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FX (ended 2014)

Sons of Anarchy S06E02: "One One Six"


Ed. note: We're trying something a little different this season with our Sons of Anarchy reviews. Instead of having one person compose his or her thoughts for you each week, we've decided it would be more fun to tag-team SOA in a conversation-style review. So each week we'll discuss the episode and all the violence Kurt Sutter feels we deserve, while still bringing you coverage of TV's most violent drama.


TIM: Let's see, what happened in the premiere? Oh yeah! A kid in an adorable little dress shirt walked into a school and shot up the joint. The big question going into "One One Six" was what the shooting would mean to the club. And, as expected and basically explained all over the internet last week as a form of damage control, SAMCRO's gun business was indirectly responsible for class being dismissed early that day. It was a potentially heavy rock to turn over for Sons of Anarchy, complete with all the politics that accompany drumming up such a sensitive topic, but it appears that the show won't be taking the podium to lecture us on gun safety. And to that I say, "Works for me." Though SOA dunks itself in violence each week, it's never really politicized it, so why should it start now? Instead, "One One Six" focused on the public's reaction to the school shooting and how it will affect the club. There's an argument to be made for "Why did the writers include a school shooting in the first place if they weren't going to tackle it head on?" But we have 24-hour news cycles for that, and I'm here to watch bikers kick ass, not reenact Crossfire

KAITLIN: I'm also on board with the show not politicizing the shooting, but—and I know we've only seen one episode since it happened—I DO feel like the series is wasting some potential with this storyline by not incorporating the shooting more thoroughly. Three kids died, and we saw how that affected Jax with his own children for about two seconds, but after that it was all, "Oh shit, we better clean this mess up and make sure it doesn't blow back on us." I just don't want the show to waste an opportunity.

TIM: Right. What SOA is doing is using the storyline as a way to get the club out of guns. This is a lot like what the series did with drugs last season. It seems like these guys always have internal debates about what illegal activities they should or shouldn't be participating in, and I understand that's a realistic problem for a club, but I hope there's a twist to it this time. Based on what we've seen in past seasons, I'm guessing the club will be divided over the gun issue (Chibs seems ready to flash his NRA card), there will be pressure from the outside to stay in the business (Galen isn't ready to stop shipping guns), and it will be a key component of an ongoing investigation against them (that gift just landed in Toric's lap). I miss the days when life was simpler and SAMCRO's biggest worry was a rival gang blowing their heads off. It's early in the season, but I currently don't see anything but this gun problem (and those who will use it against them) as being an immediate threat. Step up, Persians! I mean, Iranians!

KAITLIN:  (Dude, Galen was a dick! I wanted to smack that smirk right off of his face.) It looks like Season 6 is the Season of Guns. But Jax is acting like getting the club out of running guns is going to be easy, telling Tara how they're going to go legit like it's no big deal. And speaking of Tara, she's making some moves of her own. Specifically, she's going ahead with the guardian stuff, and unless I'm going completely insane, did I hear the word divorce?

TIM: I've never bought into Tara's "let's hand the kids to the former junkie" plan, but that's what the show is sticking with. Doesn't she have ANY other friends? Or is that what putting everything into a motorcycle club does to you? Hopefully the ends justify the means, because I love tension between Tara and Jax. How amazing was that quick scene when Jax picked her up from prison? They didn't say ANYTHING to each other, and then BAM, the credits rolled. That was very powerful, and it showed how far apart they are. The way their relationship was handled was great in this episode. They were both standoffish, yet they still showed glimmers of being really into each other. Whether it was out of habit or out of a responsibility to the children, or maybe even just to play their roles, it was a fascinating watch. And the episode closed with them doin' it, but doin' it so... mechanically. They were so glum. They're playing house. And will every episode end with Jax humping? I know some people who will be okay with that.

KAITLIN: I would probably be one of those people. I mean, I, uh, I watch this show for the articles. Anyway, that was another case of Sutter & Co. showing instead of telling, and I think it was really successful. But I do feel like the show fast-tracked Tara's unhappiness a bit. She's been looking for a way out of Charming for awhile now—ever since her hand was broken during that botched fake kidnapping in Season 4—but she's never acted like she didn't also love Jax at the same time. I guess prison has changed her outlook on life and opened her eyes to what's really important. Something I'm sure Clay Morrow knows a thing or two about.


