Sons of Anarchy
Sons of Anarchy

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"The Culling" is the twelfth episode of the second season of the FX original series Sons of Anarchy, and the series' twenty-fifth episode overall.


The entire SAMCRO family goes on lockdown inside the clubhouse as Jax and Clay prepare to battle The League. A.J. Weston learns the truth about Ethan Zobelle's business dealings in Charming. Applying what she has learned from Gemma, Tara ensures her position at St. Thomas Hospital.


SAMCRO prepares for war: club members pack up food, clothes, supplies, and loved ones; Tara packs a medical bag; Clay and Tig check weapons and ammunition. The compound is abuzz with activity, and many different SOA charters are represented. Club members armed with AK-47s stand guard on the rooftops; cars create a barricade at the front gate, pulling aside only to allow entrances and exits. Jax gives the order to “lock it down.” Inside, the clubhouse is packed, even Chief Unser is there; Clay addresses the crowd. He says they are all family, and “SAMCRO takes care of their own.” He explains that the club has some business to handle which could put their members and the people connected to them in “unfriendly situations”; he says everyone will be safe here until matters are resolved. No one leaves without an escort.

In the chapel Tig says they have enough ammo; they just need guns. Clay says there are two cases at the IRA safe house, but the ATF is watching. Chibs is concerned that an ATF bust will lead Jimmy to him, but Jax says they have a plan: Unser produces the ATF surveillance photos showing Cameron and Edmond with Zobelle; Jax thinks the photos will convince Jimmy that the Hayes men have already been approached by the Feds, and are the real rats. Clay says they will use a “bait and switch” to get the guns past the Feds. He will go see Jimmy; he tells Jax to “start spreading the racial harmony gossip.” As Half Sack leaves the room, he's asked what happened. Sack says that his body rejected the implant, and that it was a stupid idea. When he leaves it's mentioned that Sack has one month left of his prospect year. Everyone says they are okay with Sack patching in.

Jax, Opie, and Juice park their Harleys in front of Impeccable Smokes; Weston exits the store to confront Jax. Jax tells Weston about Zobelle’s dealings with Marcus Alvarez and the Mayans; it seems the “great white hope” has been giving AB guns to the Hispanic gang in order to control the heroin war: all Zobelle cares about is money. Weston seethes with rage and doubt. Chibs rides up to see Fiona standing. They both go into the bathroom where Chibs tells Fi she needs to come with him in order to be safe. Fi is scared that Chibs ratted on Jimmy. He tells her he didn't. Fi tells Chibs he never changes. Chibs agrees, then they kiss. Clay meets with Jimmy O’ and shows him the ATF photos; Clay says Edmond has turned rat, and the ATF is watching the safe house so they can’t get their guns. Clay suggests a solution. In the safe house Edmond seals shut a gun crate. There’s a knock at the door: it’s Polly Zobelle; the young lovers can’t keep their hands off each other. At the clubhouse Tara seems uncomfortable with all the attention she’s getting paid by the “Crow-eaters.” Gemma tells her to get used to it: she’s “Jax Teller’s old lady,” and people in the clubhouse (and in Charming) need to show her respect. Clay, Jax, and the others meet with Laroy and Henry Lin; they explain how Zobelle and the Aryan Brotherhood have been bankrolling the recent Mayan power grab. Jax says if they can combine forces against their mutual enemies, the One-Niners and the Chinese can divide the spoils. They agree. Weston arrives at the AB warehouse. He finds empty gun crates. In a back room he discovers the heroin distribution center; he’s infuriated to learn Jax was correct. Weston confronts Ule, who confirms that Zobelle sanctioned the operation. Weston shoots Ule in the head.

