It looks like Juice’s time is finally coming. This week on Sons of Anarchy we watched Juice try to commit the ultimate act of betrayal against his brothers. “Try” being the key word here. After abandoning Gemma in the desert (not that she doesn’t deserve it!), Juice seeks out SAMCRO’s long time foe The Mayans to propose a deal. If they help him escape to Mexico with a new identity, he will give them whatever info they want on the Sons. It was a scene we’d all been waiting for after it was included as part of the season preview shown after the premiere episode in September, but I don’t think it went how any of us had expected it to. Instead of taking Juice up on his offer, the Mayans go straight to Jax with an offer of their own. By the end of the episode, Juice is in Jax’s hands and the Mayans and the Sons have agreed on a truce.
Up until last week’s episode, I was a firmly on the #SaveJuice side of this fandom. However, though I will feel bad if he dies, now I think he deserves it. The first time that Juice betrayed Jax he didn’t mean to. He was high and full of grief over what Jax had made him do. Even the second time when he helped Gemma cover up Tara’s murder, I believe he at least had some good intentions. This time Juice’s betrayal was selfish and cowardly and I was glad when the Mayans gave Juice to Jax. It’s only a matter of time now before Juice dies, but I am sure that he will shake things up a bit before he goes. Maybe that’s how he will try to save himself next, by telling Jax who Tara’s true killer is. Either way, at this point there is no redemption for Juice, no way that he can live, and no way that he will ever be a part of SAMCRO again.
Juice’s dilemma was not actually the main plot of tonight’s episode. Tonight, Jax is working to prepare himself for war against August Marks. This entire season we’ve watched Jax make and then break alliances in his plan to take revenge against the person who he believes to be the cause of Tara’s murder, Henry Lin. Now that his plan for retaliation is out, Jax is no longer being quiet about why he was retaliating against Lin, and everyone seems to understand where he’s coming from. Except for Marks. The Niners give Jax the heads up in this episode that Marks is out for their blood. Jax begins recruiting alliances once again. It’s a wonder that anyone even trusts SAMCRO anymore.
There’s even talk about patching over what’s left of the Grim Bastards, which would be quite a move toward the inclusion of diversity within the club. My favorite part of this episode was the fact that every single member of the MC was disgusted by the ignorance of the White Supremacist gang that they’re working with. SAMCRO has come a long way since the time when Juice was afraid to even tell them that his father was black, and I believe that this is definitely a part of the good influence that Jax’s presidency has had on the club.
There were a few notable moments in this episode that I enjoyed. The first came toward the beginning with a conversation between Wendy and Bobby. It is revealed that Wendy still loves Jax. At this point I believe that Wendy has redeemed herself, but the question is whether Jax could ever truly forgive her, and even if he could forgive her, could he ever love her again? Wendy is a character whom I’ve always disliked, but with Tara gone I think that Wendy has done the right thing this time around. She’s there for Jax’s children but she isn’t pushing to be their mother or to be his lover again. She’s supporting Jax’s family when they need it without expecting anything more from it. She’s just thankful to be given this time with her son and that is why I believe that she does deserve Jax’s love again. I’m not sure that she will get it, but I won’t mind if she does.
The second was a scene between Gemma and a waitress at a diner, played by Lea Michele (Glee). Gemma is overheard by the waitress talking to Tara about the first time that she realized that Jax wasn’t going to be hers forever (which is kind of creepy). She’s talking to Tara about how she saw how much that Jax loved Tara, even when he was still young. The waitress strikes up conversation with Gemma asking about who she was talking to. I liked this scene because Gemma admits that it is her fault that Tara is dead (though not that she killed her). It’s becoming more and more obvious that Gemma regrets her actions in last year’s finale. Unfortunately, it’s also becoming clear that although she feels bad, she still doesn’t think she should suffer because of it.
This episode marks the end of the first half of the final season of Sons of Anarchy. So far this season, we’ve watched Jax plot his revenge against Henry Lin, who we’ve always known was framed by Tara’s actual murderer Gemma, without caring who he had to take out along the way. Jax has wreaked a lot of havoc this season, and there have been consequences for his actions. Now that Lin is out of his reach, what will happen next? Where will the season go from here? I believe that while the first half of the season found Jax being misled and following the wrong path, the remainder of the season is going to show him finding his way back; back to the man he was before Tara’s death. The truth is bound to come out, and we’ve got seven more episodes left to watch it happen.