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Sons of Anarchy Season 1
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186 of 199 people found the following review helpful
on August 8, 2009
Format: DVD
The Shield may be lamentably gone from TV, but prominent alumnus Kurt Sutter seems to have taken it upon himself to carry on its legacy with Sons of Anarchy, and if the show's first season is any indication he's more than up to the task. Anyone who enjoyed The Shield's combination of intelligence and testosterone will certainly find a lot to like here, as SoA quickly established itself as among TV's most unique and consistently compelling shows and only got better from there. Striking a near-perfect balance between grit and sensationalism, it takes viewers through a world marked by violence, double-dealing, and racial division, with an emphasis on the ambiguous morality and personal and familial baggage that come with a life lived between the straight world and the criminal one. The machinations of the characters and the twists of the plot are almost operatic, but the show remains rooted in the harsh realities of gangland.

The premise is sort of Hamlet-meets-the-Sopranos: youthful biker and new dad Jax Teller (Charlie Hunnam) finds himself trying to balance work with personal life as the Vice President of the Sons of Anarchy Motorcylcle Club Redwood Original (aka SAMCRO), a gun-running biker gang co-founded by his late father and now run by his stepfather Clay Morrow (the ever-swaggering Ron Perlman), who's married to Clay's widowed mother Gemma (Katey Sagal, in pretty much the biggest departure possible from her Married With Children days). From the somewhat hippie-ish beginnings envisioned by Jax's father, SAMCRO has evolved into a criminal powerhouse, especially in their central California base of Charming, where they're practically a small-town Mafia. These guys may not be as bad as the Hell's Angels, but the show makes it clear that they're far from harmless nonconformists, as we see them running guns, committing murders and (in one particularly stunning scene) burning off the tattoo of a perfidious former member. Single-episode plots focusing on the gang's efforts to turn a profit and stay out of trouble are expertly mixed with longer arcs dealing with the constant conflicts of gangland life and the mounting tensions within the club. As the season progresses, it increasingly develops into a battle of viewpoints between Clay's world-weary cynicism and Jax's (relatively) idealistic leanings and pangs of conscience, which leads inexorably to a conclusion that already has me drooling in anticpation of season two.

In another welcome parallel with The Shield, the show's writing gets progressively more complex and nuanced as the season goes on, giving the cast, a nice assemblage of recognizable (but not household) names, a lot of room to work. Further cementing his status as Hollywood's leading Jewish tough-guy actor, Perlman is impossible not to watch as Clay, the club leader who walks a fine line between toughness and ruthlessness. Clay's a classic antihero in the Tony Soprano-Vic Mackey mold, whose occasional moments of decency don't quite compensate for his myriad of bad acts, but he's practically a softie compared to his wife. Taking the concept of standing by her men very seriously, Gemma's the very picture of steely determination, willing to say and do anything to safeguard her family, and she shares both Clay's ability to perceive all the angles and his lack of reservations in doing what needs to be done.

For his part, Jax is certainly no saint, but he hasn't quite been won over to the Machiavellian value system championed by his mother and stepfather. Constantly tugging at his conscience are the newly-discovered writings of his late father John, a somewhat intellectual type who didn't necessarily intend for the club to become a crime syndicate. The voice-over narration of John's journal is a bit of a contrived device in a show largely devoid of them, but it does nicely frame the struggles that come to define the season. This season also sees a succession of great supporting turns from recognizable faces--Jay Karnes as a twisted ATF agent with a thing for Jax's ex, Mitch Pileggi as a vicious Nazi meth lord, Ally Walker as an enjoyably amoral Fed who vows to take the Sons down--that only serve to up the entertainment quotient. Even the law-enforcement officers--the shady, compromised Chief Unser and the more principled, by-the-book Deputy Chief Hale--eventually emerge as multi-dimensional characters in their own right.

Overall, it's extremely difficult to find fault with this season. SoA seems to have flown under the radar a bit while shows like Mad Men and Breaking Bad get all the acclaim, and while those are both great shows I think SoA easily holds its own as one of the best on TV right now. If it maintains its level of quality in season two, we viewers could have yet another all-time great on our hands.
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60 of 66 people found the following review helpful
Verified Purchase
The timing of Sons is obviously gauged to take advantage of the latest mid-life crisis which requires men my age to buy Harleys and spend their weekends pretending to be outlaw bikers.

