Guns, however, shouldn't be one of them. The Second Amendment stands as one of many great testaments to the idea of freedom that our forefathers envisioned for their people. They felt a government should trust their people with great responsibility if they truly believed in the concept of freedom and democracy.
Sure, if they came to the present and saw that we primarily use that responsibility for hunting moose from helicopters and negotiating with the Domino's guy they might take it right back, but the idea is what's important.
So to celebrate one of America's latest of many birthday to come because fireworks are technically illegal in my neck of the woods, here are your TV's seven greatest guns.
That's the feeling my gut got when series creator Shawn Ryan said Fox might make a Shield movie if demand called for it.
The question actually sparked an interesting and light-hearted war of friendly curses between the cast and Sons of Anarchy star Ron Perlman who was also on the dais to grub for Emmy nods. Walter Walton Goggins, the actor who brilliantly played the daft and overly cocky Shane Vendrell, uttered "That is bull#*$&!" since his character killed his family and then shot himself in the final episode just as the Barn closed in on him. That's not a direct quote, by the way. He may have used different punctuation marks.
The ending isn't my problem. In fact, it's one of the better series endings I've seen in my lifetime. The show didn't go out all guns a blazin' in a fiery final showdown, with Shane or Vic waking up next to Suzanne Pleshette and realizing the entire season was just a dream that took place in an autistic child's snow globe.
Last week another terrific cable drama, The Shield, took its final bow in a series finale that still has fans talking. The talk is mostly about the last three minutes, which featured Vic Mackey's silent contemplation of the life he now leads after losing his friends, family and, some say, his freedom. Right before the screen went dark we saw Vic stride out of the cubicle that is now his home -- unsure of what his fate would be from now on.
Some fans of the series were unhappy with this ending, saying that there was no closure to the life that Vic had led over the last seven seasons. Some hearken the ending to the now-famous series finale of The Sopranos, which featured several seconds of nothingness before the credits rolled. This concept of not giving finality to a series finale is a new one for viewers to grasp onto. But, when you look at it further, it makes complete sense. Why should the lives of our favorite characters come to a complete ending when our own lives don't?
(S07E13) "Family meeting!" - Shane
Seven seasons, 88 episodes, and it all comes down to this. Vic Mackey, one of television's greatest anti-heroes, finally got what was coming to him. The Shield is over and Tuesday nights across America just got a little less exciting. Shawn Ryan has crafted some masterful Vic Mackey moments since 2001, but this episode (and Michael Chiklis' acting in it) easily stand apart as one of the show's greatest achievements yet.
(S07E12) "How much memory does that thing got?" - Vic
One down and one to go.
Victor Samuel Mackey. Hard to believe, that after seven seasons, we didn't even know Vic's full name. If you think about it, there's a lot we don't know about him and his past - other than what we've seen him do. A list of deeds that's now on record with the United States federal government. Uncle Sam just gave Vic a free pass.
When I spoke with Shawn Ryan recently, he mentioned that in all his research about dirty cops, when two of them went off the radar like Vic and Ronnie did, one eventually looks out for himself and turns against the other. So while it was shocking to see Vic hang Ronnie out to dry, were you really that surprised?
Over the past several years, TV fans have been fortunate enough to be able to say a proper good-bye to some of the medium's finest dramas ever made. Alias, The Wire, The West Wing, The Sopranos, and Six Feet Under have all bowed out within the past four years, and the list could go on. They all got "endings" - whether you liked them or not. However, none of them (save for The Wire and for entirely different reasons) were as consistently riveting as Vic Mackey's exploits on FX's The Shield.
Since the seventh and final season began airing, FX has sent critics the first 11 episodes. So, despite the fact that I've been in the know, I've tried to avoid sounding like "I have a secret" in my episode reviews. Still, I was in the dark like everyone else when it came to how it all ends. So imagine my glee when I received an invite last month to attend a screening of the show's final two installments followed by a Q&A with Shield creator Shawn Ryan.
