Sunday, June 10, 2007

Sopranos ends without a bang

Uwe and I hunkered down and watched the last episode of "The Sopranos" tonight. Would Tony Soprano get whacked? Commit suicide? Take out Phil Leotardo? Would there be an all out mob war?

Since it was on at 6 PM, we were entertaining our 2 year old daughter all the while, so we could watch the last episode live. There was a lot of youtube muted cat video playing, the baby crawling all over Uwe, and we had the TV closed captioned so we wouldn't miss anything.

With just 15 minutes left we were left scratching our heads going, "There's only 15 minutes left." and wondering "How the heck are they going to end the show?"

Anticipation was building as we watched Tony seated in the diner waiting for his family, and then each family member arriving. First Carmela, then AJ, and then Meadow. As Meadow walks through the door, the bell jingles and Tony looks up - then the screen goes black. At first we thought our cable went out. Uwe was shouting, "Wtf!" And then after awhile (which felt like an eternity) the credits started to roll. Nice to know our TV and cable are fine.

Uwe thought the ending was way lame and I was just plain disappointed. We never find out what happens to Tony and his family. But then it's sad all around when a show like this ends. After a hit show like this airs for 8 years, it's hard to see it end. No matter what, we would have been disappointed with the ending. It's always a let down, and there's no great way to end a series like this. You want the show to stay true to itself without a tidy ending, but you still long for more episodes to see how the characters are doing.

The ending felt like just another episode, building up to a crescendo, with more questions. Was Tony's favorite FBI agent sleeping with a fellow FBI agent from New York? And is that how he got his information about Phil Leotardo? Why did the FBI agent shout, "Yes, we're going to win!"? (This was the first time we got a peek into the life of the FBI agent.) Were we all just being paranoid about Paulie turning on Tony? Where have I seen the actress who plays Donna Parisi (Anna Mancini?), Patsy Parisi's wife before? I'm thinking of an old TV sitcom, but if I recall correctly she's gained a lot of weight and is almost unrecognizable. Imdb and the Internet are no help here!

So the ending just leaves it up to the viewer's own interpretation of what happens next. Some people are calling it brilliant, while others are calling it a cop out. I say, no matter what - it was a let down. Phil Leotardo's ending was the highlight, and at least Tony didn't pinch Sal's nose in the hospital like a de ja vu of Christopher's demise. (Christopher's murder still haunts me.) So I walk away saying, "Thank you for all the great episodes and memories. The Sopranos will be missed." If there's ever a movie, I will be there.


Uwe Hook said...

Yes, I was disappointed at first. But after I slept over it, I have to say this was pure brilliance.

The build-up in the restaurant was so amazing and it ended with a WTF moment. I represents everything what's wrong with Tony's life: It can end at any moment without any warning.
Same applies to all of us but Tony has to live with so many additional threat: car bombs/shootings, indictments.

I don't think we'll ever see a show of this caliber again.

Rose said...

I finally figured out where I saw the actress who plays Donna Parisi on The Sopranos. Her name is Donna Pescow, and she played the role of "Annette" in the movie Saturday Night Fever. (The girl who was in love with John Travolta's character - Tony Manero - but Tony only wanted to dance/be with Stephanie Mangano). Imdb had the incorrect actress's name listed for the Donna Parisi character, so it took me awhile to figure out where I saw her before.