TV Recap: Sons of Anarchy, “Toil and Till”

Written By David Oliver

SONS OF ANARCHY -- Pictured: Key Art. CR: FX

All right, Sons of Anarchy, after last week’s bloody, bloody premiere, I wasn’t really sure what to expect of the upcoming season. I mean, I expect more and more bloodshed, but that’s really all I know. While the violence continues to escalate, major plot reveals and twists are proving a slower burn. Rev up those engines, readers.

Early in the episode, Gemma (Katey Sagal) says to Nero (Jimmy Smits), “I bet you wish you never bought me that drink. Your life would be a whole lot simpler.” Nero says, “Simpler but not as fun.” Umm, Nero, you legitimately should have run for the hills two seasons ago. Even if you just look at Gemma, she’s like Medusa: you’re screwed.

Photo Credit: Prashant Gupta/FX
Photo Credit: Prashant Gupta/FX

Tara’s ghost continues to haunt Gemma, as Wendy (Drea de Matteo) finds Abel’s (Ryder and Evan Londo) Pre-K forms. Abel later asks Gemma, “Were you there when Mommy went to heaven?” (Sigh). Gemma painfully lies, and when he asks how she knows she is there, she says “all angels go to heaven.” This kid is going to need some serious therapy when all the truth comes out – if it ever does.

Juice (Theo Rossi) unties Unser (Dayton Callie), who wants to help Juice get out of town. Unser takes on the Sheriff’s offer to be a “consultant” for the department, and he specifically requests to see the files on Tara’s murder. Is he going to cover for everyone? That’s not what Gemma thinks at least, when she finds the files while he’s napping. This is classic dramatic irony right out of Shakespeare and the same paranoia that led to Gemma murdering Tara (Maggie Siff). Here’s hoping she actually learns her lesson and maybe clarifies what happened before she takes action.

Gemma tries to get Juice out of town, giving him money and keys to her father’s house. On his way out of town, Juice calls Chibs (Tommy Flanagan) (!) but hangs up before either says anything. We see Juice back at Wendy’s apartment. This reminded me a lot of Tara actually: she always tried to leave, but for one reason or another couldn’t. And look where that got her.

Photo Credit: Prashant Gupta/FX
Photo Credit: Prashant Gupta/FX

Meanwhile, Jax (Charlie Hunnam), the rest of the MC and the Indian Hills charter stop one of the Triad shipments, killing many Triad members and discovering they are trading weapons for heroin.

Favorite quote of the episode goes to Jax as he talks to the Indian Hills charter: “I don’t have a vision anymore. All’s I see is what’s right in front of me.” Gulp.

Jax later lies to Lin (Kenneth Choi) and says he and his men weren’t responsible, only to frame two associated with Indian Hills. The final scene of the episode finds Jax snuggling with Abel and Jury (Michael Shamus Wiles) of the Indian Hills charter clutching his apparent son as well – except he’s dead. What a powerful, foreboding image. The father/son motif has been constant throughout the series. I wonder if there will be a flash-forward by series’ end where we see if Jax’s sons join the MC? For Tara’s sake, I sure hope not.

I have a few questions, since this show often makes me think (as good TV should). Did the guy in the Hazmat suit make anyone else think this was an episode of Breaking Bad? Well, the head in the fortune cookies box not being meth was a giveaway, but up until then?

Also, are Nero and Wendy about to be a thing? My guess is no, but that Gemma’s jealousy will get the best of the two ex-junkies hanging out too much, with someone – or both – dead. I have a sinking feeling Gemma is going to outlive the entire cast.

Rating: 8/10

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