The Sopranos

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The Invunche
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#101 Post by The Invunche » Wed May 02, 2007 9:16 am

I doubt it, that's not how Tony kills people. They deliberately told us about her migraines earlier in the episode so we would know something wasn't right with her head and not be too surprised with her death.

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Michael
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#102 Post by Michael » Wed May 02, 2007 12:08 pm

People still die in their sleep. My 32 year old friend died unexpectly in her sleep and it turned out that she had a heart condition she never knew she had. I never bought once that Hesh's girlfriend was killed by Tony or his crew.

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#103 Post by ltfontaine » Wed May 02, 2007 12:16 pm

I suppose it's open to interpretation, as the cause of Renata's death is never explained, but I saw no evidence that would implicate Tony in the death of Hesh's girlfriend. The fact that Tony immediately payed Hesh the balance due, his apparent remorse at having held out on his old friend, and his seemingly sincere sympathy for Hesh's loss, weigh against the possibility that Tony was guilty of something nasty.

With five episodes left, Chase is still guarding his cards, an unpredictable storyteller to the end.

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#104 Post by vogler » Wed May 02, 2007 12:24 pm

It never even crossed my mind that it was anything to do with Tony. I thought the point was that Tony visited Hesh shortly after, but not to offer his condolences (which he did very disingenuously), but to give him his money. Hence Tony doesn't give a shit about Hesh.

It's funny how we all interpret it in different ways.

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#105 Post by benm » Wed May 02, 2007 12:32 pm

I think it's tony saying he's in control and would only pay hesh under his terms.

Wasn't the migraine a lie that hesh told tony so he could stay at home and not go to the boat show? Or did renata actually have migraines in earlier episodes?

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#106 Post by ltfontaine » Wed May 02, 2007 12:34 pm

vogler wrote:It never even crossed my mind that it was anything to do with Tony. I thought the point was that Tony visited Hesh shortly after, but not to offer his condolences (which he did very disingenuously), but to give him his money. Hence Tony doesn't give a shit about Hesh.

It's funny how we all interpret it in different ways.
Funny indeed. I read the final scene as Tony's characteristically confused and clumsy attempt to make amends with Hesh, and to offer sheepish condolences, despite the fact that Hesh is obviously beyond caring about the money at that moment. Tony's following an impulse to reach out, but can't get it right.

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#107 Post by jorencain » Wed May 02, 2007 12:40 pm

ltfontaine wrote:
vogler wrote:It never even crossed my mind that it was anything to do with Tony. I thought the point was that Tony visited Hesh shortly after, but not to offer his condolences (which he did very disingenuously), but to give him his money. Hence Tony doesn't give a shit about Hesh.

It's funny how we all interpret it in different ways.
Funny indeed. I read the final scene as Tony's characteristically confused and clumsy attempt to make amends with Hesh, and to offer sheepish condolences, despite the fact that Hesh is obviously beyond caring about the money at that moment. Tony's following an impulse to reach out, but can't get it right.
That's what I thought also. Her death just came out of nowhere, so I wasn't sure if I missed something. I also thought that the migraine thing was a lie so that he wouldn't have to go out with them (especially since Hesh told her to go to the room and lock her door as Tony pulled up).

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The Invunche
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#108 Post by The Invunche » Wed May 02, 2007 1:17 pm

Yes, the migraine was a lie, but it's a very convenient excuse when people already know you suffer from migraines. I know that personally. Also, she was using a sleep mask which could indicate a sensitivity to light, a common symptom of migraines.

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#109 Post by barnyard078 » Wed May 02, 2007 4:48 pm

I haven't seen the episode (waiting for the DVD), but the HBO site's episode guide says that Renata died of a stroke. Make of that what you will.

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#110 Post by jedgeco » Wed May 02, 2007 5:17 pm

barnyard078 wrote:I haven't seen the episode (waiting for the DVD), but the HBO site's episode guide says that Renata died of a stroke. Make of that what you will.
The New Jersey Star-Ledger's TV critic confirmed with one of the Sopranos writers that Renata died of natural causes and we're not to infer Tony had some hand in it, (about 4/5 of the way down in the comments).

