The Sopranos: Best Ending Ever?
I have HBO free this weekend and watching a Sopranos marathon and was thinking about the ending. I truly believe it’s one of the best endings ever. I mean EVER. It was so out of left field. And people talked for weeks about it. People STILL talk about it. I can’t think of any snow that ended on such a controversial note.
I never watched Breaking Bad, so that doesn’t count. I know DL’ers agree. Right? RIGHT?
|by Anonymous||reply 152||October 14, 2021 9:19 PM
It was good and I enjoyed the last episode. I wasn't outraged like some but I wouldn’t call it the best.
|by Anonymous||reply 1||September 24, 2021 11:21 PM
This should’ve been a poll.
|by Anonymous||reply 2||September 24, 2021 11:22 PM
Does controversial equal, people are still whining about it years later? If so, I would add Lost and How I Met Your Mother to the list of controversial endings.
|by Anonymous||reply 3||September 24, 2021 11:24 PM
I didn't subscribe to HBO and only got around to watching Sopranos last year in the lockdown so I knew what was coming. Seeing that final episode I mainly was amused by the thought of 10 million Sopranos fans in 2007 looking at each other and in unison saying WHAT THE FUCK !
|by Anonymous||reply 4||September 24, 2021 11:28 PM
Damn r2 you’re right.
R3, that was universally considered drab and easy. I don’t think the Sopranos was either.
|by Anonymous||reply 5||September 24, 2021 11:38 PM
Six Feet Under had a better ending.
|by Anonymous||reply 6||September 24, 2021 11:44 PM
I LOVED the Sopranos ending. My heart was pounding the minute Don't Stop Believing started playing. Meadow and the car, etc.
I thought it was a brilliant ending and it surprises me how many people hate it.
It was also hinted at earlier in the season in a conversation between Bobby and Tony.
For some reason I also loved that Cabin/Lake House episode. For me, that had a strange foreboding feeling about the ending of the show.
|by Anonymous||reply 7||September 24, 2021 11:47 PM
The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Six Feet Under
Whether any of these are "better" they are all less controversial in being heralded as among the best endings ever. Sopranos was reviled initially by many people and still has many detractors.
|by Anonymous||reply 8||September 24, 2021 11:49 PM
The best ending ever is a tossup between Walter Matthau's final shot in The Taking of Pelham One Two Three and Charles's Bronson in the original Death Wish.
|by Anonymous||reply 9||September 24, 2021 11:51 PM
The last season tied things up too tightly while leaving the family in a totally ambiguous place. I could rewatch every other season of this show dozens of times (I always have something on for the noise, especially things I've seen before; audio wallpaper).
Loving the HBO marathon, they're on Season 2 today. Some of my favorite Janice moments are in this one.
|by Anonymous||reply 10||September 24, 2021 11:52 PM
I had to think about the ending for a while before I realised that it was perfect. At first, I was just a bit confused.
Best ending of all time (for me) was Six Feet Under’s.
|by Anonymous||reply 11||September 24, 2021 11:58 PM
Just watched season 2 and one of the episodes (with Tony and his son on a boat) ended with Wheel in the Sky by Journey.
|by Anonymous||reply 12||September 25, 2021 12:01 AM
I really loved the ending of the last Twin Peaks season
|by Anonymous||reply 13||September 25, 2021 12:09 AM
Oops link I think that’s the series finale
|by Anonymous||reply 14||September 25, 2021 12:10 AM
Breaking Bad's ending tied up everything in a neat little bow and was totally conventional, so it's adored.
|by Anonymous||reply 15||September 25, 2021 12:20 AM
I did not like the ending. Maybe it's a personal preference, but I don't like the song "Don't Stop Believing."
The screen did not "fade to black." It went to snow screen, which was an obvious reference, IMO, to HBO.
David Chase let it slip and admitted that Tony gets killed in the diner. It makes sense that someone would at least try to kill Tony. Everybody else was dying. It didn't make sense to have Tony and family in the middle of a bright diner during all of the killings. David Chase had a cheesy soft spot for Tony as a father.
|by Anonymous||reply 16||September 25, 2021 1:19 AM
[quote] It didn't make sense to have Tony and family in the middle of a bright diner during all of the killings
In the diner MAYBE. With a gang war just settling down not having his back to a wall NO WAY. Even as a child the lesson of Wild Bill Hickok was not lost on me.
|by Anonymous||reply 17||September 25, 2021 1:36 AM
R16 it wasn’t a fade to black and it wasn’t a snow screen, it was a sudden black screen with no sound. Not really close to HBO at all.
|by Anonymous||reply 18||September 25, 2021 1:45 AM
I feel like it’s a very teenage reaction to adore a ‘confusing’ ending over one that the ‘normies’ would like (one that’s linear or concludes plots etc.). Reminds me of the obsession american advertising has with surreal or #outlandish formats (frat boys go wild).
|by Anonymous||reply 19||September 25, 2021 2:32 AM
Have to agree with “Six Feet Under” but the “Sopranos” final episode was also a stroke of genius. Likewise, the conclusion of “The Bob Newhart Show.”
|by Anonymous||reply 20||September 25, 2021 3:13 AM
Huh r19? Teenage reaction?
|by Anonymous||reply 21||September 25, 2021 3:37 AM
R21 kinda like when young guys discover catcher in the rye and fancy themselves as intellects? Like in a “it doesn’t make sense but that’s why I like it, you prob wouldn’t get it?” way. But they don’t really get it either.
|by Anonymous||reply 22||September 25, 2021 3:43 AM
What I didn't like about the Sopranos ending was the familial aspect. They considered themselves 'soldiers' and there were rules, one which was NOT to be breached is not to involve wives and children. It, IMI, just doesn't sit well with the continuity of the show.
