Four episodes in and Mayans M.C. treated us to its best one yet with ‘Murcielago/Zlots’. With twits, turns and revelations aplenty, all delivered with that edge of your seat simmering tension that the show has promised us from the start, if episode 3 shifted gears up a notch slightly then episode 4 ramps them up even more.
At the end of episode two, we saw the Mayans resident perv and general weirdo, Johnny “Coco” Cruz (Richard Cabral) looking to be curb crawling but it turned out to be something more personal to him than that and in episode four further revelations involving Coco’s family come to light and it looks like this is going to tear his seemingly closest relations apart. This side of Coco doesn’t look like it’s something the M.C. know about but it’s a side of his character that is potentially very dark so it will be interesting to watch it unfold.
But away from that little sub-plot and onto more cartel related matters. It turns out that the federal agent that has been checking up on EZ (J.D. Pardo) is also looking into the cartel himself. Not only that but he is more closely connected to EZ than we thought, which could have big implications further on down the line. In terms of the actual cartel, Emily (Sarah Bolger) decides to throw herself into Galindo’s (Danny Pino) plans for tracking down the rebel group that kidnapped her son and comes up with a useful and sensible sounding plan of action. However, it doesn’t quite relate to Galindo’s plan of action that involves the brutal death of a nun after said nun is seen on video with Galindo and Emily’s son.
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The attack isn’t shown but that makes it’s discovery even more shocking in a pulse-quickening scene. This scene is even more impactful due to an earlier scene where we see Galindo and Emily share a tender moment. It seems Galindo is aware of his destructive actions and tendencies but seems torn between being a family man and the head of the cartel. It’s this that makes Danny Pino’s character such a compelling villain; his love and vulnerability in front of Emily clear to see but his dark side also clear. Very clear for the viewer and becoming clearer for Emily.
Other revelations involve EZ and Angel’s (Clayton Cardenas) father, Felipe (Edward James Olmos) It appears he has a darker and more mysterious past than anyone realised. Which would explain his gun collection and possibly, his knowledge of chopping up dead animal bodies for his job as a butcher. It could also explain the fed puking in fear after a confrontation with Felipe. It seems he’s more dangerous that we expected. Another, maybe not so surprising revelation is Mayans M.C. president Bishop’s (Michael Irby) understanding with the local Mayor.
The Mayor getting the club to take care of a dead body; a fence jumper trying to cross the border. But this is done in such a nonchalant manner that you get the impression that this type of action is a regular thing between the Mayor and the Mayans. Add to that a new and intimidating player running prescription drugs across the border who could prove to be another big foe for the Mayans to worry about, episode four certainly had you glued to your seat. And what with Angel’s paranoia probably going through the roof after witnessing a conversation between EZ and Alvarez (Emilio Rivera) where Alvarez tells EZ that the brothers in the club come first and any conflict between him and Angel will simply be resolved by one of them being moved to another M.C. Will Angel’s lies eventually be uncovered?
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A lot to take in maybe. But this time, with the familiarity of the characters and the stories it appears to be all coming together nicely and the way the threads weave throughout the episodes, particularly this and the previous episode are impressive and well written. Not to mention well performed by the cast. On this, admittedly early evidence, Mayans M.C. is turning out to be more than Sons of Anarchy Jnr. and very much its own biker gang- based beast.
Mayans M.C. is on BBC 2 Saturdays at 22.30. The entire series is also currently available on BBC iPlayer.