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Sopranos: Final Season (Spoilers)
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jdw
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2007 7:06 pm    Post subject: Sopranos: Final Season (Spoilers) Reply with quote

Debut is this Sunday, as I assume no one has missed the hype.

"I got a bad feeling about this, Chewy."
-Han Solo

It's possible that Chase has been saving the "good stuff" for the end. But the last several seasons have been going off the cliff. The note that Johnny Sack starts the season in the process of dying from cancer isn't promising. I'm with Frank on this one - Chase never seemed to know what he had in Johnny Sack. Instead of being the one in New York putting Tony's "family" at risk in a power struggle as the series runs down, Chase seemed to view him as just another one of the "problems" Tony has to deal with before it gets brushed aside for the next one.

It's really a missed opportunity. There is a great tale of one of the major NJ mob families, being really just a sub-family of one of the NY families, being torn apart in a feud with New York... then bringing *down* the New York leadership by turning witnesses against them.

Wiki the name Tony Accetturo.

I'm not saying that Chase should use what happened to Accetturo to have exactly happen to Tony.

The point is that it's an example of how NY-NJ tension is ripe.

I get the feeling Chase will simply go the route of NY being thugish in their dealing with Tony rather than the more subtle, thinking-man's way that Johnny Sack went about it. Since Tony is thugish, and often pretty stupid in his actions, having a non-thug in NY as his true worst threat in the mob makes for something more interesting.

Anyway... we'll see how it goes.


John


Last edited by jdw on Mon Apr 09, 2007 11:22 am; edited 1 time in total
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jdw
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 08, 2007 10:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pretty good episode in the "continuing series" mode. In the "build to the finish" mode, it was sort of passable. You get a little bit of sprinkling the bread crumbs of what's to come with the Feds and the Gun Charge, along with yet another sucession fight looming in New York. There's also the two very brief indications that Christopher is on Tony's shit list.

But most of the show was killed with the two couples at the lake.

Janice remains a pain in the ass, and one generally wishes she had been killed off several seasons ago. On the other hand, this is one of the better episodes for Bobby that there has ever been which makes Janice almost bearable.

Tony's midlife crisis has been going on for years. More of the same to start the season... eh. It really isn't mining any new terrian with the character. Carmela's character is spinning the same old notes as well, though her standing up to Janice was interesting.


John
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Iron Chad



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PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2007 10:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Probably some spoilers, though I tried to be vague where if you haven't seen it, you won't get what I'm saying, but be careful anyway if you don't want to be surprised.

The thing I was the most impressed about the whole episode was how pretty it looked in HDTV. That's not exactly stellar praise, though all the lake cabin stuff looked great.

I'm not going to get too excited about what happened last night (i.e. it looked like there were some promising seeds sown), though I agree this was far and away Bobby B.'s finest moment. He's one of the characters that has grown continually over the life of the show and become more than just a one note fat joke like he was when he was Junior's keeper (unlike Paulie who's gone from an interesting character to nothing more than goofy comedy relief). I also noted that Tony is now every bit as fat as Bobby, if not fatter, which I wonder isn't on purpose.

I know it was Bobby's finest moment because Janice didn't bother as much as she normally did. I've got to think that sloppy hit is going to have repercussions as well. Victim tears shirt. . . gun dropped in the hall a few feet from the body. . .. You'd hope these hoodies watch the Wire to see how you can stack up bodies for months and the police don't notice.

After last night's events, you have to wonder if Tony will peg anyone to step up to get ready to take his place in case something happens.

I like how Billy Batts having a heart attack meant about squat. I wonder if there weren't so many loose ends left at the "intermission" to this last season to make arrangements in case any of the actors got lippy about their contracts and Chase decided they weren't needed. I did note Meadow was in the show for about a minute.

-Chad
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jdw
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2007 11:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Agreed that Bobby's hit was sloppy. The torn t-shit = DNA. Bobby's sweat. They even mentioned DNA in a discussion. It was too ham-handed and obvious having the shirt torn. The dropping of the gun is interesting, but he was wearing plastic gloves. I'm not sure the gun leads anywhere, unless it was a piece used in other killings (would be a stretch).

I actually think Billy Bats heart attack meant something - the "Lupertazzi Family" (Carmine Sr., Johnny Sack, Carmine Jr., Phil) appears to be having another power struggle:

* Johnny Sack wanting to have Carmine Sr. wacked, only to call it off

* After Carmine Sr. died, Johnny taking our Lorraine and Angelo, then forcing Little Carmine to head away

* Phil appeared to be "running the family" for Johnny last year, but Sack's power was falling apart due to being in jail

Now we get the clues of what happened since last season:

* the soldiers aren't happy with the person who took Phil's spot while he was gone (the bitching during the Welcome Back party)

* That younger turk that Phil appears to favor, or perhaps doesn't want to sit behind the old farts anymore

* the preview of next week where we see Tony talking to Little Carmine

So Phil's health did have an impact.

