has been replaced by the M16 rifle that the club's founders wielded in Vietnam.
Only full members can wear the "patch". Ot...
melancholy and even apparent madness. Claudius and Gertrude worry about
the prince’s erratic behavior and attempt to disco...
blade, and, after revealing to Hamlet that Claudius is responsible for the
queen’s death, he dies from the blade’s poison....
mother; Jax murders the man without hesitation in a tattoo polar bathroom, an
act Hamlet would’ve backed out of. But like ...
to Clay’s authority and “kingdom”. One moment that damages their relationship
is when Jax finds out that Clay planned on k...
Hamlet by saying, “This very coinage of your brain.-This bodiless creation
ecstasy-Is very cunning in.” However, this quot...
seek to control everything around them. Clay like Claudius believes that he’s
untouchable and loves his role as “King” eve...
Hamlet's anarchy
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Hamlet's anarchy


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Hamlet's anarchy

  1. 1.     Jaime  Varela  Coca   Taller  de  creación  integrada   Triple  grado  M21     HAMLET’S ANARCHY Before we talk about the similarities between Sons of anarchy and Hamlet, it should provide a description of both works. SONS OF ANARCHY What is the definition of anarchy from sons of anarchy tv show? "Anarchism stands for the liberation of the human mind from the dominion of religion and liberation of the human body from the coercion of property; liberation from the shackles and restraint of government. It stands for a social order based on the free grouping of individuals" Emma Goldman The Sons of Anarchy is an outlaw motorcycle club with many charters in the United States and overseas. The show focuses on the original and founding charter, Sons of Anarchy Motorcycle Club, Redwood Original, referred to by the acronym SAMCRO or Sam Crow. The Redwood charter is headquartered in Charming, California, in a clubhouse adjacent to the Teller-Morrow auto mechanic shop. Led by former President Clay Morrow, the club protects and controls Charming through close community relationships, bribery and violent intimidation. John Teller and Piermont "Piney" Winston co-founded SAMCRO in 1967 following their return from the Vietnam War, where both men served in the paratroops. The first charter was called "Redwood" because they weren't settled in any one city but just cruised the Northern California coast from Eureka to Big Sur, which is Redwood country. It wasn't until after Gemma, John's wife, became pregnant with her first son, Jackson, that they decided to settle in Charming, the town where Gemma grew up. At that point, John Teller thought Charming was a little too cute for a charter name, so he called the charter the Redwood Originals. That's when the SAMCRO handle was born. Six of the "Redwood Original 9" members were veterans; Clay Morrow was the youngest of the original members. John died in 1993, Gemma remarried to Clay. John and Gemma's son, Jackson (Jax), grows up around the club and becomes Vice President of SAMCRO. Jax is also connected to Tara, a doctor at St. Thomas Hospital. Club members wear vests known as cuts or kuttes (jacket with the sleeves cut off). The SOA patch on the back is a Grim Reaper holding a crystal ball with the anarchy "A", and wielding the Reaper's traditional scythe, the handle of which
  2. 2. has been replaced by the M16 rifle that the club's founders wielded in Vietnam. Only full members can wear the "patch". Other smaller patches on the vest stand for different things, examples being "Men of Mayhem", which is worn by club members who have spilled blood on the club's behalf, and "First 9", worn by the original nine members of SOA. Jax also commonly wears a cap with the words "Reaper Crew", and at least four female characters affiliated with the club (Gemma, Tara, Wendy, and Lyla) have crow tattoos. The Sons ride customized motorcycles of various types. Club members have "day jobs" in local industries, most of them working at the Teller-Morrow garage as mechanics, but they primarily make money by illegally importing weapons, modifying and selling them to various gangs, along with protection runs for local businesses by protecting valuable truck shipments from hijacking. The club operates out of a clubhouse on the same lot as the Teller-Morrow auto shop. The clubhouse includes a living area with multiple rooms (where members sometimes crash for the night), a fully operational bar, a pool table, a kitchen, a workout room, and the "chapel", a room with an elaborate conference table made of redwood that has a reaper logo carved into the top, where the patched members meet to discuss club business