At the compound Tara bandages Chucky’s burned stump-hands: Piney says Chucky just “showed up at the gate” with news about Caracara. Tara and Gemma leave (with SOA security) to run errands. Chucky says Weston and the AB are responsible for the warehouse fire: he was a witness. Bobby thinks Chucky should report what he knows to the police: it will expedite their insurance payout. Jax tells Unser they “planted the seed” with Weston; he says they’ll need some help “inciting” him. Agents watch as Polly leaves the IRA safe house. Stahl goes in and confronts Edmond; she wonders where Cameron is. He says Jimmy is coming personally to collect the guns to give to SAMCRO, so she doesn’t need his father; she can nab both Jimmy and the Sons when they make the exchange. She warns him to “play this out the right way,” otherwise she’ll bury both him and his “Da.” Polly returns to Impeccable Smokes. Her father knows she’s been with Edmond, and is displeased. Weston enters, and draws a 9mm. He confronts Zobelle about being a “race traitor”; he produces a brick of heroin from the warehouse, and says he’s already killed Ule. Zobelle tries to explain his actions but Weston is disconsolate. Weston’s cell phone rings: it’s his son Cliffy; Weston rushes to his SUV. Zobelle tells Polly to call Hale, and report that someone threatened her life: the Deputy Chief will send somebody to keep her safe. He kisses her on the lips in an un-fatherly way, and leaves to “secure new protection.” Weston arrives at the Charming Police Station in time to see his sons being taken by Child Family Services; the CFS officer says the two boys (aged ten and six) were left alone in the house with access to loaded firearms. Hale and Unser watch from the steps; Unser tells his deputy he called the CFS. The officer says the children will be placed in foster homes until a hearing; Weston is livid. Jax rolls up, and tells Weston “I see your kids are taking the trip I arranged.” Nose-to-nose, Jax adds: “at least I didn’t gang-rape them.” Weston gets it: Jax wants revenge; they agree to a time and place. The ten best Aryans against the ten best Sons… “no weapons... no witnesses.” Hale takes note of their encounter.

At the police station Hale tells Unser about Polly’s call, and also about the killing in the drug warehouse. He thinks SAMCRO is responsible, and tells Unser he won’t abide bloodshed in Charming. Hale assigns an unmarked car to tail Jax or Clay if either leaves the compound. Chucky finishes giving his statement on the Caracara fire to an officer. Hale reads the report. En route to St. Thomas, Tara and Gemma talk about God and faith; Gemma says she believes everyone has “a job to do.” She says she is “a fierce mother,” and Tara is a healer. Stahl and the ATF stake out the Irish safe house. Chucky strolls the block with a canvas bag over his shoulder, dropping flyers on doorsteps and vehicles. A black SUV with tinted glass arrives. Jimmy gets out with his bodyguard (Luke) and a young Hispanic man (Armando). Edmond says the guns are in the garage; Jimmy tells Luke and Armando to load the crates into the SUV. The SUV pulls away, and Stahl follows. Edmond exits the house, and gets into the ATF surveillance van; the van pulls away. Chucky dials his phone, and reports “all clear”; several Harleys roar around the corner and up the Irish’s driveway. The garage door opens, revealing Jimmy O’ and four crates of AK-47s; Jimmy and Clay embrace. The guys load the guns into the SOA van. Things still seem unfinished between Jimmy and Chibs. The black SUV (believed to be transporting Jimmy and the guns) pulls inside the loading bay of the Galt Surplus store; the ATF agents park across the street. Clay and the other bikers arrive, and go inside; Stahl gives the word, and the ATF raids the store. Unfortunately for Stahl, Jimmy isn’t there (Armando was driving the SUV); and neither are the guns: the crates are empty except for two dead rats. Stahl is furious: she’s been duped; Edmond is terrified: Jimmy is on to him. The Sons walk out, satisfied. Stahl tells Edmond his only hope for protection is to bring in Cameron to roll on Jimmy. At St. Thomas, Tara finishes some paperwork; a cocky Margaret Murphy enters. The doctor and the administrator exchange unpleasant words. When Margaret refers to Gemma as “that biker whore,” Tara defends her new family: she lashes out, first choking Margaret, and then punching her in the nose. She tells Margaret that SAMCRO owns the town and the police; they know where she lives, and where her kids go to school. She advises Margaret drop the “bogus claim” against her.