I get it. Television is populated with pretty people and there are just some guys who are objectively hot (hellooooo, Jon Hamm). Generally speaking though, I'm not drawn to the Luke Perrys and Mario Lopezes of the world. I like quirky guys, and so while most of the dudes on this list aren't going to make it into the People magazine "Sexiest Man Alive" issue, they keep me tuning in every week (heh, that sounded totally dirty).
Follow me after the jump for the undercover hotties: ten guys on TV I secretly love.
(S07E11) "Then why do I still feel ashamed about this?" - Corinne
Despite everything she knows about Vic, Corinne still can't help but feel remorse for working with Dutch and Claudette. It's amazing if you think about it - the hold that he has over her even as she recognizes who he really is. It's this bizarre mixture of love, hate, fear, and respect all at the same time. That being said, it only makes sense that Corinne is the one to turn. Only someone with an intimate knowledge of Vic could arrive at the conclusion that no one else could. The rest of the world may know who Vic Mackey really is, but only Corinne knows who he pretends to be.
(S07E10) "You should run too, man." - Ronnie
It's arguable that smarter words have never been uttered by anyone on The Shield before. Run? Um... yeah! The word "duh" comes to mind. How else can Vic possibly protect himself other than just disappearing? With all the pieces to this puzzle, there's just too much chance that something doesn't fit. It's a testament to Vic's ego and hubris that he's still willing to hang on for the remainder of the ride, but longtime fans have to be wondering how this can possibly come out clean for him.
(S07E09) "What? I'm supposed to be Shane Vendrell to whatever Vic Mackey plan you've hatched?" - Dutch
I've got to say - Dutch annoys me sometimes. His high 'n' mighty, holier than thou act can be a bit tiring. Especially when he's being hypocritical about it. For him to say no to Steve and chastise him for setting up that sex offender is completely ridiculous and I'm so glad Billings called him out on it. Dutch has been faking sexual attraction to Rita Denton for weeks now, all in an effort to draw info on Lloyd - completely unethical! It's just humorous to me that he consistently draws a line and then steps over it anyway.
(S07E08) "What if you get forced to do something... that you didn't really want to do?" - Two Man
I imagine that this is what it must look like inside my stomach after eating Taco Bell. For a while, I'm feeling full, loving that hot sauce, seasoned beef, and three cheeses. Having a good time and then bam -- everyone starts turning on each other and all hell breaks loose as the entire meal starts looking for an exit.
Yes, I've just compared The Strike Team to a gordita, but it fits, doesn't it? A big plate of nachos bell-grande can only agree with a Mexican pizza for so long. Doesn't matter which item you're associating with Shane. All that matters is that he's exiting first.
(S07E07) "Ehh... another Mexican donkey show and Aceveda had me playing the reluctant virgin." - Vic
Even though this whole season is really "the beginning of the end," I think it's safe to say that this episode was the true turning point. Yeah, Vic and Ronnie tried to kill Shane but now he's going to retaliate. Bad move. You'd think that by now, Shane would have learned his lesson. Why stick around and add fuel to the fire? He's got Rezian's 100K. Take Mara and the kids and jet - for good. If the little plan he's setting up goes south, then he'll be running anyway. Say what you will - I still think he's stupid. Even Vic understands what it means to quit while you're ahead... well, sometimes. Not in this episode.
(S07E06) "I'm not Shane." - Vic
There are way too many layers to that quote. For Vic to say something like that and to actually believe it just goes to show you how delusional a person he truly is. For him to actually believe that he's somehow better than Shane Vendrell is just about as hypocritical as it gets. Bad behavior leads to more bad behavior by setting a precedent and if you're a longtime fan of The Shield, you know the original sin: Terry Crowley.
Apparently I'm not the only one. In five short weeks, Sons has managed to not only retain 3.5 million viewers in the adults 18-49 demo, but it's retained 97% of its total audience since the premiere. Which is why FX decided to pick the show up for a second season.
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