Hola, Gasmii! I sincerely hope your Thanksgiving/Black Friday/two more days of leftovers were fantastic! My weekend looked like this:
Jealous? Maybe I should stop pushing ‘em out, eh?
Jax is having some “virtual” quality time with his progeny, too, writing letters to T&A in his Deep Thoughts Diary again, with his golf pencil.
Ever heard of an iPad, Jax?
Apparently, he has some hard, grown-up decisions to make, and he’s about to make ‘em. Yeah, sure, we’ve heard that before … there have been about 20 minutes total in this whole gosh-darn season during which people actually made and executed decisions (and I admit, every one of those 20 minutes were exciting!). The rest of the time, they were just talking about making decisions.
During Jax’s voiceover, we see Gemma helping Clay put his shirt on over his tattoos. Ron Perlman makes the acting choice to slump his shoulders again this episode to show us how defeated and resigned he is.
Dude, do you have scoliosis AND arthritis? Stand up straight!
We see a shot of Tara in the bedroom, looking for all the world like a Cymbalta commercial.
Reality is just so depressing when you’re sober.
Jax keeps writing after he gets to the clubhouse until Bobby knocks on the office door to let him know all the guys are there. They leave the office and Bobby tells Jax that the meet with Galen at the barn in set up for 2:00 pm, but Bobby insists they bring Clay to the table immediately. Clay wants to admit that he was responsible for the Nomads’ crimes and wants the members to vote on his sentence now. Jax is surprised and hurt that Bobby went behind his back and brought Clay in without clearing it first with Jax, who wasn’t ready to deal with Clay yet.
Don’t rain on my downward spiral, Bobby!
Clay tells the table how he reached out to the Nomads and came up with the plan to commit the home invasions to indirectly make Jax look bad and regain the club presidency. He tells the table he didn’t want anyone to get hurt, even though it was about pride and greed. He also says he thought Jax wasn’t ready to lead, but he was wrong and Jax is a better president that Clay ever was. After confessing, he goes to the garage to await the votes. First, the guys vote unanimously that Clay should lose his patch. Second, they have to vote — again, it has to be unanimous — whether Clay deserves to die. Chibs throws in his two cents before the vote: Chibs doesn’t believe Clay’s motives were anything but selfish and he needs a bullet or 15. No one else has anything else to offer for or against Clay. The vote itself is, bar none, the best part of the episode. The tension was thick, the acting was good, and we’re all wondering if anyone’s going to say “No” to killing Clay. Jax votes first and votes yes, of course. Chibs is next, and though we know he has a heart of gold, his two cents just before the vote predict that he votes to kill Clay, too. Up next is Tiggy. Will he stay true to Jax or vote to keep Clay alive for old times’ sake?
I dunno … Jax did save me from constant jail sodomy but Clay always lets me kill a lot of people. Decisions …
Tiggs votes to kill Clay. Self-preservation is strong with this one.
Happy votes to kill Clay, too, just to make me love him even more, I think. CFP also votes to kill Clay, ’cause he’s not ready for a character arc yet. Next is Juicy … how will he vote?
Die Daddy Die! I’ll miss you!
Last up is Bobby, and he votes “No”! AAAARRRRGH!
Et tu, Elvis? I thought you wanted to hold this club together!
Jax says nothing, just bangs the gavel and church is over. Chibs says he’ll go get Clay from the garage. Jax gets up and walks out. He meets Clay coming across the driveway and slams him down into the beer table outside. He starts choking him and Chibs tries to pull him off. Jax throws Chibs off and starts beating Clay in the face in front of everyone. Even Chucky sees and does the “quick intake of breath across clenched teeth” hissing noise that everyone’s doing.
This beatdown’s looking pretty bad/It makes me feel sorta sad/Am I tempting my own fate/If I use my thumbs to masturbate?
Chibs and Tiggy pull Jax off after the sixth punch or so, but I’m a little disappointed. We’ve seen much worse beatings on this show this season and I expected something a little less … anti-climactic. I don’t want this to turn into UFC or something, but this was a long time coming and that’s all we get?
