Sons of Anarchy recap: The Mad King

Jax takes it upon himself to negotiate with the Irish, and Gemma visits Clay for information (both plans end badly)
Ep. 05 | Aired Oct 8, 2013

KABOOM Chibs (Tommy Flanagan) and Jax (Charlie Hunnam) realized the Irish had delivered a bomb, not beer, in the nick of time.

Prashant Gupta/FX

At the warehouse, it was black hoodies up as Jax and Chibs tried to lure Connor to them while they sat in the Irish Suburban. Why didn't Jax let Chibs drive in when Connor motioned? That's how Connor knew it wasn't his men behind the wheel. Connor yelled, "SAMCRO" and two of his guys started firing. You'd think they'd have known the glass was bulletproof. Chibs ran into one guy. One guy got away. Then a foot chase ensued. (A new meaning to hit and run!) Juicey had to remind Happy that Jax said they needed Connor alive. Maybe someone should have told Jax that: How he knew exactly where to run the vehicle through the wall to send cases of alcohol flying into Connor (but not kill him or hurt any of his guys), I do not know. Pretty sure it was all a set up to Chibs’ punch line: "Jesus, another fine Irishman brought down by the bottle." Jax told Happy and Juicey to place the dead body of the guy Chibs had hit on top of the clubs' guns (AKs and Glocks), which Tig and Chibs had found stowed there. Jax was leaving the guns as a peace offering. With a dead body on top? "They still come out ahead," Jax said. Jax needs more bodies called in, but he still refuses to dial Bobby.

At the prison, Clay was delivered a book by an Irishman who told him "The Mad King" got real good around page 47. Clay found a note there. Jax, meanwhile, had gotten a hold of Connor's cell phone and was trying to find out how to use it to contact the Kings. When Connor told him where to find the burner numbers, Jax stepped outside to make the call in private, supposedly just to see if the numbers actually worked. One of the cell phones in a Belfast basket of cells rang. Jax being Jax, thinking he knows best, spoke calmly to the Kings. He told them how Galen didn't want his plan to work because Galen hates that Jax is at the table and has off-the-book secrets with Clay to protect. He said Clay's days in Stockton were numbered, but that August Marks could triple their buyers. They said they didn't like that Pope had made his empire in heroin, but Jax knew they didn't like that Pope and Marks are black. Still, they said they'd talk it over and get back to Jax. The camera moved and we saw who was sitting on the fourth side of the table -- Galen. He used words I'd rather not repeat to describe Jax's diverse business partners and insisted August would use them to set up his network and dump them for a local, cheaper source. He insisted he's got no secrets from them when it comes to Clay, who Galen has set up with protection and transport to Belfast. The deal with Clay would be locked down by day's end, Galen said, and Jax gets what he wants -- out of guns and ties severed. Not quite as literal as "hands off," but you knew from the way he leaned in, it meant s--- was about to go down.

But first, Gemma went to see Wendy, who had to rush to put a scarf around her neck so Gemma wouldn't see the bruise on her neck was gone. Gemma figured the lockdown would send Tara's exit strategy into high gear, so she came to see if Wendy had heard anything. She told Wendy she wanted a copy of the will so she could show it to Jax. Hearing that Tara was making this move again behind his back would tear him apart, Gemma said, so she's not going to say anything unless she has proof. Gemma brought Wendy a handful of baby pictures of Abel. Wendy wanted to know why Gemma was letting her in: The push and pull with Tara made Gemma think about what it was like before she returned to town. Gemma wants the family to be right and Wendy was a good fit for Jax -- until she became an addict. Gemma hugged Wendy and told her to keep doing what she's doing. I spoke with the director of this episode, Gwyneth Horder-Payton, who said she had to keep reminding herself who was playing who in this scene. Is Gemma really desperate, or does she just want Wendy to think she is? Is Gemma setting Wendy up? Is she hoping Jax gets rid of both Tara and Wendy if she sees the will?

Back at T-M, Juice got a call from Clay's lawyer saying he'd set up a conjugal for Clay and Gemma. The guys knew that meant Clay had something he needed to tell them because conjugal cells aren't tapped since its spouses only. I almost feel guilty now laughing at the boys deciding who was going to tell Gemma. Tig said it was a job for a loving son, and Jax took Chibs as backup. Chibs flipped off Tig and Juice.

Nero went to see Eli to confront him about the tail. Eli said until the DNA results come back, this wasn't about Erin's murder, it was about the DA wanting to tie the Sons to the weapon used for the school shooting. Nero told Eli where he could find him for the rest of the day, including when he'd be murdering his next hooker, just to make it easier for him. I think Eli and Nero could've been friends under different circumstances. Seeing them fight hurts me. But I'm holding out hope Eli will help Nero in the end.

NEXT: “I’m so sorry”

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