At the SAMCRO compound, the guys kiss their ladies goodbye and the parade of Harleys roar towards battle. The unmarked police car tails the pack from a distance. Jax, Clay, and the rest of the club’s “ten best” wait in a clearing; their motorcycle headlights illuminate the rural battlefield. They watch as a small caravan of Aryan Brotherhood approach; Weston gets out of his truck, backed by twenty AB armed with AKs. Jax surmises that Weston couldn’t handle a “fair fight”; Weston says “Fair is for losers.” Jax agrees; Tig lets out a shrill whistle. A dozen armed Niners and a dozen armed Asians emerge from the darkness, outflanking the AB: it’s a stalemate. Jax says they should stick to the plan. With primal screams, the Sons and the AB charge each other. They fight hand-to-hand; the white supremacists seem outmatched by the revenge-driven Sons. Jax gains the upper hand against Weston; Tig bites a guy’s ear off. The Sons are on the cusp of victory when the melee is interrupted by the lights and sounds of approaching squad cars; the Asians and Niners head off back into the woods as Weston orders his men to retreat. Jax tells Weston they’re not finished; Weston agrees and stays behind. Hale arrives, gets out of his Jeep, and approaches. Jax says this doesn’t concern him. Hale says it does: they’re in Charming. A bloody Weston says there’s been no crime; Hale places Weston under arrest for the Caracara fire. Jax is frustrated: he’ll have to wait a little longer for his revenge. Clay tells Tig to call Unser, and have him “move on the cigar store.” Out in front of Impeccable Smokes the squad car pulls away as Unser enters the store; he tells Polly “its closing time.” Hale sees the protection detail return to the police station: they say Unser relieved them. Hale senses trouble; he tells the officers to follow him. Clay, Jax, and the others enter the cigar store. Clay demands to know where Polly’s father is; she says she doesn’t know. Clay slaps her hard across the face, and grabs her by the hair. Well aware of the part she played in Gemma’s rape, he shows her no mercy: he pulls his 9mm, and aims it up her skirt. Zobelle returns; Clay says they need to talk “outside Charming.” Zobelle refuses to leave; he says Clay will have to kill him there “on Main Street.” Clay is willing to oblige; he forces Zobelle to his knees, and raises his gun. Hale and his deputies arrive; Hale can’t believe what he’s seeing. Unser says there has been no crime, “and there won’t be one”; he pulls rank, and tells the others to leave. Hale starts to go. Zobelle blurts out that he and his daughter “are in possession of illegal narcotics,” and shows them the brick of heroin Weston brought by earlier; Zobelle demands to be arrested. Unser is helpless to intervene; despite his mixed emotions, Hale places Zobelle and his daughter in cuffs. Jax leans in close, and whispers to Zobelle reassuringly: “we’re going to kill you.”


Main Cast[]

Supporting cast[]

Special guest stars

Guest stars


Notable Quotes[]

Clay: (referring to Half-Sack) Where's he at?
Chibs: His year's up in about a month.
Clay: How does everyone feel about patching him in?
Chibs: Yeah.
Clay: Half a sack, shitload of balls.

Tara: I pity you. You walk around here with your little administrative degree, pretending like you know medicine. You're just a cheap suit too stupid and lazy to get into med school. So now you compensate by making the healers jump through hoops.

Margaret: Well, I guess someone's true colors have finally bled through. I guess you and that biker whore you travel with…
Tara: (grabs Margaret by the throat). How dare you. You don't know her. You don't know any of them.
Margaret: Oh my god! You hit me. You're finished. I'm calling security…this is assault.
Tara: No. (punches Margaret) That's assault.

Clay: Whatever happened to 10-on-10 with no weapons?
Jax: Guess you couldn't handle a fair fight, huh?
Weston: Fair's for losers. I'd rather win.
Jax: (reveals the Niners and Triads) Yeah, me too.

Church meetings[]

Tig: Alright. Got all the ammo, we just need the AK's.
Clay: We got two cases at the safe house. Problem is ATF will be sitting on it waiting for Cameron to show.
Chibs: And when he does, Stahl's gonna get to Jimmy O and tag me the rat.
Clay: We're gonna protect your family, Chibs. I already put a call in to McGee in Belfast. Club's gonna watch over Kerrianne.
Bobby: And you should reach out to Fiona. Bring her in, we'll keep her safe.
Chibs: I know. I appreciate it, boys.
Jax: It's all just a precaution, bro. We think we got a way to get our guns and convince Jimmy who the real rat is.
Tig: Right.
Unser: Lifted these from ATF before they left. (puts pictures of Zobelle and Hayes on table)
Jax: We show Jimmy that Cameron and Edmond have been under the ATF's thumb, should be enough to convince the IRA the betrayal's in-house.
Chibs: Good.
Happy: But how do we get our guns from the safe house?
Clay: The old bait and switch. We'll move on the Irish. (to Jax) You, Ope and Juice start spreading the racial harmony gossip, alright?
Jax: You got it.
(most everyone leaves)
Clay (to Half-Sack): Hey Sack. What happened?
Half-Sack: My body rejected the implant.
Clay: Aw.
Half-Sack: I know. Stupid idea. (leaves)
Clay: Awww. Where's he at?
Chibs: His year's up in about a month.
Bobby: How's everybody feelin' about him patching in?
Jax: Yeah.
Clay: Half a sack, shitload of balls.


2 unnamed Mexican women - Shot by AJ Weston

Ule - Shot by AJ Weston


Featured Music[]

  • Billy Valentine & the Forest Rangers - "Someday Never Comes"
  • Tara Holloway - "In the Flesh"
  • Pearlene - "Watch the Way"
  • Straylight Run - "Later That Year" and "Hands in the Sky (Big Shot)"
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