This season of Sons of Anarchy has done serious damage to my calm. I’ve gone from yelling at the screen to weeping silently into the fluff of one of my favorite stuffed cows (Sigmund). I went into the show thinking, “I’m sure it’ll just be a bunch of scraggly guys on motorcycles trying to look cool and banging hot chicks.” Yes, you’d be correct in assuming that I hadn’t been reading anything about SoA before I had a marathon of the last four seasons in July/August.
On to this week’s episode.
Gemma said goodbye to her ever-loving sanity. The emotional grave she started digging for herself at the end of last season is getting deeper and deeper. She is completely isolated in her own lack of being able to cope as anything but the old lady of Samcro’s President. Any mother would’ve been able to see the anguish on her son’s face the second she saw him after the kind of shit Jax went through in prison. Gemma missed it completely. Not only that, she’s piling even more problems on his plate to deal with instead of *gasp* being the parent in the relationship and providing for him. Jax had it right, he doesn’t have the time or emotional resources to cater to his mother’s zombie-like hunger to be worshiped and loved–even though she can’t dish out an ounce of what she devours from others.
Tara has likewise said goodbye to a part of herself, the part of her mind that was immune to Gemma’s schemes. She allowed Gemma lead her into a fight. She’s letting Gemma’s little mindfuck with Abel and his biological mother sink in, actually considering telling a three-year-old child that the only mother he’s known isn’t really his mother. “Sorry, baby, but your real mommy is an ex crackhead who didn’t care about you enough to stay sober for nine months.” Yeah, that conversation would go over real well, and the kid will tell it over and over again to his therapists. What happened to Tara thinking for herself? She learned too well from Gemma’s lessons when she started dating Jax the second time around. May the gods help her boys if she turns out to be that bad down the road.
Jax says a few goodbyes in this episode. He’s saying goodbye to more of the control he has over the MC. The raw, gaping hole of Opie’s death leaves tons of room for others to wiggle their thoughts into his mind. He’s fighting to keep the reigns tight, but Clay is getting stronger physically and mentally. Clay speaks up against Jax’s decrees pretty damn often. He constantly questions Jax’s decisions. There’s a lot of new faces (for us) around that table. Which side of the Teller/Morrow coin will they land on if these two butt heads again?
While we’re talking about the new-to-us guys, can we get more information on them? Like…names? That is one flaw about this show, they bring in a shit ton of colorful background people to flush out the MC and make them look like an actual threat to their opponents. But we never get to *see* those background guys, even ones that are constantly on screen. Yeah, I get it, huge cast means less time with the small-timers. Still, it gives a depth to the show to at least know the names of the men around the table, deciding the future of Samcro alongside Jax and the others we know damn well.
There’s one more goodbye. This is one not only for Samcro, but for the fans as well. This last week, I’ve watched SoA fans bumrush Ryan Hurst on Twitter with an avalanche of tears, anger, support, kind words about his time on the show, and jokes to lessen the sting of his departure. Opie was the soul of Samcro. He kept Jax true, grounded. Even when his own life went to shit, he still managed to take care of the others, even though it was all too apparent that he’d buried all of his hope and love alongside his first wife. Watching the guys say goodbye tonight was hard for me. Grown men crying is a trigger. I don’t know why, but it will always, always bring me to my knees. There is something about someone so powerful brought down to nothing with grief.
Unfortunately, Samcro doesn’t have the luxury of taking time to mourn their loss. They’ve said goodbye and before the tears can dry, they must turn around and deal with business. Their ship is sinking fast. The exits have been blocked by their enemies. Unless they can make their own exit, everyone will drown. Everyone. How many more will the MC say goodbye to before Jax’s end game can become a reality?
If Kurt Sutter has his way, rocks will fall and everyone will die. Or so I’m guessing.