The irony on this is that while NY has been rolling through bosses, Stooge Tony somehow has remained in power and not terribly threatened for years.


John
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Iron Chad



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PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2007 1:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for pointing out what I missed at Phil Leotardo's Welcome Back party. To be honest, it look just liked Billy Batts's Welcome Back party from "Goodfellas", so I was probably too busy making "Go get your fuckin' shinebox!" jokes to pay attention to the state of the NY family on the show. I take back what I said, Leotardo's heart attack apparently was important, and it got Phil somewhat off Tony's back since the time that passed since we were bored to death by the previous episode.

-Chad
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jdw
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2007 12:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One just keeps waiting for someone to get killed off, but the season has been nothing but a tease on that front.

Last week it was Tony wanting to kill Paulie, and not doing it.

This week is was Tony suddenly pulling a *massive* gambling addiction out of his ass along with this 200K loan from Hesh (at 3K a week vig), and us getting the tease that Tony's going to kill him.

Last week we get Junior being pulled out of nowhere to be "running the retirement home", only to be pissing on himself and quietly allowing himself to be numbed up at the end. We also get a tease of his sidekick possibly going Chief Bromden on him, and also an assortment of other characters straight out of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. WFT? This is Jun's big spotlight of the season, and it's literally *pissed* away?

The whole stuff in "New York" of Phil now being boss... you know, what's going on in New York is wildly more interesting than what's going on in Jersey.

I'm not saying the entire season is lost right now, like last season ended up being a total clusterfuck. But it's starting to feel like Chase's hand is once again wrapped around our cocks and slowly jerking us off through a season. This is why he needed a 21 espisode, two-part "Final Season"?


John
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Jeremy Billones



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PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2007 2:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
This week is was Tony suddenly pulling a *massive* gambling addiction out of his ass along with this 200K loan from Hesh (at 3K a week vig),


I'm only up through 3.4 so far, but hasn't one of the themes of the series been how Tony doesn't gamble and has no respect for those who do?

That'd be a freakin' Smallville level retcon.
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jdw
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PostPosted: Thu May 10, 2007 4:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote



The final season is becoming sound & fury over substance.

Christopher & Paulie are at odds again, leading to neither of them being shot dead. Wait... Chris falls off the wagon again (who had the Over in the over/under Chris vs. Sipowicz pool). And Chris shoots someone *other than* Paulie right in the fucking head.

"Yippy~!"
-A. Skywalker

Before shooting the writer right in the fucking head, Chris in a drunken stupor talks about going witness protection program because he's so fed up with the shit. Well, rather than writing some decent shit leading up to him considering the WPP, we instead get the SOS - Chris vs. Paulie, Chris not getting proper treatment and support from the family, Chris falling off the wagon...

Zzzzzzz...

AJ's hot Jennifer Lopez girlfriend dumps his since he's a loser. AJ gets depressed. AJ picks himself up by boozing and popping his meds and helping his new buddies punish someone for not paying his gambling debts.

"Yippy~!"
-A. Skywalker

Tony and Carm have another violent argument.

Zzzzzz...

Gandolfini does some of his best acting of the series in a scene with Dr. Melfi. No... it's *not* a good scene. Tony gets stuck with some of the worst lines written for him in the series, and Bracco again looks like she'd rather be anywhere in this world other than stuck in this character that's gone nowhere in the past 4+ seasons. Just saying, Gandolfini does some decent acting in that moment where he tries to get across wanting better for his kid, and here's his kid wanting to off himself. One wishes Sopranos Creative could give him something to work with.

This is starting to turn into a trainwreck. 4 episodes left. At this point one is commited to sticking around since we've already pissed away 82 espisodes of our lives on it. I wish somewhere back in the past that I would have done what I did in the Season 2 debut of 24 - hit the eject and stayed away. :)


John
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Iron Chad



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PostPosted: Fri May 11, 2007 7:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I wish somewhere back in the past that I would have done what I did in the Season 2 debut of 24 - hit the eject and stayed away. :)


But had you at the patience with 24 you would've had with the Sopranos, you probably wouldn't've gotten fed up with it until this season which has been such a mess at times, even the producers/writers have admitted they're going back to the drawing board next season with less (possibly no) CTU HQ antics/soap opera and more Jack in the field. There's also been hardly any Kim to speak of (she was on two or three hours last season, but that's it) since the end of season 3.