(Not counting Adrianna bc of her and the FBI, or the woman, Lorraine I think, who was acting as a capo for Little Carmine, she was a player so fair game, neither were wives/mothers ).
|by Anonymous||reply 23||September 25, 2021 3:56 AM
"Newhart" was by far the best ending ever. So unexpected, and so hilarious, and with the most brilliant (and most unexpected) last line ever: "You should really wear more sweaters...."
|by Anonymous||reply 24||September 25, 2021 4:00 AM
Flannery O’Connor was good at shocking, explicit endings that made sense, character-wise.
|by Anonymous||reply 25||September 25, 2021 4:20 AM
I was unimpressed with the ending but then my emotional investment in the show was minimal. I can see die-hard fans really appreciating the tension. For my money, Boardwalk Empire has the best final moment out of the HBO shows. Nucky sees the surreal woman and her tent, she shows him the TV (the end of the Jazz age and start of the mid-century) and then he dies with the era. Perfect.
|by Anonymous||reply 26||September 25, 2021 4:24 AM
I just binged all six seasons of “Justified”, and thought the ending was among the best. Maybe not “the best”, but it was satisfying.
|by Anonymous||reply 27||September 25, 2021 4:41 AM
Chase did not slip and give the ending away. What he said was:
[Quote]It’s for people to decide for themselves. I had another scene that was going to be Tony’s death, that we were going to do. That was two years or three years before we came up with the other one. So, there was a death scene. Tony drives back into the Lincoln tunnel, he goes for a meeting with Phil Leotardo, and he’s killed. I don’t think you were going to see the death, but you were going to know that he was dead.
|by Anonymous||reply 28||September 25, 2021 5:02 AM
Yeah, R23. Family is not iusually involved, but when Tony had Phil Leotardo whacked in front his wife and grandkids, New York gave The Sopranos a taste of their own medicine. Butchie and Paulie had Tony killed in front of his wife and kids.
|by Anonymous||reply 29||September 25, 2021 10:33 PM
James Gandolfini as Tony Soprano scared me more than any other actor in a role than anyone else, ever.
|by Anonymous||reply 30||September 25, 2021 10:45 PM
I was really disappointed in the ending of "The Sopranos." The show had centered in the first season on Tony's relationship with his therapist, but it had moved beyond that (to the show's detriment), and Dr. Melfi wasn't even in the final two episodes.
And I couldn't really care that much if Tony was whacked. I would have felt bad if Carmela or the children had been whacked too, but the Mafia almost never do that in their hits--they usually only kill other mobsters.
|by Anonymous||reply 31||September 25, 2021 10:55 PM
Carmela had blood on her hands the same as Tony.
|by Anonymous||reply 32||September 25, 2021 11:10 PM
R23; the rule is wives and kids don't get "touched". Not that they would be shielded from the horror of his murder should they be around when the opportunity arose (Phil Leotardo's exploding head under his SUV tire as his wife sat in the car after witnessing his murder comes to mind).
It's been revealed that Edie Falco shot a scene for Saints of Newark that depicted Tony's funeral. It won't be used though, unfortunately. I would have liked to see something resembling follow up to the finale.
Nevertheless I agree with you OP, it was definitely memorable, more memorable than finales of other great shows that tie everything up in a neat bow. I think the frustration with this ending is it just left us hardcore fans wanting more, and not wanting it to end like that. Though I suppose that's exactly how his death was intended to be depicted. Live by the sword and all.
|by Anonymous||reply 33||September 25, 2021 11:13 PM
R32, that’s an interesting statement. I don’t agree. Tony killed people in cold blood. Carmela looked the other way—for the worst reason, a comfortable life. But she didn’t kill anyone.
However, I think your point is a good one.
|by Anonymous||reply 34||September 25, 2021 11:16 PM
David Chase did slip up and reveal that Tony dies.
[quote] Alan Sepinwall, “The Sopranos Sessions” co-author, asked Chase, “When you said there was an end point, you don’t mean Tony at Holsten’s [diner], you just meant, ‘I think I have two more years’ worth of stories left in me.'”
[quote] Chase slipped up with his reply, which sounds like a confirmation of Tony’s death. “Yes, I think I had that death scene around two years before the end,” he said. “Tony was going to get called to a meeting with Johnny Sack in Manhattan, and he was going to go back through the Lincoln Tunnel for this meeting, and it was going to go black there and you never saw him again as he was heading back, the theory being that something bad happens to him at the meeting,” he continued. “But we didn’t do that.”
[quote] Co-author Matt Zoller Seitz caught the slip and called Chase out on it. “You realize, of course, that you just referred to that as a death scene,” he told The Sopranos creator.
[quote] Realizing his mistake, Chase took a long pause. “Fuck you guys,” he replied.
|by Anonymous||reply 35||September 25, 2021 11:17 PM
R35 Love Chase's response.
|by Anonymous||reply 36||September 25, 2021 11:19 PM
I remember here in NYC our first reaction to the blank screen was that the Time Warner Cable signal had crashed.
|by Anonymous||reply 37||September 25, 2021 11:24 PM
So true R37. I was cursing a blue streak.
|by Anonymous||reply 38||September 25, 2021 11:26 PM
R36, I think it only made sense that Tony died.
IIRC, Edie Falco (Carmela) said that she had an idea for Carmela to take over the "family" after Tony's death.