Sons of Anarchy shows real potential as a worthy successor to The Sopranos - The Complete Series episodic brand of voyeurism. Sons offers to take us into the lives of those who live outside the social contracts (or constraints) most of us take for granted. However, unlike The Sopranos, the Sons are not a criminal version of royalty (a status bestowed by endless viewings of The Godfather DVD Collection .) Instead they are, (as described by another reviewer) "relatable." These are, for the most part, average joes, who've chosen to live outside the requirement to be a part of the herd or to "go along to get along."

Whether we actually practice it or not, the American ideal (or myth) is that of the rugged individualists, who band together to oppose the bureaucracy that wants to force these square pegs into round holes. Think of Rooster Cogburn in True Grit.

And that's the legend that Sons of Anarchy is based on. The basic concept is that the SAMCRO's (Sons of Anarchy Motorcycle Club - Redwood Originals) are latter-day Knights Errant. Following in the footsteps of Jesse James and John Dillinger (if you believe that they were only stealing from the villainous landlord or grasping banker and not the hard-working farmer) these outlaw bikers exist to protect their community from the evils of dope-dealing white supremacists and the rival Mayan motorcycle club. And that's where they lost me, at least a little bit.

I grew up in Fontana, California, with a family full of 1 %'ers (the one-percenter nom de plume arose after the 1947 Hollister riots, when the America Motorcycle Association famously proclaimed that "99% of motorcycle riders were decent citizens" and "1%" were outlaws.) The brotherhood is undeniable - every member was loyal to the patch and would do anything and everything he could to help another brother.

But the loyalty was entirely to the club - if you weren't patched you were just strangers, worthy of no more consideration than the bug that slammed into your teeth as you roared your Harley down Route 66. The idea of them banding together to protect their city, or even their block, just left me a little incredulous. However, I'm nit-picking - this is fiction and I need to be more forgiving.

So now that I've aired my petty grievances, let me tell you what I loved.

This is probably the finest cast on the small screen I've seen in a long, long time. Even though the story is theoretically about Jackson "Jax" Teller (played by Charlie Hunnam), it was Rob Perlman (of Hellboy fame) and Katey Sagal (finally escaping from Married with Children) that were the most realistic characters and really made the show. While Jax is an interesting character and was obviously designed drive the main themes of the show, I couldn't help but wonder how this brooding prince (think Hamlet) was able to rise to the level of vice-prez without committing some horrific act of violence, which the show promises to have a lot of.

Sons was created by Kurt Sutter, a writer and executive producer on The Shield so you know he's going to keep this series gritty and as realistic as possible.

Sons promises a lot and I'm looking forward to the next episode. Now if only I could convince my wife to let me buy a Harley...
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53 of 60 people found the following review helpful
Format: Blu-ray
Had not watched this show during the first season run, but I had customers asking about it for months now, so in seeing the Blu option I took a chance. The demand has been huge and the feedback has been excellent. A well produced show, a great cast, a gritty yet flowing soundtrack (Primal Scream, Lions, Bob Thiele, Curtis Stigers) all put together onto a solid Blu package.

The picture quality through all 13 episodes maintained decently, with only a few failures here and there depending on the night footage. The DTS is mixed just well enough to hear such gems as a cigarette burning while the Harley floods the outer channels, or a dog barking out a rear channel that makes you jump, or one of the few bass scenes (thumping music) when they enter the Niners Club in Oakland. The music was actually done just right in each episode as to not drown out any peripheral chatter or relevant goings-on. The supplements are placed entirely on disc 3 and include:
* Making of - 9 minutes which initially I thought was way too short but it gets made up for with everything else.
* Ink - 4:45 clip on everything tatoo. Unfortunately none of them were real.
* Bikes - 7 minute blurb on everything one needs to know about each character's mc. Caters to the enthusiasts wondering about the specs.
* Casting - 15 minutes of audition tapes mixed in with interviews for each primary and secondary character. I liked Pileggi's take on showing people he can be bad ("not Skinner").
* Deleted scenes - 35 minutes, half of which should have been left in, especially with such gems (plot holes) as how those panties kept getting flushed, Segal's chest scar, the clothing optional bathroom scene, Prospect feeling the wrath for beating Elvis, Pine being more aware of Clay's feel on his kid, and more.
* Gag reel - 7 minutes that actually contained more highlights than gags, including every single kill of the season crammed into one minute, every single breast, butt and kiss shot montaged together, and the answer to that nagging question of what Tig really did in the morgue (he is just not right at all).
* Commentary on the last episode by a ton of cast and crew.

