Sons of Anarchy (season 4)
|Sons of Anarchy (season 4)|
Season 4 DVD cover
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of episodes||14|
|Original release||September 6– December 6, 2011|
The fourth season of the American television drama series Sons of Anarchy created by Kurt Sutter about the lives of a close-knit outlaw motorcycle club operating in Charming, a fictional town in California's Central Valley. The show centers on protagonist Jackson "Jax" Teller (Charlie Hunnam), the then–vice president of the club, who begins questioning the club and himself.
Season Four premiered on September 6, 2011, on cable network FX. The season premiere ("Out") by series executive producer and principal director Paris Barclay and written by series creator and executive producer Kurt Sutter was one of the highest-rated telecasts in FX's history.
Cast and characters
Sons of Anarchy is the story of the Teller-Morrow family of Charming, California, as well as the other members of Sons of Anarchy Motorcycle Club, Redwood Original (SAMCRO), their families, various Charming townspeople, allied and rival gangs, associates, and law agencies that undermine or support SAMCRO's legal and illegal enterprises.
- Charlie Hunnam as Jackson "Jax" Teller (14 episodes)
- Katey Sagal as Gemma Teller Morrow (14 episodes)
- Mark Boone Junior as Robert "Bobby Elvis" Munson (13 episodes)
- Dayton Callie as Wayne Unser (12 episodes)
- Kim Coates as Alex "Tig" Trager (14 episodes)
- Tommy Flanagan as Filip "Chibs" Telford (14 episodes)
- Ryan Hurst as Harry "Opie" Winston (13 episodes)
- William Lucking as Piermont "Piney" Winston (9 episodes)
- Theo Rossi as Juan-Carlos "Juice" Ortiz (13 episodes)
- Maggie Siff as Tara Knowles-Teller (14 episodes)
- Ron Perlman as Clarence "Clay" Morrow (14 episodes)
Special guest cast
- Rockmond Dunbar as Lieutenant Eli Roosevelt (12 episodes)
- Ray McKinnon as Assistant U.S. Attorney Lincoln Potter (12 episodes)
- Danny Trejo as Romero "Romeo" Parada (8 episodes)
- Kenny Johnson as Herman Kozik (3 episodes)
- Drea de Matteo as Wendy Case (2 episodes)
- Marianne Jean-Baptiste as Vivica ("Dorylous")
- David Hasselhoff as Dondo ("Brick")
- Sonny Barger as Lenny "The Pimp" Janowitz ("To Be, Act 1")
- Christopher Douglas Reed as Philip "Filthy Phil" Russell (12 episodes)
- Emilio Rivera as Marcus Alvarez (8 episodes)
- David LaBrava as Happy Lowman (9 episodes)
- Benito Martinez as Luis Torres (9 episodes)
- David Rees Snell as Agent Grad Nicholas (8 episodes)
- Michael Marisi Ornstein as Chuck Marstein (7 episodes)
- Winter Ave Zoli as Lyla Winston (6 episodes)
- McNally Sagal as Margaret Murphy (5 episodes)
- Frank Potter as Eric Miles (5 episodes)
- Jeff Kober as Jacob Hale, Jr. (5 episodes)
- Niko Nicotera as George "Rat Boy" Skogstorm (5 episodes + 3 as co-star)
- Kurt Sutter as "Big" Otto Delaney (4 uncredited)
- Timothy V. Murphy as Galen O'Shay (4 episodes)
- Merle Dandridge as Rita Roosevelt (4 episodes)
- Kristen Renton as Ima (3 episodes)
- Patrick St. Esprit as Elliott Oswald (3 episodes)
- Bob McCracken as Brendan Roarke (3 episodes)
- Walter Wong as Chris "V-Lin" Von Lin (3 episodes + 3 as co-star)
- Tory Kittles as Laroy Wayne (2 episodes)
- Tom Arnold as Georgie Caruso (2 episodes)
- Randolph Mantooth as Charlie Horse (2 episodes)
- Keith Szarabajka as Victor Putlova ("Out")
- Rachel Miner as Dawn Trager ("With An X")
- Olivia Burnette as Homeless Woman ("Hands")
- Brian Goodman as Huff (Vice President of SAMTAZ) ("Una Venta")
Although Sons of Anarchy is set in Northern California's Central Valley, it is filmed primarily at Occidental Studios Stage 5A in North Hollywood. Main sets located there include the clubhouse, St. Thomas Hospital and Jax's house. The production rooms at the studio used by the writing staff also double as the Charming police station. External scenes are often filmed nearby in Sun Valley and Tujunga.
