Poenitentia is a Latin word that translates to penance. That seems to be the theme of tonight’s episode. Let’s take a look at an episode that could indeed be the catalyst for things to come this season.
We start this episode with Jax sitting in the kids’ room holding Thomas in his arms as he writes in his journal. Talking over the television, you hear the voice of the District Attorney. She is giving a press conference regarding the recent school shooting perpetrated by the young boy, Matthew.
“It is my highest priority as your District Attorney, as a proud resident of this county, and as a mother to find the parties responsible for putting a weapon so deadly into the hands of a child.” She concludes.
After her press conference, she is briefed by the police officer in charge of the investigation. She asks him if they have been able to locate Darvany or her boyfriend, to which he explains that they are both MIA. He informs her that he picked up both Byz-Lats that were at the scene, but both of them were clean, and he was forced to let them go. She is obviously not very pleased.
Back in his hotel room, we find a half-naked Toric attempting to mess around with his cell phone. It looks as if he shares the same affliction as Clay when it comes to his hands. Could this have played a role in his departure from the Marshals?
In the background you can hear the shower running. It looks like Toric actually hooked up with the girl he was courting during his time at Diosa. Toric hears a noise outside, and quickly grabs his gun from under the bed and rushes to the door. He sees the DA emerge from a black SUV and start heading his way.
The girl from the shower makes her way to the window, and touches him on his shoulder and greets him warmly. Distracted by the thoughts going through his mind, he spins around and shoots the girl in the stomach. AAs she falls backwards, he begins to panic and starts apologizing to her. He heads back to the window to see where the DA is, and then comes back for the girl, still apologizing and telling her that she is going to be ok. He forces her to the ground, still apologizing mind you, puts a pillow over her head, and puts two bullets in her brain. Exactly how does he plan to explain this to the District Attorney? Now we have a knock on the door.
I think we just had our first ‘Holy Crap!’ moment of the night. Queue the intro.
Of course he can’t invite the DA into his room now, so he quickly gets dressed and answers the door. He steps outside and closes the door behind him. She asks him why he did not tell her about Tara Knowles. He tells her that he has already spoken with her and that she is “towing the family line.” The DA mentions that she is a surgeon facing manslaughter charges and implies that there is room to push there. He responds by telling her that the reality of jail time hasn’t set in for her yet; however, Clay has been burned by the club, and facing certain death in prison, surely he is their best play.
She provides him with a new agreement to turn State’s evidence, which she needs Clay to sign. She also tells him that she needs him to track down Darvany Jennings. Toric tells her that the best way to get to her would be to track down Nero Padilla. He tells her that he is Arcadio’s cousin, and explains his business and association with the Sons of Anarchy, insuring her that he is the way to go.
Now, we see Jax entering Sheriff Roosevelt’s office. He asks him what is going on with Clay, and why he wants to see him. Roosevelt tells him that he should speak with his Public Defender. Jax tells him about Gemma’s run in with Toric after visiting Clay the day before. Jax asks if it is Toric pulling the strings. Roosevelt tells Jax that he ‘heard’ that Toric was pulling some serious favors in order to keep Clay from being murdered in prison. He also informs Jax that Toric payed a visit to Tara while she was on the inside, and that it was him who processed her arrest. When asked what he wanted with Tara, Roosevelt replied that he was looking for the same thing that he wants from Clay, something that he can use to crush the people that are responsible for his sister’s murder.
Back in the hotel, we see Toric getting ready to start his day. He takes his medicine, and heads towards the door. Before leaving, we get a brief glimpse of the present that Toric is leaving for housekeeping. The girl that Toric just murdered was left bleeding in the bathroom tub. I digress to an question I have asked many times before; What in the holy heck is wrong with this man?
As an addition to the irony here, he places the ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign on the door. Well played, Mr. Toric…well played.
