In the super-sized “Mayans M.C.” season 3 debut, the club is struggling under the weight of a border shut down and a battle with the rest of charter, Miguel looks for answers and Adelita finds her freedom…
By Damon Martin — Editor/Lead Writer
It’s been 16 long months since “Mayans M.C.” season 2 came to a close and thanks to the ongoing pandemic, the third season was delayed until finally returning on Tuesday night.
The show has undergone a shift since season 2 because series co-creator Kurt Sutter is no longer acting as an advisor, writer or producer on the series after a very public split with FX following the company’s sale to Disney. That leaves the day-to-day operation of “Mayans M.C.” in the hands of Elgin James — the man Sutter hand picked to help him lead this series when he first envisioned the spinoff from his original creation, “Sons of Anarchy.”
James had a lot of ground to cover in the special two-episode debut, especially in the wake of an explosive season 2 finale that saw the Mayans from Santo Padre seek out vengeance — against the orders of the rest of the charter — on the Vatos Malditos, a rival club from south of the border. After a bloody back and forth battle left the Mayans with one less member after Riz died from wounds suffered during a shootout — coupled with Taza actually cutting off his air supply to finish the job for reasons that still haven’t been revealed — Bishop decided to wipe out the entire Vatos Malditos crew.
The plan worked well enough until they discovered that the Vatos’ leader Palo escaped and there was one extra dead body to account for at the end of the night — a member of the Sons of Anarchy.
Meanwhile, EZ and Angel were able to clear their father’s name and get him out from under the thumb of U.S. Assistant District Attorney Lincoln Potter by blackmailing him with some valuable information Miguel Galindo had actually gathered on him. While the strategy freed Felipe Reyes from further persecution, it also meant Angel wouldn’t be able to free Adelita from being held by the government much less the chance to finally meet his son, who was born in custody with his mother handcuffed to a hospital bed.
And finally, EZ got his own personal revenge on Dita Galindo after she confessed to ordering the hit that got his mother Marisol Reyes killed. She begged for death and EZ delivered before burning her body after she wrote suicide notes to convince anybody looking for answers that she took her own life. Of course, nothing is ever as clean as that because Marcus Alvarez — founding member of the Mayans and now right-hand man to Miguel Galindo — spotted motorcycle tracks leading away from the scene of Dita’s demise.
That pretty much catches us up to where we begin so with that said, let’s recap the first two episodes of “Mayans M.C.” season 3 titled “Pap Struggles with the Death Angel” and “’The Orneriness of Kings”…
The ramifications of EZ and Angel blackmailing Lincoln Potter — a move nobody in the Mayans actually knew about — has resulted in problems for the entire club. Through Potter’s power in the Attorney General’s office, he’s essentially had the border between the United States and Mexico shut down with Border Patrol on constant surveillance to cut down on the amount of illegal crossings.
More and more immigrants are being detained and the investigations have even led to the Department of Justice finding a tunnel — the one that led to the dress making shop in the pilot episode — sealed up and closed with concrete.
That all leads to problems for the Mayans, who have always used the heroin trade as their main pipeline of income.
Of course, the border being shutdown has led to problems across all of Santo Padre.
The once thriving community has almost turned into a ghost town, now only occupied by the people who either refuse or can’t afford to leave, the criminal element and the military vehicles lining the streets.
EZ, now a fully patched member, goes to visit his father Felipe, who is struggling under the weight of watching his son murder Dita Galindo, regardless of how much she was asking to die. Felipe has fallen into a deep, dark depression to the point where he barely rises out of bed and doesn’t even acknowledge EZ’s presence when he shows up each morning with a breakfast burrito just hoping to get him moving.
As for Angel, he’s consoling himself by having sex with one of the girls who hangs around the Mayan clubhouse. He still looks at the photo of his baby boy that Potter sent him after Adelita gave birth but he’s trying to drown out his pain with something that obviously gives him a whole lot of pleasure.
Then there’s Coco, who took shrapnel in the eye last season during one of the battles with the Vatos Malditos. It seems doctors prescribed him Oxycontin to deal with the pain but the problem now is that Coco is hooked on the dangerous opioids and he can’t give them up.
In fact, Coco’s addiction has caused serious problems at home and at work as he’s spending every dime on the pills, which means he stopped paying his daughter Letty’s tuition and he’s even gone as far as selling his car in order to get more Oxy.
At the tunnel, EZ and Angel meet up with Coco and Gilly, who have returned from Mexico with a small shipment of heroin — far less than the usual haul but with border security tightened, this is all they can move across. Everybody notices that Coco is short tempered and not himself but there is no Mayan intervention in this episode.
