What Episode Does Gemma Kill Tara in Sons of Anarchy? Answered

American crime action series called Sons of Anarchy aired first in 2008 and ran all the way through 2014 follows the story of a biker gang based in the fictional town of Charming. While the seven seasons of the show have a long and complicated story arc, we are here to dive into one part of it, which is in what episode and why Gemma killed Tara.

Creator Kurt Suttor has explored themes of fraternity, loyalty, trust, and blatant racism with a commentary on the sheer corruption rooted deep within government officials, and vigilantism. The makers had David Labrava, an actual biker gang member, as their advisor on how such gangs function and the members operate.

This story of a bunch of rebel bikers and the conflicts they face throughout the show got so much attention from fans that by the time its third season rolled, it was pulling almost five million viewers every week. The next two seasons ended up becoming the highest-ever rated show in the history of FX Network.

Riding on the popularity of this show, the makers even released a spinoff version, calling it Mayans M.C., this one being based on a Latin club. The show, Sons of Anarchy has actors Charlie Hunnam, Katey Sagel, Mark Boone Junior, Kim Coates, Tommy Flannagan, and so many others who make up the talented cast of the show. 

Tara Knowles and Jax Teller in the show, Sons of Anarchy (Credits: FX)
Tara Knowles and Jax Teller in the show, Sons of Anarchy (Credits: FX)

The show was praised by critics and fans for portraying the gang culture in an authentic manner. Actress Katey Sagal, who appears in the show as Gemma Teller Morrow, got special mentions for the way she played her role.

The show has a charming story, and the makers made sure to use it to its full potential; much like all of the other shows, this one, too, gets better with each episode as the makers find the direction for the show. Let us now look at Katey Sagal’s character and why she ended up killing off Dr. Tara Knowles in the show.

What Episode Does Gemma Kill Tara?

The death of Tara took place in season 6, episode 13, which was titled “A Mother’s Work,” of the show as she was stabbed to death by Jax’s mother, Gemma. Tara Knowles was introduced in the show as a reputed doctor with a slightly sketchy past.  She had dated Jax in high school but, after some legal trouble, had decided it best to leave town to eventually pursue medicine in San Diego.

After almost completing her education, she came back to town in hopes of meeting with the Sons of Anarchy Motorcycle Club Redwood Original, or SAMCRO. By the fifth season, she had once again gotten close to Jax, and the two even had a child together. The show also showed them getting married, with Tara becoming a mother to Jax’s other son as well.

Fans of the show would know that Gemma, Jax’s mother, did not much like or trust Tara, despite their sharing love for Jax. 

Katey Sagal as Gemma Morrow in the show, Sons of Anarchy (Credits: FX)
Katey Sagal as Gemma Morrow in the show, Sons of Anarchy (Credits: FX)

Despite the fact that Tara had loved Jax and the two had shared moments together for a big portion of their lives, Tara still realized that Jax’s way of life, which to her seemed to be drowning in violence and danger. She had wanted a better life for her kids and had planned on betraying Jax and SAMCRO, in hopes of escaping from the town.

She waited till season six, giving Jax the opportunity to change, but upon realizing that it was probably never going to happen, she planned for a way out with the kids. Bringing light to Jax’s deal with law enforcement would have put him behind bars for at least twenty-five years, which would have been enough time for Tara, Abel, and Thomas to run away.

But before any of this could happen, Gemma somehow caught a whiff of Tara’s plans and got blinded by rage, betrayal, and possessiveness toward her son, Jax. She visited Tara and, in anger, ended up stabbing her with a carving fork multiple times. 

With the help of Juice Ortiz, she disposed of the body and wrapped up Tara’s chapter from their life forever. The makers had shown a conversation between Tara and Jax, where the former had revealed what she was about to do to the latter.

Tara's death scene in the show, Sons of Anarchy (Credits: FX)
Tara’s death scene in the show, Sons of Anarchy (Credits: FX)

But Jax managed to come up with a better plan where he would take the blame for the KG9, all charges on Tara would be dropped, and the kids and Tara would be safe. Jax was obviously being the bigger man, agreeing to go to jail for his kids. 

While it was Jax, who had said that he would take the blame and go to prison, Gemma, without finding out the details, charged toward Tara’s house, thinking that she was trying to ruin her son’s life.

The makers revealed later that this death scene was necessary for the show and for Jax to witness, for important changes to take place in his story arc, which the makers had set up for the final season.

Also Read: What Episode Does Ellis Grey Die in Grey’s Anatomy? Explained

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