his ruthlessness, and his apparent soft spots for kids, bodes for one of the shows most compelling characters, imo
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I feel that SoA can be in trouble in a longway. it feels like dead end with Sutter's approach to it - so many violence and killings every three weeks and then every day (during a season i guess) it seems absurd almost. I know it is a show and we accept SoA reality in which every day some shit blows up some dead tortured bodies appear whatever. but it feels that it kinda reach the point of almost kafkian absurdity, nonsensical point. when you just don't care anymore and just wonder how these people can function in all this crazyness (threats, deaths, killings, vendettas - and Jax or Tara thinking or saying - it's fine we get through it.In Tara's shoes I'll be running away from this wackos. I see no logic here. It's like in One Tree Hill so many dramas one cannot handle ever. I bet real Sons Of Anarchy (if they exist) never see shit like this. It's just unreal to the point of no return.

And I see that in 4 season opener when wedding scenes cut with killings' scenes. It was sloppy and in your face (very obvious like we are idiots). Sutter has lost his feeling for unobvious. for subtle moves. for unpredictable.

for positive - i'm glad Jimmy Smiths is on the team. he's great. and wanna see private Tig's vendetta for Pope. I'm not against plotting but don't appreciate Sutter's choice for cuts and imagery.
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@ BRANDONLILLIES; i dont think this writer can have watched OZ because gemma's rape is some of the most brutal television he's watched.



OZ pretty much desensitised me to violence and crime
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thats not waynes apartment, that was gemma house and i dont think they were targeting wayne, they are the ones breaking in to friends of the sons houses! maybe they are working for clay and were going after gemma on his orders because the police believe they are probably blacks, so they have created a pattern and swoop in and kill an influential family member and the sons go after the niners!!!!!
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Yup, that was Gemma's house.
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As much as I love this show and have been waiting for it's return, I'm sorry but in my opinion that was an incredibly dull Season Opener.



The only thing of interest were the scenes with Tig and his daughter, he did a brilliant job but the rest of it had me staring at the wall wondering if it was going to be over soon. It really felt like they were all just wandering around waiting for something to happen and nothing ever did.



I was however pleased to see Jimmi Smits and Harold Perrineau, they'll make great additions to the cast and I am looking forward to next week when we'll get to see Jax and Nero interact.
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I am not impressed that this site states that the season 5 premier would be aired on FX Canada and it was not. I waited weeks to watch the premier to find out if you live in Canada it was only aired on the super channel.
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Don't count on TV.com for Canadian TV listings. This website is as "Ameri-centric" as they come.
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this season opener [maybe the shows best opener to date] proves that kurt sutter is the finest writer/producer in tv today.



i couldnt wait for this show to start 4 years back [being a REAL biker myself], but i had serious reservations. the dude from beauty and the beast? peg bundy as biker royalty? the dude from a gay show playing the lead bad guy and ladys man? eeeeyaaahh.......... . and the fact, as another poster brought out, there was going to be a backbone of violence and dirty deeds, but how far can you keep that fresh? there's only so many dirty deeds and ways to die. so i thought. and this is why this show is as deep and brilliant as it is, they keep the violence in perspective and bring it out in gut wrenching ways [and lets face it, in 2012, we have been desensitized by decades of hard violence and snack on it between meals]. and the characters just keep changing without being boring and cliche [cliche another red flag for me in waiting for the show, how many corny "biker" lines will the show serve up each week?] sutter chose the RIGHT cast and his writing, to me, is beyond reproach. this season is going to be beyond dark. but you know sutter is going to put it all together and i believe we will be seeing jax at his finest, strongest hour before seasons end. you heard it here first!! tig is the one who is going to put clay out of his sick misery. maybe not this season, but its coming. think clay has caused opie some damage? true. but look at how he has twisted tig and the soul sacrifices clay has walked him into? now offering up a family member to put the final nail in tigs sanity. i always bet opie or jax would do the deed [ya know it has to happen] with gemma as a dark horse. but i see tig being the hero and doing what all of us have wanted to do for the last 3-4 years!! and theres another 3 seasons in ink!! wow? how will they "survive"? you cant take on that task as a writer without having a sure fire plan with a polar opposite of a HOUSE MD ending. its gonna be quite the ride! i am already feeling that "92 miles an hour" jax talked about sitting in my chair in front of the tv!!!
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Yo hazben, I ride myself as well and I think Kurt listens to Sonny regularly for advise. All my bro's here love the show, though it's a little over dramatized, it got a great cast, good music and interesting plots
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Also wanted to point out that it's very common for the mafioso crime bosses to not be as physically or mentally imposing as their right-hand man. In any and most cases, the 2nd in command is on par or above their counterparts, i.e. Darth Vader/Palpatine. It's too early to say where SoA is going with Damon Pope, so far we've seen Zobelle/Weston, Romeo/Luis Torres, even Clay/Tig as a deadly combo throughout SoA history.
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summary:In the fifth-season premiere, Jax takes the reins of SAMCRO as trouble brews in Charming.

watch full streaming here free http://tinyurl.com/8fec3ef
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Kurt Sutter not that sofisticated guy I guess. He always does that brutal shit in your face (I don't think we need to see particularily how girl burning out alive and screaming, they could see her dead already) but nope. it's not enough for sutter. we should watch her burn and scream. it's way too disturbing image. (wait are we in torture porn-like movie?) even gang rape of Gemma was not that shocking and out there.