The 3 disc set is a worthwhile owner for any fan of the series, and even though there are plenty of clarity fades and intermittent grain, the Blu package filled out nicely. Plenty of heated debates out there about the authenticity of the show, but Kurt Sutter was very honest about the research and stated no one would give him a single iota of material - he had to imagine all of this up. Congrats on making a competent brotherhood motorcycle club family drama.
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23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
Fantastic show and GREAT extras on the DVD! Always appreciate it when a DVD set includes extras. Includes deleted scenes, a gag reel, films about the tattoos, the motorcycle customization, casting decisions narrative including the original audition tapes for all the cast. Also includes some audio commentaries.

All in all, a great DVD set and that's not to mention the show itself. Charlie Hunnam steals every scene he is in. He is electrifying, vibrant and SO talented. You can't take your eyes off watching him every moment he is on the screen.

The show is fantastically written but even better is watching Hunnam interact, especially with his girlfriend--wow, their scenes are hot! Some actors are just really interesting to watch, they can do more with a look or a word than others do with entire lines. Hunnam is one of these.

His character is the vice-president of the Sons of Anarchy but his intelligence, questioning of the status quo and determination to stick to his beliefs means he is in conflict with those in the club who either have no morals, easily leave them behind or only care about money.

Hunnam is fascinating to watch, in one scene he is emotional or tender to his girlfriend or family, then the next he is violently asserting his will in clashes where he defends his principles or makes a point.

There is an interesting tension showing his desire to be honest in the world, yet his need to be duplicitous, because of gun-running or other illegal activities.

The scene where he finds a gawker sitting on his bike, and is pretending to be friendly then beats the guy to the ground, telling him "Don't EVER sit on another man's bike!" is an illustration of this.

There is a stillness to Hunnam's portrayal which brings so much interest to the character. Instead of going on and on about something, he'll just say "Are you ready for this?" and with a short sentence and a look, will say everything.

The audio commentaries are really funny too. There's one scene where they show Hunnam with his shirt off and the show's creator says "This is one for the ladies!" and he is so right.

All in all, this DVD is well worth buying and keeping, not just a rental.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on September 2, 2009
Format: Blu-ray
Far and away the best show on television. For those who are tired of shallow "reality" shows or the seemingly never ending, unrealistic cookie cutter sagas of CSI Anytown / Law & Order Name-Your-Crime, this show is a true original. The casting is superb. Once you've seen the actors in their character roles, you'll forget that they were ever in another series. The only disappointment is that the seasons are only 13 episodes long and 12 months apart.