Bobby comes into to church, where Jax is sitting by himself. Jax says, “You made a deal with him behind my back”. Bobby throws Clay’s cut on the table and says that he did make a deal to vote against killing Clay if Clay agreed to come in and admit his role in the Nomads fiasco. Bobby says he was doing for the club and to protect Jax from himself. Bobby knew that if he didn’t bring Clay in to admit his betrayal and get kicked out of the club, as soon as the last IRA deal was done, Jax would have killed Clay. Jax would never have brought Clay’s deception to the table at all if he had his choice; Jax would have killed Clay behind the club’s back in order to get personal satisfaction … just like Clay had done in the past. Bobby loves Jax and the club, and says the club needs Jax’s leadership to heal all the wounds. Jax tells Bobby that Opie said the gavel corrupts, and he was right. Bobby just wants the brotherhood back and Jax just wants Bobby to leave.
My bad … remind me never to make “Save the Club” plans with Clay when I’m hungry. Now where’s that pie, damn it?
Gemma and Unser are nursing Clay in the garage office. Gemma tells Clay he should go to the ER and get stitches, but Clay says he’s fine and just wants a minute alone. Gemma consents and after she and Unser leave, Clay cries. Also anti-climactic. I wanted self-flagellation, snot, “Why me?” while looking up to the heavens, but all I get is this:
At St. Thomas, Tara’s dropping off the boys at daycare and has Attorney Calamity Jane in tow. Apparently, Tara has to go to Stockton and give her official statement today about Otto killing No Nonsense, and Tara’s “accessory with the accessory” role in it. Ally asks Tara about the boys, and if she has a plan for custody in case she and Jax both die, which seems more and more likely with each episode I watch. Tara realizes she has no custody-worthy friends or relatives and is going to have to give that some thought.
At church, Jax is still sitting alone when Chibs comes in to tell him that Pope wants to meet at Charming Heights.
At Stockton, Tara gives her official statement to some dude and Ally does great work as her attorney, making sure Tara never implicates herself in the actual crime, saying Tara never read the part of her volunteer contract stating she would never give anything to the prisoners, and insisting Tara had no idea what Otto would do with the cross.
Creepy Obama is not pleased with her answers, but what can he do?
At Charming Heights, Chibs and Jax ride up to some clear cut land and greet August, who they find out has been with Pope since he was 17 and Jax says he’s either loyal or patient. Smile …
Pope is impressed with Jacob Hale’s plan for Charming Heights. Jax asks Pope to sell some more drugs out in NV to off-set the cost of the new guns. Pope is impressed with Jax’s business acumen and asks if he’s sure he wants to get out of the drug business. Jax asks him for advice in the Clay situation, after telling Pope he still wants to kill him though the club voted to keep him alive. Pope comes up with some trite cliches that work very well here, including, “Democracy is overrated.”
So was the last season of Lost.
They decide together that revenge by proxy on Clay may be the best route in this situation; Jax keeps the club stable but still makes sure his stepdad ends up six feet under. Pope is still itching to get his hands/guns/instruments of terror on Tig in extra retaliation for his daughter’s death. Jax promises to deliver Tiggy tomorrow to Pope, and Pope threatens that if he doesn’t, Pope will bring a world of pain down on SAMCRO. Is anyone else besides me hoping that Jax gives Tiggy a heads-up about Pope’s plans for him and tells Tig that if he kills Pope, all is forgiven? A girl can dream …
The guys from SAMCRO are meeting with Lin, his boys and his guns, and the cartel faction headed by Romeo and Luis in a Chinese warehouse. Lin shows off some pretty impressive stuff but Romeo and Luis balk when Henry says he can’t set up regular biweekly deliveries until they set up the shipping/supply routes with their Palestinian suppliers, which will take two to three months. After a quick discussion, the cartel/fed dynamic duo give Lin a specific grocery list of firearms and ammo and tell them they’ll need it every two weeks once the route has been set up. Satisfied, Lin agrees. Romeo and Luis pull Jax aside and let him know that Galindo needs firepower more than ever now, since he’s fighting a turf war on two fronts. Because of this, on top of what SAMCRO is picking up from Galen today for what Jax thought was the final time, the cartel is going to need one more Irish drop to hold them over until Lin’s first regular delivery. Jax is hesitant but tells Romeo he’ll ask Galen and it should not be a problem. Romeo tells Jax to demand that it’s okay from Galen and stomp/waddles off.
