Sons of Anarchy Season 7: Episode 12- “Rose Red”
***FILLED WITH SPOILERS, duh***
So let me lead with this, I’ve got no clue what’s going on within the mind of Kurt Sutter and attempting to figure out the endgame for SAMCRO and Sons of Anarchy as a whole is futile at this point. I say this not only because most of my finale predictions were literally blown away during the penultimate episode this past Tuesday, but because in my eyes there’s no story left to tell.
After eliminating Clay and Tara last year, the endgame had to focus on Gemma and Jax. But with that, I wasn’t expecting that story to end in the second to last episode, and I wasn’t expecting it to end with Jax blowing his Mom’s brains out. Watching Sons of Anarchy from the Netflix perspective (binge watching, swallowing seasons worth of TV in a weekend) you get a better sense for the story and where things might be headed. In the earlier seasons I was charmed with the relationship between Dr. Knowles and Jax, and saw the evolution this outlaw was taking as he dug deeper into the manuscript his father once wrote.
The arc seemed clear, John Teller wanted a better life for his club and in the end Jax (with Tara as his avatar) wanted a better life for his kids. Of course things went south, Tara got sucked into the life, Gemma meddled, Clay schemed, Jax became President. That’s drama, and it’s more than acceptable.
Things began to unravel in Season Four when the screws began to tighten on Clay, especially with the murder of Piney and Opie’s need for vengeance. The “shocking” death of Opie seemed to pull the final thread off that arc established in S1, irrevocably changing Jax’s story from there on out. I’ve previously written about my dashed hopes for Jax’s story, and seeing how it played out in “Rose Red” I became incredibly disappointed with how things ended, despite how well acted the scenes were. Everything Tara had hoped for was whisked away by Jax killing Gemma. When Gemma says “You have to do this baby, it’s what we do” (paraphrasing) the ultimate evolution of his arc would be for Jax to take the higher road, let Gemma live, and call the cops. Obviously that wasn’t happening after he blew Unser away, but it wouldn’t have made the previous six years a bloated waste and would have given the finale some added weight.
Oh, Unser. Jeez… Live by the sword, die by the sword. I wish I could say more about the situation as there were a million ways for him to avoid death-by-Jax, but to be friend-zoned into death Wayne? Poor form. Chucky would have made it out alive.
Juice got to die on his own terms (a theme prevalent throughout this SUPER SIZED EDITION of television), and despite my earlier predictions of Theo Rossi surviving the series I was happy to see Juice enjoy his last slice of pie. I could have done without all the prison rape, but in this show I’ll take what I can get.
Where does this leave things heading into this Tuesday’s finale?
- Nero and Wendy seem to be heading toward a fresh life as caretakers for the kids, enjoying freedom and raising their makeshift family on that fantastical farm in NorCal (did you hear? There’s animals too!!). I had my doubts on Nero making it out alive, and DOES NOT DIE (Sorry Jimmy, that means you dead).
- Wendy and Jax got to fucking since murder always seems to turn Jax on, especially when it’s Mommy Murder™. My guess is Wendy will become pregnant, and we’ll perhaps get a fancy flash-forward at the end revealing young adult Abel working on his Dad’s bike with Thomas and Jackson Jr. playing in the background. Symmetry!
- Jax signed his death warrant with the unanimous vote for mayhem, and his off-screen deal to broker the Grim Bastards into the Sons is not what I’d call riveting finale TV. Sorry to say I’m not that invested in what becomes of SAMCRO at this point, and I’m guessing this will drag things down a bit as Chibs and Tig hug and tell Jacky Boy how much they love him pre-sacrifice.
- Final prediction that will probably be wrong and invalidates everything I’ve pontificated– Everyone dies?
With my Leave of Absence from work earlier this year, I began devouring TV shows and movies on Netflix by the pound, powering through series upon series until I was all caught up with each individual selection. I originally did this when the 5th and final season of Breaking Bad was about to premiere, and sitting through all four seasons on Netflix was like a religious experience for me at the time , and made me realize what I was missing out on. I soon realized binge watching doesn’t always turn out to be so enlightening, but as a completest I always feel the need to finish what I’ve started.