For seven seasons, Sons of Anarchy fans have watched Jax Teller perform acts and retain memories that most people in the real world are incapable of living with. He’s been a maelstrom of gore-soaked bedlam for both his SAMCRO brotherhood and his immediate family, as well as a shitload of people who he was far less fond of. It sometimes only takes one lit match to bring down even the most well-constructed house, and Jax is the trick birthday candle that just never stops burning things…and it’s attached to the front of a Mack truck made out of automatic weapons. There soon won’t be anything left for him to destroy.
Jax has to go. And not just to prison. He has to go away for good. And while I’m pretty sure I could list at least a dozen justifiable arguments for the necessity of Jax’s demise, here are the three biggest reasons why Jax Teller should long be pushing up the daisies by the time creator Kurt Sutter’s next series is on the air. That Sutter loosely based Sons of Anarchy on the tragedy-filled Hamlet, which ends with basically everyone dying, is the unofficial fourth reason.
Jax Stands for Nothing NowI used to like Jax; I really did. When Sons of Anarchy began, he was a fatherless ruffian attempting to carve a sunshine-friendly knothole into the life and times of SAMCRO. Even though he had many people on his side, the series was Jax against the world, and audiences were expected to join his quest to keep SAMCRO as respectable and bloodless as possible. Then his worldview shifted and it became a quest to keep Tara and his sons safe and on the path to a better life, and we were still with him, because he was building his case against Big Bad antagonists like Clay. But now, especially after this season of misdirected vengeance, Jax’s motivations aren’t even shadows of their former selves.
He’s now on his way to a Mr. Mayhem vote for a murder that is just the latest in an extremely long line of them, but it’s been a long while since Jax had a real endgame behind his actions. His treatment of Juice – which flipped from murderous revenge to stringing him along for club duties – is a microcosm of Jax’s actions as SAMCRO’s President, which have always been more about solving ten different small problems instead of one massive one. His gameplan is a bullet-riddled mess and there’s nothing left for him at SAMCRO. And we all know that the life of a former club member is no life at all, so it all needs to end.
There is No Chance for RedemptionThere were different points in Jax’s warped conquest that he approached things with the scales of liberty strapped to his back, even when he wasn’t at liberty to do anything about the situation. (I bet President Jax thinks Vice President Jax was a total puss.) Jax used to think of the greater good as an actual greater good, instead of just an unattainable ideal to immediately replace with piles of dead criminals. Many of the people who died at either Jax’s hand or command were scum of the earth, and most of them probably required very little second thought once they were gone.
But now Jax is living with Gemma’s blood on his hands (and his bone-white sneaks), and those are the stains that can never be washed away, no matter how many beers and lurid sexual acts he uses as medication. Jax also knows that he was more-directly-than-indirectly responsible for Bobby losing an eye and some fingers before being shot through the head, and that there are a lot of other SAMCRO members who died under his watch in the past. To make matters even more complicated (sort of), he not only killed a fellow charter president based on erroneous information, but he then lied to everyone else about why he did it. There will be some redemption for this last one, but only for others. Jax will never be able to undo the damage he has caused, and he arguably has very little damage left to cause. It’s time he pays the final price for it all.
His Kids No Longer Need HimJax has long been one of television’s worst fathers, spending more time saying goodbye to his sons Abel and Thomas than anything else. Still, if we’re judging him by his words over his actions, we know that a lot of what Jax does with SAMCRO is so they can have a roof over their heads and an endless supply of blood money paying for their cereal and baby food. He was, at one point, ready and set to run away with Tara and the kids, starting over from scratch and going straight. And I’ve got some ocean-front property for anyone who believed that storyline would ever come to fruition.
But now Abel knows that Gemma murdered Tara, and that Wendy is his actual mother, and while it’ll be years before Thomas has an inkling about his rotten family tree, the infant isn’t exactly in the most stable of situations. These sons need a future where hope and survival aren’t just fictional concepts, and there is a chance for that embedded within Nero’s big farm plan, which Wendy actually seemed sold on. And since there’s a good chance that Nero will also be biting a bullet in the finale, Abel and Thomas could really be free from the gang life altogether. Abel’s future is going to be a neverending newsreel of information about Jax’s wrongdoings over the years, and like Jax dealing with John Teller’s secret sins, it’s probably better for Abel if he can’t get any of the information firsthand.
Don't forget to watch Sons of Anarchy's series finale on Tuesday, December 9. But first, let us know where you think Jax should end up.
How Do You Think Jax Should Come Out Of The Finale?