Harry “Opie” Winston portrayed by Ryan Hurst – Sons of Anarchy
Harry “Opie” Winston portrayed by Ryan Hurst – Sons of Anarchy
“I got this…”
―Opie’s last words
Harry ‘Opie’ Winston was a member of the Sons of Anarchy MC on the FX original series Sons of Anarchy. Opie is played by American actor Ryan Hurst. He makes his debut in the series’ premiere episode, “Pilot.”
His father, Piney, was also a member of the club and one of the First 9. He was best friends with the club’s former President, Jackson Teller.
Opie had just finished a 5 year prison sentence in the Chino State Penitentiary. He fathered 2 children with his deceased wife, Donna Winston. Opie later marries Lyla Winston, a porn star employed by LuAnn Delaney. LuAnn owns Cara Cara and is the wife of Otto Delaney.
Like Jax, the club was in his blood. It is the only life and family he has ever known. Playing a recurring role through the series’ first, second, third, fourth, and fifth seasons, Opie was killed in San Joaquin County Correctional Facility. After a brutal beating and fatal blow to the back of the head, he met his demise in the Season 5 episode “Laying Pipe”.
He is seen once more, as a corpse, in the series’ subsequent episode, “Stolen Huffy”, in the same season.
Opie’s most powerful trait was his unbreakable loyalty towards SAMCRO and his best friend, Jax. Even after spending five years in jail for the club, he was willing to do anything to help the Sons. After his release from prison, Opie was torn between leaving the club and becoming a family man or staying with SAMCRO and risking his life and freedom once again. He eventually chose to stay in the club. After the death of his wife, he completely alienated his children, out of grief.
Opie, though seemingly gentle, has a vicious streak. He savagely beat Tig when he confessed to be responsible for Donna’s murder. He went on to threaten Agent Stahl for it, making her believe he was going to kill her. However, he revealed his gun was empty, telling her to remember that “the outlaw had mercy”, causing her to break down after he left. He later killed her in the same way Tig killed Donna.
Opie ultimately sacrificed himself for the club, and for Jax, not wanting his best friend to die.
Opie was paroled from a five year stay in prison following his conviction for a botched arson with ex-member Kyle Hobart. His wife, Donna, was killed by Alexander ‘Tig’ Trager during a botched hit against him. The hit was issued after the ATF set him up as a rat against the club in an attempt to take down SAMCRO.
Opie is still very depressed over the death of Donna. He becomes distant from his children. As a result, Opie starts crashing at the Club house and begins to take more risks for the club. He is eventually asked by Jax if he has some sort of death wish.
Opie meets and begins to date porn star Lyla, whom he seems very happy with. He desperately wants to get her out of the porn life by getting her pregnant. Lyla is secretly taking birth control so she can continue to work.
When Lyla and her co-workers are entertaining businessmen for a deal between SAMCRO and the Lin Triad, Opie starts a fight that loses the club a good cash payment and guns. He went to Belfast, Northern Ireland to back up Jax’s search for his son Abel. He also kills Agent June Stahl in the same fashion that Tig killed Donna.
Lyla and Opie were married in the Season Premiere. Their wedding was also used as a cover to retaliate against the Russians for going after Jax in prison. When the new wife asked his involvement, he keeps the clubs secret and tells her they had nothing to do with murdering the Russians. Opie wants Lyla to get out of the porn business. Lyla continues to work doing girl on girl. He even tries to impregnate her to get her out.
When visiting her at work he finds her stash of birth control pills. She confirms that she does not want to stop working in the industry saying it is “all she knows”. This really hurts Opie, inciting a one night stand with her porn star co-worker Ima at the club house.
Lyla confesses to Opie that she had an abortion before he went to Belfast. This news causes their relationship to slowly fall apart. The final straw comes when V-Lin is tasked to bring her to the SOA compound for protection during the heavy battles with Lobo Sonora. Lyla gives V-Lin the slip and bails on her new family.
