British Universities Film & Video Council

moving image and sound, knowledge and access

Sons of Anarchy

Synopsis
American television drama series created by Kurt Sutter about the lives of a close-knit outlaw motorcycle club operating in Charming, a fictional town in Northern California. Loosely based on Shakespeare’s Hamlet, the show focuses on protagonist Jackson "Jax" Teller (Charlie Hunnam), the Vice President of the club who begins questioning the club and himself. His uncle, gang leader and patriarch Clay (Ron Perlman) seems to be modelled on King Claudius while Katey Sagal’s Gemma (previously married to Clay’s now dead brother) is set up as a Gertrude figure (with some Lady Macbeth thrown in for good measure). Jax stands in for Prince Hamlet himself. Jax’s reflective questioning of the SOA culture, brought on by the birth of his son, references Hamlet’s melancholy over the death of the king. Additionally, Jax ‘communicates’ with his dead father by way of his late father’s unpublished journal/manuscript. Creator Sutter has said of the Shakespeare element, "I don’t want to overplay that but it’s there. It was Jax’s father who started the club, so he’s the ghost in the action. You wonder what he would have made of the way it turned out. It’s not a version of Hamlet but it’s definitely influenced by it."
(Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sons_of_Anarchy, accessed 6/2010)
Series
Sons of Anarchy
Language
English (United States)
Country
United States
Medium
Television
Transmission details
3 Sep 2008 (Channel: FX)
Duration
45 mins

Credits

Director
Bill Gierhart; Guy Ferland; Gwyneth Horder-Payton; Kurt Sutter; Paris Barclay; Stephen K. Kay; Terence O’Hara
Producer
Art Linson; James D. Parriott; John Linson; Kurt Sutter
Cinematographer
Paul Mailbaum
Writer
Brett Conrad; Chris Collins; Dave Erickson; Jack LoGuidice; Kurt Sutter; Pat Charles
Editor
Huinter M. Via; Jacques Gravett; Jordan Goldman
Music
Bob Jr. Thiele
Production Design
Anthony Medina
Costume
Kelly Jones
Art Direction
Lori Agostino; William Eliscu
Cast
Charlie HunnamJackson ‘Jax’ Teller (Hamlet)
Ron PerlmanClarence ‘Clay’ Morrow (Claudius)
Katey SagalGemma Teller Morrow (Gertrude)
Ally WalkerAgent June Stahl
Dayton CallieChief Wayne Unser
Johnny LewisKip ‘Half Sack’ Epps
Kim CoatesAlex ‘Tig’ Tragar
Maggie SiffTara Knowles
Mark Jr. BooneRobert Munson
Ryan HurstHarry ‘Opie’ Winston
Taylor SheridanDeputy Chief David Hale
Theo RossiJean Carlos ‘Juice’ Ortiz
Tommy FlanaganFilip ‘Chibs’ Telford
William LuckingPiemont ‘Piney’ Winston

Additional Details

Production type
Television and Radio Drama
Plays
Hamlet
Keywords
motorcycles; Shakespeare, William (1564-1616); gangs

Notes

Notes
Duration given represents the running time of each episode. Season 1 and 2 have been commercially released on DVD and are available through retail outlets.
General
Sutter has hinted that he plans a five-year run for the series, with each of the five seasons mirroring the corresponding act in Hamlet.
History
The TV series premiered on the subscription network FX on September 3, 2008.
The show’s first season averaged 5.4 million viewers while
the series’ second season finale, "Na Triobloidi," was watched by 4.33 million total viewers alone. With those numbers, the show secured the crown for the top scripted drama series during the season’s 13-week run in the Tuesday 10 p.m. timeslot in average delivery of the Men 18-49 demo (See http://www.tvsquad.com/category/sons-of-anarchy/, accessed 6/2010).
Reviews
Source: IMDb, http://www.fxnetworks.com/shows/originals/soa/(official website)
Review: Sergio Angelini, ‘Sons of Anarchy - Season 1’ , Sight and Sound: The International Film Magazine, Vol. 20, Issue 5 (May 2010), p. 98.
For a full cast and crew list covering all episodes see http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1124373/ (accessed 6/2010).

Production Company

Name

Fox 21

Notes
Fox 21 is a reality television production arm of Twentieth Century Fox.
Name

FX Newtworks

Web
http://www.fxnetworks.com/ External site opens in new window

Distributor (DVD)

Name

20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

Web
http://www.fox.co.uk/ External site opens in new window
Phone
020 7753 8686
Fax
020 7437 1625
Address
Twentieth Century House
31-32 Soho Square
London
W1D 3AP
Notes
Feature films from Fox and MGM for sale on DVD and Blu-ray via retail outlets.

Record Stats

This record has been viewed 890 times.