Sons Of Anarchy's Katey Sagal Was Very Emotional Over Her Plot-Twist Death

It doesn't matter if it's a drama or comedy, fans of long running TV series often become emotionally attached to the characters that they've been following over the course of the show's story. When a character is killed off, many viewers have to deal with a true sense of loss. 

Meanwhile, the actors playing these characters have their own personal connection to these fictional roles. Even though fans may think most actors in this situation are worried about the end of a steady job, performers like Katey Sagal from "Sons of Anarchy" prove that emotions go beyond a simple paycheck.

When Sagal spoke to People about her character Gemma's death on Season 7, Episode 12, "Red Rose," she explained how emotions hit her when walking up to the set with Charlie Hunnam, who plays her fictional son and murderer. Although previous episodes alluded to this moment coming, Sagal still felt the future loss of her on-set bonding. 

"Charlie [Hunnam] and I cried a lot. It's how 'Sons of Anarchy' has always been. Everybody goes there," Sagal said. "I remember right before I walk out of that living room and toward the rose garden, Charlie and I just hugged each other, really hugged each other, because it was also goodbye for Katey and Charlie after seven years." These emotions were surely in stark contrast compared to the final moments of Gemma's life.

The final moments were a relief

When the series got to the episode when Katey Sagal's Gemma meets her fate, fans had already experienced some sad deaths in "Sons of Anarchy," like with Opie (Ryan Hurst) and Clay (Ron Perlman). Meanwhile, in this episode, Jax learns Gemma is Tara's (Maggie Siff) killer, and he tracks her and Wayne (Dayton Callie) down. After dispatching Wayne, Jax leads his mom to the garden, where he shoots her. Despite all the real emotions Sagal admitted to feeling, none of it was true sadness. 

"It was very emotional in a beautiful way," Sagal said. "It wasn't torturous. It was kind of a relief." The relief Sagal talks about wasn't due to her not enjoying her time on the series, but rather being familiar with the building story arc that lead to this dramatic moment. "We'll all been building to this moment for this last season and have all been in our own forms of denial by not really dealing with it ending," Sagal said, "but on that day, there was no turning back. It was extremely emotional." 

As for Callie, whose character also bit the dust in the same scene, when he learned of Wayne's death, he had a more humorous revelation. Callie told Entertainment Weekly that he learned of the episode details when having lunch with Sagal, and he asked her if she had read the script yet. 

"The look on her face said I was dead," Callie said. Sagal's look may have tipped Callie off about his character's fate, but shortly after, he learned he wasn't the only one leaving the series.