Kurt Sutter steps down as the Mayans M.C. co-showrunner. Known for creating the popular FX series Sons of Anarchy, the American writer-producer also portrayed the character Otto Delaney during its seven-season run. Sutter co-created Mayans M.C. - a Sons of Anarchy spinoff - with Elgin James.
Shot on location and both sides of the United States-Mexico border, Mayans M.C. follows a motorcycle club that plays a pivotal role in Sons of Anarchy. JD Pardo stars as EZ Reyes, a prospect for the titular motorcycle gang. He’s supported by older brother Angel (Clayton Cardenas), who keeps a close eye over club and familial conflicts. During Mayans M.C. season 1, cartel leader Miguel Galindo (Danny Pino) strategizes against long-time enemies, and also with new threat Adelita (Carla Baratta), a rebel leader seeking vengeance for past crimes. Mayans M.C. season 1 premiered in September 2018, and was renewed the following month. Richard Cabral earned a Critics’ Choice Television Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series.
Per Variety, Sutter had decided to step down as Mayans M.C.’s co-showrunner. The announcement was made at the Mayans M.C. season 2 premiere in Los Angeles. According to Sutter, “It’s time for the white man to leave the building.” Incidentally, the FX series will now prominently feature a Latino creative team led by James, a long-time activist and former member of Friends Stand United (FSU). Various Latino Mayans M.C. cast members spoke to Variety about the series’ authenticity factor, and how the cast and crew attempt to produce “unfiltered and raw” moments. The aforementioned Cardenas provided a telling quote about the creative approach for Mayans M.C.:
“We stay authentic to Latino culture. I don’t want some whitewashed type of dialect and visuals…”
Mayans M.C. currently holds a 72 percent Tomatometer score on Rotten Tomatoes, which does indeed speak to the high quality of filmmaking and performances. But given the casts’ recent statements, along with Sutter’s exit, their creative commitment and the positive critical reviews don’t necessarily guarantee a third season. In recent months, fans of the Netflix series Tuca & Bertie and The OA expressed their displeasure after the streaming service cancelled both productions, which are known for their unique creative visions. But whereas Netflix uses algorithms to gauge viewer interests and doesn’t release official streaming numbers, a more traditional network like FX analyzes rating numbers before ordering new seasons.
Whatever happens moving forward with Mayans M.C., the series will undoubtedly have a different narrative tone. Sutter began his career as a writer and producer on the gritty FX cop drama The Shield, and used that experience to create a truly edgy series with Sons of Anarchy. Considering the subject matter for Mayans M.C., it makes sense that Sutter would exit gracefully and allow his Latino colleagues to handle creative responsibilities.