TIM: What a perfect segue into Clay's story! It seems like we never know exactly what Clay's up to, and this situation is no different. He's game to take Toric's deal to save his ass, but he played his leverage and said he'd only do it if he got to talk to Gemma and Jax first so he could be an honorable rat. Are we sure we believe that? You just never know with Clay. I felt for Gemma when she went to see him and he groveled; that's got to be confusing as all heck. And when Jax didn't make time to see Clay, it was hard to tell whether Clay's feelings were hurt or if he was simply bummed that he wouldn't be able to make the deal. Maybe it was a little bit of both. But his ass got saved anyway, thanks to Toric forging his signature on talking papers—that's how insane and vengeful Toric is. I'm no officer of the law, but I do believe that's illegal. 

KAITLIN: I didn't get the impression that Clay's feelings were hurt when Jax blew him off. Part of me thinks he knew Jax would never show up, that he was relieved he didn't have to sign the papers and turn rat. I mean, he's not Juice, you know? He's stronger than that. But then again, Clay's always out to save Clay, and he's terrified of not being in protective custody, so who knows at this point? Like you said: We never know what the F Clay is up to. Also, it'll be interesting to see his reaction when he discovers the forgery. Which, by the way, I just feel like Toric didn't prepare enough to forge that. He didn't even stare at a copy of Clay's signature at all beforehand. And you know this isn't Toric's first time. He's a professional at bending the rules to fit his own agenda. Shoddy work on his part. I want CCH Pounder, who plays the DA Toric was nagging, to kick his ass for that later on.

TIM: Although "One One Six" was a much quieter episode than the premiere, there still was some sweet, sweet violence, and it came from the cabin in the woods. SAMCRO relocated Darby/Darmody/Darcy (whatever her name was), the mother of Matthew the school shooter, out to the boonies to make sure the Feds didn't get a chance to talk to her. Or just as likely, to make sure she didn't get a chance to talk to the Feds. Yowzers, this was tense. Dealing with a potential tattle-tale is tough, and who can blame Whatshername for being scared and uncooperative? There was a bad play here courtesy of Acadio (Dave Navarro), Nero's cousin, who ran after her when she flipped out and drew a shottie on everyone. Dude, you should have played the middleman and talked her down instead of running into the van after her. Keep the peace, man. Still, I don't think he expected Nero to nail him with a headshot. I certainly didn't expect Nero to do that. A little trigger-happy, are we Nero? Whatever happened to the ol' shoot-'em-in-the-leg trick? You could learn something from Person of Interest, bro. And that was your cuzzzzzzzzin, man. Brutal. All the crying in the world won't cover up the fact that you messed up. 

KAITLIN: Speaking of all the crying in the world—JUICE. The poor guy is still trying to work his way back into Jax's good graces after snitching, so that means he gets to do all the really shitty jobs that Jax needs done. He helped set Clay up last season after Clay treated him like a son. He got his ass kicked last week by Chibs so Chibs could get right with everything that has happened. And this week he had to pump Whatsherface full of heroin and then smother her on Jax's orders. At least Jax had the decency to jump in when Nero went off on Juice (this lie will obviously come back to bite the Sons in the ass later this season, right?). Still, man, can't we just have one season where Juice isn't getting shit on? I don't know how much longer he'll last. Or how much longer I'll last.

TIM: The thing that hit me hardest about Juice's job as Jax's bitch was his face; it was just so empty. Theo Rossi is so underrated, he's been doing a great job for years. I also think "One One Six" will be underrated since it lacked a lot of the explosiveness of the premiere, but I thought it was great. Lots of good character setup and a solid sense of direction for the season. To me, it felt like a more mature episode of SOA that didn't try to do too much and it benefited because of it.  

KAITLIN: When I compare "One One Six" to the premiere, I think "One One Six" was the stronger of the two episodes. The season-long stories are slowly moving forward, and it wasn't weighed down like it could have been, given its status as the first episode after a school-shooting. If the show keeps this up, I'll be pleased.



NOTES

– So far, the Bobby storyline is what it is. He's recruiting members to go Nomad and he's got three of the four required. If the whole season just visits him sporadically recruiting people until he has like a hundred and then we see him riding with 100 dudes, I (Kaitlin) will be happy. But for now, it's not really enthralling.

– So, in this lady prison you can beat the shit out of another inmate and then get released the next day? 

– One thing I (Tim) never even thought about was that Clay's first name is Clarence. Haha, Clarence.

– Tara's hair was looking a lot better this week! You go, girl.

– The C. Thomas Howell comeback continues! Welcome back, star of Sideout


What'd you think of "One One Six"?

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Really strong episode, really strong. The sense of urgency and impending doom is still looming. And will probably remain there. Like with every good show I miss the old days, but this is good stuff.
Do have two points though.

