Otto “Big Otto” Delaney was a member of SAMCRO of the FX original series Sons of Anarchy. Played by American actor and show creator Kurt Sutter, Delaney makes his debut on the episode “Giving Back” in the series’ first season. Playing a recurring role through the series’ first six seasons, he was incarcerated in Stockton State Prison until his death. He was married to porn producer Luann Delaney and met his demise in the Season 6 episode “Wolfsangel”.
Otto “Big Otto” Delaney was born in Colma, California on September 29, 1963, and later became a member of SAMCRO’s Charming Chapter. He has a sister with the ADA in Lodi. His “old lady” is Luann with whom he was deeply in love. Luann Delaney was Gemma Teller Morrow‘s best friend. When he met her, she was a pornstar. Otto gave her the money to start her own porn studio, Cara Cara. He promised her that she would never have to work in front of the camera again. Since his incarceration, Luann’s made ends meet producing “mature porn” movies. He has her name tattooed on his left arm.
Otto was a member of the Redwood Charter until he was arrested and sent to Stockton Prison in the mid 1990’s. He was originally arrested for second-degree murder and vehicle theft and was given a six-year sentence in Stockton State Prison.
He is a powerful man on the inside and is the leader of the “Big House Crew”, a gang of imprisoned Sons of Anarchy members. However, Delaney committed a number of crimes for SAMCRO while inside, and, as a result, his sentence was significantly lengthened. In March, 1997, he broke a man’s collarbones and two ribs. He stabbed an informant, resulting in an additional two years in August of 1999. In December, 2001, he tried to broker a deal with GN that went south and he got his left eye slashed.
Otto was always loyal to his club, no matter how much he had to suffer. He protected SAMCRO until the end. He was quite an intelligent man, often reading books in prison. His one weakness however was his wife Luann who he ask the club to look after as his only favor.
In prison, Otto protected Chucky Marstein, who is an accountant imprisoned for fraud. He protects Chucky from the Lin Triad for 18 months. When Chucky is released, Delaney arranged to have SAMCRO protect him from Lin. In exchange, Luann was to get Otto’s share of the money Chuck stole from the Triad. He later hints to Clay and Jax that Chucky has a “condition.”.
Otto gets a Visit from Agent Stahl
Otto receives a visit from ATF agent June Stahl. Stahl informs him that Cara Cara was raided and that Luann faces 10 years on drug charges. Delaney agrees to inform on SAMCRO if Stahl lets Luann go and helps him at his parole hearing in three months. He also tells her that he wants it in writing. Otto tells her about a 1999 hijacking involving SAMCRO and two other charters, assuming that it will not harm the club.
Later, Luann visits Otto and warns him that Stahl is trying to use his information for a RICO case against the Sons. He manages to get Luann clear of the charges and makes it look as though he is going to rat the club out.
When Stahl returns, Otto feigns an inability to read the typed statement so that she leans in close. It is then that he repeatedly slams her head against the table. This is to prove to SAMCRO that he is not a rat.
Otto gets a visit from Clay Morrow and Jax Teller, informing them that the Aryan Brotherhood is getting increasingly hostile. They tell him that Cara Cara has been shut down by law enforcement as Stahl’s revenge for him assaulting her. They also tell him that Georgie Caruso is poaching all of Luann’s employees.
Otto is attacked by Squirrel
In an attempt to “humble” Clay, Otto is ambushed while moping a hallway by inmates affiliated with the Aryan Brotherhood, at Ethan Zobelle’s command. After being beaten up, the Aryan in charge of the attack, Squirrel (David J. Wright), goes a step further by gouging Delaney’s good eye out with a broken mop handle. As he does so he states that the “Beating was from the League! This is from me!” As a result of the assault, he is blind in one eye and only has 10% vision in the other.
Otto Learns Luann was Murdered
Jax visits Otto with tragic news: Luann has been murdered. Heartbroken, Otto believes Caruso is responsible.