and vote on major decisions. The club also owns a secluded cabin in the woods and formerly had a warehouse outside of town where they assembled the illegal weapons. SAMCRO keeps meth traffickers and drug dealers out of Charming, which puts them at odds with the meth-distributing white supremacist Nords, headed by Ernest Darby; this earns them respect and admiration from the townspeople, who believe the Sons do more to protect their town than its own police. SAMCRO also has to deal with a rival Oakland-based motorcycle club (MC), the Mayans led by Marcus Alvarez. Other groups in SAMCRO's orbit include the San Francisco–based Chinese mafia Lin Triad, led by Henry Lin; the Italian American Cacuzza crime family; the Real IRA of Ireland, which supplies them with illegal Russian-made guns; the "One-Niners", an African American street gang to whom SAMCRO sell weapons; and various affiliates in the state prison system, where many members of the club have been incarcerated at one time or another. HAMLET On a dark winter night, a ghost walks the ramparts of Elsinore Castle in Denmark. Discovered first by a pair of watchmen, then by the scholar Horatio, the ghost resembles the recently deceased King Hamlet, whose brother Claudius has inherited the throne and married the king’s widow, Queen Gertrude. When Horatio and the watchmen bring Prince Hamlet, the son of Gertrude and the dead king, to see the ghost, it speaks to him, declaring ominously that it is indeed his father’s spirit, and that he was murdered by none other than Claudius. Ordering Hamlet to seek revenge on the man who usurped his throne and married his wife, the ghost disappears with the dawn. Prince Hamlet devotes himself to avenging his father’s death, but, because he is contemplative and thoughtful by nature, he delays, entering into a deep
  3. 3. melancholy and even apparent madness. Claudius and Gertrude worry about the prince’s erratic behavior and attempt to discover its cause. They employ a pair of Hamlet’s friends, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, to watch him. When Polonius, the pompous Lord Chamberlain, suggests that Hamlet may be mad with love for his daughter, Ophelia, Claudius agrees to spy on Hamlet in conversation with the girl. But though Hamlet certainly seems mad, he does not seem to love Ophelia: he orders her to enter a nunnery and declares that he wishes to ban marriages. A group of traveling actors comes to Elsinore, and Hamlet seizes upon an idea to test his uncle’s guilt. He will have the players perform a scene closely resembling the sequence by which Hamlet imagines his uncle to have murdered his father, so that if Claudius is guilty, he will surely react. When the moment of the murder arrives in the theater, Claudius leaps up and leaves the room. Hamlet and Horatio agree that this proves his guilt. Hamlet goes to kill Claudius but finds him praying. Since he believes that killing Claudius while in prayer would send Claudius’s soul to heaven, Hamlet considers that it would be an inadequate revenge and decides to wait. Claudius, now frightened of Hamlet’s madness and fearing for his own safety, orders that Hamlet be sent to England at once. Hamlet goes to confront his mother, in whose bedchamber Polonius has hidden behind a tapestry. Hearing a noise from behind the tapestry, Hamlet believes the king is hiding there. He draws his sword and stabs through the fabric, killing Polonius. For this crime, he is immediately dispatched to England with Rosencrantz and Guildenstern. However, Claudius’s plan for Hamlet includes more than banishment, as he has given Rosencrantz and Guildenstern sealed orders for the King of England demanding that Hamlet be put to death. In the aftermath of her father’s death, Ophelia goes mad with grief and drowns in the river. Polonius’s son, Laertes, who has been staying in France, returns to Denmark in a rage. Claudius convinces him that Hamlet is to blame for his father’s and sister’s deaths. When Horatio and the king receive letters from Hamlet indicating that the prince has returned to Denmark after pirates attacked his ship en route to England, Claudius concocts a plan to use Laertes’ desire for revenge to secure Hamlet’s death. Laertes will fence with Hamlet in innocent sport, but Claudius will poison Laertes’ blade so that if he draws blood, Hamlet will die. As a backup plan, the king decides to poison a goblet, which he will give Hamlet to drink should Hamlet score the first or second hits of the match. Hamlet returns to the vicinity of Elsinore just as Ophelia’s funeral is taking place. Stricken with grief, he attacks Laertes and declares that he had in fact always loved Ophelia. Back at the castle, he tells Horatio that he believes one must be prepared to die, since death can come at any moment. A foolish courtier named Osric arrives on Claudius’s orders to arrange the fencing match between Hamlet and Laertes. The sword-fighting begins. Hamlet scores the first hit, but declines to drink from the king’s proffered goblet. Instead, Gertrude takes a drink from it and is swiftly killed by the poison. Laertes succeeds in wounding Hamlet, though Hamlet does not die of the poison immediately. First, Laertes is cut by his own sword’s