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#111 Post by Andre Jurieu » Thu May 10, 2007 12:19 pm

I'm probably in the minority on this one considering the reaction this season has received so far, but I have to say that these last few episodes of The Sopranos have been among the most compelling/absorbing/fascinating TV I've watched in a long time. I'm sure this mostly has to do with my interest in the issues of succession and legacy that have been running through the last few episodes, specifically the paternal relationships that have seemingly become strained and almost irreparable. Almost every episode so far has taken some time to dwell upon the relationships between sons (often surrogate sons) and their father-figures, and how this lifestyle has severely warped the dynamics of these relationships. I have to admit, I found the scenes in which Tony discusses his failures as a father to Chris and Anthony to be incredibly distressing and tragic.

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#112 Post by Fletch F. Fletch » Wed May 16, 2007 1:32 pm

A fascinating conversation between Tom Fontana and David Chase.

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Michael
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#113 Post by Michael » Mon Jun 04, 2007 10:17 am

Last nights episode was so intense. Tony's world is cracking faster than ever. I still have NO clue how it will wrap up all in one hour next week. I'm not getting the terrorism angle...it's been mentioned in every episode since the show returned a couple of months ago.

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#114 Post by Belmondo » Mon Jun 04, 2007 11:52 am

Just a guess, but I predict that the final scene will bring us full circle and show Tony having a panic attack - isolated, all alone, his world destroyed.
I had a fear that the show would not really "end" and that they would always leave enough for a future HBO movie. I don't see that happening and it looks like we will get the strong ending that the show requires.

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#115 Post by rs98762001 » Mon Jun 04, 2007 2:37 pm

That's four absolutely classic Sopranos episodes in a row. At least it's going out on a roll. I agree that, despite having watched this show since its start, I still have no idea how it's going to finish. Nothing and everything would surprise me: that's a testament to Chase's genius as a writer. There's a scope and power that this show has managed to maintain over the years, despite its occasional and inevitable lulls, that dwarfs not only most other recent television shows but most other recent movies.

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#116 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Fri Jun 08, 2007 11:38 am

An interesting primer for you lucky bastards who'll have HBO this Sunday.

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Michael
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#117 Post by Michael » Fri Jun 08, 2007 2:26 pm

Does anyone have the feeling that Carmella's head will roll this Sunday? Phil ordered his crew to decapitate the Sopranos crew (and family?). And when Carmella and Rosalie went through photos from their Paris trip, the camera lingered on one particular photo. In that photo, Carmalla stood in the place of Marie Antoinette. Hmmm.

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The Invunche
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#118 Post by The Invunche » Fri Jun 08, 2007 4:07 pm

It could be payback for killing Phil's girlfriend.

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#119 Post by Hai2u » Sun Jun 10, 2007 11:04 pm

So what did everybody think of the series finale? I thought it was great.

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#120 Post by rs98762001 » Mon Jun 11, 2007 2:45 am

Brilliant. Well, maybe not so much the episode as a whole, but the last sequence in the restaurant was a directing and editing masterclass. Rarely has so much tension been wrung out of so little actual action.

And it was a great Fuck You from Chase to all those expecting a traditional sense of closure. I wouldn't be surprised if most viewers were disappointed by the unresolved nature of the show, but to me it's indicative of what has always made THE SOPRANOS so unique.

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#121 Post by miless » Mon Jun 11, 2007 2:52 am

rs98762001 wrote:And it was a great Fuck You from Chase to all those expecting a traditional sense of closure. I wouldn't be surprised if most viewers were disappointed by the unresolved nature of the show, but to me it's indicative of what has always made THE SOPRANOS so unique.
I agree... especially that long (LONG!) pause for the credits... when it went past 10:00 and you were thinking: FUCK! HBO fucked me! I don't know the last minute! Fuck!!!
and then you rewind (with the appropriate technology, of course) and you realize the brilliance of their actions.
somewhere, you know a mobster is shooting his television.

