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Sons Of Anarchy: Season 1 Review

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FX biker drama starring Ron Perlman. Otherwise known as Hellboy’s Angels

★★★★

Whether your ride comes in the form of a tricked-out Harley Dyna or a sputtering, ten year-old Piaggio, there’s just something about motorbikes that gets the testosterone flowing. It’s this obsession with horsepower and bike culture that forms the crux of Sons Of Anarchy, brain-child of The Shield writer Kurt Sutter. Part-crime thriller and part-Shakespearean tragedy, SOA is, at its core, a family drama: the dysfunctional kin in this instance simply taking the form of a gun-running outlaw biker gang.

The first season throws rogue ATF agents, white supremacists and rival MCs into the mix, but it’s the personalities within the club that make the show stand out. From Ron Perlman’s cigar-chomping patriarch to Mark Boone’s inspired Jewish biker-cum-Elvis-impersonator, each of the leather-clad leads stands out as a well-rounded, distinct personality, the club politics and shifting allegiances more engaging than any number of shoot-outs or barroom brawls.

Like The Shield before it, it often strays into morally uncomfortable territory, walking the fine line between noble outlaws and violent thugs. But while the show might not always be easy viewing, it’s great TV nonetheless.

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