  1. If Sons of Anarchy is based on Hamlet, then Juice was Lady MacFuckingBeth this week. Out damn spot, out! Anybody!? He even fits the profile perfectly. Doing the killing for hubbie Jax. Kurt Sutter is nuts and I love him for it.
  2. Also, why is everybody so dead against Wendy taking the kids?? Is she not allowed to rehabilitate? Would those kids really be raised better by a group of murdering bikies? She was a mess in the first season, so she left her kid with his dad, got herself clean, good and proper. Wanted to fight for him, saw it was a losing battle. Again, made the right decision by leaving. So why shouldn't Tara trust her? Wendy is obviously ready to make tough choices regarding the safety of her son, she's remained clean for the majority she's been on the screen. Of course she'll always be an addict, that's the nature of addiction. But I honestly do not think she is the worse choice for Abel and Thomas to go live with.
At any rate, ready for the next episode! To see where this crazy rollercoaster ride will take me :).
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The only one on this show I don't hate right now is probably Bobby.
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Wait, no one thought the show was politicizing the school shooting just because there was no mention of gun control? I thought it was especially telling that it all went down at a Catholic school.
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"Clarence". Haha indeed, almost as laughable as "Timothy".
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Nah, I'm really not liking this review style. Just can't get into it, gonna go elsewhere for the SOA reviews.
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Ugh, Sideout. WORST. VOLLEYBALL. MOVIE. EVER. Not that there are good ones. Bummer.

I have loved Theo Rossi as Juice for so long. He has been amazing as an actor, and his character being like this is pretty awesome, and awful to watch.

Clarence. He's an ANGEL!

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First of all the convo thing went a little better this week as the review goes, but not sure if it's going to work or not. We did not see any public reaction to the shooting, we saw the club informing each other on it.

The shooting is Jax's "ticket" out of the gun biz but the club will not agree, the tension will either bring Bobby or Clay or both back into play. Jax may lose his "seat" as president.

I am hoping the Tara divorce thing is just in case she does go to jail. The giving the "junkie" the kids thing has been stupid of her from the start, why not give them to the co-worker as someone said earlier. I think with the pregnancy she will start rethinking her decision to leave alone & will try to get Jax to leave with her. The not mentioning of the "whore" shows how meaningless it was for Jax, & also shows the shambles of his relationship with Tara, It was emphasized in this episode in the great scenes of not talking when he picked her up & the last scene in bed like they were strangers.

Clay just wants to throw it in Jax's face that he's turning on the club.

The lie to Nero will bite Jax in the butt for sure, I do not think he will end up at the end of the series exactly like Clay because then the whole thing was for nothing. I think it will end with him killing Clay for what he did to his father, Now about Jemma I don't think he'll kill his mother, but she will be punished.
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A much better episode than the premiere. The madness that Sons brings can be super fun to watch, but the show is at it's best when dealing with it's relationships. It really felt like the end for Tara and Jax, and Jax seems either blind to it or he doesn't want to acknowledge the problems. The scene when Tara left the jail and they didn't speak, no hug of hello, it perfectly demonstrated how far apart they are. Last season Tara and Jax were all about honesty. Jax was being open about all the clubs business with Tara. Now she is looking for a divorce behind his back, and he has shut down about club business again. Tara has wanted to leave for a long time, but it really feels as if she is different now, there is a coldness to her.
I'm glad the show isn't going to politicise the shooting either. I found the conversation between Jax and the Irish very interesting. The Irish basically said the shooting is good for business. Fear means more sales, you could see the dollar signs in his eyes. Kind of naive of Jax to think that he could just walk away from an operation as big as theirs so easily.
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Im really enjoying this method you guys have going on. It's like commentary on a football game! And the score isn't looking so good for SAMCRO.
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Guns Don't Kill People, Rappers Do.
Goldie Looking Chain.
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Am I the only one who thought Toric knew what he was doing with the forgery and was banging his hands and trying to get them to have the shake that Clay's hands would have because of the arthritis? I'm sure Toric knows of Clay's medical problems with his hands. Sure Toric is a little loopy and drug fueled, but I think there was a little more to him banging his hands and clenching them than just being a little nuts - he was getting his hands into character.

Maybe I'm just reading too deep since I don't want to believe he would be careless with something as big as signing that statement.
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I suppose that's certainly possible but I have a really hard time seeing that being part of the typical forger's playbook. However, he almost certainly would have had a practice sheet nearby, as it is a standard thing (afaik) for a typical forger to do the signature several times immediately prior to putting it on the actual document. But I suppose you could explain that away by saying it was off camera or that the signature didn't need to be all that good to accomplish its goal.

I had another theory altogether about the hand scene, but the more I think about it the more holes I see in it, so I won't bother mentioning it (even though I'll hold it in my mind for my own future use should that turn out to be an important plot point, even though I doubt it will be).