Back at the shop, we see Tara walking up with the boys. She is greeted by Unser. She asks him if Gemma is here. He offers to watch the boys for her until Gemma gets there, but she says she can wait for a little bit. He asks her how she has been holding up. Just as they start to talk, Gemma pulls in. He tells her that she is going to get through this, to which she replies, “It’s not about me anymore.”
What does that mean? Is this some sort of foreshadowing of things to come? Do she have a suspicion that her fate has already been sealed?
After a short exchange, Tara leaves the boys with Gemma and heads off to get her hand examined.
Now, we get to the point in the show where business starts to pick up. We head over to the prison where Clay is finally getting his face time with Jax. Jax basically cuts through all the pleasantries and tells Clay to say what he has to say.
Clay tells him that he understands everything that went down. Jax shuts him down saying that he doesn’t believe Clay’s mea culpa. Jax asks him straight forward what he gave the Marshals in order to stay safe. He tells Jax that he promised to give up the club if Toric let him see him and Gemma. Clay tells him that the one thing he wants him to know is that he is sorry for everything. Jax asks him if he is shedding all the guilt before he turns. Clay takes a quick look over at the two sided mirror, which of course Toric is standing behind, and says no, that he isn’t giving them anything. Then they’ll send him back to general population, and this will play out as expected. Clay tells him that this is all he wanted to say.
Jax rises from his seat and heads to the mirror. This is the portion of the episode that was featured in the trailer.
I’m sorry about your sister. I can feel how personal this is for you, but SAMCRO didn’t kill her. Otto acted alone, he’s not a member anymore. He’s just a broken guy, more than a few blocks from sane. I don’t give a sh** what you do to him, but if you try to come after my wife, try to tie her to this murder, you’re gonna feel how personal this is for me.” Jax says to Toric through the glass.
Jax walks out of the room, leaving both Clay and Toric to their own devices.
Toric comes into the room, and leaves no stone unturned in an effort to get Clay to sign the papers; however, Clay holds steadfast.
You know, I can’t help but see the irony in all this. You’ve got who knows how many kills in the last 30 years? And the one that gets you the death sentence is the one you didn’t do.” Toric says to him as he walks out of the room.
Now back at the clubhouse, Jax sees that Gemma has the boys. He asks her where Tara is, and she explains to him that Tara is having her hand looked at and that she’ll be back in a few hours. He tells her that he needs to ask Tara something. She asks him if he saw Clay. Jax tells her that he gave him the same sad story that he gave Gemma.
Now, we are at the table, and Jax is explaining what happened to the rest of SAMCRO. He tells them that they will know soon enough if Clay was telling the truth. If he stays in protective custody, then the know he was lying. Otherwise, he will probably end up dead. He warns the club that Toric is going to come at this from every available angle, and he wants them all to be on guard.
He tells them that he has to meet Nero out at Stockton to sign the new Diosa paperwork. They decide that Chibs, Tig, Juice, and Happy would accompany Jax to Stockton, and that Phil was to round up some of the prospects and sit on Teller Morrow. Juice suggests that someone should reach out to Bobby and let him know what is happening with Clay. Jax tells him to do it. Chibs interrupts and tells ax that Bobby should hear it from him.
If he misses me so much, he shouldn’t have left.” Jax says before slamming the gavel.
Speaking of Bobby, now we see Bobby at a diner with the others that he has been recruiting to patch out with him. They all agree that it is time for a change. It looks as if Bobby has found the necessary members to be able to patch out of the Redwood Originals. Where could this road possibly lead Bobby?
Back at their house, we see Toric in the kitchen reaching for a beer. It’s not long before we realize that he has Gomes and Fiasco tied up at the kitchen table with duct tape over their mouths. When one of them responds with a smart remark to his question, he slams his head into the table and attempts to wretch open his beer bottle with their mouth. Blood comes rushing out of his mouth, and yet the bottle still isn’t open. He removes the tape from the other’s mouth, who proceeds to tell Toric that they have no idea where Arcadio and Darvany are. He does the same to him as he did to his partner. You can hear the sound of his gums ripping as his teeth are being forcibly moved within his mouth. So much for the legit cop routine, huh?
