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TV Review: Sons of Anarchy 1.1

The journey of Jackson “Jax” Teller and the boys of the Charmin, CA motorcycle club known as the “Sons of Anarchy” begins.
By  · Published on September 5th, 2008

Sons of Anarchy, FX, Airs Wednesday 10/9c

Episode: “Pilot” (Season 1, Episode 1)

Synopsis: The journey of Jackson “Jax” Teller and the boys of the Charmin, CA motorcycle club known as the “Sons of Anarchy” begins with two discoveries; his son’s harrowing premature birth by Wendy, his crank-addicted ex-wife, and the discovery of a life-altering document written by his father who died fourteen years earlier. As well, the gun-running gang faces trouble when a group of thieving Mayans threatens to delay one of their precious shipments.

Review: Bikes, babes and big guns — when you think of motorcycle gangs, easy riders and Hell’s Angels, that’s what comes to mind. And in the series premiere of “Sons of Anarchy,” we get it all, along with a heavily emotional hour-long journey into the world of Jax Teller, the club’s hot-headed vice president. To start a series like this one with such a heavy, complex episode is certainly a statement from the show’s creative team — this isn’t your average, fluffy drama about a bunch of bad boys and their toys. Then again, the fact that the show calls FX its home should have tipped us off to that. What we are really left with after the series’ opening frame is a few thoughts: this show is bound to become more complex, more intriguing and more twisted in the way its characters weave back and forth, searching for power over the gang; it also leaves us with an unmistakable sense of excitement. A great new experience has begun, and we all have the rare privilege of seeing it from the beginning. In an episode marked by great performances all around, including those of star Charlie Hunnam and vet Ron Perlman, “Sons of Anarchy” has come crashing through the wall of primetime TV to tell it’s audience that it is here, and it is here to stay. If you missed this pilot, you’ve already got some catching up to do.

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Neil Miller is the persistently-bearded Publisher of Film School Rejects, Nonfics, and One Perfect Shot. He's also the Executive Producer of the upcoming One Perfect Shot TV show (HBO Max, 2021) and the co-host of The Storm: A LOST Rewatch podcast. He can be found on Twitter here: @rejects (He/Him)