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No, That's exactly what I thought. Clay's got arthritis or something in his hands . Toric knew this and used it to sell his story....even if it did make him look extra nuts
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I didn't even think of that was the reason he was banging his hands, bravo! I just thought he was being loopy again!!
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Ugh, the nonsensical Irish again, the single solitary lame reason that Clay still draws breath. This season is starting out worse than last season. Which is a hard feat to accomplish. This is making me look forward to AHS. Not because it is going to be great, but it has to be better than this.

But at least they killed off Navarro. Which frankly is kind of surprising.

Ah well. Season one and two were really good.
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Season 1 and 2 were awesome. and I actually really enjoyed Season 3. Season 5 I cant even imagine going back to watch not because it was awful, but because of how dark and depressing it was. IT was still good TV. Just hard for me to stomach.

It's still a great show
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A few things -

*Jax is really becoming more like Clay (the lie to Nero was straight up Clay Morrow)
*I'm glad they are not politicizing the school shooting, its not that sort of show.
*Juice just seemed numb about killing the girl and any consequences, and i do think Jax ordered it
*Toric faking Clays signature was a bit lazy and will obviously come back to bite him in the ass - this is the sort of thing that politicians use to make someone a scapegoat when things go bad
*Bobby continues to build a Nomad crew - pretty sure this will impact Jax's standing within the MC at some point.
*Tigs flakiness in the last episode was totally ignored this week.
*Tara - i was surprised she wasnt setting up custody with her co-worker instead of Wendy. I'm guessing the pregnancy (Jax's i assume) can play out a few ways. Either she aborts which totally turns Jax against her or she keeps the kid as leverage to get whatever she wants.


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Did you see the way Nero looked at him when they were hugging?
Nero's no fool and he instantly knew that Jax is now lil' Clay and it's probably better to play along.
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I was thinking it's Jax that's becoming more like Clay the way he lied to Nero. He looked Nero straight in the eye and swore it wasn't him that arranged her death when it was. Jax is also making decissions for the club instead of bringing them to the table.
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I'm sure this is a very stupid question, but can someone tell me what the 1-1-6 in the title refers to? Sorry and thanks.
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Toric quotes lines from Shakespere's sonnet 116 when he is behind the 2 way mirror watching Clay and Jemma =

“Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks/But bears it out even to the edge of doom.”

Its a sonnet about enduring love
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Nicely done.

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Ah. Thanks!
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What's up with Tara's secret pregnancy test? Was it inferred earlier that she violated in prison or is this the first time? ...with tears in the end sex scene maybe being the second time? (I say maybe because it could be a combination of things)

P.S. Tim, I didn't enjoy the group review format (I actually stopped reading, then forced myself to do so I could give a more informed opinion)...

I understand trying new ideas, but it just messes with your style. It also means that less stuff from the show gets covered, hence the need for my first two questions. Usually I could count that even little details like those would get covered in a normal review of yours.

Maybe instead of a back and forth conversation going over the same things, Kaitlin and you can cover different aspects of each episode? Anyways, best wishes.
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Yeah, the pregnancy test was interesting. It was my impression that Tara wasn't in jail long enough to be violated by a guard (if that was your question). I didn't interpret her tears at the end as response to sexual trauma--though it definitely could be--but more as a manifestation of how far apart she and Jax really are... I think the pregnancy test is actually the setup for Tara to be pregnant with another of Jax's kids. She'll abort it without telling anyone (no messy Grandma Gemma to tell Jax and strongarm her into keeping it this time) but Jax will find out anyway. It'll be leverage/justification combined with the divorce proceedings and whatever she admitted to the lawyer for Jax to kill Tara, completing his descent into Clay territory (though Clay never literally killed Gemma).

HOWEVER, I sincerely hope this is not the case. I hope Tara actually has a badass plan in her back pocket and gets to carry it out. I feel like this show doesn't give her enough agency/power to make decisions on her own--though that could be intentional since she's never fully committed to either MC life or "outside" life and we all know it just cuts you off at the knees if you're not fully in or fully out. Anyway, not to turn my reply into a diatribe, but I really really hope Tara gets some more chops and chances to show them. I hope she doesn't betray the club, or at least that Jax gets some sort of wakeup call to remind him that he and Tara always planned to leave. I get what he said about needing/wanting to stay and in some way make Opie's sacrifice worth something good, but that's just not the way their staying in Charming ever actually works out...
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Yes, I was referring to a possible violation by a guard. I also think that is highly unlikely, because as I understand she's only been in jail for a few days, and doesn't show obvious signs of abuse. But seeing how the ex-Marshall threatened her life and that of her sons, I wouldn't have put it passed him to make sure she got abused and murdered in prison. Thanks for the reply.

