Sons of Anarchy, Season 5, Episode 3, “Laying Pipe”: Spoilers, Thoughts and Discussion.

RIP Opie. This episode definitely answered at least one of my questions from last week, how did Opie plan to get out of county after assaulting the sheriff’s officers. Answer: he was never getting out. It seems the character Opie had outlived his usefulness in the writers’ room. Over the course of the last four seasons pretty much every awful thing that could be done to Opie was. He lost his wife, to the mixed machinations of Agent Stahl and Clay. He sought her killer and was forced to buy his father’s life with his acceptance of the fact that a Son had killed Donna. His marriage failed. He lost his father to another Son’s gun. His best friend wanted to leave the club and leave him behind, a widowed half orphaned two time loser who was never even going to make the shortlist for father of the year. Jax change of heart only pushed him further away. When he took his shot at Clay and was stopped there was no way he could ever return to that table. Even in a position of leadership, Opie could not sit elbow to elbow with the architects of his misery. Opie did not care about Greg areas, he was raised by a code; a code most of his Brother Sons only pay lip service to. From the moment Jax clued Opie in to Pope’s demands it was pretty obvious Opie would volunteer somehow (despite having two kids currently under the watchful eye of his ersatz wife and porn star.)

From the writers point of view, I get it. There wasn’t really a way to keep him around that didn’t feel like a cheat. I did not enjoy the death scene though. I would have preferred a more violent scuffle with the guards that led to the lead guard shooting Opie dead in that closet (since when are C.O.s strapped inside the jail?) Also I don’t understand how that guard didn’t think there would be reprisal for Opie’s death.

Next week we say goodbye to Opie and hopefully focus more on the home invasions being committed by the Nomads. There were two things that popped out at me during the bust of Nero’s establishment: I think Jemma’s assault of the hooker prompted her to drop the dime on the brothel; despite all his faults I can’t see Clay ratting it out. Also they never really explained the gut shot gangbanger lying on the floor of the reception area, I can’t help but think the two new bad guys due this season Lupe and Fiasco won’t somehow come in because of that small detail.

As we move on from Episode 3, Tig is now Jax’s bitch as he was Clay’s, and Jax takes one more step towards becoming Clay just as Opie feared.There have been some serious watershed moments on this show: Donna’s death, Tig’s confession, Jemma’s Rape, Stahl’s framing of Jemma, Opie executing Stahl, Clay killing Piney and beating Jemma… I just wish Opie’s death carried the same resonance as his life. I’ll sure miss the bearded viking.

I liked Perrineau’s Pope a little more this episode but I still don’t buy him as a gangster even as a Nicky Barnes type. Even Frank Lucas had some menace to him. Pope lacks conviction and when he started spouting off about men and kings it just sounded like story. He is the least authentic character in a tapestry of hyperbolic archetypes, hopefully we see less of him as this season goes on, if there is one thing Sons is great at it is delayed gratification.

What did you think?

~ by chrismcdevitt on September 26, 2012.

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