Saturday, December 06, 2008


There may be something coming out in one of the tabloids this week about Katey and myself, so I wanted to address it before hand. One of the rags took something I said out of context and twisted into a ridiculous story. In an interview with my hometown Jersey paper, I was discussing some of the feedback I was getting about the show. Here's what I said:

I've gotten my share of death threats. Some people are not happy, but I'm actually surprised at all the really good feedback. The outlaw culture by nature is about not being put into a box. The fact that we're making a little TV show about that world flies in the face of that. I wasn't expecting to be embraced, but for the most part, people get it, that it's a TV show, that we're at least trying to make it as organic and real as we possibly can, within the framework of having a compelling narrative week after week. They appreciate the fact that somebody is attempting to tell dynamic stories, and attempting to at least show it as it really is. I would say that the majority of the feedback has been positive.

In that statement, I was using extremes to single out a particular group of irrationals. I've received a fair amount of angry, aggressive emails from hogpumpers and delusional MC wannabes who claim that I stole their idea for a TV show. One of these inane emails came through a Fox website, so the network was legally obligated to have some extra security on set for a few days while I was directing (I wasn't too worried, I had a hundred fucking bikers watching my back). But for the record, none of those accusations came from any member of an outlaw club. As I stated, the majority of the MC community embrace the show. They understand it's fiction and that we are at least attempting to portray the world in a real and compelling way. I guess the scoop in the rag will be that Katey is beside herself because my life has been threatened. Not true. The greater threat is the one I'm getting from Katey as I slowly inch myself closer to getting back on a Harley.

The gossip biz must be hitting a serious downturn. Things have gotta be real slow if their spinning fiction about fucking writers. What's next, Busta Rimes caught [ommitted] Shonda Rhimes?


Spooky Lil Girl said...

So you're thinking of getting back on a harley? I recently starting dating a very careful man who doesn't ride, at least not the way I do. He worries about me all time, has a cow if I don't wear my seat belt in my truck. I can't even imagaine what he would think if he ever saw me carving the turns in Spearfish Canyon or tearing up the roads in the Smokey Mts.
He sometimes ride on the back of my sporty. My chopper is solo only. He holds on tight and I take it easy with him. He tells his mother that I am a very careful and skilled rider. BTW we are in our 40's, not kids. But he has never seen me really ride. Riding is something I do for the pure enjoyment of it. I do it for me and no one else. I don't do it to impress people. I have to deal with enough of that in my career, so when I am riding, it is pure selfishness. Kinda like skiing. You do it for you.
And I'm very good at it. Yeah there are idiots that pull out in front, not seeing the motorcycle and I have buried a few friends who died in just that way and know a few more whose lives were changed forever by a careless driver. but I still ride. For the most part I ride "safe", but when the road starts to curve, I can't help but enjoy it.
If my man made this an issue? Well I told him I might ride home alone to NC from Sturgis this past summer and he was so shook up he wanted to break up. I rode home in the truck instead. Last week I was asked to ride in a stunt show and I had to turn it down as just the look on his face told me no way could he deal with it.
He just got his permit and is practicing on one of my bikes. Because I care for him, I'll take it easier when I ride. But there are no guarantees. But no way do I want to lose him. So choices must ne made.
As for the negative feedback you are getting, I find that most of the time, its the wannabee punks that give people smack about things. I used to park my Ninja at some hardcore shops and never did any one of those guys ever give me smack about it. It was always the posers.
And hey the tabloids are paying attention to you cos your show is the show people are talking about.
You came up with something actually very different and interesting, and made it work. I'm looking forward to next season.

TJ Leyden said...

Look the taps are all about trying to kick good people down when ever they can. F them and the rags. Look real people no that its hollywood and just keep it real and we'll keep watching it. Get back on the bike and if you are every riding through southern Utah let me know and I'll ride with you anytime. Keep up the good work and let Katey know that she steals every scene she in, what a great actor she is.

CFL2005 said...

The show is awesome and I can't wait to see how evolves next season. I'd say all the people ticked at you and the show are either people who don't "get it" or think you're trying revive the outlaw side of bikers that weekend yuppie I'll buy a harley so I can look cool tried to kill. As George Carlin once said about these guys "you ain't cool skeesix, you're chilly and chilly ain't never been cool". The weekend truck my bike to Sturgis and Daytona guy will never get the real side of being a biker. A MC is about the brotherhood and this show puts that out for everyone to see.