Thanks to FX for staying outside the box.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on August 26, 2009
Format: DVD
Overall a great new series filled with a raw edginess that I couldn't get enough of.
The show first aired on Fox's FX cable channel in fall of 2008. Fox had been airing trailers all over the cable world attempting to drum up interest in the new series. However, the trailers they aired showed nothing of the series, making it impossible to tell what the series was about. So of course I had to tune in to find out. And I was pleasantly, sometimes overwhelmingly surprised at how good the show was.
The show features a biker gang from a small town who run drugs and guns to keep their gang and the money flowing, while bartering to keep the local law off their backs. Plus they have to contend with other gangs who want to take over their turf or just plain take their money.
The gang is headed by Clay (actor Ron Perlman and star of the movie `Hellboy') with strong influence from the next biker generation, Jax (actor Charlie Hunnam who played Nathan in `Queer as Folk' and Katie Holmes love interest in the movie `Abandon'), who is the son of the co-founder of the gang. Jax's mom, Gemma (actress Katey Sagal formerly of the well known `Married with Children' TV series), is also the old lady to Clay and plays a vital sometimes brutal role in the gang. And then to make things interesting, they throw in Jax's ex-girlfriend, Tara, formerly part of the gang, who is now a doctor at the local hospital.
Outstanding variety of characters, excellent casting all around, great story and subplots that add even more drama to the dramatic, and just some laugh out loud or downright crazy stuff that happens in each episode. I was blown away with Jax, as a character (and the actor who played him) because of the depth and conflicted duality he seemed to contain just below the surface that keep me riveted to the screen. And I was floored by Gemma, she was just so awesome, like a mother bear protecting her cubs.
The one flaw of the show, for me, and it's a small one since the show doesn't have a lot of it, were the sex scenes with Jax and the female partners (especially the ex-girlfriend Tara). They just didn't feel 'real' to me. They seemed very awkward, like it was actors trying to create a sex scene for the characters.
Season 2 of the series is to set air on the FX channel on September 8, 2009.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon December 27, 2011
It was originally the title of the show that made me avoid it and today years after it first aired I just finished watching the first season. The series was consistently intelligent and the characters tend to grow on you. The show, despite it's violent nature, seems to keep growing on you with every passing episode. This is the story of Jax Teller, vice president of the gang called SOA. He is one of the more encrypted slow-burner characters that I have come across. It is the effortless nature of the show to portray characters and storylines effectively to the audience that makes me a fan.

I've often jumped off my chair waving my hands in the air, I've always often just been dumbstruck and at times I've been over eager for the show to be done with because all hell will break lose in just one episode. There are some women in this show but they take a back seat but don't be mistaken there is a queen bee played magnificentally by Katey Seagal who plays Jax's mom "Gemma"

It would be not incorrect to assume that the show is very inspiring and seems to somehow always have a couple of tricks up it's sleeve. My hats of to the creators. I can't even believe I have three seasons left to be watched. I tell you I feel lucky.

PS - Some very solid rock tunes that I have never heard before often play in this show. I also wonder if the next seasons will be even more ruthless.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Format: Blu-ray
"Sons of Anarchy" comes from the mind of Kurt Sutter, a former writer and co-producer of FX's popular (and now recently concluded) series "The Shield". Joining Sutter are fellow writers Dave Erickson ("Canterbury's Law") and Jack LoGiudice ("Street Time", "Resurrection Blvd." and "7th Heaven"), composer Bob Theile Jr. ("The Office") and cinematography by Paul Maibaum ("My Boys", "Samantha WHO?" and "Related").

The drama series revolves around a motorcycle club known as the Sons of Anarchy Motorcycle Club, Redwood Original (SAMCRO). With SAMCRO chapters across the country, the original Sons of Anarchy motorcycle club was formed in an area called Charming. Members consist of normal men who have their own responsibilities, life style and jobs but what they have in common is their allegiance towards the club. And that allegiance includes being part of a life of danger. For the Sons of Anarchy, the group makes a lot of money by dealing with importing illegal weapons which they sell to other gangs in the Bay Area (primarily the East Bay area), dealing with other organizations or mafia connections but taking a pride in their city and protecting local businesses and the people of the area.

They are well-connected and also have ties to the inside of law enforcement and thus, are able to maintain their operations. But of course, all is not safe as major gangs are there to cause the club some havoc. There are those who try to mess with them or steal SAMCRO's shipments such as the white supremacist group known as the "Nords", their Latino rivals from Oakland known as the "Mayans" and possibly other dangers including the authorities.

The first season of "Sons of Anarchy" focuses on member Jax (Charlie Hunman, "Undeclared", "Hooligans"), a member who tends to takes care of operations for the club and is quite respectful of his allegiance to the club that his father John had started and ran until his death many years ago.

SAMCRO is now run by Clarence "Clay" Morrow (Ron Perlman, "Hellboy" films and "Beauty and the Beast") who married Jax's mother Gemma (Katey Sagal, "Married with Children", "Futurama", "8 Simple Rules...For Dating My Teenage Daughter") and have lived a life of making money but now are starting to feel the financial constraints.

