Edward Kip “Half-Sack” Epps
Edward Kip “Half-Sack” Epps
Edward Kip “Half Sack” Epps is a fictional character on the FX television series Sons of Anarchy. This character is played by American actor Johnny Lewis. Half-Sack makes his debut in the series’ premiere episode, “Pilot”, in the series’ first season.
Being a SAMCRO prospect (prospective member) often resulted in him being hazed and given undesirable tasks. The other members generally kept a good-natured attitude towards Half-Sack when giving him these difficult tasks. Playing a recurring role through the series’ first and second seasons, Half-Sack met his demise in the Season 2 episode “Na Trioblóidí.” However, Half-Sack is mentioned once more, in the episode “Aon Rud Persanta”, during the series’ sixth season.
Kip Epps, (also called Eddie, by Gemma) was a native of Charming, California, who served in the United States Army during the Iraq War. He lost a testicle whilst serving in Iraq, prompting the nickname “Half-Sack”. A surprisingly formidable fighter, he was also the Junior Lightweight Champion of the Armed Forces boxing competition.
After leaving the military, he returned to Charming and began prospecting for the Sons of Anarchy Motorcycle Club and worked as a mechanic at Teller-Morrow Automotive Repair. He was also a vegetarian. During his run on the show he was romantically linked to Rita “Cherry” Lewis.
To distract the police from their activities, Jax Teller, Chibs Telford, Juice Ortiz and Half-Sack acquire two dead bodies from the local morgue and set them up in a fake shoot-out. The set-up shooting is made to look like a racist murder involving the Nordics, a local skinhead gang. On the way to Lodi, they are cut off on the road by a man driving a red muscle car. On the way back to Charming, they catch up with this man at a gas station and beat him up. The driver pulls out a pistol and attempts to shoot Jax, but is wrestled to the ground and killed by the Pakistani shop keeper who hits him with a fire axe. They steal the CCTV tapes and flee the scene.
While working at the auto shop one day, Half-Sack tells Tig Trager that Clay Morrow‘s wife, Gemma, gives him a MILF chubby, unaware that Clay is within earshot. Later, at the Devil’s Tribe patch-over party, Half-Sac meets a woman named Cherry, and the couple seem to be in love. Clay retaliates by pulling rank and having sex with Cherry.
Bare Knuckle Boxing
The club enters Half-Sack into a bare-knuckle boxing competition, to raise funds to buy weapons. During this time, he is trained by Chibs. It is Chibs who enforces Clays requirements that Half-Sack have “no booze, no weed and no pu$$y”. This means Cherry is kept away from him. Bobby is assigned (by Clay) to test Cherry’s loyalty to Half-Sack. Bobby tries to have sex with her, but she refuses his persistent advances.
At the competition, Half-Sack reaches the final, but is then told by Chibs and Tig to take a dive, because they bet on his opponent. Half-Sack agrees, but then sees Clay and Cherry hugging at ring-side. This brings on a sudden surge of rage, and he knocks his opponent out. Half-Sack is then told he owes the club $35,000.
Misguided Payback Attempt
In a bid to pay back the money, help the club, and earn his patch, Half-Sack steals an ambulance, which he plans to sell. The club dismisses this stunt as pointless and unnecessarily risky, however. The ambulance eventually does come to good use when Cameron Hayes of the True IRA is shot and wounded by the Mayans.
Half-Sack’s girlfriend, Cherry, is arrested but later broken out of jail. Happy then smuggles her into Canada, and she eventually moves to Belfast, to stay with SOA’s Belfast charter.
Aftermath of Donna’s Death
After Piney Winston’s daughter-in-law, Donna, is killed by the One-Niners (or so it seemed), Piney travels to Oakland to get revenge. Jax sends Half-Sack to follow him and to stop him from doing anything unnecessary. However, when they get to Oakland, Epps is unable to stop Piney from starting a fight in a Niners bar. It ends in a hostage situation, with Piney holding a Niner at gunpoint. When Jax and Chibs arrive and try to stop Piney from causing further trouble, Half-Sack helps Jax disarm him. They hold a meeting with Laroy, the Niners leader, who tells them that it is not he or his gang who killed Donna. The season ends with Half-Sack Epps and the rest of SAMCRO attending Donna’s funeral.
At the beginning of the second season, Half-Sack is still a prospective member trying to get into SAMCRO. He seems to have a more prominent role in some of the club’s dealings, often going on runs/errands with the other members. However, he is still the most likely member to be given surveillance duties.
After a short absence, Half-Sack returns to the clubhouse, revealing that he had a surgery to receive a prosthetic testicle. Soon after the surgery, Epps begins feeling discomfort. He eventually can’t take it anymore and enlists Tara‘s help. She informs him that his testicles are severely swollen due to infection, a possible side effect of the surgery.
In “Culling”, Half-Sack reveals that his body rejected the prosthetic. Soon afterward, Clay and some of the others have a discussion on how they feel about patching Epps into the club. They all agree that he would be a good addition to their ranks. Clay remarks that he has “Half a sack, shitload of balls.”
Half-Sack later participates in an organized brawl with L.O.A.N. as one of SAMCRO’s ten best fighters.
In the season two finale, Epps is tasked with watching over Gemma and Tara, but he cannot prevent Gemma from exacting revenge on Polly Zobelle. He returns to Jax’s home, not knowing he was followed by Cameron Hayes. After Hayes threatens to kill Abel Teller with a kitchen knife, Half-Sack rushes at him, only to be stabbed and killed. His death is discovered by Jax, Opie, and Chibs. Half-Sack Epps becomes the first main character to be killed off in the series.
Sutter Weighs In
Kurt Sutter, series writer and creator, said that Half-Sack was killed off because Lewis wanted to leave the show due to creative differences; “We decided we’d find some noble way for him to go. It wasn’t my intent to try to be sensational and kill off a main character.”
In the season premiere, SAMCRO buries Half-Sack with over 50 full-patch members from California, Washington, Nevada, and Oregon as well as numerous former military colleagues in attendance. A three-piece cutt is draped over his casket during the service, implying that SAMCRO posthumously patched him in.
Half-Sack is mentioned in the episode Aon Rud Persanta, along with Opie and Phil Russel, by Wayne Unser. He does so in an attempt to dissuade Gemma from raising Abel and Thomas. Unser says that their parents would have tried to prevent the lives they led, if they had a second chance.
Epps is the first main character and also the first SAMCRO member to die in the series. Along with Piney Winston and Wendy Case, Half-Sack is the only main character not to have killed anyone. Epps has appeared in 26 episodes of the series.
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