We now come back to Teller Morrow, where Gemma and Unser are feeding the boys. Suddenly, Wendy pulls in. Unser tells Gemma to go on and that he will watch the boys for her.
Wendy asks if Jax is around. Gemma tells her no, but asks her what is wrong. She tells Gemma that she was attacked. She tells her that a new guy in one of her NA meetings asked her for her number, and she told him no. She saw him again at another meeting, and this time, he followed her to her car, grabbed her by the neck, and shoved his hands down her pants. She gouged his eyes and ran for her car, but as she was pulling out, he screamed that him and his friends were going to find her and rape her. She tells Gemma that the guy’s name is Luis. She understands that Jax is pissed at her, but she is really scared. Gemma understands and tells her that she will talk to Jax. Gemma tells her to come by the house when she is done with work for the day, and assures her that everything is going to be ok.
Ok, maybe I am looking a little too deeply into this, but I don’t remember Gemma ever liking Wendy this much. I know that there is such a thing as compassion, but this is Gemma we are talking about after all. Could the tides be turning? Could Wendy slowly be working her way back in with Jax? One can only imagine that this is going to get much deeper before any truth is revealed.
Now we drop in on Jax and Nero and their meeting with Collette and Barosky about their new business venture. Nero explains to them that everything has to be done by the book, and that inspectors can pay them a visit at any time.
All of a sudden, gun shots ring out, and the bakery where they are having their meeting is now riddled with bullet holes. One of Barosky’s guys was injured in the firefight. He tells Jax that they got a partial plate on the white Mercedes, and there was one match; Amir Ghanezi. As you may remember, this is one of the Iranians that SAMCRO attacked in the Season premiere. I knew it was only a matter of time before they came calling for revenge for the death of his brother.
The club sets out to find Ghanezi at the marina. Jax tells Juice to stay behind with Collette and make sure that nothing happens to her.
Now, we catch up with Toric and the District Attorney. She asks him if Clay signed the affidavit. He tells her that he missed him at county, and will have to wait until he is processed at Stockton. He tells her that he did meet with the two Byz-Lats, but they gave him nothing. Toric still swears that Nero is the way to tie the club to the gun that was used in the school shooting, even though Patterson tells him that she has ran a check on him and that everything is legit. He suggests pressing one of his girls to see if there is anything they want to trade for information. She tells him to do it.
They make their way into her office, and she closes the door behind them. She then hands him a form and tells him to sign it. She tells him it is a form that covers her in case he decides to go rogue. This makes him a special investigator. She hands him a badge (great…this psycho has a badge again) and tells him that she assumes he has a gun.
Now we find ourselves at the docks with Barosky, Nero, and SAMCRO. Rather than going in hot, they decide to make this a “social call”.
When they approach the boat, they force the guys to toss their guns. They even give them the privilege of a pat down. Amir admits to shooting up the bakery, and reminds them that it was the club who crashed their studio and scared away their girls. Barosky says that they made good on that. Amir disagrees. He says that he has not seen his brother since the day that the club took him, and that this morning, they found his brother’s coat in the water. He says he knows that they killed his brother and dumped his body in the bay.
Jax denies killing his brother. He tells him that the reason his brother hasn’t contacted him is that he was pissed that his brother caved, and maybe that’s why his brother has been avoiding him. Amir says that no matter what, his brother would never turn his back on his family. Barosky tells Amir that this is done. Amir replies that for now, they are even.
I didn’t say we were even.” Barosky says as he pulls out a knife and slits one of Amir’s men’s throats. “Now that feels like even.” he says after Jax knocks the other guy out, takes his gun, and they train the guns on Amir.
Barosky tells them to start the boat, and leave and keep going. He says that if he ever sees him or any of his Iranian kin again, he will personally gut every one of them.
Jax tells Nero and the club that everything is settled.
