‘Sons of Anarchy’ Creator Reveals Impact of Major Character Death in Season 5

Published 3 years ago by , Updated September 27th, 2012 at 10:49 pm,

sons of anarchy season 5 opie death Sons of Anarchy Creator Reveals Impact of Major Character Death in Season 5

[Spoiler Warning: MAJOR Sons of Anarchy Season 5 Spoilers Below!!!]





 sons of anarchy season 5 opie jax1 Sons of Anarchy Creator Reveals Impact of Major Character Death in Season 5

By the end of last night’s episode of Sons of Anarchy, fans were left in shock as SAMCRO was forced to sacrifice one of their own to Damon Pope (Harold Perrineau), leaving Jax’s (Charlie Hunnam) longtime ally, Opie (Ryan Hurst), to be brutally murdered in prison. To help answer some of the viewer’s questions surrounding Opie’s death, series creator Kurt Sutter revealed why he decided to kill of the fan-favorite character, and how this major death will impact the rest of season 5.

Speaking with the press this morning, Sutter spoke about when he decided Opie’s fate; why Opie had to die; how Opie’s death will impact the series forever; and what’s going to happen in the rest of season 5, as a result.

Even though the death of Opie’s father, Piney, came as a shock in season 4, Sutter had already plotted out the death of Jax’s best friend by the end of season 3. Needing a way to set Jax’s character on a different path, Sutter decided to use Opie’s life as the lynchpin.

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I started thinking about it towards the end of season three, and then I think it all came together with the death of Piney last year. I got to the end of the season and realized that there was this circular dynamic that was happening with Jax and Opie that was very difficult to get out of.

As we came into this season, knowing where I want to take my hero…Jax needed that emotional upheaval, that one event that happens in a man’s life that can change the course of his destiny, and I think the death of his best friend is such an event.

Every death on Sons of Anarchy is memorable, and Opie’s is no different: taking on a gang of men, besting many, and then falling from a deathly blow to the head. While graphic deaths are always memory, Sutter’s intent was more earnest:

I wanted Opie to go out a warrior, with nobility and a sense of protecting the people [he still loves].

I don’t do things arbitrarily or just for shock value. I think there’s a sense of how deeply committed I am to the show and to the fans as well…I do think that there is a sense of [the fans] understanding why it happened and where it will go.

Continuing, Sutter had a message to fans who might be upset about Opie’s death:

What I would say to them is that yes, it’s incredibly sad, but the death of Opie will color the rest of the episodes for the rest of the series. It’s not a death that will happen in vain.

Jax will be greatly influenced by the death of Opie, and perhaps that loss, that emptiness, will color him throughout the rest of the season.

sons of anarchy season 5 samcro1 Sons of Anarchy Creator Reveals Impact of Major Character Death in Season 5

Since the beginning of the series, Opie has always been a positive support for Jax – even if he was only recently made aware of everything that was going on. Now that this element has been removed from Jax’s world so painfully, it’s reassuring to hear that the repercussions of this event are great.

Even so, the death of Opie also impacts any direct comparison that the series has with Hamlet. Even though Sutter has always mentioned that Sons of Anarchy is only loosely based on the famous William Shakespeare play, the comparisons up until now have been pretty direct. The only problem is that Opie’s counterpart in Hamlet doesn’t die in the play.

Without giving away any Hamlet spoilers (something that hasn’t been said since the 1700s), Opie’s counterpart in the play serves to be the chronicler of everything that occurs in Hamlet’s familia struggles. Now that Sutter has made this turn, who knows what other tweaks he’s made to the iconic plot, and who may now be saved (or doomed) because of it.

Right now it looks like Sons of Anarchy might be bowing out of the major death game for a bit, focusing more on the emotional struggle that Jax is facing, and the decision’s he’ll have to make to secure the future of SAMCRO. Still, it is Sons of Anarchy, so there’s always a chance for more blood.

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Sons of Anarchy airs at 10pm on FX

Source: E! Online

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  1. I heard that Ryan Hurst (Opie) has had a lot of offers for different roles. I guess he can pursue them now.

    • thats great news..I hope he gets alot of work..

  2. Opie NOOOOOOOOOOOO! G.oD Da.mmit!! Why kill Opie?!?!?! I wanted him to at least get kill Clay first!

  3. I was sad.Opie was a soldier

  4. I understand the need to “harden” Jax, however, the fight scene was weak and Opie should have killed one or two of his opponents prior to being killed. He hit the first one with a lead pipe to the temple with a full swing, realistically that opponent would have been killed or at least rendered unconscious by that blow, but he was back in the fray almost immediately. Obviously the writers have never seen what happens when that kind of blow is delivered/received.

