MAYANS M.C. Co-Creator on Crafting an Arc 'No One Else is Crazy Enough to Do' - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote

MAYANS M.C. Co-Creator on Crafting an Arc ‘No One Else is Crazy Enough to Do’

September 4, 2018 by  

Mayans M.C.

MAYANS M.C. — Pictured: JD Pardo as EZ Reyes. CR: Prashant Gupta/FX

Nearly four years after SONS OF ANARCHY concluded, Kurt Sutter is revisiting the world with MAYANS M.C.

The quasi-spinoff (co-created by Sutter and Elgin James) follows EZ (JD Pardo), a prospect with the Mayans M.C. charter located near the California/Mexico border. EZ, newly out of prison, was brought into the club thanks to his brother Angel (Clayton Cardenas)…and may be in over his head.

Set in a post-SONS OF ANARCHY world has its own benefits and complications. “It almost would have been easier if we were creating our own universe,” James admits. “It’s been really challenging and really rewarding to [work within the confines of the established world].”

“As an artist, you’re trying to tell your own story, always,” he continues. “You’re trying to bleed out your own heartbreak and pain. You want that from all the writers. That’s why our writers’ room is majority women and mostly people of color—except for one woman who is first-generation Italian-American. But I wanted them to have distinct voices. And Kurt, it was his mandate; he allowed this to happen. It’s cool to start as something else, this germ [of an idea], and put this candy-coated shell of SONS OF ANARCHY over it.”

A key way for the creative team to differentiate the stories from the start? Choosing to have EZ be lower in the club’s ranks than SONS main character Jax (Charlie Hunnam) was in the mothership. “When we talked about SONS, it was the story of ‘Hamlet,’” James says. With this, “because it’s set in a Mexican-American community, it should be the most American story. It’s the American dream: Those old penny novels about an urchin kid who worked his way up in the company. We decided to do that with a prospect. It’s like the American dream when you start off the custodian and wind up [as] the CEO.”

But centering your action around a character who has the least amount of power in a group—led by Bishop (Michael Irby), a cousin of SONS character Marcus Alvarez (Emilio Rivera)—is its own risk. “We’re trying to pitch this show as we’re gonna have our lead character have no agency…it’s not something you would normally do,” James acknowledges with a laugh. “So we try to mess with that. There are other secrets about him that are red flags that you wouldn’t do in a TV show. But through Kurt and his brilliance, we’re using it as ‘This is awesome, because no one else is crazy enough to do it—and we’re going to.’”

MAYANS M.C., Series Premiere, Tuesday, September 4, 10/9c, FX

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