That being said, this last season of the Sopranos is potentially turning into a bigger mess than this season of 24 (I couldn't have summarized my frustration with the last episode any better than you did), especially if the "spoilers" I've seen a few places are correct -- Prepare to groan, roll your eyes and feel jerked off by Chase yet again.

-Chad
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corrado



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PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2007 3:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I read Christopher died in this week's episode via suffocation from Tony. They could've waited till the last episode to do that. Awful rushjob there.
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Iron Chad



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PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2007 5:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actually, there were some spoilers traveling around the `net that had what happened last night happening in the finale. If the spoilers are accurate, it's probably best they went ahead with that this week to build for the stretch run.

Hell, it's not like they've done much of anything else this season. Too bad AJ wasn't rinding along as well.

-Chad
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jdw
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PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2007 9:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Sopranos finally crashed at the bottom of the cliff that it drove off several seasons ago. It's an utter clusterfuck at this point, little more than a beached whale of a series that needs to be put out of it's misery.

This comes from someone who wanted to see Christopher (and his annoying girlfriend) killed off from the second season on forward.

At least Adriana got to go out with a quite worthy death, with Chris ratting here out to Tony, Tony tricking her into going for a ride, and Sal doing the deed in the woods.

Chris was a worthless death. We get his 20th falling off the wagon last week that was little more than shit thrown at the wall. And we get a worthless death this weak that was just pathetic. It's as if Chase was keeping him alive all this time to obviously kill him off, then realized he was a few shows away from the finish, threw some shit on the wall, and literally came up with a car wreak. Symbolic of the series going off the cliff.

Honestly... an utterly clusterfuckerific "WHAT THE FUCK?!?! ALL THIS TIME FOR THAT?!?!" moment. Like I said, and longtime poster here know, I fucking *hated* the characters of Chris and Adriana, and passionately rooted for them to be killed off. You know it's a fucked up killing when the person who wants it most thinks it was dogshit. :)

This season would be disappointing if it wasn't obvious for several years the show jumped the shark creatively and was simply being stretched out for Chase and HBO to cash in on. Seems like Gandolfi had a clue that was the point, which is why he held them up for more cash a few years back. Good for Gandolfi. HBO and Chase have probably combined to make a billion off this over the years. If he has to keep speaking these shitty lines, The Man should pay up. :)


John
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Iron Chad



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PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2007 1:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Couldn't agree more, it's too bad that the years Chase has been jerking off the fan base likely isn't even leading to a happy ending for fans, probably just some mild to severe chafing.

Without getting too spoiler-ific, but considering what went down inbetween Chris rolling Tony's Escalade off a cliff, the quirky dream scenes "Six Feet Under" always did better outside of the first couple of seasons of the Sopranos and more A.J. -- was likely what starts/continues/heats up, etc. the "war" between New York and New Jersey, and God is it stupid. If you weren't paying close attention, you miss it, but I think it's over points back to NY on an old asbestos dumping (even coked up Chrissy realized it was an issue Tony should've relented on) deal. Same old shit, and if this is the proverbial straw and the camel's back, then fuck all of this because there were issues in the past 10 times heavier (even with Phil Leotardo as acting boss) and no one went to war.

When was the last time a movie used "Comfortably Numb" and it didn't lead to or deal with a scene about somebody dying or about to die? And it had to be that horrible version from Roger Waters's "The Wall: Live in Berlin" solo album with Van Morrison fucking up David Gilmour's beautiful vocal as bad as Chase has fucked up the Sopranos. A fitting end for this shit I guess.

-Chad
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Jeremy Billones



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PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2007 11:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tom Fontana & David Chase shoot the breeze
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Jeremy Billones



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PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2007 12:56 pm    Post subject: A dissenting opinion Reply with quote

"The Sopranos is the ultimate Upper Middle Management series. In many ways, this last season is the best series on film industry mid-life crisis I have ever seen. (I can't speak to mid-life crisis in other industries, as I have not been so close a witness.) But the constant struggle between the enormous, serious, life-changing power that so many execs wield and the absolute impotence of the very same people, often regarding the very same decisions, is what Tony has been facing in episode after episode. The more emotionally healthy he gets, the more he can handle without losing it completely, the more shit that is drawn to him. And week after this last magnificent run of weeks, he is handling the load, not only as best he can, but rather well in light of things."

Why is this the best season of The Sopranos ever?
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