|Title||Directed by||Written by||Original air date||Prod.
|40||1||"Out"||Paris Barclay||Kurt Sutter||September 6, 2011||4WAB01||4.93|
|Jax, Clay and the other SAMCRO members are released from prison, after serving 14 months for federal weapon charges, and return to Charming where they encounter a new sheriff (Rockmond Dunbar) and an Assistant U.S. Attorney (Ray McKinnon) who set up a secret task force to shut down the club's gunrunning operation. Opie and Lyla get married in a ceremony on an Indian reservation, while the Sons sever their ties to the Russian Mob. Jax proposes to Tara and reveals his desire to leave the Sons of Anarchy.|
|41||2||"Booster"||Guy Ferland||Dave Erickson & Chris Collins||September 13, 2011||4WAB02||3.71|
|The Sons meet with Gallindo drug cartel representative Romeo Parada (Danny Trejo) to make a deal, which includes transporting cocaine. Jax and Clay devise a pact that ensures both their individual endgames. Meanwhile, the Russians retaliate against SAMCRO. Gemma tries to find where Tara has hidden John's love letters. As Roosevelt shows his teeth to SAMCRO, Tara proves her usefulness to the club.|
|42||3||"Dorylus"||Peter Weller||Regina Corrado & Liz Sagal||September 20, 2011||4WAB03||3.42|
|Jax and other members of the club have to do some fieldwork when Kozik inadvertently lets a truck full of weapons get stolen. Clay attempts to sway Bobby's support for the deal with the drug cartel, while Gemma confronts Tara about the existence of John Teller's letters. Juice finds his position endangered when Roosevelt reveals he knows Juice's father is Black - a revelation that would get him expelled from SAMCRO. The cartel deal is approved by a narrow 6-5 vote, with Clay, Jax, Tig, Opie, Miles, and Kozik voting "yea" and Chibs, Piney, Happy, Bobby, and Juice voting "nay".|
|43||4||"Una Venta"||Billy Gierhart||Kurt Sutter & Marco Ramirez||September 27, 2011||4WAB04||3.28|
|SAMCRO makes a run to set up a new business venture with their Tucson charter, SAMTAZ, while Gemma makes a new ally in town with Police Chief Roosevelt's wife, Rita (Merle Dandridge). Potter drives a wedge between Otto and SAMCRO.|
|44||5||"Brick"||Paris Barclay||Dave Erickson & Brady Dahl||October 4, 2011||4WAB05||3.51|
|After Police Chief Roosevelt threatens to tell SAMCRO of Juice’s family ancestry, Juice is forced to take a sample of the cocaine that SAMCRO is transporting for the Gallindo drug cartel. Meanwhile, after Piney threatens to expose John's love letters to the club if Clay doesn't shut down their dealings with the cartel, Gemma and Clay scramble to find where Tara has hidden them, with Wayne caught in the middle. After Otto demands the club do something about Luann's unsolved murder, Jax and the others hunt down Georgie Caruso.|
|45||6||"With an X"||Guy Ferland||Chris Collins & Regina Corrado||October 11, 2011||4WAB06||3.56|
|Juice's act of thievery leaves SAMCRO in a delicate situation that puts its prospects to the test. Clay asks Romeo for help to kill Tara. Ima's presence in the club pushes Opie and Jax. Wayne makes a move against Clay to protect Tara.|
|46||7||"Fruit for the Crows"||Gwyneth Horder-Payton||Kurt Sutter & Liz Sagal||October 18, 2011||4WAB07||3.65|
|As the Sons set up their business in one of Alvarez's drug labs, the club endures difficult situations with both Tara's death threat letter and an attack against the Mayans. Bobby, unhappy with the ongoing events, calls a vote for a new president. Juice is cornered by Linc Potter's scheme and makes a desperate move.|
|47||8||"Family Recipe"||Paul Maibaum||Dave Erickson & Brady Dahl||October 25, 2011||4WAB08||3.82|
|Juice's plan doesn't work out. The club vote for a new president is put on hold when rivals of the Gallindo drug cartel bring their issues to SAMCRO's front door. Tara makes a decision about her future, to protect her family. Clay makes a drastic move to protect himself.|