Tara meets with Wendy in her office and fills Wendy in on Gemma’s accident with the boys and Abel’s resulting heartbeat-correcting surgery. Wendy wants to know what’s going on,
I thought we could start the Charming Chapter of Junkie Moms Anonymous!
and Tara tells her she’s been having a lot of deep thoughts of her own, about mortality and where the boys will go if the most
likely horrible happens. She doesn’t come right out and ask the first Mrs. Teller to be the boys’ guardian in the event of her and Jax’s deaths, but she hints at it. Then she tells Wendy she’s welcome to go see Abel in daycare but just to say she’s a friend of Tara’s.
At the barn, the guys meet with Galen and his merry band of thugs, which includes the tallest Irishman I’ve ever seen.
See? He’s like the complete opposite of a United Colors of Benneton model.
Jax comes at Galen diplomatically, and convinces him to give him one more shipment on top of today’s so they both the IRA and SAMCRO can get the cartel out of their lives forever with a clean break. Galen agrees, but … not so fast. Romeo, Luis and some other Hispanically-inclined people (much better than the “bean n#ggers” title Galen gave them) show up uninvited, like Hispanically-inclined people usually do,
Maybe if we all hide they’ll think we’re not home.
saying they just wanted to confirm that this drop and the next, final drop were going to happen. Apparently, they talked to Pope and found out that Clay was out of SAMCRO. Romeo was worried that with Clay out of the picture, Galen would refuse to supply Galindo anymore. During the ensuing, short-lived gun battle, an Irish guy and two cartelytes are killed, one by Jax who is defending Bobby’s life. Quickly, the cartelytes have the barn surrounded and the Irish give up their guns smoothly. Romeo tells his guys to load the guns on the trucks and takes back his bag of drug money, telling Jax that SAMCRO is paying for this buy since they killed two of Romeo’s guys. The icing on the shit cake is when Galen, ordered out by the cartel guys, stops to tell Jax that thanks to him and this screw up, the Sons are going to feel pain on two continents. Poor Jax … his day keeps getting better and better.
After commercials, Galindo’s guys are loading the Irish guns into their truck while SAMCRO looks on. Jax is freaking out, telling the guys that Galen’s going to be retaliating quickly and they need to get everyone and their families to Teller-Morrow ASAP. He wants Tiggy to get the Tacoma chapter down to Charming pronto. Jax calls Juice, finds out he’s with Clay at Clay’s house packing up all of his SoA paraphernalia for turn-in, and tells him “listen to me very carefully”. Of course, we don’t get to hear what Jax’s instructions are, but since it’s Juice getting the directions, we can be sure they won’t be followed.
In the kitchen at Diosa Norte (does having an on-site kitchen make a brothel “legitimate”?), Nero is talking to one of the few of his old crew that he didn’t shoot to death and a very familiar-looking cousin …
Dave Navarro, I hardly recognized your malformed Precious Moments head, thanks to that authentic facial scar!
who are telling Nero all about the turf they’re losing to rival gangs since Nero left the hood. Nero says he’ll ask the MC for help and get back at them tomorrow. Gemma comes in just as they’re finishing up and asks Nero if his doctor client can take a look at Clay’s lacerations. She tells Nero that Clay got kicked out of the club, and he lets her know he’s getting sucked back into his old crew.
Oh, and BTW, I DO really love you. Now help me nurse my husband back to health.
Before they can hump each other on the Top Chef B Set, Lyla interrupts to tell them they all have to go to T-M for the lockdown.
At Clay’s, Juice and Clay have gathered every thing in Clay’s house that has a Reaper or some other SoA marking on it for turn in. Clay tells Juice to let Happy know that he’ll get his tattoos taken care of at T-M tonight.
