Kurt Sutter had said there was just too much story to cram into a simple one-hour finale for the epic fourth season of Sons of Anarchy. With ‘To Be (Act 1)’, co-written and directed by Sutter, fans can expect to find out why.

With the sheer amount of manipulation, half-truths and flat-out lies floating around the inner confines of the Sons of Anarchy, it’s a wonder the motorcycle club is capable of running a garage, let alone take part in an astronomical amount of illegal dealings.

But, like any hotbed of Shakespearean deceit, SAMCRO may finally be ready to implode.

After Opie (Ryan Hurst) catches word from Unser (Dayton Callie) that his father, Piney (William Lucking) was gunned down by Clay (Ron Perlman), Opie saw fit to return the favor by putting two slugs in Clay’s chest. However, before Opie could deliver the deathblow to Clay, Jax (Charlie Hunnam) stepped in, wounding Opie in the process, but ostensibly saving the lives of both men.

Unfortunately, Jax and Unser’s attempt at covering up Opie’s would-be assassination leads the always half-cocked Tig (Kim Coates) to go rogue, and attempt to take out The Kings head-honcho, Laroy (Troy Kittles), on his own. The episode’s second botched hit finds the Sons coming to Tig’s rescue, as he flees from Laroy and his muscle.

Meanwhile, Gemma (Katey Sagal), endeavors to acquire the letters from Tara (Maggie Siff), convincing her that handing them over to Clay will be the only way any of them can hope to continue breathing. Acquiescing to Gemma’s request, Tara (reluctantly?) provides the matriarch with the letter’s location, knowing full well their intended use.

At long last, Jax and his mother have the confrontation that’s been brewing for some time, and Gemma finally comes clean about John Teller and Clay’s role in his death. With this information comes the inescapable urging of her son to bring down Clay and to take his rightful place at the gavel.

While Jax ponders his next move, Tara stakes a claim on her husband – proving herself to be as masterful at manipulation as Gemma.

Is Jax preparing to lead the Sons, or will he finally skip town and leave behind the only life he’s ever known? And, will Clay earn an eleventh hour reprieve, or is his survival not to be?

As always, discuss under the assumption that other have watched the episode. If you have not, the comments section should be considered off limits.

The season finale of Sons of Anarchy season 4 airs December 6 @10pm on FX.