As for the heroin, they hand it off to a woman named Alicia, who is struggling to get by after her job at the Galindo Agro-Park fell through when construction on the project stalled. With no way to make ends meet, Alicia has agreed to become a mule, running heroin tucked into a pair of car seats in order to get through the local border checkpoints.
But even that play goes awry after a nervous Alicia can’t quite answer the border patrol’s questions without looking very jittery and when she’s asked to pull off to the side for an additional search, she panics and makes a run for it. A set of road spikes quickly stops her and Alicia gets busted with the Mayans’ heroin.
As for EZ, Angel, Gilly and Coco — they visit a local bar to have some drinks but that soon erupts into an argument between members, which then spills over into a fight with four members of the military also at the same place.
Back at the clubhouse, Bishop berates the members for starting a bar fight when all eyes are on Santo Padre right now.
It seems in the wake of his orders to eliminate the Vatos Malditos, the gun trade that was supposed to get handed over from the Sons of Anarchy has fallen apart, which is crippling the other Mayan charters. Palo — the leader of the Vatos is still missing — and nobody has forgotten about the dead member of the Sons of Anarchy, who was buried in the dirt in Mexico with nobody the wiser (yet anyways). The Mayan kings — Ramos and Canche — are putting pressure on Bishop and Santo Padre to deliver heroin in order to keep all the charters going but even that trade is drying up fast with the border shutdowns.
Bishop also finds out that Les Packer (played by Robert Patrick) from the San Bernardino chapter of Sons of Anarchy has gotten cancer and it’s not looking good for him.
Because of everything else happening, Bishop tells the club to just forget about Palo from the Vatos Malditos — that’s a luxury they can’t afford right now. There are much bigger problems to deal with like a meeting later that night with the other Mayan kings.
Still, Taza warns his brothers that Palo will come back for them in one way or another. It seems during his days as a Vatos Malditos member, he personally saw Palo slit his own brother’s throat and hold him while he bled out and died. That’s the kind of ruthless man seeking vengeance on them now but Bishop just can’t be bothered with it right now, especially with so much more on his plate.
Before the meeting takes place, everyone tries to find refuge for a few hours — including EZ going on a date with Gabriela, the friend of Letty’s who he flirted with a season ago. It seems these two have gotten closer in recent weeks but EZ is still doing his best to hide his true nature from Gaby — like telling her his busted knuckles are from accidentally being burned fixing his bike rather than punching a rival repeatedly when they decided to cross the Mayans.
Finally, when Bishop and the rest of the members from the Santo Padre chapter arrive at a bridge to meet with Ramos and Canche, they are told that this isn’t meant to be a confrontation or a fight. Instead, Ramos insists that this is an attempt to rebuild the relationship from inside the club.
The way he proposes doing that is for the Santo Padre chapter to begin bringing in double their normal load of heroin and handing it out to the other charters so they can continue to operate while the gun trade is off the table. But this isn’t a request as much as an order because they blame Bishop’s need for revenge as the reason why the gun operation has fallen apart after the Vatos Malditos were eliminated.
At first, Bishop just scoffs at the request but then he flat out declines and tells the kings to go fuck themselves because the Mayans couldn’t survive without the Santo Padre pipeline. That’s the end of the meeting as Bishop leads his club away from the bridge and it appears the Mayans are more fractured than ever before.
At the Galindo compound, Emily’s relaxing swim is interrupted by a visit from Santo Padre Mayor Antonia Pena. She has arrived to inform Emily that the entire town is about to shatter into pieces after the Galindo Agro-Park was shut down, which has now resulted in the police force being cut down and not even trash is being picked up any longer. Mayor Pena warns Emily that if they don’t do something soon, Santo Padre will cease to exist.
Of course, Emily has her own problems at home after firing her housekeeper Maria for just allowing Mayor Pena into their home without warning. Emily is dealing with a fussy child and an absentee father because Miguel has been spending all of his time down in Mexico lately while trying to maintain some sense of control over the crumbling Galindo empire.
When she tries to tell him about Pena’s visit, he more or less just brushes it off and tells his wife that the town’s problem isn’t their problem. Without being able to bring supplies over from Mexico, there’s no cost feasible way to build the Agro-Park and turn a profit. In fact, at this point, Miguel says writing off the property would probably wield them better profits than trying to build the Agro-Park using supplies and builders from the United States.