  4. 4. blade, and, after revealing to Hamlet that Claudius is responsible for the queen’s death, he dies from the blade’s poison. Hamlet then stabs Claudius through with the poisoned sword and forces him to drink down the rest of the poisoned wine. Claudius dies, and Hamlet dies immediately after achieving his revenge. At this moment, a Norwegian prince named Fortinbras, who has led an army to Denmark and attacked Poland earlier in the play, enters with ambassadors from England, who report that Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are dead. Fortinbras is stunned by the gruesome sight of the entire royal family lying sprawled on the floor dead. He moves to take power of the kingdom. Horatio, fulfilling Hamlet’s last request, tells him Hamlet’s tragic story. Fortinbras orders that Hamlet be carried away in a manner befitting a fallen soldier. HAMLET ON A HARLEY There are numerous references to William Shakespeare’s Hamlet in popular culture such as film, literature, and art. One television show that is almost a spitting image of Hamlet is the television drama series created by Kurt Sutter called Sons of Anarchy. Sons of Anarchy draws many character parallels to Hamlet, as well as the storyline. It is, in fact, the story of Hamlet, and instead of taking place in Denmark it takes place in a small town in northern California called Charming, and all of the characters are members of a motorcycle club. Jax Teller who is the protagonist of the show resembles Prince Hamlet; Gemma Teller who is Jax’s mother resembles Gertrude and Clay Morrow the current president of the charter is another version of Claudius. Other core characters in the show are Tara Knowles who is Jax's love interest who represents Ophelia and Opie Winston who is Jax’s closest friend is based on Horatio. Other similarities with Hamlet are Jax’s questioning of Clay’s intentions, the presence of John Teller’s “Ghost”, John’s mysterious death, and the trouble the club faces. By looking closely at the influence Hamlet has on the Sons of Anarchy, the comparison of the characters becomes clearer and deeper each time you look at their actions and motives. “For, though I am not splenitive and rash,- Yet have I something in me dangerous.”. This quote describes not only how Hamlet and Jax are alike, but how their personalities seem to have a murderous rage in them that is waiting to explode. This is what makes Jax and Hamlet such appealing characters to the reader and audience which makes them wonder what their next course of action is going to be. While Hamlet and Jax are both threats to their “father’s” empire the thing that truly separates them is their ability to act on certain things. When it comes to this Jax has more in common with Leartes because they both have the ability to act unlike Hamlet. While Jax and Hamlet are both very contemplative and impulsive, Jax is the only one to fully carry out his carefully laid plans. (Murtagh) But like Hamlet, Jax is known to wait long periods of time until he finally does what he says. This however, may give some people the interpretation that Jax has the inability to act, but that’s not the case. While Jax hasn’t faced the task of avenging his father’s death like Hamlet, he has however been tested. An example of this is when Jax confronts the man who raped his
  5. 5. mother; Jax murders the man without hesitation in a tattoo polar bathroom, an act Hamlet would’ve backed out of. But like Hamlet, Jax waits weeks before he does this because he wants to “play it smart” before getting his revenge. It is understandable why Hamlet has the inability to act because after all he was the prince of Denmark who had a sheltered and privileged life, who had never faced a murderous situation before in his life like Jax. It’s as if Jax and Hamlet were born into the same lives but only one of them was born into an environment that praises violence. Another characteristic that Jax and Hamlet share is their self-loathing when something happens to a loved one. While Hamlet becomes depressed after his father’s death, Jax become’s equally depressed when his son is kidnapped and taken to Belfast, Ireland. Now, Jax doesn't share Hamlet's