    • Well there was that other little problem of Opie being on the room first, given a pretty good weapon, and the just waited in the middle of the room for them to come in and surround him. Anyone wanting to survive would have gone into the corner where he couldn’t be flanked.

  5. I hope Jax kills the prison guards that took Opie from us, along with POPE!

    • I am totally with you on that one….Pope should get away from this….Opie will be missed… He plays brotherhood to the TTTTT!!!!!

  6. After loving 56 straight episodes, I never thought something would turn me off of SOA.

    I was wrong.

    Kurt, I think you were wrong. I’m not alone in saying that I “was” a dedicated fan, until last night.

  7. Last nights episode was amazing; the writing, & direction of the show leaves me wanting more. All I can ask for is 2 hrs shows every tuesday.

  8. It was heart breaking but it will change Jax

  9. Clay should have been the one to die. Opie lost his wife, and dad, he should have been able to beat Clay to death. Clay still has his patch, where is the balls in the club. Clay beat the s*** out of Jimma and Jax does nothing. Juice shot a full patch member he should die.

    • CIA. Cartel. RICO. Clay isn’t going anywhere for a while

      • annoying too, the entire jemma/clay s*** is so played out, it’s been 5 seasons of the same s*** over and over. Enough with the Oedipus Rex.

  10. Get rid of tigg I hate him he is the reason all this happen.

  11. Sutter, hopefully you read this, no one gives a s*** about Jax, Jemma, Clay, Tig or most of who’s left. You basically killed off your audience with Opie. I’m gone, thanks for the memories man.

    • Speak for yourself. While Opie was also my favorite character, I still care about the others as well. So yeah, people DO give a s*** about Jax, Jemma (are you freaking serious right now?!) and all of the rest of them.

      I’d like to beat Tig’s face in right now though.

  12. Let me start by saying that Sons of Anarchy is hands down the greatest television show I have ever seen. Behind SOA is The Wire…and it is a distant second at this point. They are obviously similar in a few ways. First off, each show never holds back from removing big and fan favorite characters. These two shows although fictional are trying to portray what is like in a hardcore biker gang and portraying what it’s like dealing with the days and lives of a major drug crew. Each writer is trying to come close to the reality of things, while at the same time giving each show it’s own “Hollywood” twists. I compare getting rid of Opie is almost the same as getting rid of Stringer Bell. The statement coming across in both of these onscreen killings is that the streets aren’t safe for anyone when it comes to the two games of SOA and THe Wire. This is one of many aspects of each of these shows that makes them great…..a touch of reality. When I say reality I mean that in real life anyone can die when playing the drug, gun, or turf game. Does it suck to lose Opie….YES….but I fully understand why and we will see if it ends up being the best thing for the show in weeks to come

    • Have u ever watched the Shield? Its like the SOA meets the wire, except better than both, in my opinion.

  13. Damn, I hope you really do find a way to make Opie’s death mean something. Because you just killed the heart, soul and backbone of your show.

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  15. Hope you can keep the passion of Opies acting alive in future episodes… will be interesting. However, Opie was a key portion of the heart, soul and brotherly allegiance of that show. Man this show is better that Shield!! Opie is a HOMIE and I know he has a excellent future..

  16. Opie was a soldier to the T, Clay is someone you have to love to hate and can’t wait to see him get his. Jax is on fire, watch out for trager he’s mad.

  17. Ope was the only character I cared about personally and had a good deal invested in. I have no one to root for now, the people left are either downright nasty(clay, gamma, tig), or have nothing going on storywise(Jiice, chibs). Jax has made too many stupid choices and was a horrible friend to Opie so I don’t care about him either now.

    Did someone really compare this to the Wire? Hah, as much as I’ve enjoyed SOA it’s not up there with the best tv has to offer. Deadwood, breaking bad, sopranos, mad men off the top of my head are all vastly superior shows. SOA had the potential but there’s been too many unbelievable storylines and plot contrivances and poorly drawn characters to put it up there with the with the best of the best.

    • Wow really, Sopranos. Not even in the same leauge as SOA and Sopranos was on HBO had alot more room to work.It wasn’t nearly as intense, it was slow paced and drug out then all the sudden they had to wrap it up real quick. Not sons. Full throttle all the way.