On your other comment... I liked how Tara played Jax, like he does with others. It would be great if she outsmarted him and Gemma all the way for a change, and I think the writers are foreshadowing that very thing. Jax doesn't deserve a happy ending, he should end as a star who once shined brightly but failed to live up to his early promise of reforming the club, ending instead in misery or tragedy.
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I actually read (and thought it made much more sense) that Tara asked for the test and blood samples to forge them and make it look like Abel and Thomas are not Jax's biological kids. I think she was going to ask Margaret for help with that. I think that makes more sense than her actually being pregnant.
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Indeed - mature is the word! Such a strong episode, with all these underlaying feelings so early on in the season (obviously, at least partly, due to the pretty much nonexisting timejump between seasons).
Theo Rossi and Maggie Siff produced some really powerful acting, despite (/thanks to) their characters not really showing any emotions at all. And I'm not sure why, but watching Mark Boone Jr do ANYTHING (like... writing on a map...) is a HUGE thrill for me.

However; Donal Logue does the most... forceful portrait at the moment - his Toric is very much like a male Agent Stahl. And he kinda scares the shit out of me.

My only real complaints about the episode is that I missed the lighter characters; Unser, Filthy Phil, Chuck... However: *YAY* CCH Pounder! I really hope her character turns out to be a capable, ballsy, GOOD character. The show sometimes suffers from having ALL the characters being either evil, bat crazy, or selfish pricks. Just weak and/or harmless...
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*OR just weak and/or harmless...
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Am I the only one who isn't worried about Tara being killed? Did everyone just forget the whore at the end of episode one? Tara's gonna find out about her and use that as leverage in the divorce. I think.....
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No mention of how Jax ordered that girl to be murdered, then lied to Nero's face about it and then told him everything he was doing, he was doing for Nero?!!! Jax Teller has become Clay Morrow.

Which leads me to the next point, the only thing that surprises me about the work Tara is doing with Lewin is that she didn't begin this sooner. I'm surprised anyone feels that Tara taking steps to separate herself from Jax and SAMCRO is coming on abruptly. This has been coming on since the kidnapping. Jax has made promises to her over and over and over again, and he always has some reason why he has to break them with new, even more meaningless promises. He's a liar and a cheat on top of being a violent criminal. Tara has two children who must be her priority, who should be Jax's priority, but she cannot let the club or even Jax come before the safety and security of her family, and that also means taking them out of that environment before it can corrupt them. Jax ordered the murder of that woman and then lied about it without so much as a flinch to both Nero and Tara, it really isn't such a stretch to see him doing the same to Tara when he realizes how resolute she is about cutting all ties to SAMCRO and Charming, taking their children with her. Tara is a pediatric surgeon, Jax is a criminal; it was destined to fail. But in case you need further proof, Jax's moral compass is so out of whack he thinks expanding the club's prostitution business is going legit.

Something meaningful is going to come out of Bobby resurrecting the Nomads but I cannot imagine what it might be. There is certainly quite a bit of film on the whole thing.
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Yeah, Bobby's story is interesting to me, though not much has really happened yet. Though no angel, he's something of the moral of the show/club. Not sure if there'll be some sort of showdown with the Nomads and Redwood--or what that would actually entail, but I think you're right that "something meaningful" is on its way. Mayhap the increasingly poor decisions of Jax Teller, and what I'm interpreting from facial reactions and glances as the other club members' discomfort with his autonomous decision-making, will lead to some intersection with Bobby and the Nomads, though I too struggle to know what that would look like.
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I feel Kurt Sutter express his sadism through 2 characters in the show. Himself and Juice - both of them just could not get any breaks. Granted many of the shits that happened are consequences of their characters own actions, still how many bad days can I get.

CCH Pounder still looks better with shorter hair. Tara has successfully learn from Jax - how to pretend and lie looking someone in the eyes. Now it is kind of sad to see both of them lying to each other. I could imagine that they might even turn against each other. When Jax finds how not only is Tara divorcing him and also taking the kids, I wonder how he will blow up ! I just hope he won't hurt Tara.