Not all clubs are outlaw, but that would not make real interesting T.V. This show puts out there, just like The Shield, Rescue Me and a lot of other shows, that there are many sides of the people we see out there but assume the best and worse of. Good "Bad Guys" and Bad "Good Guys". It messes with people heads and that's why I love it.

Don't change a thing, just let it keep evolving and living up to the potential the fans know it has. Screw everyone else, let'em use their remotes if they don't like it.

Justin said...

"Busta Rimes caught doughgirling Shonda Rhimes?"

I. Fucking. Knew. It.

Slow news day. *yawn* I got to get up and cover a story on a Pearl Harbor commemoration ceremony today - and that I still have to write. I had to get up very early to get there and had to wade through other reporters to get it. Better that then covering Ms. Spears cooter flash of the week.

Katey is concerned for some reason - I hope you don't mind me adressing her in the familiar - but it sounds like you either A) layed your bike over or B) she doesn't want you to lay your bike over.

I broke both wrists and my jaw eight years ago. The only thing I ride right now is a toilet seat.



kickstart said...

Sooooo ... what are you'all going to do between now and next SoA season ?

Hope you and your team can put something on the screen in the mean time , I'm just fine with waiting - as long as its entertaining .

and by the way that SoA Ron put up for the Indian River Patchover would make a cool shirt too ..

keep cool

Desolation Angel said...

Dude, you'd have bros all over the U.S. watching your back, not just the hundred there. Thanks for taking some chances, for pursuing your vision and for being willing to put some integrity on the screen. Thanks for giving voice, life and breath to that part of John Teller (though ficitional) that must live inside you. Thanks for giving it depth, and having it take time, and refusing to capture it neatly, self-contained in 44 minutes each week. Life ain't like that, it doesn't get tied up, it's messy, and the choices we make, though they are the best at the time, don't always turn out the way we expect them to. Keep on keepin' on.

Justin said...

You know... of course you can't roll like this, but...

LOS ANGELES, Calif. -- Today, Kurt Sutter has indeed let slip the dogs of war.
"With all the threats against my life, I have decided to employ a team of trained Chilean commandos to safeguard myself and my family," Sutter said. "We have also purchased an armored zepplin for commuting. It has hot oil we can pour on assailants. And T.V. critics."
Sutter has come under fire from anonymous fiends who have threatened his life and that of his beloved bull-terrier, "Peaches."
"They wanted a war, well now they've got one," he said. "We accidently killed the UPS guy, but in all fairness, well, that fucker had it coming. No one wears shorts in December."

alohalani said...

Justin...that was too funny. I like the idea of the armored zepplin, where can I get one of those?

I guess I've gotten jaded, but I never believe the stuff I read in the tabs. I just automatically figure it's all bull. I read that article on where you made that quote. I figured the ones threatening you were wannabes. I admit I know nothing about the mc lifestyle, but I can imagine those guys would be smart enough to know the dfference between tv fiction and reality. Also, from the interviews you've given and what you've written here it is obvious you have respect for the mc members and have done all you can to avoid stepping on any toes.

As far as the accusations that you stole someone's idea, that's just pure jealousy. They know they could never have made anything even approaching the genius of your show. I can't wait for next season.

Stay positive and know your fans have your back, especially us fellow Jerseyites. Ride safe!

Grizzly Kaz said...

Never a dull...only a duh moment.

Reading stuff like this makes me realize why I never got into publicity or journalism on a pro level: (Not that you can call tabloids pro by any means, in fact I'd say low level for them).

I hope the Harley at home issue is resolved in a way thats' good for all concerned.

As far as the toilet paper rags and death threats...

just flush 'em.

LOL at Justin's last comment.

Outsider said...

Geez hope what's next in the 'bloids is me
(omitted) Debra La Fave....but hey ...
bein' in the 'Bloids is a sign you've arrived
Good Publicity! ...just don't get a
half shaved head and drive erratically
in an Escalade

Pierre093 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
zzzdog said...

Well, I bet that's enough to get visions of aluminum bats dancing in your head.

My world overlaps that of the national deaf community and the sign for "The National Enquirer" is the hand held in the finger spell position for the letter "e" and swiped across the lips in the sign for "lies."

I think that sums it up.

Even when they aren't lying, they are, and they'll victimize anyone, famous or not.