Jax visits again with more news. This time he tells Otto that Ethan Zobelle, the leader of the League of American Nationalists allied with the AB, is an FBI informant. Jax tells him to spread the word to the Aryan shot callers.
In the Season 2 finale, in the prison’s reading room, Squirrel is attacked and beaten into submission by SAMCRO sympathizers the Black Guerrilla Family.
Then, with assistance, Otto stabs Squirrel in the neck with a screw-driver, killing him. Delaney mirrors back Squirrel’s words as he kills him whispering “Beating was from SAMCRO. This is from me.”
Otto is released from lock-down in the Season 3 finale. At SAMCRO’s request, he asks Lenny “the Pimp” Janowitz (Sonny Barger), another imprisoned SOA member, for information on Jimmy O and the Russians.
The reason for Otto’s absence and imprisonment in lock-down is revealed during conversation with Clay and Bobby. Delaney tells them that he is being charged with murdering Squirrel. He also tells them that he believes the case against him is very strong.
There were cameras in the reading room that recorded surveillance footage of him killing Squirrel. Because of the cameras, Otto has no chance to plea down. In addition, there is a report on Delaney stating he “continues to show a pattern of aggressive behavior.” Otto says he is unsure of what type of sentence he will receive. He says that his public defender, whom he had to resort to, “doesn’t speak very good English.” Delaney tells Clay and Bobby that he is sure he will be sentenced to death. He says that by the time the SAMCRO members facing prison are arraigned and actually get to jail, he will be on Death Row.
Delaney meets Lenny “The Pimp”
Otto has a brief meeting with Lenny in the prison infirmary. They have a friendly chat and Otto tells him about Clay’s requests, which Lenny agrees to do. Otto passes this on through a coded message.
Otto is sentenced to death, so he is on death row while several other SAMCRO members are in prison. When they are released after 14 months, they have a razor smuggled into his cell by a guard. He uses it to cut his wrists and is taken to the infirmary. He ends up right next to Ivo Alexei, the Russian who shanked Jax Teller. Otto slips out of his restraints and stabs Alexei in the ear with a scalpel, killing him.
Marcel accuses Bobby of Murder
Deputy Sheriff Gabe Marcel visits Otto in solitary confinement. He informs Otto that traces of Bobby Munson’s semen were found in Luann’s underwear at the time of her death. Marcel insinuates that Bobby was the one who killed her. Despondent at this apparent betrayal, Otto talks with Gemma Teller Morrow. He demands that she tell the club to find out who was responsible for Luann’s murder.
Bobby visits Otto to tell him what happened, apologizing for being with Luann but claiming there was no love between them and Luann did indeed love Otto. He claims that Georgie Caruso was responsible for Luann’s murder. The club had ultimately decided to spare Georgie’s life so they could use his billionaire contacts to end Charming Heights.
Bobby Lies to Otto
When Otto asks Bobby if SAMCRO killed Luann’s murderer, Bobby says they did, lying to Otto, despite being instructed by SAMCRO to tell Otto the truth. The truth being that they needed Georgie alive, temporarily.
Proof Caruso is Innocent
Deputy Marcel returns with proof that, not only was Caruso in Thailand at the time of Luann’s death, but that he is still alive as of yesterday. He reasserts that Bobby killed Otto’s old lady, and that, considering all that he has lost his freedom, his vision, his wife, his sanity, and has now been condemned to die for the Sons, “there is a substantial inequity at play here.” Otto questions Marcel’s job position, reasoning he has far more power and reach than a Deputy Sheriff should.
Enter Agent Potter
When Marcel visits Otto again, he is straight with him, admitting that actually he is an Assistant US Attorney named Lincoln Potter building a RICO case against SAMCRO, the True IRA, and the Galindo Cartel. Otto agrees to inform on Bobby in exchange for his money going to his sister-in-law, an appointment with an eye doctor for reading glasses, renewed privileges for Lenny Janowitz, an earlier execution date, and the chance to tell Bobby to his face that he ratted on him. Otto agrees to give up a number of crimes and to go into protective custody. All of Otto’s demands are met, except for Lenny’s privileges, so he refuses to sign his statement.