Both have made the Sons of Anarchy to a club that is profitable (due to the club's illegal dealings) but things start to change when Jax discovers his father's belongings especially with the discovery of his dead father's unpublished manuscript. It appears that his father has envisioned change for the Sons of Anarchy and because of this, Jax notices that with all the trouble and danger the club faces now, perhaps its time to change things for the positive for the club.

Jax eventually starts to show doubts towards the club's activities and starts to become more compassionate to the personal lives of some of the members and thus puts himself into a position that can lead to conflict with the his step-father/leader of the Sons of Anarchy. Of course, this change of thought starts to rub certain members the wrong way, some who question Jax's ability to lead in the future.

Needless to say, Jax's mother, Gemma starts to be concerned of her son's interest in her dead husband's belongings and looks at things as if her deceased husband is trying to talk to her son from the grave. Thus, she wants her husband Clay to make sure that Jax doesn't hurt the operations of the Sons of Anarchy and make sure he doesn't stray.

Throughout the series, we get to see how the club operates but most of all how tight or how troubled the internal brotherhood is between the members of the motorcycle club and the dangers they face.

Members of the Son of Anarchy also include:

* Bobby "Elvis" Munson (Mark Boone Junior) - The treasurer of the club and an Elvis impersonator
* Tig Trager (Kim Coates) - The sergeant-at-arms. Clay's right hand man and incredibly violent. Doesn't believe in Jax as the successor to the club.
* Filip "Chibs" Telford (Tommy Flanagan) - The medic of the club that served for the British Army.
* Piermont "Piney" Winston (William Lucking) - Opie's father and co-founder of SAMCRO.
* Harry "Opie" Winston (Ryan Hurst) - A member of SAMCRO who has been off-an-on with the group because of his obligations to his wife and kids. Thus he stays away from their illegal activities.
* Juan Carlos "Juice" Ortiz (Theo Rossi) - The club's intelligence officer, ahe hacker and the guy with the inside connections.
* Kip "Half-Sack" Epps (Johnny Lewis) - A member of the club and former Iraq vet.

"Sons of Anarchy - Season One" is featured on three Blu-ray discs. Here is a spoiler-less summary of each episode:

DISC 1:

* EPISODE 1 - Pilot - Introduction to the characters and Jax's pregnant ex-girlfriend goes into a drug overdose and harms his baby. Meanwhile, the Sons of Anarchy's weapons have been stolen by The Mayans and now they must recover the weapons.
* EPISODE 2 - Seeds - There's a new deputy chief in Charming and is on to the Sons of Anarchy. Meanwhile, SOA member Opie and his family are having financial problems.
* EPISODE 3 - Fun Town - The daughter of a prominent Charming family is assaulted and the Sons of Anarchy (who protect their town) needs to take care of business.
* EPISODE 4 - Patch Over - The Sons of Anarchy try to help out their Nevada brothers known as the Devil's Tribe. Especially now that they have been threatened by the Mayans.
* EPISODE 5 - Giving Back - Clay must protect a parolee, meanwhile SAMCRO is being investigated.

DISC 2:

* EPISODE 6 - AK-51 - Clay has Jax work on a project for him and a way to see where Jax's mind is for the club.
* EPISODE 7 - Old Bones - Old bones are discovered outside of Charming and secrets of Clay may be revealed.
* EPISODE 8 - The Pull - SAMCRO gets into more financial problems, meanwhile the Nords and Mayans continue to grow their partnership.
* EPISODE 9 - Hell Followed - SAMCRO gets their revenge against a rival biker club.
* EPISODE 10 - Better Half - Agent Stahl starts to investigate the women of SAMCRO.

DISC 3:

* EPISODE 11 - Capybara - Jax is put into a situation in which he must choose to be there as a friend for the members of the club vs. his allegiance to the club.
* EPISODE 12 - The Sleep of Babies - Clay has to make a difficult decision on how to pay for Bobby's defense. Meanwhile, Abel's return home causes severe problems for the club and a tragedy for the club.
* EPISODE 13 - The Revelator - Jax goes on a search for who murdered a person close to them and Jax discovers the awful truth that the murderer may be someone he knows really well.