He can’t be bothered to talk any longer because Miguel has work to do on this day.
His first stop is to the psychiatrist’s office where his mother used to go for therapy. In the wake of her “suicide,” Miguel is searching for any kind of answers — he ask the doctor to tell him what was ailing his mother so much and did he play a part in her demise? Miguel eventually breaks down in tears, just trying to find some reason behind his mother taking her own life.
When the psychiatrist refuses to answer on the basis of doctor-patient confidentiality, Miguel leaves but then orders two of his men to murder her later that same night.
As for Miguel, he eventually makes his way down into Mexico and it turns out he’s having an affair on his wife Emily by sleeping with Governor Sederica Palomo — the politician he helped put into office under the guise that she was going to dismantle the Galindo cartel yet in reality, they are working together.
It seems Miguel and Palomo are quite close these days and being with her appears to be the only joy he’s getting right now.
Outside of those romps between the sheets, Miguel is struggling to maintain control over his territory in Mexico and his need for answers about his mother’s suicide just overwhelms every other part of his life, He even murders Paco, who was one of his most trusted soldiers, just because he was driving the day that Dita made her escape just before she took her own life.
It’s also clear that Miguel’s behavior isn’t sitting too well with Marcus Alvarez, who gave up his life as the leader of the Mayans to serve the Galindo cartel. Now he’s watching Miguel lose himself after losing his mother and it’s affecting every single decision he’s making.
As for Emily, her unraveling is just beginning because later her sister Erin comes to visit after an invitation from “Mike” — the name she always called Miguel when they were growing up together. Judging by the interaction between sisters, Erin was always flighty and never had much need for responsibility, which meant that always landed on Emily’s shoulders.
When Miguel finally returns home that night, he informs Emily that he invited Erin to stay with them permanently to help out with their son. Emily barely has a chance to respond before Miguel is kissing her forehead and telling her goodnight as he goes upstairs to wash away the sins of the day with a hot shower.
You Can’t Go Home Again
Down in Mexico, the Federal authorities are patrolling the streets when they meet up with members of Los Olvidados — the rebel group that Adelita once controlled. They kill the agents and steal the truck for a plan that will come into action later.
As for Adelita, she’s been tortured by the American government ever since her baby was born. They hang her by handcuffs and pipe in sounds of her child screaming and shrieking for his mother just as added torment. But it seems Adelita’s days of suffering are almost over because Lincoln Potter, who is currently on leave, orchestrated her release and she’s being set back to Mexican authorities.
Of course, Potter’s right hand Agent Linares knows this is a death sentence for Adelita. The second she steps foot into Mexican soil, the local authorities will kill her dead.
At the border, Adelita — with her head covered by a hood — is handed over to the Mexican authorities with Linares actually apologizing for how this all ended.
The good news for Adelita, once she’s inside the vehicle, her hood is removed and she’s greeted by members of her own group, Los Olvidados, who used the trucks stolen to then intercept the meeting for the exchange with the U.S. Department of Justice.
Sadly, while Los Olvidados thought they were getting a leader back, Adelita is so rattled and distraught from the torture she received that she’s barely coherent much less ready to tell them to do anything.
Back at the new compound, Adelita is disturbed to find out that her favorite Mini has disappeared, apparently leaving after there was a problem with some of the other members. Later that night, Adelita ends up leaving the compound, much to the chagrin of her friend in charge because her return was supposed to be greeted as the start of another revolution.
Instead, Los Olvidados have been abandoned by Galindo, Governor Palomo and now apparently their own leader.
A breakfast date between EZ and Gaby ends up back at his father’s house where he delivers yet another burrito in hopes that Felipe will eventually rise from his bed. When EZ’s not around, Felipe manages to at least sit up in order to apologize profusely to the memory of his dead wife about the way that his sons ended up. Particularly, Felipe is sorry for all the ways that EZ has been corrupted, particularly considering he strangled Dita Galindo and then set her body on fire.
At the house, Gaby joins EZ inside because she wants to see where he grew up and she ends up washing dishes and telling him to leave her there while she takes care of the house. EZ makes sure to hide Felipe’s gun just in case he wakes up and finds a strange girl there cleaning.
When Felipe finally gets out of bed, he instinctively looks for the gun, but then realizes one of his sons must have left this girl there at his house. He’s short tempered with her at first but Gaby is persistent and she ends up making him dinner as the two of them share a meal together and he actually opens up to her.
Well at least until EZ returns and he tells his son he doesn’t need a babysitter.
