Sons Of Anarchy Review: “Faith And Despondency” (Season 7, Episode 10)


Sons of Anarchy gave fans another super-sized episode this week as the show prepares for the end, but was it really necessary?

Normally, I wouldn’t complain about the members of SAMCRO being pranced across the screen in the bare minimum, but like so much of tonight’s episode, it seemed to fall on the gratuitous side. Sure, it’s understandable that fans want to absorb as much time as possible with these characters, who over seven seasons they have become quite attached to, in a very intimate way. It makes perfect sense – from a fan perspective. However, broadcasting an episode that clocks in at almost twice the normal run-time for no other reason than to give fans a little more, hurts more than it helps.

After last week’s shocking (err, meant to be shocking) ending, Sons of Anarchy failed to capitalize on the high emotions in the wake of Bobby’s (Mark Boone Junior) execution. Besides a brief conversation about the club being “Bobby-less” and the predictable ambush, resulting in possibly the quickest retaliation to-date, it was as if the members of SAMCRO had compartmentalized their loss and moved on. What should have been a testament to the role that put Mark Boone Junior on the map, turned into another wasted opportunity.

Instead, the writers put the emphasis on the few core members still standing and their current romantic entanglements – to the point that Abel’s game changing confession was almost overshadowed. That’s right. Young and traumatized Abel Teller, so often marginalized, spilled the beans about Grandma. And then, the credits started to roll. With all of Abel’s erratic behavior as of late, it’s too early to tell how Jax (Charlie Hunnam) will take his son’s statement.

Whether or not Jax chooses to act on it or assume it’s just another side effect of the trauma from Tara’s murder will make or break Gemma’s (Katey Sagal) chances of surviving the season. Of all the characters, Gemma, who has made a habit out of making survival her prerogative, I suspect is also the least likely to run – even under the circumstances. After everything she’s been through, this is going to be her end point – good or bad.