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Michael
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#122 Post by Michael » Mon Jun 11, 2007 8:26 am

I agree... especially that long (LONG!) pause for the credits... when it went past 10:00 and you were thinking: FUCK! HBO fucked me! I don't know the last minute! Fuck!!!
and then you rewind (with the appropriate technology, of course) and you realize the brilliance of their actions.
somewhere, you know a mobster is shooting his television.
I'm laughing. That happened exactly here last night. I rewinded it at least three times to make sure the cable or the TV didn't fuck up. My mom called me immediately and screamed at me "Michael! What happened?!" thinking the same thing about her TV fucking up or something. What a perfect ending for The Sopranos. Very original. But mean and a fucking tease!

My friend had an interesting comment that I'm not ready to buy:

SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS

Tony got whacked. The last thing he sees is her daughter walking in and then, NOTHING. Remember Christopher or Bobby telling Tony that when you get shot, you can't even hear the shot. You never hear it coming.

But I think it's the audience that got whacked not Tony.

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#123 Post by jedgeco » Mon Jun 11, 2007 9:11 am

Michael wrote:But I think it's the audience that got whacked not Tony.
Exactly -- life goes on, just without you.

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#124 Post by Belmondo » Mon Jun 11, 2007 10:39 am

Well, I like the interpretation (above) that Tony got whacked and the last thing he sees is nothing, but it is still unresolved and a bit unsatisfying.

If you are going to give me a story about a bunch of Italians and leave everything open to interpretation, then your name better be Fellini or Antonioni.

I also like the idea that their life will go on, just without us, but after six seasons of (mostly) wonderful episodes, I wanted it to END and I really hate the idea that they all could come back for a future movie.

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#125 Post by montgomery » Mon Jun 11, 2007 2:26 pm

rs98762001 wrote:And it was a great Fuck You from Chase to all those expecting a traditional sense of closure
Well then, fuck you too, David Chase. Anybody who ends something simply to subvert what he imagines are the expectations of the "audience" is an asshole. (I'm not saying this was Chase's intention, but to say that it's a "great Fuck You" is to align yourself with Chase as a way of feeling superior to those you imagine are the butt of Chase's joke).
Belmondo wrote:If you are going to give me a story about a bunch of Italians and leave everything open to interpretation, then your name better be Fellini or Antonioni.
I agree. My problem with the ending was not that it was a non-ending (which is what I expected), but that it was such a manipulative non-ending. There was no psychological or emotional ambiguity, only narrative ambiguity; but when this is picked apart, it doesn't make sense. If the blackout is Tony's death, then the scene make some sort of sense (though we don't know who the assassin is, why it's happening now in front of the family in this unlikely place, or how the assassin knew he would be there). But if the blackout isn't Tony's death, then what is this scene about? I've read that it shows how Tony experiences the world, i.e. fraught with tension. But I don't buy this, because much of what happens (the whole Meadow thing, some shots of the suspicious customers) happen outside of Tony's P.O.V. So if this does indeed turn out to be a nice family dinner, why are we made to feel all this tension? Why is the scene shot and edited around meaningless actions and characters with the express purpose of building tension? Maybe it really is just a "fuck you" to the audience and nothing more, but as "fuck you" endings go, I've seen better. If Chase's ending is supposed to be ambiguous, it needs to hold up under different interpretations, but it holds up more strongly under the "Tony gets murdered" interpretation. And it's possible that Chase's intent was that Tony gets murdered and it's supposed to be obvious--what else would this scene be about?--but in that case, why are so many people confused about it? Ultimately I think that the scene (which itself seemed shoehorned into the episode), while a nice lesson in Hitchcock tension-building, falls flat by being too unspecific or not unspecific enough.

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