review

Redwood


The problem with a long wait is that it creates expectations. It doesn’t matter what it is, a trip, a party, a date, or a new series. You have plenty of time to imagine how awesome it’s going to be and make up stories in your head.

The problem with expectations is that sometimes, they get too high and then, when the moment comes, reality can’t really keep up. Suddenly, that thing you had been waiting for becomes a disappointment.

I had been waiting quite a while for the new Sons of Anarchy series, and my expectations were high. Last season ended with a jaw dropping moment. Something that, in hindsight, was going to happen at one point or another, but that you really didn’t expect when it did. The trailers I had seen for season 7 promised a lot of violence and amazing moments. I was really looking forward to it. I’m not going to go into much detail about episode 1 of season 7, because it’s just out and I don’t want to spoil anything. I am going to mention, however, Marilyn Manson makes an appearance (it took me some self-doubt, and a quick Google search to confirm it was him, trying to avoid any spoilers in the process), and I still don’t know how I feel about that.

The episode didn’t disappoint me at all. This is going to be a very dark season indeed. I can’t wait to watch more, even if it means it’s going to end soon.

It’s funny how we get into the stories we’re told, how some of them make us laugh, others make us cry, or even get scared. Sometimes, when we have a good storyteller, like Kurt Sutter, we can relate to the characters, even when there’s nothing in common on the surface. Of course, I have nothing in common with some guys in a motor club in Northern California, who happen to deal with guns and go around killing people, yet somehow, we share the same stories. Watching this episode, I thought of Opie, and thought Jax would definitely be missing him. I don’t even know these people. Heck, they’re not even real! Yet I could relate.

I guess it all boils down to the same stories of loss, loyalty, friendship, betrayal, revenge, and love. We all suffer the same stories, it’s just how we deal with each of them what makes us different from one another.

I’ve been remembering the beginning of the series, when I started watching SOA out of boredom one day, and out of curiosity. The first thing I always remember of that first episode is actually the first images, two crows eating something from a road at night, while headlights are approaching. I don’t remember many details of that episode, just that Jax had had a baby, from a drug addict girlfriend (or wife, can’t remember), and that some place they were using to hide guns had burnt down. I remember that bit because that’s when Tiggy’s character was sort of introduced: he had had some women hiding in that warehouse, prostitutes, who had died. Of course, the club had then the problem that if they could get any DNA from the corpses, this could link the warehouse to Tiggy and therefore, to the club. It was a good start.

The reason I kept watching was because of Jax Teller (Charlie Hunnam). That got me through a couple of episodes. Don’t get me wrong, seeing him getting butt naked for his club (had sex with a woman who had a crush on him and who could help them with the dead bodies problem), or being all tough, or all sexy riding a motorbike, with his beard and his tattoos, sure that still is something truly engaging… but what really hooked me into the series was the crudeness with which the story was being told, the ties between each MC member, the way the different plots were interlacing, trying to separate the business and the personal aspects, when trying to survive. Also, the way they link the beginning and end of the episodes, with songs and some recaps and so on, and at the end, how each character goes about their business, coping with whatever has happened to them, while a song plays.

Six seasons and one episode later, I am as hooked as I was back then. I find myself talking out loud, at the general direction of the TV, commenting about what’s happening (I watched the episode on my own), or even replying to some of their conversations (seriously, I really get into stories… some ads even make me cry!) or when someone crosses yet another line, I find myself saying dammit, no!

It was a really good episode, even though they were trying to get a recap of what had happened since last time we watched, the tone was set pretty early on, possibly within the first minute of it. I watched, and I understood that Jax had changed, last season had changed him. It would have changed me as well. And to think he doesn’t know…

This season feels like something is going to explode at some point (not like the TM though!) and it’s going to be messy. So far, every series finale has made my jaw drop, so it’s only fitting this season will have to be the best ever, since it’s the last (and we don’t need another Lost, or True Blood).

I just can’t wait.

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