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SONS OF ANARCHY “To Thine Own Self” Recap – Coming Together to Fall Apart

Sons of Anarchy, “To Thine Own Self” is quite ironically titled.  This episode brings a new face, old problems and too much truth for some in the club.

In the beginning of this episode, Jax is trying to figure out what to do about Otto and Tara.  Otto set her up so she will not get out of what happened unscathed.  It just so happens that Tara’s insurance has lapsed as well.  Tara has a meeting with the club’s lawyer; making sure to put together a story that might get her out of trouble.  Otto’s testimony is undone due to the fact that he committed a felony by killing the prison nurse, but he’s not the only one going down. This is all going on in the midst of Tara getting an offer to work at Providence Hospital in Oregon.  She lets the recruiter from Providence know that she wants to move forward with their offer, but claims she needs more time before telling Jax.  It seems that my suspicions have been correct and Tara is making an escape plan in the face of the danger to her children.  I finally feel like she is thinking (somewhat) straight.  Though, the arm of the club is far reaching.

Jax is locking down everything while they wait to see what happens with his new plan, the Cartel, CIA and Otto’s testimony being lost.  In the meantime, Otto has his own new demon to face in the form of Lee Toric.  This new character is played by one of my favorite actors, Donal Logue of Terriers and one of my favorite shows from the past, Grounded for Life.  Toric is introduced as if he is another inmate, in prison garb as he beats Otto senseless in his cell.  Otto’s next meeting with the man finds Lee dressed in civilian clothes, claiming he is not a government agent, but a concerned citizen.  I’m not sure what that means yet, but we will find out soon enough, no doubt.  He makes it clear that his mission is to make Otto suffer for months to come before he is allowed to die.

Jax pulls Juice aside to tell him he needs the documents immediately.  The episode becomes a mad dash for Jax to gain leverage against Clay before Clay discovers Otto is no longer a threat to the club.  He puts Gemma on the same mission by telling her the truth about the Nomads and the documents from the safe, telling her she has to get information from him now.  Jax finally tells his mom about everything regarding the Irish, Cartel, Feds and Otto to put an exclamation point on his request.  Gemma makes a desperate appeal to Clay’s (nonexistent) sympathies, making it look like she is looking for Thomas’ birth certificate so he will feel guilty and come up with it.   It doesn’t work, but once Clay discovers what the rest of the crew is after, it definitely serves as undeniable proof that she is working for Jax.  Juice does eventually find the documents and Jax tells Juice to ensure that Clay isn’t left alone in the house again after this discovery.  This turns out to be harder than it seems and Clay manages to get rid of or move the documents before Jax can get to them.

Nero’s old crew shakes him down for guns and we see a different side of Nero than we are accustomed to.  Jax decides to keep the peace and offers to give them a few small guns to keep them calm.  When the guys go out to meet Nero’s old crew to give them the guns they are ambushed, but between Jax’s fancy driving skills and the rest of the guy’s gun skills they make a good run for it, down the side of a cliff in a station wagon no less.  It is definitely a true Sons style escape.  Despite Nero’s initial reaction, Jax puts the kibosh on Nero trying to get revenge.  He doesn’t want a gang war around Charming.  Gemma is being standoffish with Nero, but she still isn’t telling him anything about where she is going with Clay.  I didn’t really think she was going to try to play both men, but it seems that is the case.  Nero is definitely in Clay’s cross hairs.

Tig goes to see Clay alone, which can’t be a good thing for Jax.  Clay appeals to Tig’s brotherly side and sucks up to him, but I’m surprised that Tig isn’t having it.  Clay proposes that Tig join him in his new endeavors if the club goes south and for an extra black mark against Jax,  Clay reminds him that Jax is still working with the man who burned his daughter…alive…in front of him.  When Clay goes to the CIA and Cartel with the information he has discovered regarding Otto, Romeo lets Clay know that his leverage is gone and he needs to get back at the head of the table ASAP.  Now not only is Jax in a rush, but Clay is as well.  Immediately playing his hand, Clay tells Jax he knows about Otto and “warns” him about the Cartel rolling on the club.  Clay tells Jax he needs to keep Romeo in place by letting the Cartel thing play out and then he can get out.   Jax tells Clay he has something else in mind and makes sure it will play out opposite to Clay’s advice.  When Clay doesn’t get the job done, Romeo calls in reinforcements to help take care of things.

