The recent crappy weather + an injured ankle led me to a very aggressive binge-watching of Sons of Anarchy. I had watched the first episode a couple years ago and it didn't grab me immediately, but revisiting it this summer, I didn't stand a chance. The show is remarkable in several ways: (1) the Shakespeare angle--the show is inspired by/a loose retelling of Hamlet, which is subtle but pretty interesting to think about; (2) an incredible amount of emotion comes through even in scenes without a ton of dialogue; (3) although these guys inhabit a hyper-masculine world, they don't think twice about openly crying, hugging, telling each other "I love you"--and it feels completely natural; (4) the women of the show are completely kickass.
Now, the world of the show is not "feminist" by any stretch of the imagination. There are plenty of times the show's female characters are mistreated, abused, defamed, etc, by the show's male characters (and by each other). But the show itself treats its ladies well. Listen: these women are complex, fucked up, vulnerable, not vulnerable, likable, not likable, sometimes all at the same time, and they have a ton of agency in their lives. And when they fight--regardless of who they're fighting with--they fight like hell. Does Sons of Anarchy pass the Bechdel test? Yes--probably every episode. Even shows whose male characters have better attitudes towards women often give those women less credit.
And aside from all that? The show is just plain good. Suspenseful, compelling, mercilessly violent, moving. In my book it touches Mad Men in terms of excellent characterizations, and also Six Feet Under in terms of its emotional impact on me (we're talking sobbing like a baby in the final moments).