This review contains spoilers.
This week’s episode of Sons Of Anarchy takes place directly after the events of the last one, which left several Russians dead, and had the Sons dropping them off where the new housing project is planned. It also introduces a few new characters, including a cracking turn from typecast-badass, Danny Trejo.
The episode is concerned mostly with the fallout from the events in last week’s episode. It’s pretty obvious who killed the Russians, but given that the police sat outside the reservation where Opie and Lyla’s wedding, the Sons have an alibi, and despite everyone knowing that they were involved, there is nothing that they can do. Judging by the two episodes that have been broadcast thus far, I would imagine that the wider narrative will involve a conflict between the Sons and Roosevelt (and by extension, Lincoln Potter).
The other narrative thread that is back with a bang, having taken a back seat last series, is what drew a lot of people to the series in the first place: the Hamlet narrative. It’s obvious now that Gemma knows that Tara has seen John Teller’s letters, and that she’s told Clay. In this episode, Gemma takes a moment to root around in Tara’s office, where she finds a folder with the letters and also JT’s death certificate.
It’s pretty clear that Tara would have to go looking for this in order to get it, and it wouldn’t be surprising if she is the first to uncover the truth behind JT’s death. Gemma also talks to Unser about Gemma knowing about the letters, which suggests that he may have taken part in covering up the death. If I were to bet on it, all my money would be on Clay and Gemma being responsible.
There were a lot of rumblings of big change in the way that the Sons operate as well, with large chunks of the episode dedicated to the politics of the gang. The cynic in me really wants to say that, if you’re not a regular viewer of the show, then these parts might seem really dull, but if you’re not a regular viewer then you probably aren’t reading this.
Clay and Jax meet up with representatives from the Mexican cartel, the leader being Romeo, played by the one and only Danny Trejo. If you were a fan of Kurt Sutter’s previous series, The Shield, you may have noticed that one of Romeo’s associates was played by Benito Martinez (who played police chief David Aceveda in The Shield). The deal with the cartel means a lot of money for the club, but part of the deal is that the Sons will not only smuggle guns, but also drugs. This provides a mixed, but mostly mixed reaction when the news gets back to the rest of the club, but Clay insists that it is for the good of the club. There is definitely a sour mood from this, and getting involved with drugs will almost certainly bring a lot more heat on the club.
Things become very difficult for the club when Opie and Jax end up getting kidnapped by some Russians, who are quite keen to get their guns back, which the Sons took last week. Jax manages to contact Clay, who agrees to give them back. However, Roosevelt picks his moment to mess with the Sons, by turning up with a fire engine, saying he suspects a fire. This gives him an excuse to enter without a warrant, and he starts smashing the place up with a fire axe. This shows a side to Roosevelt that we didn’t see last week. I was convinced that he was going to be a very incorruptible, by the book kind of cop, but after seeing him lose it this week, I’m starting to think that he’s a bit of a live wire.
Obviously, with the Sons caught up with the police, it looks like they won’t make the deadline with the Russians, and that Jax and Opie will be executed. However, keen to protect their investment, the Mexican cartel comes to their rescue, while dispatching most of the Russians in the process. This gives the Sons more of a reason to get involved with the drugs, as they might feel that they owe the Mexicans something now.
The episode comes to a close with Tara announcing her engagement to Jax, but it’s obvious that there’s a bad feeling in the clubhouse due to the drug running.
When I saw Danny Trejo’s name in the opening credits, I definitely felt good about it, as this show has been calling out for a Trejo kind of character. I hope that he’s a recurring character in it, rather than just around for a few episodes, as he was in Breaking Bad.
So, two episodes in, and the series is looking pretty good already. I definitely get the feeling that the writers know what they are doing in this series, and we’re in for a good one.
You can read our review of Sons Of Anarchy season 4 episode 3, Out, here.