As we near the end of “Sons of Anarchy” season 6 on Tuesday night, now seems like the perfect time to address what could be the obvious: That this has been a intense, shocking 12 episodes of TV. This is clearly a show that is going into the finale in a far difference place than the premiere, and with a number of major and minor characters dying along the way.
Though it was difficult at times when you consider the events that have taken place (from Venus Van Dam’s return to the Mayans resurfacing) this season, we’ve managed to single out the five events in particular that stick out to us. Most of these were jaw-droppers, but for different reasons. At least three got us pretty emotional, another had us fairly grossed out, and one had us feeling reflective on the path some of these characters have taken.
1. The school shooting (“Straw”) – This was, beyond a shadow of a doubt, the one that got non-watchers of the show talking. In the end, we stand by what we said at the time that it aired: It may not be an easy thing to watch, and you may wish that even for the sake of the characters that it didn’t happen, but it is important to respect the creative process and the risk that was taken. Plus, we feel like the show has over time validated the tragedy, as it set Jax Teller and SAMCRO on the path to getting out of the arms trade.
2. The death of Lee Toric and Otto (“Wolfsangel”) – After originally planning to be a role lasting almost the entire season, Donal Logue’s time was cut short due to “Vikings’ scheduling conflicts. Therefore, we see Toric go in a brutal way, and then Kurt Sutter’s own mass murderer was made for Otto to quickly follow him out the door.
3. The clubhouse burns (“The Mad King”) – This had to be one of the most brutal explosions in the show’s history, and when you consider just how much death is tied into this series, it is still remarkable that this is the one event that did not have a particularly high body count. Then again, doesn’t the clubhouse count as a character in its own right?
4. The death of Clay Morrow (“Aon Rud Persanta”) – You probably knew that we were going to lose Ron Perlman in some way; but for him to go out in this brutal way, and in front of Gemma? We never saw that happening, especially over a full year away from the series finale. Clay wasn’t the only one to die in “Aon Rud Persanta,” but his is the death that makes you sit back and think about where this man was years ago, and how your opinion of him may have changed since that time. He’s the last person you want to have any sympathy for, but there are moments where it crept in.
5. Tara goes on the run (“You Are My Sunshine”) – We could have put three separate Tara moments on this list, whether it be her hatching the plan to fake a pregnancy and have Gemma put behind bars, or her finding out that she was completely alone and even Patterson wouldn’t help her. But we feel like everything built to the moment this week, where Maggie Siff’s character decided to take the children and run. Like many of her choices this year, it may have been well-intentioned for the sake of the kids, but it lacks the sort of preparedness that it would need to actually work. Still, Siff remains this season’s unsung hero.
Now, we turn it over to you. Share your pick for the most-shocking moment in the season either in the poll, or the comment box below. Also, click here to preview Tuesday night’s finale, which could very well have a moment to add to this list.