This is so much like real life. How couples love each other, tries so hard to make it work even though they know how different they are.Finally it reaches the end when they turn against each other and kids are caught in the middle.
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I agree with Surette that this episode was mature. I almost forgot that SoA became macho soap. This episode felt like SoA was still trying to pull Hamlet shit off. Tension between Tara and Jaz was palpable. I enjoyed it very much. But I gotta say I didnt expect that Jax would want to kill innocent woman just like that. This was the endgame for me. Now I want Jax to be punished very bad. I want huge consequences and shitstorm to fall on his pretty face. I want him to be killed. He is over. He's beyond redemption for me. I just don't remember that Jax was so willing to kill innocent person in last season. I guess she was junkie therefore less worthy. In every episode of SoA we see dead bodies. It got to beyond ridiculous point. Now I want for this club to go down in flames. Im rooting for DA to rip them off. These bikers did too much heinous stuff, they are moral bankrupts. Jax is moral bankrupt. They deserve to pay big time for their heinous shit. I want Tara to f*** Jax up big time. Now it's more interesting for me to watch how club gonna go down in flames. And how many of them will die.
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I agree, I want to see Tara escape from the endless misery, death and mayhem that befalls most of the characters. The rest of them including Jax are beyond redemption.
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Why the hell did they have to kill off Dave Navarro already? I love Dave Navarro.
And yea I really hope Jax finds out Tara is trying to get out and he kills her. I've never been a fan of hers.
Welcome to the show CCH Pounder. Good to see another Shield alum on TV. I would totally be in heaven if they can get Michael Chiklis to do a guest spot. That would be amazing.
They really need to bring in Michael Raymond-James so we can have a Terriers reunion.
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I think Sutter's gone on record saying Chiklis is too recognizable and that he wouldn't bring him on unless there was a really good way to separate him from Vic Mackey. As for bringing Michael Raymond-James on... I am so in for that.
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That may be hard to do. Vic Mackey is one of the most iconic figures in TV history (in my opinion).
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Chiklis should play a straight up good guy. That would make him so different from Vic Mackey ! Or a very nasty mob boss ! Ha...anyway I think he could guest star next season or he might get another new job by then :-)
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Honestly, I was pretty bored with this episode. Maybe it's just because I was feeling a little sleepy, but... meh. It felt like too much setting up, especially with things like Toric forging Clay's signature and Jax lying to Nero about killing Navarro's old lady. They're obviously going to end up kicking Toric and Jax's future plans in the ass.
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Ha! Suck it, Nevaro! Smell ya later :P

Could somebody explain to me what exactly happened between the end of last season and this year? Tara was clear that she wanted to go to Portland and the last time I checked, Jax was okay with that. She'd go ahead, he'd clean up club business and follow her out there. Wasn't that always the plan?

So, Tara obviously didn't get the job, but now she's pushing for Wendy as guardian and going to hit Jax with divorce papers? Wait, what? For as much as I don't understand this Wendy play, when did we go from Tara doing whatever she could to turn Otto and save the MC from RICO to leaving Jax? The club sure, I get that, but when did we go from Tara at the throne with her old man to divorce city?

I know Sutter likes to fill in gaps after the fact, but this is a pretty big gap and I don't see how we got from one side to the other.
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Not much happened between the seasons. It wasn't that big of a time jump, so it definitely feels very strange that Tara is all of a sudden ready to ditch Charming AND Jax. Doesn't make sense to me either. I can see how she might resent the situation she is in and the situation the boys are in, but she willingly put herself in it. I'm torn on supporting her efforts to remove herself from the Club, but it feels awfully weird to think that she's also ready to divorce Jax because of it. Hopefully there's a play there that will become evident later in the season.
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I think the Wendy thing was introduced last year. This was just a reminder. Tara thinks it's extremely important to get the kids away from the club, and I can't say I blame her.
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Getting the kids away from the club I get, but this plan with Wendy would require:

1. Jax's consent
2. Her and Jax's death
3. The presumption that Wendy could keep the kids away while supporting them on her own

I'm not sure what world Tara's been living in the past few years, but what part of her brain is telling her that Jax would go along with this or that even if she were to Jedi mind trick Jax, that Gemma would drop Wendy in a hole and take the kids back?

Of course, that completely ignores the fact that she's apparently under the presumption that a recovering drug addict she barely knows is the best choice for her kids' well being?

Sorry, I'm not seein' it
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1. You're probably right about that.

2. This is like saying that writing a will is always a failed plan, because you have to die for the plan to be successful.

3. Are you suggesting that the kids maybe want to join the gang when they get older? I would think that Wendy will have a lot of influence over her kids until they're adults. What are the kids going to do if she moves the family to another city?

4. Do you see a better option than Wendy? Would you rather put them in an orphanage until the state can find a foster home?
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2. What you're saying here doesn't have a lot to do with your original item 2, or my reply to it. Jax's consent is item 1. You're also saying that if they both die, Gemma will get the kids. Yes, that's exactly what Tara is trying to prevent, and it's clearly a good thing for the kids. Wendy can't be worse than Gemma, because Wendy will at least try to raise them as normal people, while Gemma will raise them as biker outlaws.

