On last week’s Sons of Anarchy, we watched Lee Toric (Donal Logue) grow increasingly desperate to find someone to turn on SAMCRO. He used two Byz-Lats’ mouths as bottle openers when they refused to give him dirt on Nero (Jimmy Smits). “It was as insane on the page when I first read it. Thank god they’re such nice guys,” Logue says. He accidentally shot the prostitute he’d bedded when the DA (CCH Pounder) pulled up to his motel and the escort startled him. “She’s like, ‘Ohmygod, I’m shot,’ and he’s like, ‘No, no, no, you’re fine.’ It’s that weird thing of shocking someone who’s in shock,” says Logue, who blames one of Toric’s physical tics for pulling the trigger. “He’s gotta deal with this situation within three seconds. I remember on set that weirdness of boom-boom [two shots to the head] and then the knock at the door. It’s like, ‘One second! Just give me a minute!’” And then he kept the girl in his bathtub so he could remove evidence that could be planted in Nero’s truck. “I love Nero. I’m angry at myself. It’s not cool,” Logue says, with a laugh. “You could always fall back on some kind of argument that, ‘Look, this guy’s sister was brutally murdered.’ Like, he’s not the one morally in the wrong here. But now he’s crossed lines that he can’t come back from.”
Toric is the darkest character Logue has ever played, and this is shaping up to be Sons of Anarchy’s darkest season yet. With the fate of Tig (Kim Coates) in question (only 35 percent of readers expect him to survive his encounter with Billy Brown’s August Marks), the ominous 91-minute runtime of tonight’s episode, and a cryptic tweet from creator Kurt Sutter promising, “There will be no unearned mercy,” fans remain on high alert. They’ve been there since the disturbing season 6 premiere, which ended with a school shooting in which a KG-9 that can be traced back to the MC was used. Some fans’ early reaction to that event puzzled Logue. While a friend of his whose child went to Sandy Hook understood the intent (21st Century Fox’s Government Affairs group notified families prior to the episode’s air date), others didn’t.
“There were some people who were like, ‘That’s where [the show] crossed the line. I’ve been a huge fan for years.’ I was like, well then, for years, you’ve been a fan of a group of people who sell guns to people without one thought as to where they go or what they do. And now it’s uncomfortable when [the show] actually says, ‘Hey, there’s a repercussion to this. There’s a consequence to this kind of behavior.’ That’s what you’re outraged by?” Logue says. “I’ve always felt [with the character] Lee Toric, there really is this kind of thinking behind it, like, Let’s show you what it means and what it does. It’s upsetting, and it’s dark, so in a way, I think it’s kinda brave. There are so many shows where someone’s your cool CIA bad guy or good guy and spraying through an apartment complex of just teams of stunt men falling over things and no one thinks about it. There’s no real sense of death and loss. When they show it in this show, it’s hard.”
Now that we’re a month into the season, Logue thinks most fans understand the weight of the storyline. “It wasn’t a one-off to take advantage of these things that are shocking the country; it became the cornerstone of what was to be the final act, years in the making,” Logue says. “I have no more respect for another person on the planet than I do for Kurt Sutter and [fellow EP/director] Paris Barclay. There’s a method to the madness.”