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July 31, 2014

Sons of Anarchy season 4

'Sons of Anarchy' Season 4 Finale Recap (VIDEO)

by Maureen Ryan, posted Dec 6th 2011 11:00PM
['Sons of Anarchy' - 'To Be, Act 2']

I've been saying for weeks now that the Season 4 finale of 'Sons of Anarchy' would be a pivotal episode of the show. It was clear that the way that the current series of events resolved would influence the show for some time to come, and give us a big clue as to what creative directions the show would follow and what kind of risks it would be willing to embrace.

You can find the audio version of my reaction to the finale in this week's 'SOA' Talking TV podcast, which is live now here and here. Or you can read on for my thoughts on how things worked out for Jax, Clay, Gemma, Tara and the rest of these Charming men.

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Talking TV Podcast Talks 'Walking Dead,' 'Terra Nova,' 'Sons of Anarchy' and More

by Maureen Ryan, posted Dec 1st 2011 3:45PM
It's mostly zombies, dinosaurs and bikers in the latest edition of the Talking TV with Ryan and Ryan podcast.

Ryan McGee and I kicked things off by mentioning a few shows that premiere this week ('The Take,' 'Trek Nation' and 'Weed Wars'). By the way, you can find plenty of other notable December specials and such in this post.

We also talked a little about 'I Hate My Teenage Daughter,' but in a much longer section of the podcast, we discussed the state of genre television and in particular the disappointing first season of 'Terra Nova' and the very uneven second season of 'The Walking Dead.'

Then it was all 'Sons of Anarchy' all the time, as we discussed the latest installment of FX's biker drama. Running times are below.

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'Sons of Anarchy' Season 4, Episode 13 Recap (VIDEO)

by Maureen Ryan, posted Nov 29th 2011 11:00PM
['Sons of Anarchy' - 'To Be, Act 1']

The shocking ending of last week's 'Sons of Anarchy' episode made me wonder if tonight's hour would be dominated by Clay Morrow; even in absentia, the club president casts a huge shadow.

For the most part, however, this week's gripping hour belonged to two of the people Clay has hurt most -- Tara and Jax. The scenes that featured those two characters talking to each other or to Gemma were flat-out fantastic, and once again demonstrate that the show's secret weapon isn't its crackling action but its top-flight cast. Katey Sagal was terrific this week, as always, but in 'To Be, Act 1,' Charlie Hunnam and Maggie Siff's performances gave me chills.

Many storylines are reaching the boiling point right now, but this terrific hour wisely focused tightly on the couple who have the most reason to despise everything that Clay and Gemma stand for. What made the hour tragic was the fact that Jax and Tara stand on the brink of becoming Clay and Gemma.

And they know it.

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Talking TV Podcast Takes on the 'Sons of Anarchy' and the Ladies of 'The Good Wife,' 'New Girl' and 'Suburgatory'

by Maureen Ryan, posted Nov 23rd 2011 12:30PM
Once again, Ryan McGee and I have recorded two podcasts for your listening pleasure.

In the first podcast, we talk about what we're digging about three lady-centric shows: 'The Good Wife,' 'New Girl' and 'Suburgatory.' As I said in a piece I posted earlier today, which re-examines several shows that debuted this fall, 'Suburgatory' has taken a big leap forward in quality and tonight's Thanksgiving episode is well worth a look.

We also did a separate podcast delving into Tuesday's shocking episode of 'Sons of Anarchy,' which I wrote about here.

Running times for the first podcast are below.

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'Sons of Anarchy' Season 4, Episode 12 Recap (VIDEO)

by Maureen Ryan, posted Nov 22nd 2011 11:00PM
['Sons of Anarchy' - 'Burnt and Purged Away']

Well, that had to happen.

The pace of the generally compelling hour was excellent and though there were developments in quite a few story threads, they all had room to breathe. It was executive producer Paris Barclay's last time in the director's chair this season, and you could tell that his steady hand was on the tiller.

Still, I'm betting all you want to talk about is what happened in the gripping closing seconds of the hour. I know I have a lot to say on the matter, in the post below and in this week's 'Sons of Anarchy' podcast (which you can find here and here).

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'Sons of Anarchy' Season 4, Episode 11 Recap (VIDEO)

by Maureen Ryan, posted Nov 15th 2011 11:30PM
['Sons of Anarchy' - 'Call of Duty']

Last week's 'Sons of Anarchy' was an intense and often gripping hour, and there's no way this week's episode could have matched it. Given that many final showdowns are no doubt being saved for the last couple of episodes of the season, the number of confrontations was certainly way down this week.

This episode offered a variety of amplifications and diversions, some of them superfluous. 'Call of Duty' wasn't better than last week's hour, I imagine we can all agree on that.

But it sure was longer.

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Talking TV Podcast Reacts to 'Sons of Anarchy' Madness, Talks 'Fringe,' 'Homeland'

by Maureen Ryan, posted Nov 9th 2011 4:25PM
Ryan McGee and I had lots to discuss in this week's Talking TV podcast.

As we are doing every week until the end of 'Sons of Anarchy's' fourth season, we discussed the latest developments in Charming and what these shocking events may (or may not) mean for the show's future.

We also delve into the current seasons of two dramas with strong followings: Fox's 'Fringe,' which we're both somewhat disappointed with this season, and Showtime's 'Homeland,' which has had a very strong start to its debut season. Still, being paranoid types (which somehow seems appropriate), we wonder if the show will be able to mix big, suspenseful reveals with character-driven drama all season long, or if one of the other might suffer as the time to supply answers draws near.

