SONS OF ANARCHY: SEASON TWO
MOVIE: **** (out of 5)
BLU-RAY EXPERIENCE: ***1/2 (out of 5)
Charlie Hunnam as JACKSON “JAX” TELLER
Katey Sagal as GEMMA TELLER MORROW
Ron Perlman as CLARENCE “CLAY” MORROW
Mark Boone Junior as ROBERT “BOBBY” MUNSON
Kim Coates as ALEX “TIG” TRAGER
Tommy Flanagan as FILIP “CHIBS” TELFORD
Johnny Lewis as KIP “HALF SACK” EPPS
Maggie Siff as TARA KNOWLES
Adam Arkin as ETHAN ZOBELLE
Henry Rollins as A.J. WESTON
BY KEVIN CARR
WHAT IT’S ABOUT
The saga continues with the Sons of Anarchy biker gang in Charming, California. In the wake of Donna’s death, Tig is feeling the weight of his guilt and the Sons of Anarchy are in danger of breaking apart. Jax and Clay continue to be at odds with how the order is run while Gemma hides the crime against her from both her men. The Sons of Anarchy reach out to other outlaws as they face a new enemy, a white supremacist organization that is responsible for the rape of Gemma.
WHAT I LIKED
Things have really been stepped up in the second season of “Sons of Anarchy.” It’s no longer an internal struggle of a biker gang. Things have gotten brutal and real. The season opens with the one-two punch of Donna dying in a botched assassination and Gemma getting gang raped. Things don’t look up much more after this.
We still have agent Stahl going after the Sons, which further shows that all the characters in this series are just shades of gray. It’s great to see Ally Walker getting more work, even though she’s a bit rough after all these years. But her presence serves to tighten the plot. Between her character, Gemma and Tara, we have three facets to the women of this show.
Having a new outside force led by Ethan Zobelle (Adam Arkin) gives the antiheroes something to fight against. As I said earlier, these characters come on strong in this season and ride a pretty visceral storyline to the bitter end. They also serve as a great focus for a strong season finale, and even in their wake it shows that the Sons of Anarchy have some weaknesses exposed and aren’t guaranteed control of Charming.
Other highlights to this season of the show include some great smaller parts, in particular Tom Arnold as a smarmy home-grown porno producer. It’s this secondary casting that gives this show a humorous edge.
WHAT I DIDN’T LIKE
My biggest problem with this series is with the character of Tara. She’s just too damn conflicted through the first two seasons. On one hand, she loves Jax and wants to be his old lady. On the other hand, she struggling with the moral dilemma. I prefer someone with some conviction, like Gemma, who may not always act in the best interest of people but at least has a reason for doing so. Tara’s moping and whining is just getting to be too much for me. Let’s leave the moping and whining to something like “The Twilight Saga.”
The three-disc Blu-ray set for season two includes commentary on selected episodes, including a visual commentary option for some. Admittedly, the visual commentary is nifty but is nothing more than a camera on the set of people talking about the show.
Additional features include a gag reel, deleted scenes on most episodes and “The Moral Code of Sons of Anarchy,” which is a featurette about the politics within the show. There’s also a roundtable discussion with the cast of the series, which runs about 40 minutes and gives random answers to fan questions in a relaxed setting. It’s not terribly focused, but it’s a neat way to see your favorite cast members out of character and answering questions from real fans.
WHO’S GOING TO LIKE THIS MOVIE
Someone looking for hard-core, gritty drama on television.