melancholy attitude on life but his self-loathing over things is very similar to Hamlet. Hamlet’s self- loathing ultimately stays with Hamlet after his father’s death and later on Ophelia’s suicide; while Jax’s is the club unraveling before him causing him to feel increasingly powerless to stop the downward spiral and somewhat at fault for it. (Felipe) It’s because of this that Jax and Hamlet seem to damage most of their relationships. Like Hamlet, Jax has a tendency to make the ones he loves run away, specifically Tara who represents Ophelia. Like Hamlet and Ophelia, Jax and Tara’s relationship is a mystery in the beginning of the series, and is unknown how serious their relationship was. Like Hamlet, Jax rarely shows Tara that he has strong feelings for her until it is needed, “When you came home, it was like some kind of time. Like my past coming around to give me another shot to do this different; better. ” (McDonough) Unlike Hamlet and Ophelia’s relationship, Jax and Tara’s isn’t forbidden or a secret. However, while Polonius forbids Hamlet from having a relationship with Ophelia, Gemma tries her best in the beginning to prevent Tara from being with Jax because she “hurt him bad last time”. Eventually Tara goes against Gemma’s advice and begins a relationship with Jax unlike what Ophelia does. While Hamlet’s love for Ophelia drives him insane, Jax’s love for Tara gives him a purpose and something worth fighting for. (Murtagh) Nevertheless, Jax still hurts Tara by shutting her out of the club business and unfortunately becomes unfaithful with her. While with Hamlet, he simply drives Ophelia away from him until she commits suicide. Only time will tell if Tara and Jax’s relationship will end just as sadly as Ophelia and Hamlet’s forbidden love. Another person who Jax seems to affect greatly is his one and only confident Opie. Opie like Horatio is the only character that Jax can reveal his plans for the club to since everyone else is dedicated to Clay. While their relationship has been shown to be rocky one, Opie has been known to take sides between Jax and Clay. Like Horatio, Opie is well respected by Clay but is also like Leartes because Clay sees him as a threat to his posistion of power. Opie, however, is affected by Jax because he keeps Opie in the dark about critical things which damages their relationship for a little bit. While Jax and Hamlet affect the ones they care about, they tend to do it in different ways. Although, Sons of Anarchy hasn’t reached its conclusion yet, one can see how Jax is slowly becoming more like Hamlet as the years go by. In season one (or Act I) Jax begins to question the Sons of Anarchy culture, brought on by the birth of his son. This in a way is very similar to how Hamlet questions Claudius’s actions after King Hamlet’s death. These questions from Jax leads to friction between the two as it did with Hamlet with Claudius, causing Jax being a threat
  6. 6. to Clay’s authority and “kingdom”. One moment that damages their relationship is when Jax finds out that Clay planned on killing Opie which resulted in Opie’s wife’s death. This is similar to how Hamlet discovers about his father’s death from the “Ghost”. Jax’s relationship with Clay can be described as a roller coaster because the two either hate or respect each other; after all Clay has been his step-father since Jax was fifteen. Clay often calls Jax “Son” just as Claudius tried to do after King Hamlet’s death with Jax accepting it. Nevertheless, this aspect of their relationship is never shown between Hamlet and Claudius’s because they were always suspicious of each other’s intentions. However, the main thing that separates Jax and Clay is how they choose to use their power. Jax believes that power isn’t necessarily important but what you do with it when it’s acquired. This most of the time leads to arguments with Clay and at one time almost resulted with Jax leaving the club. Their relationship in the end will only lead in death when Jax discovers Clay’s involvement in his father’s death. While Clay and Claudius impact Jax and Hamlet’s life, it is in fact their father’s ghost that motivates them to do certain things. “When we take action to avenge the ones we love personal justice collides with social and divine justice. We become judge, jury, and God.” (Murtagh) This quote comes from John Teller’s personal journal called The Rise and Fall of Sam Crow. How the Sons of Anarchy lost their way. While John "communicates" with Jax through this unpublished journal; Hamlet, of course, literally communicates with the ghost of his father. It’s their father’s ghost that influences their decisions which unfortunately leads to death. While Hamlet is the only