On "Talking Sopranos," they discussed (not in depth) Janice taking over the family. They (Steve Schirripa & Michael Imperioli) said that David Chase had an idea for a Sopranos spin-off, a comedy with main characters Bobby and Janice Bacala.
|by Anonymous||reply 39||September 25, 2021 11:26 PM
Loved the ending of Sopranos, Breaking Bad, and Mad Men. Hated the ending of Lost and Game of Thrones
|by Anonymous||reply 40||September 25, 2021 11:26 PM
"I'm here".... Leftovers had a more complete ending.
Just tell us a fuckin story. Sopranos was like getting the last page ripped out of a fantastic book. Ppl were thinking wtf!
|by Anonymous||reply 41||September 25, 2021 11:33 PM
The Sopranos could have killed Tony off, more decisively, but in the way of Adriana. Camera goes up to the sky.
|by Anonymous||reply 42||September 25, 2021 11:36 PM
Melfi was in the final two episodes, R31. She has a rather large role in "Blue Comet," the next-to-last episode, in which she terminates her therapeutic relationship with Tony. She does not appear in "Made in America," the final episode.
Her arc after "Employee of the Month" in season 3 seems to lead inexorably toward ending it with him.
|by Anonymous||reply 43||September 26, 2021 12:02 AM
That ending was stupid, childish, like something out of a creative writing class. . "We'll end it by not ending it!"
|by Anonymous||reply 44||September 26, 2021 12:08 AM
All indications from what Chase has said is that Tony was whacked. It was a brilliant ending. We believe this seemingless endless movie we are in and watching is real, it is over and ends in a second. People's reaction emphasized this....we want meaning, resolution, whatever.. There is none.
|by Anonymous||reply 45||September 26, 2021 12:09 AM
^^^we experienced death as far as we know it...a blank, black screen. There were lots of after-death scenes in the series, all through the eyes of the living....funerals, wakes, grief. With this ending Chase brought us to the brink that we never want to really think about and really have no clue about.
|by Anonymous||reply 46||September 26, 2021 12:12 AM
People were befuddled and confused and puzzled and disappointed by the ending. Did Tony die? Did he live? But I thought it was so incredibly obvious. Tony looks up and the screen goes black. It meant death. That's what death is: blackness, nothingness, all light gone, the end. The ending meant death. Tony Soprano's death. How could anybody NOT realize that?
|by Anonymous||reply 47||September 26, 2021 12:23 AM
I think also, this ending was an indictment of Tony and his Henchmen....a family evening, a seemingly meaningless but everything moment at a diner, you stole all this from the people you whacked.
|by Anonymous||reply 48||September 26, 2021 12:26 AM
It was not a brilliant ending as a big boss like Tony NEVER would have left his back exposed in a restaurant. Sloppy as hell.
|by Anonymous||reply 49||September 26, 2021 9:32 AM
Definitely among the best.
Many of the best things in life are not neatly resolved. I don't need resolution, but I tend to dislike the people who think they deserve that every story be resolved for them — and complain when the writers or film makers don't write the story that that viewer thinks he "needs" to see.
Of course there are books and films and TV series that end is a sloppy mess, but the fault there is in the sloppiness, of having taken a story in one direction only to have lost interest and inserted something random just to be done with the thing. "The Sopranos" ending certainly wasn't sloppy or slapped together. It ended just as its creator started at, just where he wanted it.
If people have their own endings in mind, fine. Enjoy your alternative plot. Nothing wrong with that so long as you don't bore the tits off the rest of us with your theories and alternative fictional turns and endings.
|by Anonymous||reply 50||September 26, 2021 9:57 AM
Can't stand the series - the thuggish low class dialect used by the main characters is impossible to endure regardless of how 'good' the acting is. Now, The West Wing, on the other hand is a top notch series I've been watching on HBOmax for the first time. Even though it ended in 2006-7 it still holds up even today.
|by Anonymous||reply 51||September 26, 2021 10:06 AM
[quote]People were befuddled and confused and puzzled and disappointed by the ending. Did Tony die? Did he live? But I thought it was so incredibly obvious. Tony looks up and the screen goes black. It meant death. That's what death is: blackness, nothingness, all light gone, the end. The ending meant death. Tony Soprano's death. How could anybody NOT realize that?
I agree, how can anyone not pay attention to the guy going into the mens room. Tony was distracted with his daughter walking in late and the guy from the bathroom exits and goes bang. I never thought anything else from the second the screen went black, and with Mr Gandolfini's untimely death, there will be no re=boot to continue his story anyway. Now the pre-quel starts.
|by Anonymous||reply 52||September 26, 2021 11:01 AM
[quote]But I thought it was so incredibly obvious. Tony looks up and the screen goes black. It meant death.
It needed more oranges.
|by Anonymous||reply 53||September 26, 2021 1:46 PM
R51, I love West Wing. In fact I put it at number two of my most favorite shows ever. But the sopranos had an impact on television that is still felt today. There has never been tv shows where the bad guy was the star, and was so deep and dimensional. It created a trend that still stands today. The west wing was not edgy but it was excellent—just the best as far as dialogue, acting and storytelling. But the Sopranos had all of that as well and had that edginess and newness that still feels fresh today.
|by Anonymous||reply 54||September 26, 2021 2:02 PM
I was angry at the ending at the time but I can admit that it was groundbreaking and memorable. We are still talking about it over a decade later.
|by Anonymous||reply 55||September 26, 2021 2:22 PM
The "Six Feet Under" finale was amazing. I was a sobbing mess by the end of it.
|by Anonymous||reply 56||September 26, 2021 4:47 PM
R56 - Yes 6FU was a top notch show and the ending was heart wrenching. You get attached to the characters and when it's over you feel a loss of association so to speak. I didn't have HBO then but bought the DVD's (which I still have). Peter Krause was (and still is to a certain extend) a Hot Potato IMMHO. Of course Frances Conroy (who played Ruth Fisher) is a featured character in the latest AHS as well as previous seasons and is so unique in many ways.
|by Anonymous||reply 57||September 26, 2021 5:14 PM
R51, you're funny. They ARE thugs! That's the point of the series.
|by Anonymous||reply 58||September 26, 2021 5:34 PM
Liked it. And it wasn’t just the ending, the whole episodes was fun to watch.