When Potter returns, he has gotten Lenny his privileges, so Otto signs the statement. He meets with Bobby and forces him to read the list of things Otto suffered for SAMCRO, telling him that he ratted because they failed to do the only thing he wanted in return, which was to protect Luann, and reveals he has given him up. Bobby calls Otto a “stupid little rat” and promises that he will “burn” as he is arrested. Bobby is infuriated as he’s being taken away by the guards, when Otto loudly says “Time for you to start a list, Bobby”.
Otto is visited by a medical volunteer who identifies herself as Tara Knowles, Jax’s wife. She tells him that his execution is stalled with the RICO case and that Bobby was not lying. SAMCRO wants him to reverse his statement or RICO will destroy the Sons. Otto wants oral sex in return, but she refuses and he tells her to never visit him again. She writes in her report that he has a staph infection, so he is confined to the infirmary and forced to take antibiotics.
Tara “Helps” Otto
Tara later returns and brings Otto a bottle of Luann’s perfume. She unhooks his hand from his restraints and, sobbing, he masturbates before Tara takes a blood sample.
The next day, he agrees to sabotage his contribution to the RICO case. Delaney asks Tara to bring him Luann’s crucifix, which had belonged to his mother. He says that once the test results come back negative, Tara will not have any more access to him. She brings him the crucifix, which he uses to pray, and then requests to go back to his cell. When he is freed from his restraints, he knocks out the orderly and repeatedly stabs the nurse in the throat with the crucifix, declaring, “Sons live, Redwood bleeds.”
Otto is Attacked
In his cell, Otto is beaten with a metal pipe by an unknown man. The man visits him later, informing him that, “These next few months will be the most excruciatingly painful time of your sick and miserable life.”
Otto Goes to Extremes
Otto is chained up in an interrogation room and questioned. A man who turns out to be Lee Toric, ex-US Marshal and brother of the nurse he killed, watches from behind the one-way glass. By this time, Delaney is regretting turning on SAMCRO, and looking for a way to make it right. He also has a great tolerance for pain. Refusing to speak, Otto slams his chin on the table and bites off his own tongue in order to show that he is still loyal to SAMCRO. He then throws it at the one-way glass.
During this season, U.S. Marshal Lee Toric targets Otto. In retaliation for Otto’s having killed Toric’s sister, he has Otto repeatedly raped and beaten in prison. Toric visits Otto and taunts him. He threatens SAMCRO and promises Otto that the rapes will continue every day.
Later, Clay visits Otto and slips him a shiv to end his misery, whispering, “No more, brother.” Toric tells Otto that Clay is no longer a member of SAMCRO, and that ratting on him would not be ratting on the Sons, promising to make Otto very comfortable if he helps him out. Otto agrees, and writes something on a pad of paper. When Toric sees that it is a vulgar insult against his sister, he strangles him.
Otto stabs him several times in the abdomen with the shiv and holds it to his throat. When two guards tell him to drop the weapon, Otto slashes Toric’s throat. He is then shot multiple times in the chest, finally putting an end to his suffering.
Despite playing a fairly major recurring character in 20 episodes over six seasons, Series Creator Kurt Sutter is uncredited for his appearances as Otto.
In the episode “Na Trioblóidí,” Otto listens to a recording of “The Progress of Nihilism.” It is an essay by William Barry that was published in the 1886 edition of The Dublin Review. Notably, it contains the phrase “sons of anarchy.” Consequently, he is the only club member, besides John Teller, shown to have any knowledge of or interest in actual philosophical anarchism.
Kurt Sutter originally planned for Delaney to be executed. That plot begins in “NS” when Otto is revealed to be on death row. Sutter eventually decided it was implausible for him to keep getting away with murders in prison. He then decided to have him commit suicide by cop.
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