Review: "Sons of Anarchy" Season 2, Episode 13 FINALE “Na Triobloidi”

12/02/2009 Posted by Admin

By our guest blogger, Eva Medoff

Warning: This review contains spoilers.

If last week’s “Sons of Anarchy” was medieval, the finale, “Na Triobloidi” (Irish translation of “The Troubles,” a period of political turmoil in Northern Ireland) was simultaneously an old Western film and an English hunting party. As SAMCRO shuffled to knock Zobelle and Weston off the chess board, the characters seemed to struggle to determine how far they should go in the name of retribution. “Na Triobloidi” opens on a fitting sight: two rats eating a dead bird along the highway. It’s too decomposed to tell whether it’s a crow--but the message is clear: bad things are coming SAMCRO’s way.

Due to unreliable testimony, Weston receives a get out of jail free card. Zobelle also walks, but for an entirely different reason--he’s been an FBI informant for three years. Ties to big players such as senators and judges make him untouchable by law enforcement. However, both of these developments are positives to the club, which now consider Weston and Zobelle merely moving targets.

Zobelle craftily calls his business partners, the Mayans, in for protection, and this is when Charming is turned into an Old West stakeout. He debates what to do in his cigar shop with the Mayans lined outside, while on the other side of Main Street, the Sons of Anarchy wait patiently for their prey. Hale and his men have parked themselves in between like sitting ducks, and it soon becomes clear it’s time to call the Sheriff.

While Clay waits for his chance to kill Zobelle, Jax is maneuvering to get Weston. Weston arranges for a police-escorted visit with his son, Duke, who was put into protective custody last episode. Like the caring dad he is, he takes Junior down to the tattoo parlor to wait while Daddy gets inked.

Opie calls in a favor to the tattoo artist, who botches Weston’s tattoo and advises him to wash it off in the bathroom. Jax, Opie and Chibs are waiting, but are foiled when Weston ends up bringing his son along. What follows is one of the more disturbing episodes of the series. Realizing he’s about to be murdered, Weston resigns himself, quietly, to his fate and tells his son to go outside, and that he loves him. “He sees nothing of this,” he says to Jax, who nods in accordance with Weston’s wishes. For a moment, it seems Jax might bend and realize that revenge will get him nowhere--but alas, the crimes against his mother and his reputation in the club are too great of incentives. Weston’s life ends in a dingy bathroom stall, his blood seeping onto the tile floor.

Fatherhood is a major theme of the episode. Jax returns to the clubhouse, and he may as well have been carrying Weston’s scalp. They all tell Jax how proud they are of him. “You done good son,” says Clay, as they all take a shot. Violence, pride, alcohol. It’s a regular macho elixir. The only thing out of the place is the haunted look in Jax’s eyes.

It’s Clays turn for revenge. Zobelle’s daughter Polly has gone off to say farewell to her Irish love, but unable to get in touch with her, Zobelle decides he can’t wait a minute longer. Every second he stays in, Charming is one second closer to death. He’s planning to split town and head back to the homeland, Budapest. As he’s escorted in a car surrounded by Mayan’s motorcycles, SAMCRO appears and starts playing target practice on the Mayans. Zobelle manages to escape to a nearby deli filled with children, but the club is waiting outside.

Meanwhile, Polly takes her sweet time getting ready to visit Edmond. While out getting flowers in town, she’s spotted by Gemma, who is running errands with Tara and their protective escort, Half Sack. And here is when all of the hurt and religious mania that have been building up in Gemma all season boil over. She tells Tara that God put Polly in her path, and she must do “her part.” Polly lured Gemma into the trap when she was raped, and Gemma now feels she must do something when all the guys are out risking their lives to avenge her. Tara, apparently cooled off from the adrenaline rush of her own cruel beat down last week, tries to talk some sense into her, but it’s clear she’s looking to a crazy woman. There is a rather defined line between societal values and the values of an outlaw motorcycle club. Tara had her taste of the latter, and perhaps now she is seeing just how truly ugly it can get. Little does she know, she hasn’t seen anything yet.

