SAMCRO is headed to Canada, but not without making a few stops first. But these stops will back the MC into some really tight corners. Gemma is going to have to make a choice that she will ultimately regret, and by the end of the episode, she will learn a truth no one wanted her to know.

Jax and Clay will also learn a truth that might send them off the deep end. Piney and Bobby will be dropped into a deadly game of hide and seek, and Tara will be forced to finally accept her role as Jax’s old lady.What worked: First of all, I’m really enjoying the increase on all the subtle comedy of this season. Two jokes in particular really stood out tonight. The first was a joke that I’m hoping the writers purposely made in reference to Married With Children. When Tigg suggests that Gemma goes red head while on the run, she replies “I’d rather go bald.” I’m praying that the joke was self-aware. The other gag involved a line from Tigg after Jax and Clay learn the truth about the caretaker’s murder. He says to Gemma and Tara “you ladies are killing me.” But his delivery was very comical.

But while there is an increase in comedy, that doesn’t mean the drama has fallen to the way side. I want to start with Nate for a moment. If this is the last we see of Nate, then I say that the writers have successfully delivered on a very heart warming arc for Gemma. I could not have asked for a better performance from Hal Holbrook. The man took the script he was given, and made it something great. And then when Gemma collapsed after learning the truth of Abel’s fate, I was praying that she would be OK, despite having just murdered someone in cold blood one week earlier.

On the front of Jax, he’s getting angrier and angrier as the season progresses. I mean, the dude punched a dent into what I am assuming is a reinforced van (consider how many bullets that thing takes). I really hope that the writers are able to stretch the Abel story line through the entire season because this is a Jax I’m enjoying watching every week. That isn’t to say that I haven’t enjoyed Jax up to this point.

I also really dug the action set piece in this episode. The shoot out in the house was short and sweet. Just the right amount of holy s**t to keep you on the edge of your seat.

What didn’t: I’m getting a little tired of this game that Tara is playing. I mean, I love her character and everything, but she needs to just start accepting her role in SAMCRO. The fact is, she chose this life. She had a chance to leave and didn’t take it. So now it’s time for her to start making the best of her situation. As Jax said “If you wanna be an old lady, then do what you’re told!”

Final thoughts: A very well done episode of SOA.

Episode: “Homer” (Season 3, Episode 4)

Airs: FX, Tuesdays, 10pm

What’s next: To help his mother, club, and son, Jax conspires with an unlikely source; the MC puts Chucky undercover.

To listen to the latest episode of Merrill’s TV Podcast, The Idiot Boxers with Kevin Carr, head over to Fat Guys at the Movies.

Hal Holbrook


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