But the tension just kept ramping up in that final scene, and then the darkness. My reaction was visceral.
|by Anonymous||reply 59||September 26, 2021 5:38 PM
And I always liked the theory that the viewer got whacked. Although I think Chase has dismissed that one.
|by Anonymous||reply 60||September 26, 2021 5:41 PM
And none of the millions who got whacked saw it coming, R60.
|by Anonymous||reply 61||September 26, 2021 5:49 PM
I agree with those saying the ending was obvious.
I keep reading that Chase deliberately left it ambiguous, but I don’t think he did, actually. He left a trail of breadcrumbs that only went in one direction.
Nothing about that last 5 minutes makes the slightest sense if Tony isn’t whacked. There would be no reason to keep focusing on the guy at the bar or showing him checking out Tony, no reason to show all the inncocent diners about to have their lives destroyed by what they are going to witness (there are boy scouts at one table) and Meadow’s inability to park meant that she was the last thing Tony ever saw - his greatest love.
Bo ambiguity there at all, imo. We experienced Tony’s last moments with him, including what he saw until he no longer saw anything.
|by Anonymous||reply 62||September 26, 2021 6:00 PM
I've been watching the Sopranos marathon & Ralphie's hair plugs are *so* bad
|by Anonymous||reply 63||September 26, 2021 7:27 PM
It’s not a diner. It’s an ice cream parlor. It’s three blocks from my house. No juke boxes in real life, but they do have a fake one in the booth they used for the scene,
|by Anonymous||reply 64||September 26, 2021 7:31 PM
People, including some Sopranos fans, can't accept that the "protagonist" DIES in the end.
|by Anonymous||reply 66||September 26, 2021 8:06 PM
R60 and r61, I love the idea of the viewer getting whacked! And you’re right—no one saw it coming. The analogy is brilliant. One of the reasons the ending is also that no one could have guessed it.
|by Anonymous||reply 67||September 26, 2021 8:13 PM
[quote] I've been watching the Sopranos marathon & Ralphie's hair plugs are *so* bad
It was worse than plugs…it was a wig. Remember when it came off in Christopher’s hand when he was dismembering him in the bath?
|by Anonymous||reply 68||September 26, 2021 8:16 PM
Whoa. Hey that ain't ketchup on those onion rings!
|by Anonymous||reply 69||September 26, 2021 8:20 PM
Believe it or not, Steve Schirripa (Bobby Bacala) wore a fat suit in early episodes. At some point, Steve said David Chase decided Steve was "fat enough" without the fat suit and Steve stopped wearing it.
Anyway, if you look at early episodes involving Bobby Bacala, the stomach looks bizarre (really bad fat suit).
|by Anonymous||reply 70||September 26, 2021 8:22 PM
Holsten's is the consensus.
|by Anonymous||reply 71||September 26, 2021 8:54 PM
[quote] The "Six Feet Under" finale was amazing. I was a sobbing mess by the end of it.
I didn't care that much for it. As the NY Times put it: "They all died happily ever after." I found it somewhat offensive that Keith's death was a violent one, whereas all the other characters died peaceful or quick natural deaths. I only found two parts of the ending to be moving. One was the sight of what's left of the Fisher family waving goodbye in the distance as Claire drives away. The other was an elderly David expiring right after seeing a vision of a young, handsome Keith, the great love of his life who died so many years ago. That really got to me.
|by Anonymous||reply 72||September 26, 2021 11:21 PM
I can't believe Gandolfini was only 51 when he died - he looked so much older. Seeing that last episode reminded me of just how overweight & tired he looked at the end. In retrospect, it's not surprising the poor guy dropped dead.
|by Anonymous||reply 73||September 27, 2021 5:10 PM
The shooting schedule was grueling (according to Steve Schirripa on Talking Sopranos). 12 hour work days, etc. Also, Gandolfini would go AWOL for extended periods (during work time) and, if I had to guess, go on cocaine / drinking benders. Plus, obviously, he liked to eat. He actually could have used a good therapist in real life.
On some of the episodes, you can hear Gandolfini breathing. I won't say wheezing or labored, but not healthy-sounding.
|by Anonymous||reply 74||September 27, 2021 5:55 PM
I heard the same thing, R74. He had a huge cocaine and alcohol problem.
|by Anonymous||reply 75||September 27, 2021 8:57 PM
Tony seemed like a pretty nice guy.
|by Anonymous||reply 76||September 27, 2021 9:12 PM
It was all over for me when they killed Adriana.
|by Anonymous||reply 77||September 27, 2021 9:14 PM
[quote] Tony seemed like a pretty nice guy.
Have you ever watched the show? He was a sociopath, as were most of the characters on this show.
|by Anonymous||reply 78||September 27, 2021 9:26 PM
[quote]He actually could have used a good therapist in real life.
Unlike the one he had on the show, who was unbelievably crap at her job. (Also not brilliant at acting, but that's another story.)
|by Anonymous||reply 79||September 28, 2021 1:22 AM
Maybe I have low standards. I liked how kind he was to animals.
|by Anonymous||reply 80||September 28, 2021 1:49 AM
[quote]I liked how kind he was to animals.
