Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Season One: Episode 8- "The Pull"

With only four episodes left in season one, "The Pull" finally brought to fruition developments in all the story lines that have been dangling along the audience for the past seven episodes: SAMCRO vs the Mayans/Darby, Jax's deveotion to SAMCRO, the health of Jack's baby, and the love triangle of Jax/Tara/Agent Kohn. 

Mayan leader with Darby
This blog has chronicled the battles that have gone out with SAMCRO and the Mayans, from warehouses being torched to weapon distribution, the hatred between the two groups is obvious. In this episode, Darby receives the FBI file from Agent Kohn, who is apparently on his way out of down after his "dustup" with Jax and the Charming sheriffs. The file details the connection between SAMCRO and the IRA, specifically the arrangements regarding transporting weapons to and from Ireland. Darby meets with the Mayans and agrees to hand over this sensitive information in return for one thing: the murder of Clay. Apparently, Darby wants to control Charming and believes that the group would fall apart without its leader. Personally, I don't see Darby's rationale at all. SAMCRO has been around for dozens of years and has motorcycle chapters in various cities and states. How would the murder of one individual- no matter how important that individual may be- affect the larger scale organization? Would the Catholic Church dissolve if anything happened to the Pope? Do companies immediately fold if their CEO changes hands? It seems as if Darby's goals are far-reaching, but then again he is a neo-Nazi who isn't the smartest of the bunch. Plus, can you imagine a guy who looks like this having a real impact- illegal or not- on a city called Charming?

Darby's perfect plan inevitably backfires on him, when the Mayans send out a hit team to murder Clay AND  a hit team to murder Darby. If I could see that one coming- Darby probably should have to, right? Anyway, both murder attempts fail as Darby successfully survives a shooting at his house and Clay survives a shooting at a local bar. The only "casualty" is one of Clay's business partners, Cameron Hayes, who is a representative of the IRA and was present to ensure their business was proceeding as planned. Hayes did not die, although he was shot multiple times in the....ugh.....butt....rear.....backside (whatever you want to call it). These attempted assassinations will clearly be major parts of the plot lines moving forward. In the same way as The Sopranos often had "eye for an eye" moments, it will be impossible for Clay and SAMCRO to sit back after the Mayans (who they clearly knew were behind it) attempted to take out a member of their own. 

While "The Pull" did not provide much information as to HOW Clay plans to exact revenge, the episode did- for the FIRST time- showcase dialogue among SAMCRO members openly questioning Jax's devotion to the club. After the assassination attempt, Jax wanted to ensure that the club was processing all options and being smart about retaliating. While Jax was
Jax and Clay
clearly more level-headed than the others, I suppose its hard to criticize a motorcycle gang for wanting to get revenge quickly and painfully. Along those lines, Tig openly asked Clay if Jax "had the balls to go out for blood" and even Clay himself had to ask Jax if he was "with him." Again, there have been many scenes where Clay, Gemma and even some other members of SAMCRO have reacted quizzically to some of the comments and actions of Jax. However, to actually have Tig share his concerns with Clay, and to have Clay openly question Jax may open a Pandora's Box as we move towards the season finale. The question is will that Pandora's Box also cause dissension in the ranks and possibly create questions about the leadership?  

A smaller story line that I want to touch on is the status of Jax's baby- Abel. Abel had been in the hospital since the beginning episode, but finally came out of the incubation chamber in
Abel out of the incubation chamber
this episode. So, what importance does a baby have on a show about a motorcycle gang? One can argue that Abel is the reason why Jax is having a struggle with this conscience. Has being a father now been the aspect of his life that is pushing him away from the violent nature of other members of SAMCRO? I believe so. Therefore, will Abel now being out of the incubation chamber and actually in his arms make Jax strive to further his beliefs and opinions on the club? 

Finally, another aspect of Jax's "family" saw her situation take an immediate turn. There has been flirtations with Jax and Tara over the last couple episodes that I have detailed on this blog. Tara and Jax used to date before Tara "broke his heart" (according to Gemma), but it still appears as if that spark exists between the two of them. At the conclusion of this episode,
Jax shoots Agent Kohn
Tara returned home when she was confronted in her bedroom by Agent Kohn (I just KNEW he couldn't have left that easily!) who attempts to seduce her. Tara plays along with him because she has no other alternative, until she sees and opening to grab his gun and shoots him in the stomach. Frightened, she calls Jax who shows up at Tara's apartment and notices Kohn on the ground bleeding. Jax explains that Kohn may go to jail for breaking into her apartment, but that he will always follow her. At that point, Kohn looks at Tara and says "Once a biker slut...always a..." before Jax turns and shoots Kohn in the head. As Tara screams at what she witnessed, she embraces Jax and stares into his eyes. The two begin having sex on her bed, with the lifeless body of Agent Kohn laying in a pool of blood on the floor next to them. 

Hold on.....

Two things from this final sequence. The first is that Jax showed his violent side that was often questioned by other members of SAMCRO. In the first episode of the season, Jax struggles to shoot one of the Mayans and only does so as a last resort. In this case, Jax showed confidence and desire to kill the man that was stalking Tara. Secondly, will the last words uttered by Kohn- "Once a biker slut..always a" ring true as the season progresses? Will Tara and Jax get together, especially after their passionate scene at the conclusion of the episode? It is clear that Jax has feelings for Tara, and with Abel out of the incubator chamber, will Jax attempt to complete a family (especially since his ex-wife and Abel's mother has not been seen in the last few episodes)? 

I guess we have to wait and see....

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