Fans were under no illusions about the long-awaited finale of Sons Of Anarchy. They knew it wasn't going to be a happy ending; showrunner Kurt Sutter has been clear from the off that the biker gang series was loosely based on the plot of Hamlet. Which, if you don't know your Shakespeare, isn't one of the Bard's sunnier plays.
Even without being aware of Sons Of Anarchy's literary forbearer, simply having watched the show for seven seasons gave you go a pretty good idea of what to expect: mayhem, murder, and truly shocking plot twists (most of which were Sutter originals rather than Shakespeare lifts) were the bread and butter of the series all the way through.
In fact – besides long shots of people riding motorcycles along freeways and a parade of cameos by former stars of The Shield – Sons Of Anarchy was principally composed of those shocking moments. The unexpected deaths, the moments of brutal gore that pushed the envelope of what you could do on TV, the conniving and backstabbing of SAMCRO.
Now that Jax has rode off into the sunset, it's past time those shocks were given the once over, see if they were as bad as they seemed at the time. Oh, look at that, they really are. Just think of this as The Life And Death Of Sam Crow: How Sons Of Anarchy Lost All Sense Of Reason. These are the twenty most WTF Sons Of Anarchy moments.
20. The Accidental Killing Of Donna
It's not that the first season of Sons Of Anarchy wasn't pushing boundaries on the regular, but in comparison to some of the mayhem that was to come? It looks like a heart-warming family comedy by comparison. That was, until the final episode of the season, when some simmering tensions that had been building throughout all came to a head.
Trying to break up SAMCRO from the inside, ATF Agent Stahl cunningly frames member Opie as an informant. Clay totally buys it, and sends Tig to go out and silence him. That's crossing a line as it is – killing a fellow member of the gang – but in light of what Clay thinks he knows about Opie, it's justified. Except it all went wrong.
Opie swapped cars that night with his wife Donna, so she's the one who gets mowed down in a hail of bullets courtesy of Tig. Which happened to coincide with the moment Clay realised Opie wasn't actually ratting them out. Urk. That was the moment all bets were off: Clay accidentally murdered one of his brothers' wives.
Who knew what else could happen...