Meanwhile, Clay is about to be processed at Stockton. The officer takes the cuffs off, and then answers a knock at the door. Suddenly, the officer disappears, and three men enter the room. All three of them attack Clay. One of them pulls a handmade knife. One of them tells Clay that it is his choice.
Tara finally finds her way back to Teller Morrow after seeing the doctor. Gemma asks her how her hand is. Tara tells her it is about the same. Gemma asks her if her and Jax ever had a chance to talk to Wendy about the guardian issues. Gemma asks Tara if she needs any help with that, to which she replies, “No, I don’t think so; at least not yet.” Gemma is puzzled by what this means.
She asks Gemma if she tells her something if she can keep it to herself.
Secrets are what I do.” Gemma replies.
Tara tells her that she is about 8 weeks pregnant. Gemma is elated. She asks how Jax is doing with it. Tara tells her that she just found out for sure, and that should would tell Jax tonight. Gemma tells her that they will get everything figured out.
The club comes rolling back up to the bakery, and Juice is standing outside. They ask Juice where Collette is. He tells them that one of Barosky’s guys picked her up, and that she said she’d call Jax tells Tig to come with him to see Collette, and tells Chibs and the rest of the guys to get back to TM and put everyone on notice until they are sure that they have this ordeal with the Persians settled.
Once everyone has left, he asks Tig if he packed up all the Persian porn equipment. Tig tells him he did. He tells him that he wants him to head down there, and that he wants everything stored in the gun warehouse just in case Amir comes looking for it. Tig says that he thought that deal was settled, and Jax tells him that they found the brother’s jacket in the bay this morning. Tig swears that he cut him loose. Before leaving, he hugs Tig and kisses him on the cheek, telling him that he loves him.
Oh, crap…I smell a set up coming. Every time that Jax kisses someone or tells him that he loves them, usually they end up dead or fairly screwed. Could this be the end of the road for Tig?
Back at Stockton, it looks like Clay made it through processing, although I am not sure how. He makes his way out onto the yard, which is filled with people who probably want his head.
As if things couldn’t possibly get any weirder in this episode, now we find ourselves back at the hotel with Toric. Have I told you that this is one messed up person?
He has on a pair of gloves and is gently touching the girl he killed and left in the tub. He tells her that he is going to make all of this matter. He then pulls a chunk of her hair from her head and puts it into a bag. He then cuts a piece of bloody fabric from her robe.
Now, we catch up with Jax at Collette’s house. One of her girls tells Jax that she is upstairs. Apparently, she is busy. Jax hears a familiar voice, so he quietly opens the door. He sees Barosky and Collette getting it on. This day just keeps getting weirder and weirder.
Now we find ourselves back at the prison again. As I suspected things finally got out of hand, as one of the black men who jumped him earlier comes at him in the yard. An all-out brawl starts up. Suddenly, Clay pulls out the knife that had been pulled on him earlier. He uses it to stab the leader of the white faction in the throat. Well played, Mr. Morrow. Now that he has committed a crime in prison, Toric can’t use him for the RICO case, and he will surely be put into solitary confinement where the rest of the guys who want him dead can’t get their hands on him.
We now catch up with Jax, who is waiting at an overpass to meet with August Marks. August tells Jax that Clay will be dead by morning. Jax tells August that he may need Clay in order to break the ties that are binding the club to the IRA. August tells Jax that this may be beneficial to him, but that this compromises himself. He says that it sends the wrong message.
Jax tells August that he recently resurrected Cara Cara. He says he knows it’s not normally the type of business that Pope Industries normally deals with, but that it can be quite lucrative. He then asks him about their “other piece of business.” Jax hands him a sheet of paper, and August opens it. August tells him to send him a business plan for his adult entertainment business. The two shake hands and then they part ways.
Wait a second…did Jax just set up Tig to be murdered?
We get a quick glimpse of Bobby as he is speaking to one of the other Sons members. It looks as if Bobby is getting ready to make the change official, as he tells the other guy that he plans to be on the road by the end of the week. Jax wasn’t kidding when he said that his club was cut in half. If Bobby leaves, and Tig dies, just how many brothers is Jax going to have left?