In the years that followed the Sopranos, I think that's an aspect that other shows with Tony-like figures forgot: while all of these characters did terrible things, they also could be lovable & funny and had character aspects to make you believe they weren't completely irredeemable
|by Anonymous||reply 81||September 28, 2021 8:48 AM
He threatened Angie’s dog (Pussy’s wife) with a baseball bat. The ducks in the swimming pool was sappy, IMO. I don’t like Seasons1and 2 that much.
|by Anonymous||reply 82||September 28, 2021 4:09 PM
Don't make shit up R82. Tony threatened Angie not The dog. He had a soft spot for pets. But then again, he ate meat by the truckload as Ralph said.
|by Anonymous||reply 84||September 28, 2021 4:53 PM
Was Tony a true sociopath? He seemed to love Meadow and Carmela, despite all he did to hurt her. When he would spoil her during and after his affairs, it seemed to be because he valued her and felt bad about his behavior even though he didn't stop doing it. Is that sociopathic?
|by Anonymous||reply 85||September 28, 2021 4:57 PM
I liked the ending. I didn't LOVE it. I did feel absolutely certain that Tony was whacked. I thought the whole family might have been, as well, but the sudden black definitely conveyed death to me.
I have an MFA in creative writing, and an ambiguous ending like that definitely is very much a writing-student type of ending that would annoy readers in a workshop. The student would think it was artful, and the readers would think it is too ambiguous and that it misses the point. The reason for these sorts of endings, I think, is that we are made to read writers like Joyce who end their stories with subtle, symbolic epiphanies and then spend hours discussing all they represent, and it gets writing students thinking in those grand terms.
I think it was a good ending for The Sopranos, though.
The series was brutal and graphic, but it was also very interior and about Tony's mind in his world. The show was based on his internal searching. Besides Melfi, there was also an episode in which he took peyote and we saw his experience directly. So the show was mostly from his worldview.
A show or movie *about* the mafia might have ended with a bloodbath instead, getting you close to the characters and then punishing you for caring about them. Seeing Tony shot in the face wouldn't work since the show was from his worldview, and it also would have been too gory a way to end the series. It would have made the whole series about morality, showing Tony get his just desserts. Instead, we finally see the world as Tony feels it, all the paranoia and anxiety of the people in the restaurant who could be threats, anxiously waiting for Meadow to arrive, and then—it's over. When Tony's experience of his life's story ends, there's no more show. It seems very straightforward to me. And I would not have wanted a violent massacre of an ending. That would be too much of a mobster action movie and not characterisic of the overall atmosphere of the series.
|by Anonymous||reply 86||September 28, 2021 5:08 PM
[quote] I have an MFA in creative writing, and an ambiguous ending like that definitely is very much a writing-student type of ending that would annoy readers in a workshop. The student would think it was artful, and the readers would think it is too ambiguous and that it misses the point.
Art (drawing and painting) major here. During school, I was really dense when it comes to symbolism, echoing, metaphors, etc. In fact, that kind of shit made me angry. I don't know what changed in me, but I now see symbolism and metaphors everywhere.
I re-read The Great Gatsby and the symbolism in there is super-obvious, but I still enjoyed the book.
I do think the Sopranos ending was kind of purposefully artsy and annoying.
|by Anonymous||reply 87||September 28, 2021 7:50 PM
I'm grateful that Tony's death wasn't shown. I prefer to remember him as a scary badass.
|by Anonymous||reply 88||September 28, 2021 8:01 PM
Goodbye, Farewell and Amen - MASH
|by Anonymous||reply 89||September 28, 2021 8:06 PM
Also remember how upset he was when Ralph murdered that trashy young stripper? He felt sympathy for her because he saw her as a kid like Meadow.
|by Anonymous||reply 90||September 28, 2021 11:01 PM
[quote] Was Tony a true sociopath?
Yes. He committed atrocious acts and felt no guilt about it at all. That's a sociopath.
|by Anonymous||reply 91||September 29, 2021 12:09 AM
That episode, University, R90, was a look at how Tony/ Meadow deal with people that are no use to them Tracie/ Caitlin. These ppl are ruthless and users.
|by Anonymous||reply 92||September 29, 2021 12:30 AM
Re: Ralph killing Tracy the Bada Bing stripper.
That episode received backlash (according to Talking Sopranos). IMO, HBO / Sopranos reacted by having subsequent episodes be more sympathetic to the stripper character (she's Meadow! gone down a different path!).
|by Anonymous||reply 93||September 29, 2021 2:05 AM
[quote] Re: Ralph killing Tracy the Bada Bing stripper.
That was one of the most vile things I've ever seen on tv or in movies. That whole episode was hard to stomach. That beautiful girl in a relationship with a repulsive monster, making her living as a stripper/slave to the mob ("Your shaved pussy is mine!"). I watched some of some episodes of "The Sopranos" over the years, but I could never watch whole episodes regularly. The violence was too much for me to take, and it was constant. Sickening violence, all the time.
|by Anonymous||reply 94||September 29, 2021 4:49 AM
The Sopranos is probably the best TV series of our time. Brilliant writers who wove together so many areas of human activity expertly. I don't recall ever taking issue with the dialogue or finding the characters unbelievable.
|by Anonymous||reply 95||September 29, 2021 8:34 AM
Men think far more of Mafia shows of all kinds than women do. There is something about the subjugation of real relationships to the maintenance of power, and to the ornate imposed relationships of The Family, that seems to appeal so much to the average Joe that he thinks any decent portrayal of it is practically Biblical.
|by Anonymous||reply 96||September 29, 2021 8:52 AM
At the time it aired, I wasn't yet a loyal fan. But, I found the final scene jarring. I couldn't quite process it, as it was "unsatisfying." Over the years, I have grown to appreciate it. If you watch the whole series, especially the final season, and particularly the last episodes, all signs pointed to Tony getting whacked (which David Chase eventually inadvertently revealed, as it has been pointed out here). Sure, he could have saved face. But, the walls were closing in on him. He wasn't above any other gangster, and as the series acknowledged, there were only a few endings available to him: death or jail.
