A Sashurai’s Review: Sons of Anarchy – Season 7×11 (The gatekeeper sings alone)


Very few shows can get the brain rattling with such anxiety and fear over chaotic scenarios. Tonight, SOA gave in to the truth and mapped out a near perfect episode in “Suits of Woe”. Jax followed the clues and met Juice’s confession head on with a promise to make it quick as a reward for the tale of this season’s finale. Marked like never before, Gemma runs, and pursues her next dark chapter alone. Every conversation between Jax and those he knows and trusts, were layered in the brutality that was Tara’s murder. Jax understands who, and to a degree why, but where Gemma is going, we don’t know.

Two episodes remain and we have to put up with a week with no Sons before the penultimate episode erupts. Jax wants to make things right knowing how much damage his mother caused. He, as usual, shoulders the burden, promising to take all the blame for those who’ve perished wrongfully. But as the episode dawn’s its final minute, all he can do is weep and wail over why Gemma would murder the woman he loved.

Jax’s journey tonight was very much a journey for all of us. Every turn I expected something to rise up and block his path to the truth, yet everywhere he went, he found more answers. We’ll start with Juice. As the words hung between them, I stuttered to think that maybe Juice would spare Gemma the misery and say he was the one who killed Tara. There wasn’t much reasoning behind it, just my mind playing tricks at possibilities. But sure enough, Juice recounted his view of that night with perfect clarity, including Eli’s murder. His thanks for such information, a promise of a quick death. So much was riding on Jax’s reactions, and I don’t want to downplay Juice’s teary eyed moments, but you’ve got to hand it to both actors for pulling off a tremendous scene that took so long to get to. It was done right, without a single shred of deception. Now Juice must live fully with the consequences, however short of a time that may be.

On the other side of this coin lies survivalist herself, Gemma. Who had one more ghostly conversation before succumbing to the lonely road ahead. She tries to reflect and say goodbye to those she can get to, but Abel and Nero are essentially the only ones. Chucky did her a solid and you can tell even without him saying it that he always had a deep loyalty, very much beyond the club. Gemma has that affect on people, Nero especially since he lied to Jax so Gemma could drive away to wherever she needed to go. His heart broke just as much to find out as it’s been doing to Jax every minute he can’t find her. It only makes sense that he and Jax shared the last scene together in tears, knowing that a death sentence to Gemma would destroy Jax for the rest of his life. The finale is getting so much harder to think about knowing that Jax still loves her, despite the mayhem she’s caused since we’ve come to know her.

Another simple subplot put to rest is the reveal that Barosky was the one who told the Chinese about he gun trade. A few times I mentioned Barosky as a possibility, yet it was hard to completely commit to that theory because everyone thought for sure a Son member could only have been behind it, but in the back of my head, Peter Weller was put in that role to serve a better purpose than a background liaison to Stockton. Jax will likely deal with him very soon.

That leaves us with the unknown equation with how the charter will vote on Jax’s life for what he did in killing Jury. I have no idea on the mental state of the other members and can only speculate they’ll vote against putting Jax down, because he’ll appeal to them the only way he knows how. All Jax wanted was a change and a way to stop his charter from getting killed. Those that remain will have very hard decisions to make if they choose for an end to their president. Do I honestly think that’s going to happen? On the surface, I’d say no. I’ve expected bloodshed in a lot of scenes of past episodes and everything turned out alright. Plus, I don’t think I want to see the charter begin a schism war. Jax will think of something he always does.


Juice finally revealing what he witnessed to Jax. They dealt with it early in the episode because it was hard waiting on the moment. The acting was superb and It was a bit tragic that it will be the last time those two speak or see each other. No matter what, Jax always had it in for Juice and Juice keeps his neutral expression, relatively accepting of the judgment given to him. One thing’s for sure, Tully isn’t done with Juice yet and it’s frightening wondering what horrors may lie ahead for Mr. Ortiz.


Tough race between mother and son, but the breakdown at the end gave Jax the win for this episode’s MVP. Every gaze, angered shout, and tearful look were spot on as we are dragged through his path one step at a time. Nero deserves a lot of credit in this ep as well. He hung on some solid reactions and letting the scene play out with his face when Jax tells him on the phone what happened it nearly priceless. Great job on both parts.


The end is two episodes away. I still can’t wrap my head around it.

Jax and Gemma will either play out at the beginning of the finale, or right toward the end. And judging by Jax’s deep sadness, there’s no telling what will happen. If Gemma confesses that she purposely had the biggest hand in JT’s death, Jax could very well snap in half.

August is a definite wildcard. He could disappear or he could have something seriously horrible occur when he gets out.

This show will likely end the life of another major character before the end. Let’s hope the toll isn’t high.

Wayne has a bit more to play in this storyline, but will he side with Gemma when he finds the truth? He was always in love with her and that never changed. Since he’s basically done with Jax it stands to reason he’ll help her regardless of the circumstance.


It was hard to find fault with this episode. 9 out of 10. Every conversation was stupendous. Even the car chase scene was done to a better degree than we’re used to seeing. It felt like a real chase scene with speed and obstacles and a sense of urgency because it was Jax fleeing and not chasing this time. With no options, Gemma is leaving Charming and not looking back. There’s a lot to be said with her survival instinct, but she’s running because not only does she not want to face Jax’s wrath, but she’s afraid because she either doesn’t know Jax well enough or she knows him all too well given the context of the situation. This will not be a fun two weeks to put up with between now and the penultimate episode. We’re almost out of gas and Mr. Mayhem isn’t done with this show yet.

No more words


2 responses to “A Sashurai’s Review: Sons of Anarchy – Season 7×11 (The gatekeeper sings alone)

  1. absolutely brilliant. If found your blog by accident and have continued to read your SOA reviews. Your statement on Maggie at the end of season 6 reduced me to tears. Keep them coming and I will continue to read. Thank you

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