Sons of Anarchy Season Three [Blu-Ray]

Sons of Anarchy Season Three [Blu-Ray]
Shit hitting the fan is pretty much par for the course in this larger than life family crime drama. The show's namesake biker gang have serious repercussions to deal with after the traumatic events of season two. Rallying together behind Jax Teller (Charlie Hunnam), in search of his infant son, who was kidnapped by the club's IRA gun dealer as revenge after manipulative AFT agent Stahl (Ally Walker) framed Gemma (Katey Sagal) for the murder of his son, the Sons put interior tensions aside to help their grieving brother. This rescue mission and the crumbling stability of their control of hometown Charming, California unifies and focuses the club on survival, strengthening the sense of familial bonds. Wanted for murder, Gemma hides out, with Tig (Kim Coates) heading her protection unit, while Clay (Ron Perlman) and Jax seek info on little baby Abel and cook up a peace strategy to curtail their conflict with rival gang the Mayans. Like any show with such a large cast of characters, each with personal journeys and plot threads to link them to the primary conflicts, it's a difficult juggling act to balance organic relationship growth within a tightly structured plot trajectory, but Sons of Anarchy pulls it off. No easy feat, especially with an entirely new cast of characters in Ireland demanding screen time in this story arc. Show runner and head writer Kurt Sutter steers clear of any rounded opinions on the IRA conflict, concentrating on the themes of loyalty, duty, opportunism and greed already at the core of Sons of Anarchy. Peripheral plot elements involving a dirty new mayoral candidate for Charming and Jax's newbie outlaw girlfriend Tara's increasing immersion in a world not her own and subsequent moral transformation seem underdeveloped, but are likely to pay off next season. As Tara, Maggie Siff's flat performance is still the show's weakest link in an otherwise strong cast, but she does show increased signs of life this season, particularly in her scenes with the consistently fantastic Katey Sagal. Plot twists are even sharper this season, with the build-up to the finale laying some particularly clever subterfuge that manipulates the viewer, along with the characters who aren't holding all the cards. For features, this attractively shot Blu-Ray collection has the requisite lacklustre deleted scenes and an episode commentary for each disc. The writers get their due for the season premiere, with Sutter heading a story-focused discussion with the surprisingly muted bunch. A commentary with Sutter, Hunnam, Sagal, Siff and Tommy Flanagan (who plays Irish Sons member Chibs) is livelier, with a lot of talk about working with the talented Irish actors and how much post-production was required to make California green enough to pass for Ireland. Even more boisterous is the season finale commentary, with nearly the whole male cast involved, joking around more than commenting. The writers come across as a more interesting bunch in a roundtable discussion of the scripting process, spurred by questions submitted via Twitter. If you've ever wanted to see how a motorcycle is built from scratch, "Bike Customizer" has you covered, and if writing and acting are more your things, there's a table reading of episode 13 with a pic-in-pic shot of the episode while the cast do their thing. "Directing the Finale" follows Kurt Sutter through his approach on set and a "World Premiere" sees him and the cast being questioned on the red carpet. Finally, there's a four-scene preview of season four that shows some heavy shit that I didn't want to see yet. What I do want to see: the continued improvement of this unpredictable, darkly humorous, morally warty, epic look at living on the fringe of the law. (Fox)