Considering the "memorable" deaths of some of the other cast-members, if we were to have seen Tony die on screen--unless it had been executed in a finely choreographed way that was beyond reproach or near that--it would have automatically excluded itself from ever being considered a "great" ending.
By cutting to black the way Chase did, he accomplished an assortment of things. He avoided the impossible task of creating a grandiose ending that everyone would love and simplified his task. This also meant no pesky logistics to deal with (how does Carmela grieve, the funeral, what happens to the kids, etc). The fact of the matter is that when Tony dies, so does the show (so, Cut to black!). Chase also questioned the assumptions of his audience by not "giving them what they think they wanted." And he devised a finale that left impression enough that we're still talking about it today.
I have grown to love the ending because it called attention to a certain human truth: we as people in general struggle to accept death (our own death, death of our loved ones, death of our idols, etc), which the Journey song emphasises. It's in our nature to want more and never lose what we had. The ending is both slick and honest. The older I get, the more I love it, as brutally honest as it is.
|by Anonymous||reply 97||September 29, 2021 10:08 AM
Very well put R97; I'd add that viewers had already experienced the whole scene with Carmela & the kids crying, etc. when Tony got shot. This time, it's lights out - no coming back from this one.
|by Anonymous||reply 98||September 29, 2021 10:59 AM
I agree… very well put r97. It sums up everything I believe about the show and the ending.
|by Anonymous||reply 99||September 29, 2021 12:44 PM
Chase telegraphed the ending during Tony's conversation with Bobby in the Lake House episode: "you never hear it coming" and in the scene where Phil's protege gets whacked in the restaurant. Meadow being late was the final key--if she had been on time, she'd have been sitting with Tony on that side of the booth and blocking the assassin's clear shot at Tony. Wives and children don't get touched, so the assassin wouldn't have taken that shot with Meadow sitting there.
Ironically, Tony's death came at a perfect time for this family: The indictments aren't handed down yet, so Tony's death means the house and other legal assets can't be seized. He's also squirreled away a lot of cash for Carmela in overseas accounts. AJ has been settled into an easy producing career with Carmine Jr., and Meadow is going to marry Patsy Jr., a successful lawyer, and may even become one herself. Carmela will be the richest widow in North Jersey and probably find herself an undemanding man like Vic Musso to marry. She also has her little house flipping business to keep her occupied. Tony's family will be better off with him gone--once they get over seeing him shot, of course.
|by Anonymous||reply 100||September 29, 2021 3:02 PM
Nice insight R100. Do you believe the Soprano leftover crew got absorbed into the Luppertazzi family?
|by Anonymous||reply 101||September 29, 2021 4:37 PM
Yes, they likely became a subset of the New York family, probably with Patsy Sr. in charge. It was only Tony's brains and balls keeping that from happening to them years before. Patsy will be fine as captain of the Soprano crew--they don't have any other potential bosses. The only others with that capacity--Richie, Ralphie, and Tony Blundetto--were taken out years before.
|by Anonymous||reply 102||September 29, 2021 5:11 PM
[quote]Nice insight [R100]. Do you believe the Soprano leftover crew got absorbed into the Luppertazzi family?
It's funny you should say that; as I was watching the marathon, I was wondering how guys like Paulie would survive without an alpha male like Tony to tell him what to do. I'm guessing NY has to absorb guys like him - they can't kill all of them & know they know too much. Plus, I don't think it would take long before the lower ranks would see the writing on the wall & would fall into line.
I see Carmela becoming very bitter - not just about the $$, but being the wife (now widow, I guess) of Tony Soprano makes her a pariah, not a local queen. Ditto for Meadow
|by Anonymous||reply 103||September 29, 2021 6:25 PM
I thought it was a terrible and confusing ending in 2007, but upon rewatching the series recently, it's glaringly apparent that Tony gets whacked in that final scene. Chase dropped portentous clues throughout that final season and especially the last two episodes - Tony even eats an orange in the finale, the classic harbinger of death mob movies!
I'm. not so sure that the whole family wasn't taken out with him. As others have pointed out, those onion rings really do seem like communion wafers; how many of us actually pop an entire onion ring into our mouths, as AJ, Carmela and Tony did? Given Chase's rather obvious symbolism, it seems they're preparing for their deaths.
And if Tony does indeed get shot by Members Only guy, the assassin would have to get Meadow out of the way at the door in order to escape. Does she get shot, too? If this was payback for Phil Leotardo's murder in front of his wife and grandkids, would NY have taken it one step further by killing the whole family to send a message?
|by Anonymous||reply 104||September 29, 2021 6:55 PM
Nah, they wouldn't kill his wife and kids. They'd be frozen with shock at the brutal murder that just happened right in front of them, as would anyone else in Holsten's. The shooter would drop the gun and walk out, Michael Corleone style.