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'Sons of Anarchy' Season 4, Episode 10 Recap (VIDEO)

by Maureen Ryan, posted Nov 8th 2011 11:00PM
['Sons of Anarchy' - 'Hands']

In my years of writing about 'Sons of Anarchy,' I don't think I've had the opportunity to write these words yet: This episode belonged to Maggie Siff.

Don't get me wrong, I've always known what a good actress she is, but 'SOA' is mostly the story of the SAMCRO guys, with a few subsidiary stories for Gemma and, to a lesser extent, Tara. Those stories are usually fit in around the contours of the club stories, and not always elegantly. But Tara's attempt to leave the orbit of the club got the time and attention it deserved in Tuesday's gripping episode. In that hour, Siff got her most challenging scenes to date and absolutely nailed them.

If 'Sons of Anarchy' is roughly following the shape of 'Hamlet,' then Charming's Ophelia just went mad. Or perhaps she began to see things clearly for the first time, and we all know what honesty and clarity get you in the world of SAMCRO: Blood, pain, heartbreak.

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'Sons of Anarchy' Gets an Extra Episode, Revs Up to 14 Hours

by Maureen Ryan, posted Nov 7th 2011 1:50PM
There's so much going on in the current season of 'Sons of Anarchy' that some fans have wondered whether the show would be able to wrap everything up in 13 episodes.

The good news is, 'SOA' won't have to tie everything up in that time span. FX executives have decided to give the fourth season an extra episode; the season will now consist a total of 14 hours.

"Creatively, this has been Sons' best and biggest season ever," Nick Grad, the network's executive vice president of original programming, said in a press release. The show's creator "Kurt [Sutter] asked us to consider adding an extra episode to fully close this current chapter of the Sons saga. By adding the extra episode, it wraps up a magnificent season in extraordinary fashion. This is a real bonus for fans of the series."

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'Sons of Anarchy' Season 4, Episode 9 Recap

by Maureen Ryan, posted Nov 1st 2011 11:00PM
['Sons of Anarchy' - 'Kiss']

Oh, Jax. You stepped up and showed some very savvy leadership in this episode. Much of what was good about 'Kiss' stemmed from Charlie Hunnam's terrific performance and from the ways in which the episode showed that Clay isn't just reckless these days, he's also not a good leader for the club. Jax is clearly the right man for these troubled times.

But does Jax really think a sitdown with the Irish, the cartel and the club is just one of "a few details" he has to take care of, a simple errand to be disposed of quickly? Has he learned nothing from being involved in the Sons of Anarchy Motorcycle Club since he was knee-high to a Harley?

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'Sons of Anarchy' Season 4, Episode 8 Recap (VIDEO)

by Maureen Ryan, posted Oct 25th 2011 11:01PM
['Sons of Anarchy' - 'Family Recipe']

Anyone else have a taste for chili? Anyone?

Didn't think so. Well, you can't say that this was a quiet episode of 'Sons of Anarchy,' though I'd argue that one of 'Family Recipe's' calmest scenes was also one of the most satisfying.

But first, let's address that Big Thing that happened...and also, the Big Thing that didn't happen.

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Charming News: 'Sons of Anarchy' Gets a Fifth Season from FX

by Maureen Ryan, posted Oct 17th 2011 2:55PM
FX has ordered a fifth season of 'Sons of Anarchy,' which is currently in the middle of its fourth season on the cable network.

The news comes as no surprise: According to FX, the show's fourth-season premiere was the most-watched program in the network's history, with 6.5 million viewers tuning in. The biker chronicle is the channel's biggest hit.

"Everyone at FX is very grateful to Kurt Sutter, his many writing, directing and producing collaborators and his masterful cast for making such a compelling and beautifully crafted show," FX president and general manager John Landgraf said in a statement.

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'Sons of Anarchy' Season 4, Episode 6 Recap

by Maureen Ryan, posted Oct 12th 2011 10:00AM
['Sons of Anarchy' - 'With an X']

Wow, there was a lot going on in this episode. Early in 'With an X,' we had a porn star pulling a gun on some bikers' old ladies, and it only got crazier from there.

Ima didn't die in the episode, even though, toward the end of the episode, I half thought she might. Sadly, we did have to say goodbye to a member of the SAMCRO crew -- and not the one I was expecting.

You'd think, given how many mystery novels I read, I would have been wise to the misdirect ran through this episode, but I wasn't, and I'm fine with that.

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Juice Must Think Fast to Save Himself on 'Sons of Anarchy' (VIDEO)

by Jason Hughes, posted Oct 12th 2011 5:45AM
'Sons of Anarchy' - 'With an X'Juice was in a very tough spot with the Mayans and the Sons when we left things off last week. He stewed in it through most of this episode of 'Sons of Anarchy' (Tue., 10PM ET on FX), as both clubs started pointing fingers at who might have taken that kilo of cocaine.

Jax stood up for Juice immediately, and because of his long standing in the club, no one questioned his loyalty or possibly complicity in the theft. That left the newer recruits, who'd been on guard duty without even knowing what they were guarding.

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'Sons of Anarchy' Season 4, Episode 5 Recap (VIDEO)

by Maureen Ryan, posted Oct 4th 2011 11:00PM
['Sons of Anarchy' - 'Brick']

The secrets and lies just keep piling up in the Sons of Anarchy clubhouse. When will the show's web site give us a scorecard that'll help us keep track of who knows what and who has told which lies to which people?

Because we may just need a scorecard before this season is out.

Also: The Hoff!

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