Sons of Anarchy creator Kurt Sutter has opened up in more detail about his recent firing, and revealed the dark Mayans M.C. joke that he believes soured his relationship with Disney. Explaining the scripted quip to Deadline, Sutter said, "Here’s what I did wrong on the studio network side, the reason why I had to go away. It all started with a joke. And not a very good one. There was a line in the Season 2 premiere. EZ [JD Pardo] and Coco [Richard Cabral] were getting off the bus at the school where the drugs were being processed. There was supposed to be a really gnarly playground out front. Filled with debris, dangerous looking swings, sharp objects, rusty jungle gym, etc. As they exited, Coco sees EZ’s distracted and says: 'Lighten up Boy Scout,' and gesturing to the playground, says, 'We’re going to Disneyland.' EZ replies: 'Yeah? Guess this is where Walt buried all the Jews he had killed.' Coco comments: 'That’s dark man…' And exits."
Sutter went on to offer, "Although the joke came out of character and in any other environment, would have been typical of my brand of dark humor, I’m not an idiot. I knew it would ring some bells. Whether real or imagined, I was already experiencing the tightening of the noose. It was manifesting in production issues, creating more hurdles, etc. I’ve learned over the years through trial and error – a lot of error – how to push back to protect story from corporate conformity."
"I discovered that when the restraints are tightening, to acquiesce and cave does not buy you trust and goodwill," he went on to say. "It only clears the path for forward momentum. So when dealing with new restrictions often implemented by a change in personnel, it’s best to respond by lobbing a grenade."
"Yes, it stuns people, challenges their authority, often involves a call from a lawyer," Sutter continued. "But the result is usually a slowing down of the restrictive thrust. Breathing room. It forces people to really think about the demand they are making and why they are making it. Is it really necessary? It at least stops the most inane notes from reaching my desk."
Finally, he added, "So when I was informed that the Walt, Jew-killing line had to go, I agreed and changed it to…We’re going to Disneyland. And now EZ says, Yeah… if Mickey and Pluto were pedophiles."
Mayans is currently in its second season, but it is unknown if it will be renewed for a third.
Photo Credit: FX