VIDEO & AUDIO:

"Sons of Anarchy - Season One" is presented in 1080p High Definition (AVC @ 23MBPS), widescreen with an aspect ratio of 1:78:1. The series is a series that has a large number of scenes shot outdoors and for the most part, the picture quality features excellent detail.

From the scenery of the mountains, the motorcycles, the weapons, the explosions, the violent maiming of gangsters and the blood, burnt flesh and details of the wounds are quite clear and detailed on this Blu-ray release.

Also, during the darker scenes, I didn't catch any major high compression or high noise during those low-light situations. Skin tones are natural and you can catch some scenes with the skin pores and for the most part, the picture quality is brilliant although you do see occasional grain but definitely not distracting.

Audio is presented in English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio (Spanish in Dolby Digital). "Sons of Anarchy" is a series that takes advantage of the lossless audio track. From the revving of the engines of the Harley-Davidson motorcycles to the booms of explosions and the gunshots, the series definitely utilizes the surrounds during those action-scenes.

For the most part, the explosions and weapons are minimal and most of the audio is dialogue-driven and is primarily front and center channel driven. As with the rock music that plays throughout the series. But for the most part, fans of the series will enjoy the lossless track and its use of the various channels throughout the series.

Subtitles are in English SDH, French and Spanish.

SPECIAL FEATURES:

"Sons of Anarchy - Season One" comes with the following special features:

DISC 1:

On disc 1, select audio and you will be able to find the following audio commentary:

* Commentary for Pilot - Featuring audio commentary with Kurt Sutter, Guy Feeland, Charlie Hunnam, Ron Perlman and Katey Sagal.

DISC 2:

On disc 2, select audio and you will be able to find the following audio commentary:

* Commentary for the Pull - Featuring audio commentary with Kurt Sutter, Guy Feeland, Maggie Siff and Charlie Hunnam.

DISC 3:

* Commentary for the Revelator- Featuring audio commentary with Kurt Sutter, Charlie Hunnam, Ron Perlman, Kim Coates, Mark Boone Junior, Theo Rossi, Ryan Hurst, William Lucking, Johnny Lewis and Tommy Flanagan.
* The Making of Sons of Anarchy, Season 1 - (8:59) Interviews with the producers, creator and cast about the series. Kurt Sutter talks about spending time with the outlaw community and trying to make the series authentic.
* The Ink - (4:50) Biker clubs have their own logo and patches and how the "Sons of Anarchy" insignia was created. Interviews with cast and crew including tattoo artists and insignia creators Freddy Corbin and Derrick Snodgrass.
* The Bikes - (7:08) The cast and crew talk about riding motorcycles and their appreciation of riding them. Crew talk about the different bikes that each character rides.
* Casting Sons of Anarchy - (14:47) Kurt Sutter (series creator/writer) and Wendy O'Brien (casting) discuss the casting of "Sons of Anarchy". The two discuss the importance of finding people who really look like they fit the part.
* Deleted Scenes - (35:05) Around 30 deleted scenes which can be watched individually or via "play all".
* Anarchy on the Set (Gag Reel) - (6:53) A hilarious gag reel.

JUDGMENT CALL:

"Sons of Anarchy" is one of those rare series that you will catch on television. The interesting thing is that back in the late 1970's, the outlaw life was typically portrayed on television as this hell-bent biker gang but films really never fully explored it well, actually, if anything, they were just used as an episode of "C.H.I.P.S" and were people wreaking havoc on innocents.

There is a culture among the biker clubs and it was great to see a series that featured characters in a variety of depth and it is quite evident that creator/writer Kurt Sutter did his research well in capturing that culture, the look and feel of the individuals (and of course, great casting) but bringing together this gritty storyline of opposing gangs and rival biker clubs and creating this world where life is not always peaceful and allegiance for the club, you need to sacrifice for the club. Personally, I was captivated by the storytelling and from beginning to end, realize that hell is going to break loose in Season 2. Granted, I say this not knowing anything about motorcycle gangs up-close and personal but I would assume with all the time that Sutter spent with the various motorcycle clubs, there are some aspects of that culture that he brought into this fictional drama series. And of course, that correlation to Shakespeare's "Hamlet" makes the series quite intriguing.