one able talk to the “Ghost” in Hamlet, everyone can read and learn from John Teller’s journal in Sons of Anarchy. It’s easy to say that this journal’s ideas and secrets are driving Jax away with the clubs actions, but John’s ghost has a more positive effect on Jax's life then King Hamlet’s ghost. This is because John urges Jax to become a peaceful person while King Hamlet wishes revenge for his death. It is known by Gemma that Jax has read this journal and worries that she’ll lose Jax the same way she lost John. When talking to Clay about this Gemma states that, “Jax is being haunted by the ghost of his goddamn father”. (Carpenter) This unsettles Gemma and Clay enormously and causes uneasiness with Jax because he is now threat to Clay's “empire”. If it’s one thing that Hamlet and Sons of Anarchy show it’s that buried secrets won’t stay buried forever; even spirits. Gertrude and Gemma are obviously one of the most suspicious and questionable characters from Hamlet and Sons of Anarchy. When comparing these two women you can clearly see how similar they are by their actions. The first thing specifically is them marrying their husband’s “brothers” right after their deaths. It is unknown whether Gertrude was involved in King Hamlet’s murder, but with Gemma it is very clear that she conspired with Clay with John’s death. Gemma calls John “a fool” and is concerned that Jax is going to follow “the wrong father’s path” when it comes to the future of Samcrow. Gertrude, however, is never heard of saying anything regarding King Hamlet’s death and it appears to the audience that she is oblivious of what’s going on around her. But it is obvious that these two women’s true goal and purpose lies with their sons: Hamlet and Jax. Gertrude and Gemma’s true goal with their sons is to place doubt in their minds with everything regarding the truth. One event that truly shows this is when Gertrude attempts to persuade Hamlet to not believe that Claudius killed King
  7. 7. Hamlet by saying, “This very coinage of your brain.-This bodiless creation ecstasy-Is very cunning in.” However, this quotes true message is that Hamlet’s suspicions regarding Claudius are false and that Hamlet should let go of his father. While Jax hasn’t confronted Gemma with this accusation yet, he has confronted her by asking her what John wanted for the club. This leads to Gemma avoiding the question and telling Jax that his father was a strong man, “Your father was hit by a goddamn semi, dragged 178 yards. And that bastard lived for two more days. Teller's do not die easy.” (Bingenheimer) Gemma also tells Jax that she loved John “more than any other man” and that even she has begun to read his journal. It’s unknown if this is an act for Jax, but when seen with Clay, Gemma seems to despise John immensely. It is her true goal however to turn Jax against his father after she discovers him reading John’s journal. Gemma, however, succeeds in doing this by telling him about his past. Jax tells Gemma specifically, “I'd never turn on my club, or my family. I'm not my father.” It is unknown if Gemma’s intentions of turning Jax against his father are because of Clay or because she doesn’t want her son to face the same outcome of John. She specifically states to Clay, “It's a different time. We can't look at Jax in the same light as John.” (Carpenter) But this is where things get interesting and confusing at the same time. While it’s obvious that Gemma loves Clay, it is possible that she’s using Clay to make sure that Jax is the president of the club when Clay steps down, “One day he’s gonna have to take over, baby.” It is possible that Gertrude had the same intentions with Hamlet because after all she protects Hamlet even when he does radical things, just as him killing Polonius. Nevertheless, these two women love their sons immensely and want them to be happy as long as they’re willing to do as they ask. In other words, Gemma is a very two-faced person when it comes to Jax because she secretly has her own agenda for him very much like Gertrude does with Hamlet. Like Gertrude, Gemma truly enjoys her role as “Queen” and doesn't take kindly to anyone she sees as a threat. One of the critical things that Hamlet doesn’t show that Sons of Anarchy does is how conniving and scheming Gertrude truly is; like Gemma. Because we don’t see Gertrude’s true colors like Gemma, you can only speculate whether Gertrude was involved in King Hamlet’s murder. It’s easy to say that she apart of his murder because she marries Claudius immediately after King Hamlet's death and doesn't really appear to mourn for his loss. But in Sons of Anarchy it is never fully explained how long it took for Gemma to marry Clay, but it