Christopher Golden — author of the Sons of Anarchy novel “Bratva” — pens a special column for Nerdcore Movement looking at the odds of survival for everyone on the show….
By Christopher Golden — Special to NerdcoreMovement.com
If Kurt Sutter really wanted to surprise us on the “Final Ride,” the last season of SONS OF ANARCHY, he’d let everyone live. But you and I both know that’s not going to happen. The real question is who will be left standing when the Reaper bleeds onto the screen for the very last fade out. I have zero inside knowledge, only a true fan’s passion for the series. I’d like to think I have some insight as a storyteller, but if I’ve learned anything after years of following Sutter’s work, it’s that he enjoys nothing more than subverting our expectations.
Here are my thoughts on the odds of eleven main characters making it to the series’ end. Of course, by the time you’re reading this, some of them may already be dead.
JAX (100 to 1):
At the end of THE SHIELD, the show on which Sutter cut his teeth as a writer, Vic Mackey was the last man standing. He’d managed to keep himself out of jail, but painted himself into a corner of his own personal hell. Jax Teller’s chances of surviving the series are directly connected to who else may die. If most of the club is killed, if his mother Gemma dies, if (please, don’t go there) one or both of his sons is killed, the chance that Jax will survive goes up. He’ll survive only to either live in the hell he has created…or to be the devil himself.
GEMMA (15 to 1):
I’m rolling the dice on Gemma. Do I think Sutter would hesitate to horribly murder his real-life bride on television? If you’ve seen what he put himself through playing Otto, you know the answer. But here’s my logic: Jax might have turned into a formidable chess master in his inter-gang dealings, but Gemma is the true Machiavelli of this series. If there’s a Vic Mackey in SONS OF ANARCHY, someone who has mastered the art of pulling the invisible strings of the world around her, it’s Gemma. Ending this series with Jax and most of SAMCRO dead, but with Gemma in prison or with her grandsons taken away by social services…that would be Gemma’s hell.
TIG (500 to 1):
If not for his burgeoning romance with Venus, I’d have said Tig’s chances of survival were about 10,000 to 1. He’s charming, but there’s no doubt that he is completely insane. Tig is a time bomb and I can’t imagine that we won’t encounter a scenario in which Jax has no choice but to set him ticking.
JUICE (250 to 1):
Truth time. A couple of weeks ago, I felt sure Juice would be dead by now. But he’s become a wild card, wrapped up in his own guilt, one moment willing to do anything to survive and the next willing to do anything to earn forgiveness from the only god he worships—SAMCRO. Do I think he’ll be alive when the dust settles? No. But he’s proven himself surprisingly tenacious.
CHIBS (30 to 1):
Maybe it’s just because I’m such a fan of the character, but I feel like if any of the core members of SAMCRO are going to survive to mourn the others, it’s going to be Chibs. He’s slowly become the heart and soul of SAMCRO. I have a little fantasy that Chibs and Jarry will ride off into the sunset together.
WENDY (3 to 1):
Someone’s got to be there to take care of Thomas and Abel when this is all over. My money’s on Wendy.
UNSER (1 to 1):
We learned at the very beginning of the series that former Chief of Police Wayne Unser has terminal cancer. He’s been in love with Gemma most of his life, but he’s shown signs lately of finally coming to his senses. If there’s going to be one person left who will truly grieve for the Tellers, what delicious irony it would be if that person was the one guy who started the show with a death sentence.
NERO (1000 to 1):
Yeah, you read that right. A thousand to one. If not for the fact that Nero’s a dad, it would be a million to one. He’s proven himself a tender hearted man, too good to live. If Nero continues to let himself be swept along with the tides of war, he’s going to get run over eventually. If he does as I expect, and eventually reverts back into the gang-banger of old, he’ll be formidable as hell, but that path could lead to death far more quickly. When he learns just how twisted Gemma really is, will he tried to protect her or turn his back? Both roads lead to dark places.
BOBBY (75 to 1):
Weary as he is, and though he has questioned Jax many times in the past, Bobby has made it clear this season that he is behind his Prez no matter what. To the end. There’s a sadness in Bobby, as if—unlike the rest of us—he already knows what that end is going to be.
HAPPY (150 to 1):
The man who knows Mr. Mayhem so intimately is likely to get to know him even better. Happy is a loyal soldier, always on the front lines. He’ll go down taking a bullet for Jax.
SHERIFF JARRY (5 to 1):
Law enforcement personnel tend to have a short life span in and around Charming. Jarry is smart and savvy, trying to find a way to survive a life in SAMCRO’s neighborhood instead of working to destroy them. If she can stay out of the way while Jax’s grief and Gemma’s deception causes the club to self-destruct, she might just manage it.
CHRISTOPHER GOLDEN is the author of the upcoming novel Sons of Anarchy: Bratva, and the #1 New York Times bestselling, Bram Stoker Award-winning author of such novels as Snowblind, Of Saints and Shadows, The Myth Hunters, The Ocean Dark, The Boys Are Back in Town, and Strangewood. He has co-written three illustrated novels with Mike Mignola, the first of which, Baltimore, or, The Steadfast Tin Soldier and the Vampire, was the launching pad for the Eisner Award-nominated comic book series, Baltimore. As an editor, he has worked on the short story anthologies The New Dead, The Monster’s Corner, and Dark Duets, among others. Golden was born and raised in Massachusetts, where he still lives with his family. His original novels have been published in more than fourteen languages in countries around the world. Please visit him at www.christophergolden.com