Sons of Anarchy is headed into its final season. Yet creator Kurt Sutter says the end of the road for FX’s biker hit has not yet been entirely mapped.
“Considering I’m a week-and-a-half behind writing episode 7, it could all change,” Sutter told reporters when asked about the series ending at the Television Critics Association’s press tour in Beverly Hills on Monday. “I’ve always had a sense of where I wanted it to go, and I come in each season with a blueprint with the big arcs and mile markers. And I’ve learned over seven seasons the looser I grip that idea the better the seasons are. And this season isn’t any different. I came in with how I wanted the season to end … but things change. It’s always been heading in the same direction, but the way I’m getting there continues to change.”
Also, Sutter warns not to expect the final season to feel markedly different: “I didn’t want it to feel like ‘the final season,’ or to have it feel different,” Sutter said. “I really want it to feel like another season from Sons, only that when we’re done there’s probably not a whole lot more story to tell.”
And will there be closure? “We don’t fade to black in a diner,” Sutter assured, referencing the infamous ending of HBO’s The Sopranos.
Other tidbits from the Sons of Anarchy panel and from chatting with Sutter afterward:
— Don’t expect dead characters showing up in the final season: “We don’t really do flashbacks,” Sutter said.
— The final season body count so far in the writing process is pretty much on par: “It’s average for us,” Sutter said.
— The new season starts 10 days after the season 6 finale, and Jax is on a mission to avenge Tara‘s death: “Jax is in a very schizophrenic state,” star Charlie Hunnam said. “He’s obviously very sad and vulnerable and kind of broken, but there’s a huge amount of vengeance and anger in his heart … He knows what he wants to do, and that’s where all his energy is going. He can’t get away from the fact that the love of his life has been taken from him.” Added Sutter: “[Jax]’s singular purpose for most of the season is to avenge her death.”
— On fallout from last year’s infamous fork murder: “The reason why it was a fork was because it was there,” Sutter said. “People are coming up to [Katey Sagal] asking her to autograph forks … It’s not that my goal is to disturb people, but I also want that reaction when beloved characters go away. I want people to be upset. When Opie was killed people f–king hated me … They didn’t stop watching, but they were upset … To me, that means you’re writing characters who are relatable.”
— The Sons prequel series is still under discussion: “If I do the prequel, it will probably be a one-off,” Sutter said, suggesting a 10-episode miniseries model. “I don’t think it’s a full blown five-season series.”
— Tig gets a romance? “I find it hysterical that my fans are saying ‘Tig, don’t die!'” says Kim Coates, who plays Alex ‘Tig’ Trager. “I should have been dead 20 times by now. He’s a survivor.” Then Hunnam cryptically chimed in: “There’s a very exciting romance. I don’t want to tell you anything about it. Tig’s getting it this year.” (Our bet.)
— And no Sons panel would be complete without some Emmy snub trash talk: “Lest we not forget, it doesn’t matter at all!” Hunnam said. “There’s a perception we’re kind of upset about this. I really don’t give a s–t. I make this for the people who watch the show, and I really care about the work that I do … You can’t win them all.” With Theo Rossi adding: “You don’t make a show to win an award. You make a show for people to watch it.” Yet Sutter shrugged: “I want an Emmy.”