S4E10:How does Sons of Anarchy celebrate getting an additional episode for its fourth season? By raising all kinds of mayhem, as Jax and Tara see what life is like without SAMCRO; but while they can leave the clubhouse, they can’t leave the life. Welcome to the real Hell on Wheels.
“I want it clean and I want it painless, don’t mess up her face.” – Clay
Clay grabs the money for the Gallindo hitman who’s heading to kill Tara and says goodbye to Gemma, telling her that he and Jax are going to deal with Mexican business. Clay no longer cares about lying to his wife. An ever-suspicious matriarch, Gemma checks the safe and sees that almost all of Clay’s personal funds are missing. Meanwhile, Jax and Tara are getting ready for their trip to Oregon. Sensing something is wrong; Gemma calls up Unser, who is at the cabin, shooting up the place to cover up Clay murdering Piney two weeks ago. Clay comes back to the clubhouse to find out the bad news (for him anyway), that Jax left with Tara. Clay immediately calls Romero and asks to call the hit off, but the head of the cartel tells Clay “our guy’s independent.” Romero tells Luis Torres to get word to their guy to be careful, since Jax is there too. Gemma tries to question Clay about the money, but Clay no longer seems to care about his old lady’s opinion and basically gives her the ol’ Michael Corleone “never ask me about my business speech,” putting her in her place.
During their trip, the Jax and Tara stop at a park near Walnut Grove. Tara tells Jax that she wants to take this job in Oregon. Jax embraces the idea completely, telling her that he’s got one more job to do and will be ready to go before her. Their perfect afternoon gets torn asunder when the hit goes down. The crew sent to kill her nabs her while she’s putting the baby in the car and they try to toss her in a van. Considering she gets kidnapped once a season, Tara knows how to fight back by now and does just that, slowing the van down enough for Jax to catch up and grab her. Tara asks to be sent to her hospital in Charming, to which Walnut Grove P.D. agree. However, they need to speak with Jax, due to his Federal Probation. The biker doctor unfortunately broke three metacarpals in her hand during the skirmish and needs surgery.
“It’s more risky her undermining this operation, it has to be handled soon.” –Torres
Obviously unaware that this was something that Clay set in motion, Jax tells the club that the guys who tried to take Tara were speaking Spanish. As far as the club knows, this could have been the work of the Lobos. They pick up Alvarez along with some of his Mayans to visit LeRoy and the Niners, who are a bit skittish after the Lobos killed three of their men that morning. The Niners take out one of Alvarez’s guys, who in turn take out one of LeRoy’s. The Niners let the clubs leave. Clay tells Jax to be with his family, and Jax reluctantly heads back to the hospital. This also leaves Clay alone to meet with Gallindo. Romero and Torres give Clay back the money, but let him know that they will still have to silence Tara, since she poses a threat with the letters about the club. Clay explains to Romero that Jax won’t leave her side and that they’ll have to offer up some of the Lobos to satiate the V.P.’s bloodlust.
“It’s not your fault, Jax; its fate that this happened.” – Tara
Maybe it was the morphine talking or maybe it was the fact that she now has a dead hand, but Tara is supremely confident that her way out of Charming is gone and that it had to happen in order for her to be with Jax. The club, or the town, won’t let Jax leave.
“You were right man; I should have let you get out.” – Jax
Some of the club members come to the hospital to see Jax. When they leave, Opie stays behind and Jax comes clean to his best friend about getting out when Clay retires. Opie reminds Jax that when he first got out of prison and wanted out of the club, it was Jax who convinced him to stay. Jax makes a heartfelt apology and surmises that Donna might still be alive if Opie had left the club. Jax asks Opie to get things right with his wife and his dad.
“I’m done being your boy, you want to dirty my jacket? Go ahead.” – Roosevelt
ATF agents take Juice in the middle of the night. Not knowing where he is, the club heads to the Sheriff’s department looking for him. Roosevelt lies and says that he did pick Juice up for a drug test, but released him last night. Roosevelt tells Potter about it and tells the ATF agent that he’s done being Potter’s scapegoat. Unfortunately for the good sheriff, he signed a form a few weeks back that says he will cooperate with the investigation. Potter visits Juice in protective custody and gives him the terms of the deal. Juice will find out when the meeting between the cartel and the IRA will take place and Potter will take down the cartel, the IRA, and only the Sons that are present at the meet. “The club and all of its charters will not fall to RICO,” he says. I wish logic would creep into these dramas; considering all of that has happened with Juice, he should know better than to trust Potter, but as I said last week most of us don’t know how we’d react in his situation. From the outside looking in though, Juicey looks like a moron; he’s allowing himself to be played.
“It’s done Wayne, Clay can’t be saved.” – GemmaSomeone finally got through to Gemma: Tara’s boss, Margaret Murphy, lays the guilt trip on Gemma in a big way. Murphy tells Gemma, “You’re an awful woman and all of this suffering landing on Tara is because of you.” Gemma returns home to find Clay putting the 25K back in the safe, commencing the biggest domestic brawl on TV since Tony and Carmela Soprano. Feeling betrayed and lied to, Gemma threatens to tell Jax about what Clay has done. Clay calls Gemma out for her part in killing John and the two throw fists. Even with Clay’s shaky hands, the rings on his fingers make their mark. Clay heads to the clubhouse without saying a word to anyone. Unser comes to the house to find a beat-up Gemma and is visibly angry and sad about what was done. Unser wants to pin Piney back on Clay, but Gemma tells him no, “Clay has to die by the hand of a Son.” Too bad Carmela couldn’t get Paulie to off Tony when they had their fight.
Next week is anoverstuffed 90-minute episode and this season has done a terrific job of ramping all of the tension up week in, week out. In stark contrast to keeping the viewer out of the loop last season, making the conscious decision to let the viewer in on everything while sitting at the edge of our seats waiting for Jax and company to find out about Clay’s dirty deeds is a risky gambit, but this show usually pays off. I have no doubt in mind that what Gemma says is true – Clay can’t be saved. There’s a slew of Sons with a legit beef with SAMCRO’s standing president, it’s only a matter of finding out which one is going to pull the trigger.