November 23, 2011

Quick Thoughts: SONS OF ANARCHY, "Burnt and Purged Away"

"Burnt and Purged Away" was supposed to be pivotal since it was the penultimate episode before the 2-part season finale, and I respected what it did for the most part, but I also walked about scratching my head more than I would have liked.

Let's just get the negative out of the way first. While it wasn't as overstuffed as last week's "Call of Duty," there was still more plot points than what was required. I hope that Wendy's going to play some role in the end game because I still cannot figure out what she's doing back. Ditto for Charming Heights. And what's up with the Irish and their illegal baby trade (although it did bring out some decent character traits out of Jax)? It just feels like Kurt Sutter's throwing extra story at us just for the sake of doing it. Usually I wouldn't mind, but some of it doesn't add anything to the overall arc.

Now onto the good stuff. Opie's struggles with Clay and the club finally boiled over, and I want to add to the praise that's been heaped upon Ryan Hurst. He just did a phenomenal job with what he was given, so big kudos to him. I was also impressed with the culmination of Otto's transition to a rat as well as where the Juice's story went. The Sons are at their best when they're evading the Feds instead of dealing with drug dealers and gun runners, so I'm excited to see how this all pans out.

Then there was the big cliffhanger, so spoiler alert if you haven't seen the episode yet. I was a little surprised that Opie shot Clay during that final scene, not because I didn't think he had it in him, but that's the kind of moment directors like to cut to black as a way to keep people coming back. I figure at this point, those who are hooked are going to come back next week regardless, so you might as well go there. Now whether Clay's dead or not is the bigger question, and I'm intrigued to see which road Sutter goes down. Logically, I can how keeping Clay alive could work, but offing him would be such a ballsy move that I'd have tons of respect for the show for actually going there.

It's appropriate that the final episode before Thanksgiving did a lot of table setting. We got the main course finally brought out, but there were a lot of sides that no one really wants to eat and crowds the table, but at least it's there just in case. Now let's dig in starting next week.


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