  18. I hate that u killed off opie why don’t u kill off his mom and kids too just get rid of all that faimly why even put them in it in the first place im tired of u killing of all the good ones like one sack and i agreeclay should have died by opie beforeyou killed opie

  19. So, who is doing the home invasions ? Not the Niners. They have the contents of the safe in Gemma’s house. I like Nero. I hope he stays cool!

  20. pope is pissing me off, he burned Tigs daughter alive n he wanted Tig to rott in prison for the rest of his life. wasnt that enough?

    i hope jax didnt mean it when he made that deal with him about killing Tig.

  21. R.I.P Ope…………..btw I am in love with Maggie Siff……LONG LIVE THE QUEEN!!!!

  22. Forgive me, but – as Tig is walking up to Jax – MY DVR STOPPED RECORDING THE EPISODE. What did their conversation constitute of? Can’t believe that happened and TERRIBLY distressed that I only just now saw the almost end of this episode :( but, wow the creative powers have BALLS, the kind that sadly another robust, once-great story-filled show (TRUE BLOOD) could use a ton of. KUDOS, SOA powers…

    • Mike Wilkerson – Fangbanger Podcast Our power went out so I didn’t see any of last weeks SOA. But if you look on FX this weeks SOA is on at 10;00 p.m Eastern and last weeks SOA is coming on again 2 hours after at 12:00 A.M. So you might want to DVR them both so you can watch last weeks 1st just a thought :)

  23. I understand that he needed to be killed off and you could tell the last few episodes he’d been somewhat depressive and stopped caring about the club but it was still painful to watch him take that final blow to the head. Cant wait to see Jax rip into that prison guard and Pope. Wonder if Tigg will survive the rest of the season.

  24. It was shocking but I think, necessary. Opie really had nothing to live for. his wife and dad were gone. he didn’t seem to really care for his kids much. his warrior mentality really meant he’d do anything to save the club despite all the bad things that it had done to him.

    But it’s good, because this should lite a fire under Jax’s *ss and get him to get the ball rolling. my thought is that he’s going to try and take it back to what JT was trying to make the club. Get rid of the guns and drugs and bring it back to the MC it used to be. they keep brushing past JT’s wishes and I think that’s what Sutter is trying bring it back to in full circle. It may mean the death of Clay and Jemma to do so, but i’m sure the other members would rather it just be a brotherhood and not what it’s become.

    And i can’t believe how much Maggie’s character has changed. it’s an amazing transformation.

  25. I personally do not agree with Opie’s death. He was a soldier to the end. If you had to have him die, I feel he should have taken out at least 2, or more of those attackers, and had the guard come in and shoot him in the end. Would have made the guard more of a player in the game instead of the puss he really is. Good show, i’m not going to stop watching, but you did kill off one of my fav characters. I hope you make it worth while.

  26. Opie!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! . Y Opie. It’s hard to invision what will go on from here. But I will stay tuned to see that guard suffer!!!!!. Opie I miss You!!!!!! As soon as he learned the real truth about his father!!!!!! The good guys never get ahead when it comes to guns and drugs… I wish i could bite TIGG’s Head OFF!!! GRAMMY FOR OPIE, he was my favorite character he was the realistic human element to SOA.

  27. I am not unhappy that I was unable to follow this show as closely as I wanted to. Other shows by Josh Whedon, often kill of a favorite main character, so I might not have minded, but had I watched more faithfully, who knows.

  28. I was truly shocked by Opie’s death just like everyone else. However, this all goes back to Tig trying to retaliate for what happened in season four and Clay is at fault for lying to him about how Piney died. If Tig had never gotten in that car and accidentally killed Pope’s daughter then Opie would still be alive. This is truly one of the best shows on TV and that’s why I make sure my Hopper is set to catch every episode. It was really emotional watching the SAMCRO guys witness Opie being beat to death: Tig couldn’t watch and Chibs just lost it when it was all said and done. My DISH co-workers agreed that this was one of the most intense episodes ever on the show. I can see how it had to be done and Jax is already promising revenge. The deal he struck with Pope was a front for what he really wants to do. I can’t wait until next week’s episode.

    • In the end though, it all goes back to Clay. Clay wanted to take out Opie because he thought Opie had ratted. He got Tig to hit Opie and make it look like a black hit. It all went bad, and it’s been going downhill since. Clay’s history of absolute ruthlessness, of being willing to kill anyone, even his fellow club members, to get his way is what this show is all about.

  29. I just want to say how much I love the show. But jaxon and opie are my favorite why kill him. But I guess it had to happen. I am a big fan I been watching since the first episode.