3. You said "keep the kids away". Away from what? If it's not the club, then I have no idea what your original item 3 is about.

4. You seem to be confusing a couple of different things her (the Wendy thing, and leaving Jax), but I don't think I have understood them well enough myself to really explain them. I would have to rewatch a few scenes.
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2. If Jax, as he's made clear a few times, would never consent, then the plan is moot. If he dies, she can do whatever she wants. If she dies, they're obviously going to stay with him. If they both die, see Grandma Gemma

3. Not sure how you could possibly read that as a suggestion I made. What I know, is that a recovering drug addict I barely know who is just barely able to care for herself is not likely at the list of people I'd give my kids to in the event of my death.

4. Lack of a good plan doesn't make a bad, near impossible to execute option and ultimately futile "better". Tara's never been stupid about the club, what it does or the personalities of it's members. Whether it's Gemma, Tigg, Chibs, Happy, Bobby...what in her brain thinks that Wendy taking Jax's kids would end well for her?
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Tara getting all that sorted out for custody leds me to believe Tara is a goner:D And there was also that sentence,something like "should I die or should you die".
Quite alot of guest stars in this episode.
When did Bobby get new bike? Seems I forgot what happened to his old one,but that one was much better and cooler. Plus,do we really need to see,how he gets 3 guys to go Nomad?

I think Nero and SAMCRO will have some fallout at least by the end of season. Then you got Irish,Toric,Clay and all kinds of trouble on horizon:D
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Hey boy, whatcha doin'?
Hey boy, where you goin'?
Who's that guy?
Who's that guy?
It's Juice!
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I thought this episode was much stronger than last weeks.
Wonder when the people guarding whatshername's FRONT DOOR realise she goooone.
RIP Dave Navarro and Cho's ex-girlfriend
#ClarenceBeCrayClay

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I really hope Tara does what it looks like she's gearing up to do. Only so that Jax will be forced to kill her. I think that will be so interesting for the show. But more importantly I want to see how it will affect Jax and completely tear him up. With that and Opie's death he will completely crumble and I'd like to see how Charlie will execute that.
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I have no idea what Tara is planning, but if it's what they were alluding too then she sure turned her back on Jax pretty quickly. Once again the one person she should talk about all of this with, Jax, is the one person she isn't talking to.
And ole Clarence, what the devil are you up to? Same question goes to you Toric the Tormented.
Another great episode.
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Tara's hair was looking better this week? Better than what? To me, it's never looked worse, almost as if she had cut it herself with children's scissors, possibly with a photo of Moe Howard taped to her mirror to use as a guide.
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Staff
I'm pretty convinced someone took a razor to it while she was sleeping. And then she stuck her head in a blender.
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IIRC, the captioning gave their names as Arcadio and Darvany, and the captioning is generally accurate and excellent on this show. (My only gripe is that it's roll-up captioning instead of popup captioning, but that's a very minor complaint. FX frequently uses the slightly more annoying roll-up captioning.) In fact, if it weren't for CC, I don't think I'd *ever* understand more than about 10% of what Chibs is saying.
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THANK YOU for finally clearing up what the hell her name was. Now, I'd like to talk about what a stupid name Darvany is.
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Glad to help out. Additionally, the captioning gave the Irish arms dealer's name as Galaan, as confirmed by Wikipedia just now.
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Staff
And we trusted IMDB for that spelling. Get it together, IMDB.
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Same here my friend
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Theo Rossi is an excellent actor.
Clarence had me rolling, never occurred to me that was his name either. I just thought Clay was an odd name. I agree with Tara's fast-tracked sadness/divorce thing, wish we could have seen more of her in jail.
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Of course, but with gun you kill people. Without gun not so easy!
Just compare killing rate with country like Canada where to have a gun is not so easy, Every time I see phrase like this "Guns Don't Kill People, People With Guns Kill People", I believe USA citizens are completly brain washed by the gun lobbys :(
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The gun nuts say "guns don't kill people, people kill people". The suggestion is that if they didn't have guns, they'd use something else. What you read here was "guns don't kill people, people with guns kill people". This statement suggests that guns are the problem. It's a joke that's makes fun of that shorter statement.
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IMO, guns simply make killing things faster and easier. And while that's not laudable in any way, the much larger problem is that we're still a very young and savage species. Humans excel at killing, regardless of the method used to bring it about. We've been murdering each other for as long as we've been around, far longer than guns or knives or even sharpened sticks have existed.

