So far, I’ve enjoyed this season of Sons of Anarchy maybe more than any season since the second, and I think it has something to do with letting go of the fact that Sons may never be as truly good as it was in the second season, when it felt like the kind of transformative series that The Shield was. Sons had taken itself so seriously, and seemed to aspire to so much that our expectations outgrew its capabilities. But once you settle into the fact that Kurt Sutter’s show is not a lofty Shakespearean drama, but dude soap opera — Scandal on motorcycles — it is really fun, and last night’s episode was kind of perfect in Sons of Anarchy terms: It advanced the plot forward, but it had a blast along the way. Bogged down in rivalries, deaths, and shocking moments, that’s what this show has been missing since season two: A real sense of fun. That returned last night.
Even better news is the fact that, according to Kurt Sutter, it’s what we can expect more of for the rest of season six.
That’s exactly right, too. It was old-school SoA.
I Know You’re a Good Cop — The way to get back to old-school SoA is to return to where it started: It was a show on a smaller scale, about the conflict between a motorcycle club engaged in illegal activities, and how that relationship worked within the town of Charming. Last night’s episode opened basically by trying to recalibrate that relationship between the club and Eli Roosevelt, who has increasingly become more like old-school Unser. He’s a good cop, but he also wants what’s best for Charming, even if that rubs up against the law. I hope this relationship continues in this vein.
Gemma Makes It Rain Sass — That same sense of fun, and the understanding relationship between SAMCRO and the Charming PD also extended to Gemma this week, who was a terror to the cops in trying to see and secure the release of Nero. The cops were pretty cool about it, and Eli continues to believe that Nero had been framed by Toric. In fact, Eli teased that out, investigating Toric’s hotel room and discovering that Toric had bleached the place, and that he was into some heavy pharmaceuticals.
Time to Go Hood, Sister — To that point, the district attorney knows that Toric is dirty, but she doesn’t give a sh*t. She wants to connect SAMCRO to the weapon in the school shooting, and she’s determined to go through Tara. After Tara turned down an an immunity offer to turn against Jax, Patterson — who is still holding Nero, at least until the DNA evidence from Toric’s place comes back — whipped off the wig, and pull out the whoop ass. She let Tara know that she’d be prosecuting Tara’s case personally.
I did have a small quibble here: When Toric planted the prostitute’s hair in Nero’s car, the DNA results from the lab came back the next day. But with Toric’s DNA evidence, the lab may not “return it for days.” That’s one inconsistent lab.
Living This Way Can Make You … Gemma — Speaking of Tara, while she did turn down the offer to turn against Jax, she conceded that she still loved him, and loves him knowing who he is, but she still has plans to go through with the divorce, not because of her, but because of the kids. The bombing of the clubhouse last week provided some pretty compelling reasons to get the kids away from SAMCRO. She also let Unser in on her secret, and while Unser seemed skeptical, he agreed to help. Wendy also knows that Unser knows, too, for whatever that is worth down the line.