Juice Continues to Get Squeezed: The poor dope can't even kill himself competently, so all his problems remain, plus the new problem of a very sore neck. (He manages to convince Tig and Chibs the chain marks are from him running into a chain.) Chibs – whom we have established as smart and observant – later catches Juice trying to clean up the chain, figures out what happens, and sort of yells some tough love at Juice before Juice collapses on him, sobbing.
The "M.D." Stands for "Moving Discreetly:" God bless Unser and Margaret. The former passes the latter Tara's death threat, and Margaret promptly brings it to Roosevelt's attention. Roosevelt responds by posting a unit outside Tara's house and coordinating with hospital security. (That scene was delightful to watch: first, because it shows how damn smart Roosevelt is, and second, because we had all the giddy fun of imagining Gemma's reaction to this.) The hospital also pulls Tara from surgery rotations because they think she's a "threat." (And who can blame them?) Gemma gives Tara a pep talk that basically amounts to "put up and shut up." However, by the end of the episode, Tara has told Jax that she's sure it's only a matter of time before Jax's business hurts the kids, and she has to get them out of here. Jax admits he's in over his head, and encourages Tara to check out Providence hospital in Oregon, and "stay there until things calm down here. You're protecting our family."
Suddenly, "Getting Busted for Crank" Is Number Two on the List of Things SAMTAZ Needs to be Concerned About: Just as the vote to turn SAMCRO's gavel over to Bobby Elvis is underway, Lobo Sonora interrupts the proceedings with a special delivery: a duffel bag with a side of approximately eleventy-thousand bullets. Filthy Phil actually acquits himself in a cool and competent fashion, but it's Chuckie who is brave enough to open the duffel bag and discover the severed head of Armando, formerly of SAMTAZ. Piney tells Clay that the bag of heads provides perfect cover for backing out of the cartel deal: simply tell Romeo that the club didn't sign up to participate in any blood feuds, then conclude business. And if Clay doesn't – well, Piney will bring to light the love song of J. Alfred Teller: "I have heard Clay & Gemma scheming/ each to each/ I do not think they will let me be."
Naturally, Clay does the exact opposite of what Piney asks. In fact, he and Jax dig in a little deeper: They feed some false info to the local Lobos mole in Alvarez's crew, then try to get Parada's operation to take out the local Lobos Sonora. However, Luis is a little light on manpower, so SAMCRO has to step in. Late in the evening, all of SAMCRO (save Clay and Tig, who are at a garden party) is hyped up and ready for a gun battle, but Lobo Sonora merely drops off the four bodies that were formerly attached to the heads that were delivered that morning. Jax says to Luis, "Looks like your competition's one step ahead." Luis does not bother to disagree.
After that dispiriting development, Clay decides to simplify his life a bit by heading up to Piney's cabin, tossing the place for the letters, then killing Piney.
Got to Get Back to the Garden: Gemma and Rita's fundraiser to save the park gets a kick in the pants by two things: Chuckie's chili (which had, at one point, a human head in it) and a speech by Clay that declares SAMCRO's love for Charming, a love that comes with many dollars attached. The upside of this: the garden is saved, Oswald is looking sweet as a mayoral candidate who loves Charming, and Hale the Lesser's evening is ruined.
Silent joke of the night: The way Tig jauntily flings Gemma's bag over his shoulder when she tells him to take her home.
Exchange of the night:
Piney: (tenderly cupping Opie's face, right where he slugged him) I'm sorry, son.
Opie: I love you, Pop. I'm with you on this.
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The episode opens with the crack of a branch, the sinuous rattle of chains, the shot of Juice's shocked face as he lands on the ground and begins gasping for breath. Since Juice's next act is to throw off the chain, I'm guessing he's changed his mind about the merits of killing himself.
As Juice is struggling to his feet, he hears two bikes approaching. It's Tig and Chibs. Juice goes to meet them -- leaving the chain behind. He lies about having taken a leak in the woods, and Chibs notes that Juice is covered in mulch. He then notes the big chain burn on Juicy's neck, and Juice "laughs" it off with "Oswald, man. He's got these stupid security chains all over these back roads." Tig cackles delightedly: "You clotheslined one? Jackass." Chibs looks a tad more skeptical. The older men break it to Juice that he's needed for vote. "Drugs?" Juice says hopefully. Tig gives him a sharp look and replies, "Change in leadership." As the other guys turn away, we see Juice's smile -- which never reached his eyes anyway -- fall into dismay.
At the Teller-Knowles house, a knock on the door wakes up a sleeping Rat. He checks the door (rifle in hand) and freezes in front of it. Tara comes over; it's obviously morning, and she's in the middle of Thomas's wake-up routine. She checks the peephole in the door, and then whispers to Rat that he needs to hole up in the back room, well out of sight. Tara opens the door to Roosevelt, who smoothly apologizes to Tara for the hour, then explains that Margaret called the sheriff's office and turned over a copy of the note. Roosevelt holds it up and blandly notes, "She's convinced you did receive a death threat." Thomas picks this moment to cutely burrow into Tara's shoulder; she pats his back and stares blankly at the sheriff.
Then -- zip! -- we're in the kitchen and Tara's explaining that she didn't take the threat seriously. Roosevelt asks, "Then why did the MC post someone here to watch you? There's a bike outside. I'm assuming he's somewhere in the back, armed." Tara gives Roosevelt a flat look and replies, "The answer to that question will require a warrant." Roosevelt shoots back, "You really got it down, don't you?" And just like that, he's let Tara know that there's a line in his mind dividing the criminal underclass from normal civilians, and Tara's just landed on a very specific side of the line. Tara knows this too and tries to scramble back over: "I appreciate your concern, Sheriff --" Roosevelt's not having it: "It's more than concern. It's a legal obligation. So I'm going to post a unit outside, and I'll coordinate with the hospital security." Thomas picks that time to coo, and Roosevelt can't help smiling at him before saying, "It's more than just your safety at stake. But I'm sure you knew that." He leaves Tara standing in her kitchen. With any luck, the good doctor is wondering when her brain broke and she accepted her homicidal mother-in-law as the arbiter of what was best for the kids.