Sons of Anarchy is a meditation on violence; it is a passion play where the cross of crucifixion become the very road that society's outlaws once believed led to freedom. Sons of Anarchy is a modern day Hamlet. But besides all of that, it's just a great effing show!
When we first meet Jackson Teller, he is a young and handsome man in his 20s with a baby problem; his old lady is shooting up heroin and she's late in her pregnancy. We also learn that he is Vice President of an Outlaw Motorcycle Club named the Sons of Anarchy. The first scene of show is not the drama that unfolds around Jackson's ex-Old Lady Wendy and his soon to be born premature son Abel; the opening drama is the sabotage and explosion of a warehouse holding the illegal automatic firearms that the Sons relies on as its primary source of income, an explosion set off by a rival biker gang, The Mayans.
This explosion sends the Sons President (and Jackson's step-father) Clay Morrow into a battle rage, which likewise puts Jackon's mother Gemma Teller Morrow into a protective flurry of activity, one of those actions potentially being delivering the very heroin that may have just killed Jackson's baby. It turns out Gemma doesn't really like any of the girls Jackson hooks up with, leastwise his “junky whore” of an ex-Old Lady.
But luckily, Jackson's true love Tara has recently come back to Charming to settle her dead father's affairs and she just happens to be a pediatric surgeon who is on-duty when Wendy and the baby are brought in. Tara is able to save the day, successfully separating both baby and mother (who will live to tell her tale, maybe) and Tara and Gemma start clashing immediately while Tara and Jackson pick up where they left off so many years ago, when Tara broke Jackson's heart because she was either going to get away from Charming and the Outlaw life or she was going to become another of its casualties.
Jackson's best friend Opie is also dealing with drama balancing his Outlaw roots and the wife and two children he is charged with protecting. Opie just got out of prison, doing time for the club out of deep loyalty, which is all well and good but a promise to his wife that he will leave the life forever is causing major heartache as he gets drawn back into the drama of the club and the lure of fast (but not easy, nothing's easy about that kind of gun running) cash.
Also, the White Supremacists are teaming up with that same rival Mexican gang The Mayans to drive the Sons of Anarchy out of Charming so they can set up selling meth and heroin in a city where the Sons and the Police force have joined together for years to keep relatively wholesome. This Devil's Bargain amounts to keeping the evil that men do in the circle outside charming while the police look the other way at what the cost is to make that happen.
And as if all t his wasn't enough, Jackson found his father's old journals while looking for his baby clothes in his mother's storage locker. And in those journals is a manifesto his father wrote titles, “How The Sons of Anarchy Lost Their Way.” As Jackson starts to read his father's words about the intention of the club when it was created to live freely on the fringes of society and how it became corrupted when the violence of running guns took over that freedom, Jackson begins to change inside as it dawns on him that there are unanswered questions about his father's death, questions that may cause his loyalties shift as he ponders how Anarchy and Freedom may not be aligned on parallels after all . And of course, this leads to a meditation on the very violence that America finds itself enmeshed in this very moment like blood beaded barbed wire - How can we possibly get out of guns and find true freedom?
And that, my friends, is just the Pilot episode. Sons of Anarchy is a hell of a ride. What follows are seven seasons of escalating violence that details with horror, tragedy, and sorrow, the price that must be paid to back out of the darkness of violence when it is the only common language we have left as a society.
The Reaper only accepts one currency for payment and it bleeds red.