|48||9||"Kiss"||Billy Geirhart||Regina Corrado & Marco Ramirez||November 1, 2011||4WAB09||3.63|
|The Niners have made a new alliance that affects SAMCRO's agenda. Gemma and Unser see the fallout from Clay's actions. Tara plans a trip to Oregon to clear her head, and Jax decides to escort her. The Gallindo Cartel gives Clay a means to take out Tara once and for all.|
|49||10||"Hands"||Peter Weller||Chris Collins & David LaBrava & Kurt Sutter||November 8, 2011||4WAB10||3.93|
|Jax and Tara discover the peaceful possibilities of life outside of SAMCRO, but the harsh reality of their inability to leave the rest of the group behind quickly makes itself known to the two of them. Tensions between Gemma and Clay finally boil over. As Potter puts a deal on the table for Juice, Roosevelt tries to do Juice a favor.|
|50||11||"Call of Duty"||Gwyneth Horder-Payton||Liz Sagal & Gladys Rodriguez||November 15, 2011||4WAB11||4.23|
|SAMCRO is in jeopardy of being muscled out of their own business when a formidable adversary arrives and quickly manages to pose a threat to their already fragile business relations with the cartel. Meanwhile, Jax confronts Clay over his mother's beating. Tara's emotional state worsens when Wendy returns, wanting to be a part of Abel's life. Otto makes a deal with Potter.|
|51||12||"Burnt and Purged Away"||Paris Barclay||Kurt Sutter & Dave Erickson||November 22, 2011||4WAB12||3.85|
|SAMCRO negotiates with the Irish Kings to secure the club's future. Jax confronts Wendy over her return to Charming. Clay tries to make a deal with Tara. Meanwhile, Otto's deal with Potter goes through, much to Bobby's dismay. Opie's trust in Jax and the club is broken as he seeks revenge. On Gemma's request, Wayne tries to undo the damage he's done.|
|52||13||"To Be, Act 1"||Kurt Sutter||Kurt Sutter & Chris Collins||November 29, 2011||4WAB13||4.42|
|In the aftermath of Clay's shooting, Jax's cover up puts Tig on the hunt and Laroy in danger. While on the verge of the Irish/cartel meeting, Juice and Bobby's disappearance puts the club on edge. Gemma reveals family history in an attempt to pull Jax closer, while Tara ensures her family's departure from Charming.|
|53||14||"To Be, Act 2"||Kurt Sutter||Kurt Sutter & Chris Collins||December 6, 2011||4WAB14||4.24|
|History repeats itself when Jax's future in Charming and with the MC is finally determined. Potter's RICO case takes an unusual turn when the Gallindo Cartel reveals its true intentions. The vote is made on Hale's Charming Heights proposition. SAMCRO makes a shift in its members' ranks.|
Alan Sepinwall stated that the fourth season risked predictability by returning to a successful formula of storytelling, but he nonetheless preferred those episodes to those of season three. Maureen Ryan reviewed the fourth season positively. She praised the addition of Lincoln Potter (played by Ray McKinnon), comparing the character's quality to that of Breaking Bad's antagonist, Gustavo Fring. The A.V. Club called the fourth season more "focused" and "operatic". AV Club reviewer Zack Handlen was fond of the season but felt disappointed with the finale, saying it featured a "lousy case of dictated convenience, of an arbitrary and unbelievable reveal used to shift characters around to where the writers want them to be for next season, as opposed to where they might land organically." However, the review did praise Charlie Hunnam's performance in the finale. TIME said the fourth season was the strongest since season two, but the show needed to end sooner rather than later. TIME also agreed that the finale's contrivances were sometimes too visible, stating "it’s the principle: you can only turn up alive at your own funeral so many times before it starts to lose its impact."
Home media release
The fourth season was released on DVD and Blu-ray in region 1 on August 28, 2012.
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