Back at Edmond’s house, Stahl is busy playing cat and mouse trying to get his father, Cameron. In a particularly heated fight, Edmond punches Stahl, and as he runs out of the room, she empties two shots into his back, accidentally killing him. This is a rather large inconvenience for Stahl. Rather than just say he was choking her and she shot him in self defense, or something like that, she bides her time to figure out some way to blame it on someone else.

Polly walks in and sees Edmond’s bloodied corpse. The camera is positioned in the backroom, where we can see Stahl hiding with her gun on one side of the wall. Polly is approaching cautiously with her gun in the hall, and behind her, in the doorway, Gemma appears with her gun. Three women, three guns, one beautiful shot. For another moment, I thought Gemma might just talk to Polly and do the right thing. Again, I was wrong. One shot to the chest, and Polly falls dead. Gemma wasn’t bargaining for the ATF agent on the other side of the wall, however.

Like the slimy snake she is, Stahl manipulates Gemma and forces her to leave her gun and flee the scene, making it look like Gemma killed both Polly and Edmond. She says as much on her radio. Unfortunately, Edmond’s dad, Cameron, is listening in.

In a state of grief and shock, Cameron follows Half Sack and Tara back to the house, knowing only that Gemma, and thus SAMCRO, caused his son’s death. Tara realizes Gemma is in deep trouble (although she has no idea where she is), and calls Jax. Just then, Cameron enters the house with a gun. This is the most terrifying scene of the episode. At first, it seems he wants to kill Tara, but then he sees the baby lying in his carrier on the kitchen counter. With the gun trained on Tara and Half Sack, he takes a knife and holds it over the baby. Instinctively, they both rush over, and Cameron plants the knife into Half Sack’s stomach instead. Thus, the fourth (actually fifth, a guy is killed in prison in the beginning) death of the episode.

Jax realizes something’s wrong when Tara hangs up on him. Opie, Chibs and Jax return to find Half Sack dead and Tara tied up. Cameron has taken off with the baby. Jax calls Clay, who must make a decision between waiting to kill the mastermind behind his wife’s rape or chasing the his grandson’s kidnapper. Nobly, he chooses the latter. (Zobelle, meanwhile, had called Hale for aid. Hale soberly informed him that his daughter was dead, and denied assistance. He’s turning more and more into Unser every day. Any way, Zobelle is able to get away and boards a flight back to the Old Country.)

The Sons race after Cameron, who heads to the harbor. Jax sprints down the dock just in time to see Cameron’s motorboat, with his baby son, speed away. Weston and Duke, Clay and Jax, Cameron and Edmond, and now Jax and Abel. Fathers and sons ripped apart and brought together. The episode ends on Jax’s agonized cries. Even with all the death in “Na Triobloidi,” it’s hard to think of anything worse than losing a child.

Meanwhile, Gemma has gone AWOL. Fleeing the law, she calls on Unser to help, who promptly drops everything to join her in her flight from the law. Yes, he’s dying of cancer. Yes, he’s long been a crooked cop. But what is Gemma’s excuse? Does she think she’s helping her family? After killing a woman and leaving without knowing the whereabouts of any of her loved ones (let alone causing the death of Half Sack and the abduction of her grandson), Gemma’s contented smile is sickeningly out of place. After a season of watching the club being torn apart, the last few episodes have been a healing salve that bound them together. Now, with the thing most precious to Jax gone, and the matriarch on the run, it seems next season will be more destabilized than ever. “Sons of Anarchy” ended on the mother of all cliffhangers--but the triumph of the show is that it has me tense with anticipation about the character’s emotional well-being than the outcome of any specific event.

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  1. Anonymous said...

    Gemma didn't cause Half-Sack's death or the abduction of Jax's son. That was all Stahl's manipulating.