Sons Of Anarchy Season Premiere Review: “Straw” (Season 6, Episode 1)


There are two things that undoubtedly raise red flags these days: Al Qaeda-related references and school shootings, and Sons of Anarchy hit them both within the first 90-minute episode of the sixth season.

The show has always pushed the envelope with controversial storylines and morally-bankrupt solutions, but they have always found their way back to partial redemption in the end – tying things up in a sloppy bow, and leaving fans with something to look forward to next season. With one episode of season 6 under his belt, Kurt Sutter has started things off by proclaiming war on the socially acceptable.

While Jax (Charlie Hunnam) prances around throwing his marriage vows out of the window and making decisions without consulting anyone besides his own conscious, the rest of SAMCRO is finding it harder and harder to put on a happy face. At the end of last season we saw Bobby (Mark Boone, Jr.) step away from Jax’s left hand, giving up his position as VP, and making his opinion about the direction of the club visible. He’s now taken it one step further and removed himself from Charming all together.

Out of all the guys in SAMCRO, Bobby tends to be the one that has the most common sense. He looks at the bigger picture – financial impact, brotherhood effects, etc. Both Jax and Clay (Ron Perlman) regularly bounced things off of him, and when it came to Jax choosing a VP, he seemed like the obvious choice (post-Opie (Ryan Hurst), of course). Now that the entire club is out of equilibrium, it makes sense that his relationship with Bobby would be the first to crumble. Since common sense appears to be the first thing leaving the party, losing Bobby from the table – and, even worse, the idea of losing him completely to nomad status – could be disastrous.

Even though Bobby is taking some time to collect his thoughts elsewhere, Juice (Theo Rossi) has returned home to endure the realities of his own decisions. Not all the brothers are aware of his past discretions that put the club at risk, but those who know have mixed thoughts on how to deal with it. Chibs (Tommy Flanagan), who has moved up from Sargent-at-Arms to VP since we saw him last, has finally expressed his emotions about the entire affair through the use of his hearty fists. I’m not saying that’s the best way to deal with your feelings, but the pair did seem remarkably chummy on the flip side.

Maybe that’s all it takes. Tig (Kim Coates) expressed his overwhelming emotions in a similar fashion on this episode of Sons of Anarchy. Instead of leaving when he had the chance, the pompous porn prick decided that taunting was his best option. I’m surprised Tig didn’t make him rest in pieces for that unknowingly-personal insult.

With the state of SAMCRO falling further and further from its glory days, Jax needs to start making decisions that don’t involve the boudoir. Jumping into bed with a potential business partners is not only a disappointing move on his part, but threatens his family and the club. Tara (Maggie Siff) is biding her time in jail while her entire life and career has just come to an abrupt halt. Realistically, she may still be a doctor in name, but she’s too much of a liability for the clinic in Oregon, or any hospital, to hire at this point. Tara can expect to say a painful goodbye to her career.

Even if she beats the accessory charges – and with the retired U.S. Marshal hellbent on her suffering right alongside of him, her possibilities are looking slim – she will return to a life where she now has to rely on her husbands’ enterprises to keep her in the lifestyle she has become accustomed to. She may still be able to convince herself that she’s winning, but is it worth what she’s had to give up? And, Jax is the one throwing himself a pity party.

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