The most portentous clue is the opening shot of the final episode--it's Tony waking up, but the framing of the shot and the organ music playing in the background makes it look like he's in his coffin at his funeral.
|by Anonymous||reply 105||September 29, 2021 6:59 PM
Hmm, you could be right R104; you're right - it's obvious Tony gets whacked, but we assume the rest of the family did not because as it was stated numerous times, they won't touch families. But the escalating violence with NY was proof that all the old rules were out the window
|by Anonymous||reply 106||September 29, 2021 7:09 PM
After the finale What do you think happened to Janice R100? Great character to hate. She and Tony were such miserable fucks. Janice had nothing to latch onto after the demise of her husband and brother.
|by Anonymous||reply 107||September 29, 2021 10:25 PM
The final scene is actually quite short. I'd remembered it being longer.
|by Anonymous||reply 108||September 29, 2021 10:35 PM
My guess is that Janice morphed even more into Livia. We see that in the last scene at that ridiculous McMansion of hers. Bobby probably left her with a decent amount of money (he always seemed careful that way), so she finally has the easy, comfortable life she schemed to get for the entire series. But she's clearly miserable, and I doubt much of it has to do with Bobby's death. She'll grump around that big house forever, making her stepdaughter and daughter miserable. She's already saying that she'll never let Sofia go because Domenica loves her big sis so much. At least Bobby Jr. managed to escape to his grandparents'.
Though it would also be fitting if Bobby DIDN'T leave her with much, and she had to sell her dream house. Remember her bringing a fucking DECORATOR over while poor Ginny Sack was still living there? Such a cunt.
|by Anonymous||reply 109||September 29, 2021 10:39 PM
OP, your priorities are askew.
And why don't the endings of shows you didn't see count? It ain't your little world, fatso.
|by Anonymous||reply 110||September 29, 2021 10:54 PM
I found Janice unintentionally hilarious.
|by Anonymous||reply 111||September 29, 2021 10:59 PM
Wow r110. Too much coffee today?
|by Anonymous||reply 112||September 29, 2021 11:05 PM
R111 It wasn't unintentional. She had lines like "I LOVE MARROW!!!" and she stole a Russian hooker's fake leg. Janice was comic relief.
|by Anonymous||reply 113||September 29, 2021 11:09 PM
Janice is a fabulous character. She steals every scene in which she appears. Just standing in the background we're waiting for her to say/do something outrageous.
|by Anonymous||reply 114||September 29, 2021 11:10 PM
R113, I loved when she beat up that soccer mom Karen at the kids' match -- like that woman had a chance against an angry mob sister!
|by Anonymous||reply 115||September 29, 2021 11:11 PM
Can we get a round of applause for Nancy Marchand as Livia Soprano the worst mother ever on TV.
|by Anonymous||reply 116||September 29, 2021 11:11 PM
I loved Ginny Sack. It was incredibly sad seeing her defeated, with Janice Soprano and her decorator doing their thing with her present.
|by Anonymous||reply 117||September 29, 2021 11:59 PM
[quote] I loved Ginny Sack.
Now there's a woman who always added an extra meatball or two to her plate of gravy.
|by Anonymous||reply 118||September 30, 2021 12:01 AM
It's graxy around these parts
|by Anonymous||reply 119||September 30, 2021 12:05 AM
If we get attacked, we should "lamb chop" it for a while.
|by Anonymous||reply 120||September 30, 2021 12:08 AM
[quote] Tony even eats an orange in the finale, the classic harbinger of death mob movies! I'm. not so sure that the whole family wasn't taken out with him. As others have pointed out, those onion rings really do seem like communion wafers; how many of us actually pop an entire onion ring into our mouths, as AJ, Carmela and Tony did? Given Chase's rather obvious symbolism, it seems they're preparing for their deaths.
I don't remember Tony eating an orange in the final episode, but that would definitely speak to him being DEAD. I don't think Members Only Hit Man would go out of his way to kill Carmela, Meadow, and/or AJ. However, if any of the 3 were in the way, then yes, the Hit Man would shoot them to get a better shot at Tony.
Good observation on the onion rings and communion wafers.
|by Anonymous||reply 121||September 30, 2021 12:35 AM
Do people often take communion before they die?
|by Anonymous||reply 122||September 30, 2021 12:42 AM
No, you get annointed with oil, "divine unction." But you do take communion at a funeral.
|by Anonymous||reply 123||September 30, 2021 12:46 AM
Not if you’re dead, r123, only if you’re attending.
|by Anonymous||reply 124||September 30, 2021 12:48 AM
It Wasn't about communion . It was for the viewer seeing that these ppl's lives were at full circle. The only one with an interesting arc moving forward is Meadow Soprano. And her story wasn't done.
|by Anonymous||reply 125||September 30, 2021 12:48 AM
R121 Tony Soprano grabs an 🍊 when he comes into the house Carmella is holed up in. It is in the last episode.
|by Anonymous||reply 126||September 30, 2021 12:54 AM
One doesn't chew Communion wafers. It's forbidden
|by Anonymous||reply 127||September 30, 2021 1:47 AM
[Quote] People, including some Sopranos fans, can't accept that the "protagonist" DIES in the end.
He was always the Antagonist. We just gave him too many chances. Like Melfi
|by Anonymous||reply 128||September 30, 2021 3:02 AM
This show sometimes had puzzling music choices. Such as when Jefferson Airplane's "White Rabbit" played as Tony and AJ made ice cream sundaes -- was that supposed to be a particularly psychedelic scene?
|by Anonymous||reply 130||September 30, 2021 10:52 PM
Tony's love for animals as shown in Christopher's intervention....
(Perhaps one of the funniest scenes in the entire series)
|by Anonymous||reply 131||October 1, 2021 1:58 AM
ENTERTAINMENT ‘Many Saints of Newark’ director reveals Tony’s fate in ‘Sopranos’ end By Alex Mitchell
September 30, 2021 | 6:31pm
OH! Someone spilled the gabagool on Tony Soprano’s 14-year long mysterious fate.