I’m hoping this is how they’ll take care of Clay’s tattoos, like the last guy kicked out.
Juice eyes Clay’s handgun, the one etched with the SoA insignia with a matching leather holster that Juice saw when he was looking for the safe documents. Clay sees him, says he knows Juice has always liked it, and tells Juice that Piney gave it to him for his fifth year SAMCRO anniversary. He was planning on giving it to Opie, but well, Juice can have it now.
As long as you don’t use it to pistol-whip the other side of my face or kill me, we’re good.
Tiggy shows up, tells them about the lockdown, and insists Clay comes with him and Juice to T-M even though Clay doesn’t think he belongs there.
Alex Trager: Digging his own grave for five seasons and still going strong.
On their way out, Juice makes sure to bring his new gun from Clay. Must be foreshadowing (I hope) …
At St. Thomas, Wendy’s sharing a snack with Abel in the hall from the vending machine, and Jax sees them. He stops, furious, and picks up his kid and asks Wendy why she’s with him. He doesn’t even give her time to defend herself and says he’ll talk to her outside the hospital after he brings Abel back to daycare. Meanwhile, the United Colorless of Benneton ad has been tailing them in the hospital. I guess he’s a ninja …
A Wall Ninja … see how he blends in?
He sees Wendy walk outside and it looks like he and his cell phone are forming a retaliation plan. Outside, Wendy’s having a smoke break on a bench near the hospital’s directional sign, and Jax and Chibs have a quick chat a few yards away. Chibs says they should take Tara and the boys to T-M and Jax agrees. He looks over at Wendy and Chibs asks if he has to do this now. When Jax turns to answer him, we hear a squeal of tires. Jax looks back to where Wendy was just sitting, but all that’s left of her
is an Etsy purse and some cookies Abel drooled on.
Inside St. Thomas, the situation is even more tense. Donal Logue, or Lee Toric, as he introduces himself, is waiting to talk to Tara in her office. He lets her know that he’s No Nonsense’s brother
and I’m one of the smart secondary characters Kurt Sutter periodically introduces — so pay attention!
and he was hoping she could shed some more light on what happened. As his questions get more invasive, Tara gets suspicious and he tells her he’s a retired U.S. Marshal who has a lot of time on his hands, time enough to burn her, Otto, and the whole damn club.
After commercials, Jax and Tara are in the office at the clubhouse, and she’s explaining Lee’s visit, that Otto’s giving his statement tomorrow and may claim that Tara conspired with him to kill the nurse, and why in the hell she let Wendy see Abel (estrogen moment!).
Chibs knocks and lets Jax know that Galen called. Jax goes into church to get details and sees Clay sitting there; he is understandably angry. Clay tells Jax that Galen reached out to him and Galen wants $475,000 ransom or their guns back in exchange for Wendy, or else Galen will take Abel for a return trip to Belfast. Nero overhears from the pool table outside and offers to help, if Jax will give him a minute alone. Nero tells Jax that he has the money, and that he had enough to buy his uncle’s farm a year ago, but felt an internal pull to stay in business. Jax is surprised.
Did I just get punk’d?
Jax rightly calls him on the fact that Nero was trying to talk Jax into speeding up the end game a few weeks ago and that Nero grossly underrepresented his financial situation. Nero isn’t making this loan offer for free; he tells Jax that “you can’t stay in uniform and not play the game, man” and now Nero’s back in the game. He’s going to need guns and protection, and wants both from SAMCRO. Jax wants clarification: Is this a loan of a half a million dollars, or payment for guns and protection? Nero answers with Option C: a new partnership.
