Things pick up right where we left off at the end of season 2. Half-Sack is dead and he bike club has planned his funeral. Abel is still gone and for all intents and purposes so is Jax. The show opens with Jax in Abels crib drinking himself into a stupor. There could not be a better image to sum up how things are going for the bike club and their families. Everyone seems to be just a little bit crazier.
Gemma is still on the lamb and holed up in a Son’s protected motel with Tig and a couple other guys playing bodyguard. She reads something in the paper (its implied that it is an obit for her mom) that prompts her to attempt an escape to see her father. We get some great scenes where you can tell the rape is still weighing on her heavily (when Tig grabs her and she overreacts and when she stabbed the owner of the car she was trying to escape in). But nothing made it clearer than when Tig flat out asked her if she had lost her mind and she said “Maybe a little”. Tig finally agrees to just take her to her father (played by Hal Halbrook). It is heartwarming and shows us a side of Gemma that we rarely see, her warm, tender vulnerable side. It is the sweetest thing this show has done in a while when you hear Gemma call her father “daddy” and clearly went back to being his little girl. He has dementia but I imagine the feds will get to him eventually in looking for Gemma and her visit there will not play out well. Also, just a random note, will this Gemma/Tig thing that happened last season finally come to light? Oh and did I mention that Clay, in his infinite wisdom, has decided not to tell Gemma about Abel being kidnapped…..yeah can’t wait for that to come out!
Meanwhile, the Sons have tracked back tot he boat that they thought Abel had been taken away on. Jax finds his little SOA hat, best acting we have seen from Charlie Hunnam. Seems that the boat was just a way to throw them off, it had no gas and did not appear to set to go out for a long trip. As they are deciding how best to destroy the boat we see two guys coming down to the dock with some gasoline. When they spot the Sons they run, of course the club gives chase and end up out gunned. Jax tells them they are looking for his son. The heartbreak in his eyes and his story quickly difuses the situation, the rival gang didn’t know about the kidnapping but told the crew everything they could which was essentially what they already knew.
Jax visits his fathers grave and leave half of his SONS ring set on top of his headstone…the SO part. Not sure what the significance of this is, but it has to mean something and clearly is the inspiration for the title. While at the cemetery we get a great speech from Piney trying to drag Jax out of his slump and back to that leadership role he was poised to take last year. Jax seems to take it all in, but isn’t ready to start that fight again.
Half-Sacks funeral/memorial service is packed wall to wall with bikers and his military friends. Hale shows up to pay his respects and keep an eye on things. His brother also comes out and has a discussion with Hale about how the town needs to know that the Sons are just a bunch of law breakers. Its a moving scene to see everyone togethr and we learn one of the bikers from a larger club is wanting to come back to Charming. I cannot for the life of me remember his name but he was the guy that was in the Shield, let me know if you figure it out. This causes a weird moment between Clay and Bobby, but i’m sure this will be explored more later. As the memorial is winding down we see a van driven by a masked man pull around, the back doors open and guns are fired into the crowd. Someone manages to knock one of the gunmen out of the van and as it speeds away Hale steps out to try and stop it. Hale gets hit by the van and has his head run over by its back tires. That’s right, he appears to be dead! Clearly he was in the wrong spot, but I wondered immediately if his brother had hired these gunmen to kill some SOA boys and had accidentaly killed his brother. If that wasn’t shocking enough, Jax spots the one gunmen on the ground, walks over and proceeds to bash his face into the concrete. Clay had been pushing him all episode to get angry, but i’m not sure he meant for this to happen.
A great, great way to open season 3. I am curious how they are going to play the Abel story line among the Gemma on the lamb and Hale murdered plots. The Abel storyline is just front and center to me, and Jax clearly is not going to be prepared to deal with anything until his son is found.
Best Lines of the Night:
- I’m going to stick a gun up your bony ass and blow out your black heart. Clay to Agent Stahl
- Every time I think maybe I’m heading in the right direction, I end up in a place I never even knew could feel this bad. What did I do, man? Jax having his heart to heart with Piney