Mayans MC season one episode titles and what they mean

Carla Baratta as “Adelita” in Mayans MC. Photo credit: James Minchin/ FX

The task of choosing episode titles is not an easy one, and this is made apparent as we look at the 10 episode titles for season one of Mayans MC.

Most of the Mayans MC episode titles follow a pattern, made up of two names, one in Spanish and a second divided by a forward slash which often to refers to the Haab and Tzol’kin (called Chol Q’ij in K’iche’ Mayan) calendars.

Other titles are more ambiguous in their meanings and less easily decoded. Instead of following a strict theme when naming each episode, Mayans MC creators Kurt Sutter and Elgin James may be indirectly saying what each episode has to offer, or simply which symbolic animal will be present in that episode.

Mayans MC is executive produced by Kurt Sutter and Norberto Barba, with Elgin James as Co-Executive Producer, airing Tuesday, September 4th on FX rated TV-MA.

Here are the 10 episode titles for season one of Mayans MC and what they mean.

1. Perro/Oc

Directed by Norberto Barba

Synopsis: “EZ’s fate is in flux as the M.C. and the cartel find a common adversary.”

Translated from Spanish into English, “Perro” means Dog and “Oc” in Yucatec Maya is one of the 20-day names of the Tzolkin calendar system, Oc also being represented by a glyph thought to be the head of a dog by anthropologists.

The premiere episode Perro/Oc is set to have a symbolic stray dog appear occasionally as EZ navigates through this episode. The dog, representing loyalty and new beginnings, perfectly suits the premiere episode as we follow EZ on his path as a prospect in the Santo Padre charter.

2. Escorpión/Dzec

Directed by Norberto Barba

Synopsis: “The Mayans seek answers from a local crew as the Galindo worlds north and south of the border collide.”

Episode 2’s title breaks the calendar-themed cycle. “Escorpión” in Spanish means scorpion. When researched, there is little to no correlation of the scorpion to either calendar. The spelling of the word “Dzec” with the letter “D” turns up little in research results as well, aside from translations that came from questionable astrology and horoscope websites, which do claim that “Dzec” means scorpion.

Turning to the Yucatec and Kiche Maya spellings,  “Tzec” spelled with a “T” (sometimes spelled Sek) does indeed correspond to the 5th month of the Haab calendar.

According to Maya Calendar Origins: Monuments, Mythistory, and the Materialization of Time by Prudence M. Rice, one meaning for the word Sek of this month is thought to be “skull”. “Tzec”, can also mean the end of something.

A scorpion, depending on the region and culture, symbolizes change and impending danger. This combined with the episode synopsis could make for an action-packed episode with great change and deadly consequences for the Santo Padre Charter.

3. Búho/Muwan

Directed by Guy Ferland

Synopsis: “The M.C. alliances are tested; the Galindo family adopts unconventional methods.”

Episode 3’s title follows the same pattern as episode 1. “Buho” in Spanish, meaning owl, with “Muwan” being a month in the Haab calendar attributed by an owl hieroglyph.

Owls vary in their symbolic nature. Often associated with darkness, wisdom, and pursuit of truth. The Yucatec Maya translation of “Muwan” means “the moan bird”, and thought to represent death.

With this episode synopsis, we can almost predict the Galindo cartel to amplify their gritty nature. We can also expect the Santo Padre charter to make wise decisions that will change the story arc for the remainder of season 1.

4. Murciélago/Zotz

Directed by Hanelle M. Culpepper

Synopsis: “A new threat in Santo Padre presents the Mayans new obstacles and opportunities.”

Once again, the Maya calendar title theme is present here. In Spanish, “Murciélago” means bat and “Zotz” is a month in the Haab calendar represented by a hieroglyph of the leaf-nosed bat.  The word “Zotz” also being the Q’eqchi’ Mayan word for bat.

The bat holds many meanings including rebirth, death and thought to represent both good and evil. Ancient Mayans revered a God called Camazotz meaning “death bat” in the Quiché Maya language. The bat is thought to have strong ties to Xibalba, the underworld, and is a powerful force against enemies.

In episode 4, we may be able to expect the bat to appear as a symbolic figure as the Santo Padre charter flies out of the frying pan for a fleeting moment into a new partnership that will change the game.

5. Uch/Opossum

Directed by Sebastián “Batan” Silva

Synopsis: Unavailable

“Uch” is opossum in Q’eqchi Mayan. Why does the second-word shift to English for “opossum”? Your guess is good as ours. If this title followed the previous pattern, it may have read “Zarigüeya/Uch”. However, something is still missing- a direct connection to the Maya.

However, the symbolism of the opossum may refer to the adaptation of a particular strategy among the Santo Padre charter as the Mayans makes alternate plans to handle the Galindo cartel that will result in fewer casualties on their end.

6. Gato/Mis

Directed by Félix Alcalá

Synopsis: Unavailable

Very simple, “Gato” means cat in Spanish and “Mis” is the Q’eqchi Mayan word for cat. The cat, well known for having 9-lives,  could symbolize the Mayans MC’s resilience, moving into the second half of the season.

Ancient Mayans respected the largest and powerful jungle cat, the jaguar, sometimes representing ferocity and confrontation of enemies.

7. Cucaracha/K’uruch

Directed by Rachel Goldberg

Synopsis: Unavailable

Meaning cockroach in both Spanish and in Yucatec Maya. Best when crushed beneath one’s boot. We know the meaning, but the symbolism is lost on us.

Perhaps, the Mayans MC will exterminate a particular threat, setting the stage for the final three episodes to steamroll forward.

8. Rata/Ch’o

Directed by Peter Weller

Synopsis: Unavailable

Rat in Spanish and rat in Q’eqchi Mayan. Responsible for spreading disease and destroying civilizations, rats are also thought to represent ambition and intelligence.

With a particular theme of rats existing in the Mayans MC universe and also carrying a negative connotation, we can only imagine a rat or two will be exposed in this episode.

9. Serpiente/Chikchan

Directed by Norberto Barba

Synopsis: Unavailable

Snake in Spanish and “Chikchan” is Yucatec Mayan for one of the 20-day names in the Tzolkin calendar meaning “celestial serpent”. Snakes, with the ability to shed its skin, can symbolize transformation. While some snakes being completely harmless, others carry the ability to inflict death.

With the previous episode referring to rats and snakes having an appetite for them, it is hard to pin down what this episode will have to offer in terms of plot.

10. Cuervo/Tz’ikb’uul

Directed by Kurt Sutter

Synopsis: Unavailable

“Cuervo” meaning raven in Spanish and “Tz’ikb’uul” meaning crow in the Q’eqchi’ Mayan language. Much like Episode 2’s title, there is no direct reference to the raven or crow in either calendar systems whether that be a month or a day name.

It is hard to ignore the choice to incorporate crows or ravens into the finale episode of Mayans MC, with the birds heavily symbolically used in the Sons of Anarchy series. Associated with the dead, the crow or raven is also thought to play a role in creation.

With Cuervo/Tz’ikb’uul the title of season one finale, this may perfectly embody the death of a significant character as the Santo Padre charter looks onward to a new world they have created for us to look forward to in season 2.

How to watch Mayans MC

The United States of America and Canada FX/ FXNow September 4th. Spain, Sweden, Norway, Denmark on HBO September 5th. South America FoxPremium September 4th. France can watch on Canal+. Australia on Showcase and New Zealand streaming on Neon, both airing September 5th.

If you are without a cable package and the FX channel, iTunes., Hulu, and Amazon will have episodes for purchase.

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