TV Recap: Sons of Anarchy, “Faith and Despondency”

Written By David Oliver

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

Plot: Relationships hang in the balance as SAMCRO is dealing with assaults on all fronts. Meanwhile, Abel’s (Ryder and Evan Londo) cries for attention may finally bring a dark secret to light.

WHEW. Have you caught your breath yet?! Because, well, um, that was intense. And that’s saying something, because all these episodes are arguably more intense than most shows on TV.

The episode starts out with a sexy montage – no, literally, it’s much of the cast sleeping with their significant others or prostitutes. This includes Jax (Charlie Hunnam) and Winsome (Inbar Lavi), as well as Venus (Walton Goggins) and Tig (Kim Coates), Chibs (Tommy Flanagan) and Jarry (Annabeth Gish), Gemma (Katey Sagal) and Nero (Jimmy Smits), Ratboy (Niko Nicotera) and an unnamed prostitute and Tully (Marilyn Manson) and Juice (Theo Rossi). Yes, you read that last one correctly, and it’s unclear what that’s about.

Faith and Despondency scene.
Photo Credit: Prashant Gupta/FX

Winsome says Jax is a good guy and that she can see he’s in pain, and the two thank each other. As much as Jax has done, underneath it all he does mean to do right by the people he loves, and it would sort of be nice to see him happy. Maybe a reformed Winsome could do the trick? Doubtful, but you never know.

But that’s the least of Jax’s problems this episode when Tully sets up a meeting with Jax and the Aryan Brotherhood, one of whom insults Tig for sleeping with Venus. The group lets it slip that Leland (Brad Carter) is about to kill the cop Unser (Dayton Callie) has been visiting at the hospital, Eglee (Marya Delver). Unser kills him before this can happen. #TeamUnser, at the end of the day.

Meanwhile, Moses (Mathew St. Patrick) wants Tyler (Mo McRae) to lead him to the pastor’s wife and son to get them to retract their statement, and ends up getting Ratboy and T.O. of the Grim Bastards (Michael Beach) briefly held hostage. SAMCRO and the Aryan Brotherhood later ambush Moses and his crew, and there’s some literal eye-for-an-eye when the crew pushes in Moses’s eye and cuts off his fingers – vengeance for Bobby (Mark Boone Junior).

Meanwhile, Venus and Tig have a heart-to-heart, because she feels like he is only into her because she’s “out of the box,” and he likes the freaky part of it, but she is falling in love with him. He surprises her by wanting all in and to be showing her off. A collective, “AWWWW.” For a show that deals with so much violence and guns and manhood, it’s quite progressive.

In other news, Nero’s farm plan is still in the works, and Chibs and Jarry are still struggling to define their “relationship.”

Faith and Despondency
Photo Credit: Prashant Gupta/FX

But the biggest meat of the episode comes from Abel: he uses his fork at lunch to hurt himself in the bathroom, leading the school to make a call to child services. He later blames Gemma for it. Wendy (Drea de Matteo), Jax and Nero all feel he needs help, and Jax warns Gemma she can’t be alone with him.

Jax takes the boys to his house and asks Wendy to help out. Jax makes a startling revelation that’s been brewing since season one: he tells Abel that Wendy is his biological mother! Wendy looks quite pained when Jax refers to them as just friends, but that doesn’t ruin the moment when Abel kisses them both goodnight.

But the mood can’t end that lightly: when Jax tucks Abel in, Abel confirms Wendy was his “first mommy,” only to ask Jax if that’s “why Grandma killed my other Mommy?”

BOOM. Jax is “this close” to finding out the season’s biggest bombshell. And more importantly: what is he going to do now?!

Rating: 9.75/10

Sons of Anarchy airs every Tuesday night on FX.

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