is known that she involved with Clay because of John’s changing ways. John unlike King Hamlet is aware of Gemma’s actions with Clay and states that he knows the end is coming, “They barely try to hide it from me. Gemma hates my apathy. She hates all of me. Her chill is terrifying. I know my days are numbered, and when these letters stop, you can be certain my death will come at the hands of my wife and best friend.” But when will the similarities between Gemma and Gertrude end? Will Gemma send spies like Rosencrantz and Guildenstern after Jax? Will she witness Jax murder someone similar to Polonius? Will she sacrifice her own life accidentally or not to save Jax? (Bingenheimer) Only time will tell whether Gemma will suffer the same cruel fate Gertrude endured. “My words fly up, my thoughts remain below: Words without thoughts never to heaven go. ” sums up how Clay and Claudius have no true feelings of remorse for their actions. They can also be described as two power hungry beings who
  8. 8. seek to control everything around them. Clay like Claudius believes that he’s untouchable and loves his role as “King” even more than Gemma and Gertrude love being “Queen”. That however is one of Clay’s biggest flaws as the leader of the Sons. Clay unlike Jax doesn’t see the “big picture” when it comes to protecting Charming and the club because he believes that power is the ultimate goal. Now this doesn’t mean that Clay is terrible leader like Claudius, but he’s far from perfect when it comes to making decisions for the club. Clay most of the time makes deals behind the backs of other members of the club which causes his rivalry with Jax to intensify. As stated earlier, Clay in a peculiar way loves and respects Jax as long as he’s not willing to question his authority and leadership. Clay like Claudius has to be in control for him to get his way, which may have lead to him overthrowing John from his position as President of the club. It is Clay’s powerful ambition that leads him to possibly kill his own “brother” because of John’s changing ways. It is known that Gemma and Clay were having an affair with each other from John’s perspective, and is possible that he marries Gemma to make sure his ideas from the club are passed down to Jax. It is known that Clay has a strong dislike for John by specifically stating that John was, “John was weak and a coward” Clay like Claudius is a very calculative man who can fall to any level to hold his power to himself. (McDonough) He thinks only of himself and has the ability to manipulate people the way he wants to. However, Clay has a human nature as well. Just as Claudius feels guilty for killing his brother, Clay feels guilty for accidently killing Opie’s innocent wife. But like Gemma it is unknown if Clay married Gemma for power because after all she is a well respected “Old lady” in the club. But it is quite evident that Clay truly loves Gemma just as Claudius loves Gertrude. Ultimately like Claudius, Clay is known to make stupid “business deals” that brings unnecessary legal attention to the club just as Claudius allows his country open to attack by letting Fortinbras’s army march through Denmark. This course of action from Clay may not only destroy the Sons of Anarchy but might also bring a tragic death from his “son” Jax. By comparing the similarities of characters from Hamlet and Sons of Anarchy you can obviously see how not only the characters and plot are very similar. Like Hamlet, Jax is a very contemplative and impulsive individual who threatens to unravel the kingdom that his father created. It is however their self-loathing and brash actions that drives away the people they truly care about. It is also their father’s “ghost” that causes them to do what they do regarding their most common enemy. Gemma unlike Gertrude is shown to be a conniving individual who is just as much as an antagonist then she is a protagonist. This leads to many questions about her and makes one wonder if Gertrude was just like this behind the scenes. Finally there is Clay who like Claudius is a very power hungry and calculative individual who’s only true goal is to control everything around them. This flaw ultimately leads to the death of not only innocent people but the ones they love as well. Kurt Sutter the creator of the series has stated that his main goal with Sons of Anarchy in its similarity with Hamlet is to make people wonder what would’ve happened if John like King Hamlet wasn’t killed, “You wonder what he would have made of the way it turned out. It's not a version of Hamlet but it's definitely influenced by it.” (Felipe) By looking at theses similarities it makes one wonder if Sons of Anarchy is truly Sons of Hamlet.