FX has announced that the final season premiere of Sons of Anarchy will air Sept. 9 and be one hour and 45 minutes long. As EW reports in our Comic-Con Preview issue (on newsstands July 18), we’ll pick up 10 days after the tragic events of the season 6 finale. Jax will be behind bars, where he meets Ron Tully (Marilyn Manson), a white supremacist shot-caller whom he uses to expand his power base.
If seeing Jax in prison orange makes you uncomfortable, odds are you’re flashing back to season 5’s “Laying Pipe.” (Yes, the guys were wearing blue scrubs when Opie (Ryan Hurst) was killed, but they started and ended the episode in orange.) Jail has never been a safe place on SOA, which may also have you wondering if Manson’s recurring character will be long for this world. If you were signing on for Sons‘ epic final season, in which essentially everyone is expected to die, wouldn’t you hope to go out in a gloriously grisly way, too?
Let’s revisit the show’s history of prison deaths:
• In season 2, members of SAMCRO got arrested after Ethan Zobelle (Adam Arkin), head of the white separatist organization the League of American Nationalists, tricked them into storming a Christian Center looking for him. Inside, Clay needed to secure the club protection against the Aryans until they made bail. The Black Guerilla Family offered help if SAMCRO would deliver two rats—one of them being Dion (Michael Bentt), an inmate in protective custody who liked “buff brown boys.” Tig punched Juice in the ribs so he’d get sent to the infirmary, where Dion was waiting. Dion’s seduction was cut short when Juice let in members of the Family. We presume Dion did not survive.
• The season 4 premiere ended with a killer montage in which Jax took care of Russian Viktor Putlova (Keith Szarabajka), who’d ordered him shivved in prison, while Otto put a blade through the ear of the Russian inmate who’d attacked Jax.
• In season 5, Damon Pope (Harold Perrineau) told Jax that SAMCRO would pay for Tig killing his daughter by giving him 50 percent of the club’s cocaine-muling profits, leaving Tig in prison for the rest of his life to suffer, and having one Son die inside. When it was time for Jax to pick the Son, Opie started another fight so the guards took him. “I got this,” Opie told Jax, who wailed behind a glass window as he, Tig, and Chibs watched Opie meet his end at the hand of four black inmates. (“I got this” would be something Jax would later say when he killed the guard who’d orchestrated the brutal beating, and that Chibs would utter when he executed one of the released inmates.)
• The season 5 episode “Crucifixed” was appropriately titled: That’s the one in which Otto stabbed prison nurse Pamela Toric (Karina Logue) with the crucifix that he’d asked Tara to bring him. “Sons live. Redwood bleeds,” he told Tara.
• Having been framed by Jax for the Tig-triggered death of Pope in the season 5 finale, Clay found himself transferred to gen pop at Stockton in season 6. He was greeted by three black inmates who gave him a choice: Die then, or shiv an Aryan shot-caller to earn a temporary pardon. Clay chose the latter.
• Clay eventually snuck Otto a shiv, and Otto was able to stab Lee Toric (Donal Logue) in the infirmary before the guards riddled the long-suffering Son (played by series creator Kurt Sutter) with bullets.
For more on Sons of Anarchy and the rest of our Comic-Con preview, pick up a copy of this week’s Entertainment Weekly, on stands Friday.