People see our skyscrapers and our computer technology and our arts and sciences and think that we've somehow evolved way beyond our savage beginnings. But our technology has progressed at such a much faster pace than our basic abilities to become less brutal to each other. We're slowly getting there but there's still an awfully, awfully long way to go.

The way I see it, our "civilization" is a very thin veneer over our animal underpinnings, a veneer that would easily be stripped away should the right circumstances arise. You can see brief glimpses of that happening all the time, everywhere.
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It's worth noting here that legally obtaining a firearm in the US is not the simple process that I think the rest of the world thinks is the case here.

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Yes. See- Always Sunny in Philadelphia Season 9 Episode 2, 'Gun Fever Too: Still Hot'
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And Mac wreaked more havoc with his sword than Charlie did with his pistol.
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I must be the opnly one with a dose of deja vu. Pretty much since the 2nd season the show has spent each season creating the same sorta tension by getting a law enforcement weirdo with a bug up his/her ass goin all extra legal to get the sons.
We've had the straight enuff to use as a ruler Charming deputy (now deceased), the crazy murdering lezzie lady atf senior agent (deceased), fbi agent/stalker (deceased courtesy of one Jax Morrow), the bearded bike riding US attorney (still extant iirc) n now we got a junkie retired hurt US Marshall who isn't merely the craziest so far, his role is the least credible, even "Justified" scriptwriters haven't ridiculously distorted a US Marshall's duty statement as much as this bloke's acting out in SoA has.

As for this year being 'the season of guns' I can't remember a single season where guns weren't the biggest cause of material, metaphysical, or mortal debate within the club.
Didn't episode 1 season 1 kick off with the guns warehouse getting burned to the ground & wimpy Jax Teller rending his garments, gnashing his teeth, wailing & generally crying to mommy about the bad karma guns spread?

It's kinda ironic that now Hamlet has gotten control of the castle, that his one success appears to be pushing the correct buttons in the correct order to create a psychopath.

I get the feeling that ol' Juicy is gonna end the season with a Jeffrey Dahmer type score on humans needlessly extinguished.
He has lost all affect - someone needs to put him outta his misery.

We're also getting to see another facet of Chib's character. He's still drinking in everything that really goes on at the top of the table, AFAIK, Chibs is not impressed.
I wouldn't be surprised to see Chib's pop a couple into Jax's brainpan before the season is out.
More+
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Is anybody else tired of the 90-minute long episodes, or is it just me?
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It's only 90 minutes if you watch it on TV ;) If you watch it elsewhere like I do, sans the annoying commercials, it's actually a little less than 60 minutes. So basically it's like watching a TV show on HBO or Showtime or something.
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I enjoy longer SOA. I mean, its not like Sutter fills in some of the ninety minutes with filler, so if its all still relative, than bring it on.
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I didn't even realize it was 90 minutes, it is late!
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Sutter would do better to stick to regular episode limits. But I don't think this episode felt as long as last week's. I might be in the minority though.
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Me too. But that is the least of SOA's problems. It just makes the problems drag out longer.
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I've said it a million times, 90-minute episodes used to feel very special on this show. It's just overkill like it was last season, and these episodes don't feel special at all.

By the way, do you ever plan on watching what I now think is the greatest show of all time; Breaking Bad?

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Well you know my opinion of the show. I don't think what they are producing is worth 90 minutes of FX TV time.

But it kind of goes in with what I said about the season premier in order for people to largely forget the muddled middle of the show andonly remember the shocking parts is to make it longer.

Yes I do plan on watching Breaking Bad. It is in my Netflix queue. I am not sure where exactly it is in there but I will bump it up. I am sure I will like it. But what if I don't. Does that mean something is wrong with me. So much pressure now.
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Well with most of my TV watching it is casual watching. Something to do while I am grading a papers, writing research proposals etc. And my thoughts on Breakng Bad is that it isn't something to watch casually. So I am waiting to have a good block of time to seriously watch it. Next time I am on a plane for 12 plus hours. Which will be in a couple months. I will watch the first season or two.
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Agreed about Sons. I also have a feeling that CCH Pounder, who was fucking incredible on The Shield, is going to be so wasted. However, if you watch Breaking Bad and don't like it, I would lose all respect for you. It doesn't quite reach TV gold until season 2, but season 1 is still great, and certainly better than most seasons of SoA. Honestly, I think the fact that you haven't watched yet does seem to indicate that something is very wrong with you. lol
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I'm tired of it. I saw that it was 90 minutes tonight and immediately cursed.
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IT really didn't need to be a 90 minute episode. it wouldve done just fine as a regular hour of tv. There was nothing really all that special about some scenes. In fact, I would claim they were unncessary, just slow and dragging
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