Sutter has no subtlety at all. he should learn from sopranos. it was way too out-of-hand thing to do. I don't see a sense here just a shocker meaning (like a sex scene near dead body in season 1). He did it just to let people talk about. I get that this is extra macho tv show but extra shock exposed scenes do not necessarily mean manly stuff. it just feels off.
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Are you insane? He should learn from The Sopranos? Well, yes, of course every writer/director/producer could learn a thing or two from the Sopranos, but the violence in SOA hasn't come close to what we saw over the years in the Sopranos.
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The beatings were more brutal in the sopranos, and maybe there were more killings, but I don't remember anything like burning someone's innocent daughter alive, or execution by cutting someones balls off, or tattoo removal by fire. So your last sentence seems very wrong.
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Ah, first SAMCROSDAY of the fall! Glad it's back since I'm without Breaking Bad (sighs sobs). This is the best season premiere of the series. I think we all know that Clay isn't going to happily stay out of the chair at the head of the table. Tara's flexing her muscles and Gemma's sort of at a loss being stripped from power and alone.

They both killed innocents, both killed women. With Tig it was business, but it was also accidental. In both cases he was going after someone else, the victim was just an accident of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. With Pope it was a very cold, calculated evil move. This will send Tig off the charts. Ouch.

My two cents: I'm just sorry that they will always judge Harold Perrineau because of his LOST's character. I understand since I'm one of the few that will always adore him as Augustus Hill and I know for sure that he will be good in Sons Of Anarchy. Just give him something well written to work on. Thank you Kurt for bringing him back to the small screen :-)
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Damon Pope not scary enough? The guy just burned Tig's daughter in front of him, did so in a pit full of his lieutenants corpses (goodbye Leroy and Darnell) and did so without even a breathe of emotion.



He has the calm and collectiveness of Ethan Zobelle but the guts and glamour of the Galindo/Lobos cartel from last season. His right-hand man also makes AJ Weston look like an ignorant redneck. Can't think of another B-list actor who would have fit the bill , Harold Perrineau has done good so far in his debut, I have to admit, it's a little hard shaking his LOST image, but then I remember his performance in Felon, and can't wait to see how he reacts when his emotions finally come out (opposite of handing out ice cream to kids)
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I love this: Need to add add a little pickup to a show? -- Just add Jimmy Smits!

Worked for:

West Wing

Dexter

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Ah...sons of anarchy is back. My life is complete.



Terrible what happened to Tigs daughter. I can't even imagine what I'd do in a situation like that, and being helpless to stop it.
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Hey Tim, I love your coverage of Breaking Bad, but I'm gonna have to disagree with you hard regarding Harold Perrineau. Did you see his performance in "Felon?" He's not just an actor playing a bad guy role, when Harold gets into a character he embodies it. I think they're doing a great job of setting Price up. He's quiet, cold, calculating. He dealt with his grief as if a controlled demolition. He compartmentalized his feelings. Set things in motion, never showing his hand until the last possible moment. And his small expression of emotion at the ice cream truck was as subtle as a poker tell. I think he's going to be the ultimate bad guy. He's the kind of guy who put running and gunning behind him years ago, not because he had to, but because he's smart enough to do things without getting his hands dirty. It may have been years since he pulled a trigger himself, but he's the type of bad guy who when you look into his eyes, you want to look away because you feel uneasy. You know he's not to be f*cked with. I think he's gonna do just fine. That's my opinion anyway.
More+
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P.S. why was the season premier not 2 hours?

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in reference to Jimmy Smits...FUCK YEAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! bout time we got another great actor.
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Were we supposed to recognize the prosthetic foot, from a character earlier in the show? or Is that a new detail, to watch for in future episodes? Because I don't remember a guy losing a foot.
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One of the Nomad new guys at the Table was named "Greg the Peg" - you remember - the guy who put his leg on Phil's shoulder. Looking back at the scene, he probably did so to emphasize his prosthetic leg, although WE didn't see anything but the shoe (as far as I can remember).

But I agree - the connection was far too vague - I only put it together after reading this review...
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We (the viewers) can see the prosthetic when Peg puts his foot on the big dude's shoulder. It's fairly quick and kind of easy to miss, but his jeans are pulled back a bit and you can see the prosthetic where the ankle should be.
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I missed that, thanks.
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It was a prosthetic leg on Phils shoulder, so its the same guy. Same shoes to.
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Oh there are so many things to clarify I can't even.... you can have all the critiques and doubts you want but you shouldn't write reviewes if you don't know the show properly.. I mean, it's your job guys to get informed, right? c'mon!

-Pope's relationship with the Sons is going to change throughout this season (he's not the actual big villain)

-Clay's image is not trying to be cleaned up by Sutter, but by Clay himself (and if you don't understand this, than just stop reading)

-the Jax/Tara pose reminds of a photo of JT and Gemma, not Clay and Gemma

... .and I can go on but I think I already sound pretentious enough so sorry for the rent but SOA is all worth it!
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THANK YOU EMMAIRIS! I was going to comment the same thing. I have read a couple of other reviews today that have been the same way. KNOW YOUR STUFF PEOPLE!!!!!
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THANK YOU EMMAIRIS! I was going to comment the same thing. I have read a couple of other reviews today that have been the same way. KNOW YOUR STUFF PEOPLE!!!!!
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And it was actually Gemma's house Wayne was in, not his house. Does one of the Nomads have a fake leg, how were we led to believe that these are them that beat up Wayne? Made no sense to read that...
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Awesome Episode and yea Harold Perrineau was eh in Lost but he was great in OZ one of my favourite shows, and that split seconds ending was crazy. Also can't wait to see all the new and returning cast can't wait to see what happens next
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If you think he was good in Oz (which he was) download, buy, rent, netflix etc.. the film "Felon" with Val Kilmer, Stephen Dorff, and Harold. Harold is Un-fucking-believable in that film.
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Opie didn't put a "For Sale" sign on his bike, he put in on Piney's, just wanted to clarify that.
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