Romeo’s crew shows up and nabs Jax off his bike at a traffic light.  Bobby is there and calls Nero to get him to dig into his crew since they don’t know yet who picked Jax up.  Nero busts in on his old crew and they antagonize him to the point of murder.  He brings out a line that is so Mi Familia to me; “You bitches wanted me back?  Orale, I’m back!”.  This also works as a reminder that Nero wasn’t always the mild mannered brothel owner to whom we have become accustomed.

When Romeo shows up to talk with Jax, he tells the young biker they needed to remind him how easy it is for them to make him disappear.  Jax tells them about the meetings he has been orchestrating and plan that he has been working out; ultimately that he set them up with another supplier for the guns since Galen isn’t a fan of working with Mexicans.  Romeo isn’t sure about the plan, but allows Jax to set the meeting for the new guns.  Jax takes it all back to the club now that it’s safe to do so.  He thinks he finally found a way out for the club.  Under this new order the Mayans will take over the coke and Lin will take over the guns.  Jax has to get everyone to agree to take the pay cut that this will bring.  As we’ve seen in the past, this plan doesn’t work out well for everyone.  SAMCRO will have to rely on Nero’s club and I assume whatever work he does with Pope (he doesn’t mention that part) for money.  Jax pulls it off with a unanimous vote.

With this, he has lost most of his leverage with Clay.  There is a telling exchange between the two men in which Jax lets the older man know he isn’t off the hook.  Jax tells Gemma to take Clay to her house and keep him there until he calls.  Jax gives Tig an almost Godfather like kiss of death as he goes to take down Clay.  He is still promising Pope the man’s life.   Juice tries to warn Clay but he ignores the calls.  Just when we think Jax has finally come to pull Clay’s number, Nero shows up at Gemma’s house instead, he looks messed up and runs into Clay.  No one told Nero Jax made it home okay and he realizes he killed a man for Jax and Gemma that didn’t need to be killed.  At this point he has to realize they aren’t worth it.  Gemma tells Nero she loves him right after she tells Clay the same but she closes the door on him as she is pleading with her eyes for him to understand something bigger is going on.  Jimmy Smits is just amazing, I don’t even recognize Nero as the same person he has been.

The episode closes with Jax sharing his biggest secret about Clay with Bobby and Chibs, telling them that Clay is responsible for his father’s death.  Bobby shows up at Gemma’s house to meet with Clay, telling him he is there to save his life.  I have to wonder why at this point.

Another tidbit to follow up on: Lee Toric from the beginning of the episode shows up at the hospital, following Tara and the boys.  I am unsure where his connections lie, I think we may be going way back for his origin.

Next week: Jax says he’ll deliver Tig, Jax finds out about Bobby’s betrayal, Bobby says it’s for his own good.  Can’t wait to see what kind of deal Bobby made with Clay and what it means for Jax’s future.

Sons of Anarchy airs every Tuesday at 10PM E/P on FX.  For more Sons of Anarchy recaps and news click here.  You can find Sons of Anarchy Seasons for sale and episodes on!  Follow @CatEdison and @ScreenInvasion on Twitter and ‘Like’ Screen Invasion on Facebook for the best contests and pop culture news!

Do you think Tara will make her escape?  Who do you think Toric is connected to?  Share your thoughts in the comments!

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Cat Edison

Cat Edison

Cat is an Austinite once removed with an affinity for film, TV, comics, graphic novels, and really anything she can read or watch. She gets emotionally invested in movie, television and literary characters, to an unhealthy degree. Cat has always had a passion for writing and there is little she loves more. Hopeful cynic and funny lady.