With The Shield, Damages, Nip/Tuck and Rescue Me, FX Network has quickly become the best stop for scripted drama. With an amazing resume before it, the bar was set extremely high for the new motorcycle gang drama, Sons of Anarchy. First off, the cast of Sons of Anarchy is just about the best you can get, not only in television but in general. Starring Charlie Hunnam (Undeclared, Green Street Hooligans), Ron Perlman (Hellboy, City of Lost Children) and Katey Sagal (Lost, Married With Children), Anarchy hits hard from the start and doesn’t let up (at least through the first 2 episodes screened for press). Not since The Shield have I been so excited for a show after showing generally no interest initially. FX consistenly pushes the boundaries of basic cable and catapults their shows into the HBO and Showtime realm with violence, sex and realism.
Not for one moment does anything seem forced or fake and, just as Nip/Tuck let us all in on a world that we have never seen before, Anarchy pushes us in to the life of a motorcycle gang for better and, mostly, for worse. The stand-out lead is Hunnam, portraying young father struggling with his longing to escape and his love for the life he currently leads. In a small role, Drea De Matteo (The Sopranos) shines as the crack-addicted mother of Hunnam’s premature child and I can only hope that they will utilize her immense talents in future episodes.
Sons of Anarchy is borderline flawless. Engaging, funny, thrilling and emotional, this just may be the best new show of the year.