I have to admit that before watching the series, I wasn't sure how Charlie Hunnam (who typically plays popular guy that the girls dig type of roles), Katey Sagal who has been in more sitcom-based shows and more dramatic series and of course, Ron Perlman, an actor that viewers are used to seeing him in "Hellboy" or the old classic "Beauty and the Beast" series. But for the most part, each of the talent did wonderful job and the series is literally well-cast. Hunnam as Jax sans the English accent almost has this Heath Ledger type of feel to his character that works. Katey Sagal does an excellent job playing a mother, but a mother who has the potential of going bad. And of course, Ron Perlman definitely has that look of a person you don't want to cross. Add in the other talent and overall, the way they play their characters are is convincing. Again, the talent are definitely well-cast!

The Blu-ray further enhances the enjoyment of the series with picture quality really capturing the violence and grittiness of the series. In the first episode, the first time you lay your eyes on the charred remains of two people, you know that this series is not going to be "pedestrian" and by the end of the first episode, you realize that the series is quite violent but fits the situation quite well. As mentioned before, the lossless audio track definitely compliments the series, especially for those who can't get enough of that engine revving of the Harley's in high definition. Also, picture quality is well-done and again, as beautiful as the scenery is of the mountain regions and the camera panning through the various Harley's, the picture quality also captures the detail of the violence of the series.

"Sons of Anarchy - Season One" was definitely a big surprise for me and it's good to know that FX has continued the trend of having well-written, well-cast and overall, another riveting drama series. Overall, this series is highly recommended!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on December 29, 2009
Format: Blu-rayVerified Purchase
I really enjoyed this show more than I thought I would considering it virtually glamourizes the outlaw lifestyle. Fortunately, the show proved a little less shallow and the characters, despite their human failings, quickly grew on me. But, even the most depraved of these outlaw bikers are probably more socially motivated and acceptable than any you would ever run across in real life. Then again, the Hell's Angels are the originators of Toys-for-Tots.

Of course, as someone who rides, I suspect I'm in the principle demographic the show targets. But, the well scripted dialogue and human drama should play well for broader audiences too. The only thing that I didn't find researched well enough were the principle bikes used in the production. I've known former members of The Outlaws and Hell's Angels, and just can't imagine any veteran biker sitting atop a brand new Sportster (Harley's least expensive bike, which is probably why they were used in the show) with "prissy" handlebar attachments and such. Even less hard-core Harley enthusiasts wouldn't dress-up their bike to resemble a foreign made crotch-rocket, much less a member of a subculture that still worships the shovel-heads and pan-heads of yesteryear. They'd probably take more pride in a leaky, dirty, old rat-bike that constantly needs fiddling with. In fact, at some bars, just parking a sport bike in the lot will get it torched. I'm not knocking sport-bikes or Harley owners who choose to modify their bike to look like something other than a Harley; that's where $100,000 custom choppers got started. But, new and spiffy don't fit the outlaw biker image at all. I'm mean we're talking about people who wear jackets they never wash (on penalty of being pummeled by the other gang members), even after the entire gang has urinated on the back.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on March 3, 2010
Format: DVD
Sons of Anarchy is a show about a motorcycle gang that is based in a small California town. It centers around Jax, a young biker who is VP of the club and sort of heir to the throne. The series writer/creator previously worked on The Shield and he brings that same kind of gritty realism and character driven drama to this new work. This is only season 1 and I don't want to hype it up too much, but it really is an excellent show. The characters are realistic and deep, the story is compelling, and it's an entertaining watch.

Ron Perlman and Katey Segal also star in the series and are doing great work. I had my doubts if Katey could step up to a serious role after a life spent doing comedies, but she has won me over. Ron Perlman does great work as always and is an excellent fit for the aging leader of the biker gang.

I really can't recommend this highly enough.
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