Opie does finally catch up with Lyla while looking for Georgie. He is cold and indifferent, saying he does not blame her for leaving. In addition, he tell her that he did not think it would work out anyways. Lyla responds with a verbal kick in the heart saying “nothing will work out until she (Donna) is dead”.
Opie vs. Clay
Opie discovers that Clay killed his father Piney and is responsible for his wife, Donna, being killed. Clay has to be stopped before he can hurt any one else he loves. He then immediately shoots Clay two times.
In an attempt to stop Opie’s rage, Jax shoots him in the wrist, then takes him to Piney’s cabin, where he tells him to stay put until everything is cleared up.
Soon Jax returns. Opie asks him if Clay was dead, to which Jax replied “No”, which angered Opie. Jax told him he would take the gavel and said that he wanted Opie to be his Vice-President—but he did not tell Opie the whole truth, which Opie already knew, so he was further angered. He told Jax that omitting the full truth is the same as lying, and he does not show up for Jax ‘s investiture as President of SAMCRO.
Opie was out of the club for a short while because he was unable to sit next to the man who killed his father and was not willing to go along with Jax’s plan of hiding the truth from the club.
He was seen placing a for sale sign on Piney’s motorcycle. After Clay visits Opie and tells him he shouldn’t leave just because Clay is there, Opie decides to come back. He arrives at the clubhouse as Jax, Chibs, and Tig are surrendering into custody and punches Sheriff Roosevelt to force his arrest along with the others, in order to stay close and protect his brothers.
While incarcerated, Jax is forced to accept a deal under Damon Pope’s terms: Tig is to remain in the pen, to be tortured forever and Jax must choose the life of another Son to give up in exchange for the freedom of the remaining two. Jax refuses to appoint one of his brothers as sacrifice and plans to offer up himself instead. Opie won’t allow Jax to follow through with his plan and assaults the commanding, ‘Solitary’ Sergeant, thereby forcing himself into the role of sacrificial lamb. The irate Sergeant orders Opie be taken to the box, where he’s left alone with a pipe to fight Pope’s agents, as the others watch helplessly, accepting his fate, Opie reassures them, saying “I got this.”
Opie initially puts up a fight, managing to wound several of his attackers, but is ultimately overpowered by them, and savagely beaten. Badly wounded, and with no strength to fight back, Opie looks to a horrified Jax, before he is struck in the back of the head with the pipe killing him.
Afterwards, Jax brokers a deal with Pope that has the remaining three Sons, including Tig released from so he can use Tig’s gratitude to his advantage to leverage Tig into siding with him. Pope agrees, impressed with Jax’s ability to see the advantage in bad circumstances.
Avenging Opie’s Death
Jax vows to avenge Opie’s fate. He later finds out the sergeant’s name and murders both him and his wife. Jax and the sons also track down Randall Hightower (the inmate responsible for dealing the fatal blow to the back of Opie’s head and the cousin of Grim Bastards president, T.O. Cross). Despite Cross’s pleas, Jax orders Chibs to kill Randall, who repeats Opie’s final words (“I got this”) and shoots Randall in the back of the head, finally avenging Opie for good.
The loss of Opie is still prevalent in the sixth season. The members of SAMCRO are seen wearing a patch saying “In memory of Opie.” Lyla cries and asks for Opie after she is tortured by the Ghanezi brothers at their torture porn studio in Stockton.
Opie is also mentioned in the episode Aon Rud Persanta, along with Half-Sack and Phil Russel, by Wayne Unser. He mentions them in an attempt to dissuade Gemma from raising Abel and Thomas. He tells her that their parents would have tried to prevent the lives they led, if they had a second chance. His grave is also seen in the season finale.
Opie’s grave is briefly seen at the cemetery when Wayne Unser visits Tara’s grave to lay flowers at it. (“Black Widower”)
Jax visits Opie’s grave at the cemetery and places his “SO” and “NS” rings on top of the tombstone.
Later, Jax echos Opie’s final words (“I got this”) as his final line to the SAMCRO members before riding off to his death. (“Papa’s Goods”)
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