Now, we find ourselves at Gemma’s house just in time to hear a knock at the door. Wendy comes in. Gemma asks her if everything is ok, and Wendy tells her that they didn’t show up at her job.
Gemma tells Wendy that this isn’t a good time. She opens a hat box and hands Wendy a gun. She tells her that until this is under wraps, she has to protect herself. Gemma tells her that there are no numbers on the gun, and nothing that can be traced back to her. Gemma walks her out of the house.
As the episode starts to wind down, we see that Clay has survived the attack, and successfully bought himself a stay in solitary confinement. He should be ok there, at least for a little while. Wendy gets in her car and leaves, just as Nero arrives home. Not too far behind Nero is Toric. It seems as if Toric is bound and determined to find a way to use Nero to link the club to the guns.
Next, we see Barosky leaving Collette’s. She almost seems happy to be rid of him. So, what is the first thing Collette does now that he is gone? Call Jax, of course. Surprisingly, Jax ignores her call.
Now, we see Tig waiting in the warehouse for what he thinks is going to be one of the prospects. Unfortunately, I have a feeling that a prospect is going to be the last thing that Tig sees.
Back at the prison, the little window in Clay’s cell opens, and someone passes him a knife, telling him that he may need this. When did Clay all of a sudden get help on the inside? I wonder who is orchestrating all of this.
Back at the house again, Jax is wandering around the kitchen when he sees a paper on the table. Upon closer inspection, he sees that it is Tara’s lab work telling her that she is pregnant. I can’t quite tell from the look on his face just what he is thinking inside.
Flipping back to Gemma and Nero’s place, we find Toric breaking into Nero’s truck, and planting the “evidence” on him in order to link him to the girl’s murder.
Not so surprisingly, we find Roosevelt as he finds the dead girl’s body. The officer tells Roosevelt that a pickup truck was seen pulling away from here after changing a flat. Man, when Toric frames someone, I guess it is go big or go home.
Now, we see Wendy in front of the mirror with a damp towel. Suddenly, she wipes away the marks on her neck that were from her supposed “attacker”. You crafty little… She found a way to get back in with Gemma without actually having to do anything. It seems like everyone in Charming has their own little secret. The only thing separating them is whose secret is worse.
As for Tig, I was right. Jax set him up. Whether this is all part of some greater plan is yet to be seen, but when Tig hears the door open, he turns around expecting to see one of the prospects to help him move the stuff, but instead he finds August Marks and a few of his men. While you don’t see any of them harm Tig in any way, we all know what is coming. Of course, we could all be totally wrong. Kurt Sutter has this masterful way of making you think one thing is going to happen, when in actuality something totally different is on the way.
As the episode making it’s final swan song of the evening, we see Jax walk into his bedroom to find Tara reading. He holds up the piece of paper in his hand, not saying a word. He walks over to the bed and sits fown besides her. She scoots closer to him. Jax looks her in the eyes and tells her that he loves her. The two of them embrace, but the look on Tara’s face says that there is far more than meets the eye here.
And just like that, this episode has come to an end. There are a lot of issues that are going to need addressing in the weeks to come. Does Nero get popped for the dead girl’s murder? Did August kill Tig? Who is really helping Clay? What are Wendy and Tara playing at? There are so many questions, and so few answers at this point.
This is one of those things that make Kurt Sutter such a brilliant story teller. For as much as he gives you, he makes you ask 3 more questions in return; thus, always leaving you wanting more. I am almost scared to ask what kind of a cliffhanger he is going to leave us with when this season ends, and we transition into the final season of the series.
However, that is quite a ways from now.
Now, we have next week to worry about. Here is a peek at next week’s episode.
Make sure to check back next week as we take a look at Episode 4, which is entitled ‘Wolfsangel’.
Sons of Anarchy airs on Tuesday nights at 10:00 p.m. on FX.