TV Review: Sons Of Anarchy 4.11 - Call Of Duty

Is it game over for Clay ?

rating: 4.5

I€™m getting a little sick of Call Of Duty right now, having seen its distictive white poster with a kitted out George Michael lookalike all over the place. The fact that the mind-bogglingly popular shooter series is even infiltrating one of my favourite TV shows is a sign of just how much of a mammoth icon of modern entertainment that its become. Thankfully, giving the episode a title of 'Call Of Duty' was far more fitting than a mere reference from Juice (€œI only see weapons like this in my video games€) might suggest. Duty and loyalty were key themes of this weeks episode, with both Tig and Opie questioning their positions within SAMCRO, while other relationships within the club continued to become strained. Besides, if it's videogames we're referencing, some of the episode was more like Call of Juarez: The Cartel, but that's not exactly a fitting title for the episode. After years of being Clay€™s right-hand man, we finally saw Tig confronting the bullish club president for his cold attitude, controversial decisions and a refusal to share information with the club. In typical Clay fashion, he acted like a complete asshole, brushing off the comments and telling Tig to keep quiet. What finally pushed Tig over the edge was seeing Gemma€™s bruised face after her beating from Clay, forcing him to hand his Sergeant at Arms patch and step down as Clay€™s whipping boy. Even though Tig has committed some heinous acts over the course of the show, Kim Coates' layered performance makes Tig one of the most likable- even if psychotic - member of the sons. Therefore, it€™s a joy to see him finally turning his back on Clay and sticking up for Gemma - clearly having deep feelings for her and previously spending most of season 3 helping her out. In many ways, it could be Tig who ends up dealing with Clay if Gemma imparts more of the truth. If Clay€™s problems weren€™t enough in having the doer of his nasty deeds turning his back on his leadership, he€™s got a very angry Opie to deal with next week. At the climax of the episode we saw him finally discovering the rather pungent decomposing body of his father Piney. Sneaking up behind him was Unser, who went against his word to Gemma and came clean about the whole situation. Personally, I think he did the right thing - let€™s not carry on building more and more dark secrets, Clay is guilty and deserves to go down, especially with everything he€™s done to ruin Opie€™s life. Seeing as it was an extended episode, it was perhaps inevitable that we€™d see a heftier amount of brutal action. We got exactly that with SAMCRO and the cartel became embroiled in a full scale war with the Lobo€™s in an attempt to end the attacks as well as what Jax still perceives as those inflicted upon Tara. If only he knew that all of the cheeky perpetrators are standing right around him and his worst enemy is his own step-father. I also really wanted him to give Clay a damn good thrashing when confronting him about the attack on his Ma, but sadly it wasn€™t to be. Clay managed to wrangle himself out of trouble again by reiterating the terms of Jax€™s deal. Within the midst of the action, the show also said farewell to Kozik (jeez, he only just came back!) having him randomally blown to smithereens by a landmine. If you€™ve seen FX€™s and Kurt Sutter€™s previous drama The Shield you can€™t help but draw comparisons to his characters similar fate on that show. If it€™s indeed a little in-joke for fans, kudos to the team for continuing to keep the spirit of the The Shield alive through fun little references and cast cameos. A surprise return also came this week from Wendy - Jax€™s previous girlfriend and true mother of Abel - who exited the show shortly into its first season. Ironically, despite being lambasted as a drug ridden failure to both Jax and her son, she€™s now clean and leading a successful life as apposed to Tara whom has become a figure as broken by SAMCRO as she once was. Furthermore, she actually managed to escape the clutches of the club - something which looks increasingly unlikely for Tara. I€™d be surprised if her return amounts to a great deal this season with everything that's going on, but I sense that her desire to reacquaint herself with Abel might play a larger part of the next season, especially if Tara€™s days are still numbered. Lincoln Potter also continues to build his case against SAMCRO with both Juice and now Otto becoming accomplices in the ongoing investigation. The scene where Otto had finally decided to sell out the club and set-up Bobby was surprisingly tragic considering Otto€™s reletively minimal role in the show. On his list of demands was the request to bring forward his execution date - a sobering moment which pretty much summed up just how betrayed and broken Otto feels over his strained relationship with SAMCRO after years of loyalty. Even Potter seemed shocked by Otto€™s state of acceptance for both his fate and his desire to see the club burn. 'Call Of Duty' was another excellent episode of Sons Of Anarchy, in a season that€™s managed to redirect its focus after a shaky start. Some of the action was a little silly (why are they all so proficient with missile launchers ?) - as was the goofy reference to the video game of the title - but I dug how the episode actually had a hell of a lot of true reverence to the moniker in the end. With a corker of an ending and precious few episodes to go, the wait for next weeks intriguingly titled €˜Burnt and Purged Away€™ - is going to be tough. Just give us the box set already Fox, the tension is killing me. _________ Best Bit: The epic cliffhanger, with Opie seething from the news of Piney's murder at the hands of Clay (Ryan Hurst played this masterfully) Worst Bit: A little too much unbelievable action.... Just like CoD itself. Quote Of The Week: "You gotta be shitting me" - Kenny Johnson realises his fate to be perpetually blown up by the FX network Sons Of Anarchy continues on Tuesday nights at 10pm on FX (U.S)

Cult horror enthusiast and obsessive videogame fanatic. Stephen considers Jaws to be the single greatest film of all-time and is still pining over the demise of Sega's Dreamcast. As well regularly writing articles for WhatCulture, Stephen also contributes reviews and features to Ginx TV.