Great … just when I thought I was done making deals with Mexicans …
Jax heads over to the garage office and sits down to talk to Gemma. We don’t get to find out what they’re talking about right now. Instead, we head over …
to Clay’s meet with Galen for the money/Wendy exchange. Jax has sent Tiggy along with Clay to chaperone. Clay tells Tig he knows that Tig voted to kill him, and Tig tells him he deserved that. Inside the barn, Clay gives the Irish the money and Clay sends Wendy out to his car and a waiting Tig. He stays inside the barn to chat with Clay, and to let him know that although both Galen and the Sons want their relationship to end, Clay would be happy to run guns for the Irish with an independent crew. Galen’s open to this idea. Clay asks Galen if he can hop one of their flights back to Belfast to lay low until Jax calms down, and if he can bring Gemma with him. Galen tells him there’s a flight tomorrow, and there’s room for him and Gemma, “so long as she doesn’t pack like [Galen's] wife, there’ll be room”.
Oh, and can she bring her bird? And her Escalade? And can she bring her Mexican friend along? Ill make sure he fits in a suitcase!
They hug it out and Tig comes in to check on Clay. As they’re leaving, Clay asks Tig again if he’s interested in running guns for Galen with him, without any politics or beef.
Well, that sounds fucking boring. I don’t see a spin-off in our future.
Back at the clubhouse, Wendy’s in the office with Jax and Tara, yelling that she knows all about Abel’s kidnapping (the Irish told her during her time with them) and she’s going to tell law enforcement about his kidnapping and hers so she can get custody of Abel.
Isn’t this the type of behavior that got you killed off on The Sopranos?
After Wendy walks out, Tara asks Jax what they’re going to do about everything: Wendy’s threats, Clay’s general malfeasance, her potential charges. She’s at a loss and doesn’t know how they’re going to handle everything. Jax pulls his favorite weapon
Jedi mind tricks
and tells her everything will be fine. After he hugs her and tells her he’s going to give her a beautiful life, he goes out into the main room of the club and gets right to work. He thanks Nero for the “loan”, and then tells Chibs to get Tig, who’s taking Wendy home, on the phone for him. Unser’s playing pool, and he’s the next stop on the Jax train of doom. Jax hands Unser Lee Toric’s business card that he took from Tara and tells him to find out everything he can about him. He asks Happy, who’s at the bar, if he’s ready, and Happy says he is. Bobby tries to chase Jax down and get a minute alone, but Jax refuses and closes the church door on him while talking to Tig on the phone.
Clay’s waiting in the garage office for Gemma. When she comes in, he gives her the original certificates from the safe and tells her that he’s figured out all along, all he really wanted was to get Gemma back. Shut up with all that mushy stuff … what do the certificates say???? They don’t address it, but he does ask her to come away with him to Belfast for a few months while everything cools down and she tells him she’ll think about it. He looks as surprised as I feel, when he asks, “Really?”
You don’t have
someone something else to do locally?
Someone knocks at the door, and he tells her she better go, and that he’ll sleep at his place because “the ink will ruin the sheets”. She walks out the outside door, while Clay walks into the garage, where everyone from the Redwood chapter and the Tacoma chapter are ready to witness Happy color in all of Clay’s SoA tattoos.
Can we hurry this up? I need to get home and see if J-Mo posted the newest Top Chef recap on tvgasm.
Gemma shows up at Diosa Norte because she’s craving some of Nero’s flauta de la piel. Jax leaves mid-tattoo blackout and heads off to Wendy’s. Toric is doing a little light reading
I had to look it up; it’s a book by an insane man and it also talks about poop. Fun!
Lee also has about 370 bottles of pills and a small arsenal of very deadly weapons. I can’t wait to see what he’s going to do with those things next week. Maybe he’ll shit in Otto’s mouth.
Jax pulls up at Wendy’s apartment building behind the T-M tow truck that Tig was driving. Tig hands him something and tells Jax it’s ready to shoot, but we can’t see what it is. Tig asks Jax why he’s doing “this” and Jax says he’s keeping life beautiful. He knocks on Wendy’s door, invites himself in, and asks where her partner is. When Wendy tells him she’s in San Franscisco, he grabs her, throws her against the wall, and brings out the needle that Tig got for him. He shoots Wendy full of smack and tells her she should never threaten his family again. Simple yet effective.
I don’t think this is what he had in mind, but I guess Jax’s life is a different kind of beautiful.
See you next week! Thanks so much for reading.