Several years ago one of my closest friends was the subject of a two-page centerfold Enquirer feature article which was highly sensationalized and spun, but factually true. The title was, "PhD. lives on $110 a year - $98 goes to Property Tax!" They picked up the germ of the story from a little human interest piece that ran in a reputable newspaper. My friend was indeed unique, and he was an open-hearted soul, so when someone posing as a self-sustained-living devotee visited him, he generously showed him his way of life. The next week he was a national freak show. It rained down a shit storm of negative reaction and legal interference that nearly destroyed, and irrevocably changed, the life he had carefully constructed for himself.

If it's okay with you, I'd rather you not post the part about my friend. Recounting the incident to someone being abused by the same rag is one thing, putting it out publicly, even in passing, feels another -- like exposing him again. I guess my reluctance speaks volumes about how much hurt these scumbags can leave in their wake. It was like pulling the wings off butterflies but on a human scale.

I mostly wanted to tell you about the "e-lies" sign -- a poetic summation, that.

While I'm here, though, let me say how much I admire your work. The show has heart and resonance and a collective, organic depth. It's one of the best things I've seen in a long time.

I read an interview in which you said that at least a few psychiatrists would support the post-murder consummation scene as an understandable response. I beg to differ and think you're underestimating the accessibility of what you crafted. I know there were some knee jerk reactions, but I think most reasonably insightful people, let alone mental health professionals, given the emotional overview, would see an understandable outcome.

I thought it was the MOST understandable reaction to the sudden and complete shift in their relationship. Just moments before Jax was apologetically telling her how wrong his life still was as a match to hers and then, in a heartbeat, events in HER life brought them to commit murder. That wedded both of them to the things she had run from in Jax, stripped away 10 years of imposed emotional exile for both of them, and along with the fuel of shock, released all their pent up loss and longing.

Once they broke the barrier of touch, realistically, what else could happen? They'd compose themselves in the face of this emotional earthquake, pull themselves together and tidy up - facing the full brunt of what they just did? Not in the world as I know it. Release, escape and connection would trump facing brutal reality. As a realistic reaction it made perfect, powerful sense to me. Aesthetically, Kohn's body lying there beside them made the pall that hangs over them visceral and immediate. I thought it was great -- beautiful, heartbreaking, and very gratifying.

I feel silly outlining your own work to you, but I guess I'm really talking in general to those who seemed to think it was incongruent. Obviously you thought it made sense, but I think more people than not, upon reflection, would too.

I also thought the "only one face I see" scene was amazing. There it all was - Jax's emotional truth, raw and laid bare in just a couple of sentences. I actually said, "Wow!" out loud. In these scenes and others, I've been struck by your ability to convey larger understandings with such economy of expression. It has elegance and impact.

And did I mention how good your cast is? Really.

I wish you, your family and your colleagues all the best and look forward to what comes next. Thank you for sharing your talent and for your fortitude in putting it out in the world. I know it can be excoriating at its worst, but incredibly rewarding at its best. I'm a visual artist, a painter.

If you've read this far, thanks for taking the time. Clearly, an economy of expression is not MY strong suit.

All best,

Tanya said...

Mr Sutter, I enjoy your show immensely. Nine out of ten times I end up falling asleep before or half through it, so I rewatch it on the website. (Falling asleep is not something I have control over, it's medication induced.) I hope they count us internet watchers in their numbers. I'm glad to hear there's a second season and hope there are many more after that! Thanks again for another noteworthy well-acted addition to television. You're wife is fabulous, I've been a fan of all her work with the exception of Married with Children. It wasn't her, I just couldn't stand the show. She is excellent actress in this role. I just love her.

Lakota said...

Kurt all I can say about getting back on a bike is there are Two kind's of "Bikers Those That Have Hit The Groubd and Those That Will".When I bought my first bike some 25 years ago that saying was told to me by the owner of the shop I bought my bike from,he was right,sooner or later everyone drops the bike/hits the ground,hell he even gave me my first set of broken wings. Yet another old tradition in the biker world a brother sees you drop the bike or go down you get a set of broken wings. Get yourself a used bike that needs a little tlc and fix it up,make it what you want it
to be and let Katey help you'll both enjoy the open road.
Best wishes to you both,and have a Merry Christmas

you-may-knowme said...


Have you given any thought to who would run the show if you do get dropped? I mean, it'd be sad and everything, but there are many people working on that show , right? It'd be a shame to inconvenience them as well as you, well, actually I mean your family.

Give it some thought

Lizz Andolini said...

I have a fetish on hands so some of your pictures kind of "please me"... ;)

Can't help but wonder what is the missing letter hidden by the bandage ?