“The Many Saints of Newark” prequel film director Alan Taylor recently shared his thoughts on “The Sopranos‘” iconic, blackout ending — a stunning conclusion to James Gandolfini’s superb work as a mob don in therapy, an end which came over onion rings and Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believin’.”
“I have to go with Tony’s dead,” Taylor, who directed several “Sopranos” episodes, told the Hollywood Reporter of the hotly debated finale episode, “Made In America.”
In that inconclusive scene, Tony sits with his wife Carmela (Edie Falco, 58) and son A.J. (Robert Iler, 36) as he watches strangers enter into Holsten’s of Bloomfield, NJ just as the show goes off while the Soprano family is mid-conversation.
|by Anonymous||reply 132||October 1, 2021 11:49 PM
Tony to Carm at 1:07: "Now, look, families don't get touched. You know dat."
|by Anonymous||reply 133||October 3, 2021 10:12 PM
That's what I never understood R133. If everyone in the mafia knows that families don't get touched, then why did Carmela and Anthony Jr go into hiding?
|by Anonymous||reply 134||October 3, 2021 10:15 PM
OP I also liked it. I don't know how people didn't get it. It reminds me of the part in Goodfellas when Henry says, "If they had been wiseguys, I wouldn't have heard a thing. I would've been dead."
|by Anonymous||reply 135||October 3, 2021 10:31 PM
[quote]why did Carmela and Anthony Jr go into hiding?
Fear of being kidnapped and held as pawns to lure Tony out?
|by Anonymous||reply 136||October 4, 2021 6:04 AM
Family got hit in Goodfellas after the big airport heist. The wives did at least.
|by Anonymous||reply 137||October 4, 2021 8:37 AM
[quote]why did Carmela and Anthony Jr go into hiding?
Yeah, I mean they were dealing with fine upstanding citizens.
|by Anonymous||reply 138||October 4, 2021 10:36 AM
I'm going to leave out the name of the character so as not to spoil anything for anyone who hasn't seen it, but...
The Sopranos pulled off something that almost never works by killing off a character and still occasionally using that character in scenes. It succeeded in creating a Shakespearean ghost effect that made scenes more emotional and more alarming rather than the way Ryan Murphy, for example, kills characters and they just keep on living anyway, or their hauntings are sentimental and saccharine.
|by Anonymous||reply 139||October 4, 2021 11:50 AM
Yeah, but no bR136. Then why didn't Phil Leotardo's wife go into hiding. Or Vito's wife? Something was off with that detail.
|by Anonymous||reply 140||October 5, 2021 2:50 PM
[quote] This show sometimes had puzzling music choices. Such as when Jefferson Airplane's "White Rabbit" played as Tony and AJ made ice cream sundaes -- was that supposed to be a particularly psychedelic scene?
There was a scene with AJ and Blanca in a bar and an old Pretenders song was playing & the young ones were getting into it, supposedly. It wasn't even "Brass in Pocket." It was "Up the Neck," maybe. Totally unrealistic and I do like the Pretenders.
Also, the songs played in the Bada Bing were totally unrealistic.
|by Anonymous||reply 141||October 5, 2021 6:07 PM
Sorry to beat a dead horse here. Jamie-Lynn Sigler (Meadow) says that she thinks Tony got killed in the last episode. Sorry, it's a long interview and I can't give you a time marker.
|by Anonymous||reply 142||October 12, 2021 7:00 PM
I assume Six Feet Under has been mentioned already? Best ending ever.
|by Anonymous||reply 143||October 12, 2021 7:00 PM
[quote]Sorry to beat a dead horse here. Jamie-Lynn Sigler (Meadow) says that she thinks Tony got killed in the last episode. Sorry,
How is your post beating a dead horse? This is what the entire thread is about and you added the observation of someone who was actually in the scene. Thanks.
|by Anonymous||reply 144||October 14, 2021 9:58 AM
[quote] showing Tony get his just desserts.
[quote] I have an MFA in creative writing,
My, how standards have been lowered.
|by Anonymous||reply 145||October 14, 2021 5:12 PM
[quote] It’s not a diner. It’s an ice cream parlor. It’s three blocks from my house. No juke boxes in real life, but they do have a fake one in the booth they used for the scene,
I absolutely LOVE shit like this!
|by Anonymous||reply 146||October 14, 2021 5:13 PM
R142 in my mind it was not at all ambiguous whether he got killed. Of course he did.
|by Anonymous||reply 147||October 14, 2021 5:15 PM
Breaking Bad ending was cheesy and predictable.
|by Anonymous||reply 148||October 14, 2021 5:25 PM
You could tell that the showrunners were reluctant to punish Walter White properly. Sure, he spent his last few months in that cabin, but otherwise he got everything he wanted: notoriety, power, and a boatload of cash to leave his family. Hank got punished way more than Walter.
|by Anonymous||reply 149||October 14, 2021 7:10 PM
The jukebox has "Any Way You Want" It right below "Don't Stop Believing".
That really should be the song Tony selects.
|by Anonymous||reply 150||October 14, 2021 7:24 PM
“Magic Man” by Heart is also prominently featured and obviously not a coincidence.
|by Anonymous||reply 151||October 14, 2021 9:03 PM
r15 You call it conventional. I call it perfection.
It's adored because it gave fans a totally satisfying and appropriate finale.
I watched Lost and Dexter to the bitter end. I'll never rewatch those shows ever again.
|by Anonymous||reply 152||October 14, 2021 9:19 PM