It’s quite clear also that EZ and Gaby are becoming quite close and he even admits to his brother that she’s somebody special — and that prompts Angel to throw up in his mouth just a little bit.
Hail to the King
With the Santo Padre chapter at odds with the rest of the Mayans, Bishop calls a meeting to talk to the other members to find out where their loyalties lie. Just as EZ is about to speak up, Angel cuts him off and more or less tells Bishop that the other chapters can fuck off because they are supplying the heroin trade to keep all of them afloat right now.
The rest of the members more or less agree and EZ refuses to speak but Angel later reminds him that he’s a full patch member now — speaking your mind comes with the territory.
Later, EZ pulls Bishop aside to tell him an idea he had after thinking about his own time in prison as well as what it means to be a king.
Bishop ends up calling a second meeting, this time inviting members from the Tuscon chapter of the Mayans to join them led by their president Ibarra (played by MMA referee Mike Beltran).
Ibarra informs them that they have brothers languishing in prisons and they depend on the heroin trade to more or less survive on the inside. If that heroin dries up, the Mayans in prison can pretty much consider themselves dead.
That’s when EZ decides to tell everyone his plan.
Rather than cutting off the Arizona chapter, Santo Padre will continue to funnel heroin to them but only Tuscon specifically so they can keep the prison trade going and dish out supplies to the rest of the charters. He also suggests instead of nickel and diming their way across the border with small shipments that they make one huge haul with 10 to 20 times as much heroin that way they are flush with supplies for months rather than days.
EZ says that now the heroin surplus will stay with the Tuscon chapter, which will cut of Canche from his power base as one of the kings. Eventually, the increased heroin trade in Southern California and Tuscon will begin to suck the Mayans’ chapter dry up north, which then takes Ramos out of power as well.
In the end, EZ wants to dethrone two of the Mayan kings — Ramos and Canche — and hand over complete control to the last man standing — his president Bishop.
Everybody at the table agrees including Ibarra, who is happy to call Bishop his only king moving forward. But he cautions Bishop about the potential blowback from Alvarez considering he was the one who put Ramos and Canche into power in the first place.
Bishop answers back by reminding Ibarra that Alvarez gave up his stripes — he’s no longer a Mayan.
As for EZ’s plan, Bishop tells his newest member that he better be ready to enact everything he’s been selling if this club is going to survive the next few months at odds with the rest of the Mayan charter.
Nothing will be easy to accomplish, especially with Palo still lurking in the shadows and just as Taza predicted, he’s not going to go away without a fight.
First, Palo calls on Montez — the member of the Sons of Anarchy Motorcycle Club Redwood Original — and it seems they had some kind of side hustle happening behind the back of club president Chibs Telford. Palo also reminds Montez that his brother “Tommy” went missing from that party down in Mexico yet nobody seems to be questioning what happened to him. Tommy is obviously the member of the Sons of Anarchy who was gunned down along with the rest of the Vatos Malditos.
Finally, Palo makes one more move by killing a Border Patrol agent and stealing his truck. To what end? That’s what we don’t know and that might be the scariest thing about this man who wants to burn the Mayans to the ground.
As for Coco, he fails to make it to the second meeting because he goes out trying to score more Oxy. When his first supplier has run dry, he tells him about a place called “Meth Mountain” where a guy named Butterlfy is controlling all of the local Oxycontin trade now.
Coco makes his way to Meth Mountain and strikes a deal with Butterfly to hand over Letty’s iPad for two pills because that’s all it’s worth to him. But Coco has another plan when he pulls his gun and steals all of the Oxy away from Butterfly, who seems none too concerned that his drugs are being taken from him.
That’s because Butterfly has backup — and a single whistle results in dozens of people pouring out of their trailers, all in pursuit of Coco. When they finally catch up, his car won’t start and the mob eventually pulls him from the vehicle where he’s then placed into a circle with all of the member of Meth Mountain surrounding him.
Just when a different leader emerges with a cocked gun and tells Coco that he doesn’t belong there, the trigger doesn’t get pulled because another member recognizes him from the past. She utters Coco’s name and he looks up at her just as a lead pipe slams across the back of the head, knocking him unconscious.
How far will Coco go to satisfy his addiction? Can Bishop pull off the coup and take over full leadership of the Mayans? Will Adelita ever regain her senses and seek to rescue her son from American authorities? Will Miguel’s unraveling lead to the destruction of the Galindo cartel?
These are all questions that will hopefully be answered as “Mayans M.C.” season 3 continues next Tuesday night at 10 p.m. ET on FX!