Monday, April 17, 2006

Surfing Through "The Sopranos"

I lost interest in "The Sopranos" in season two, so don't think I'm trying to jump on the "Sopranos ain't so good" backlash as the series finale approaches. But surely anyone would consider last night's episode a horrible mess. The gay mobster runs away and we spend an interminable amount of time in a small town where he goes to a diner, orders breakfast, takes a walk, sits by a waterfall and then goes antiquing! This took about 20 minutes of the show but seemed to last for hours, adding absolutely nothing to our knowledge about the guy or what might happen to him. (It made the endless wedding reception scene from the week before seem brisk in comparison.) Equally dull: the reactions of the other mobsters, the guy's wife and Meadow (who whines about liberal issues and then shares damning info that could get the gay guy killed -- what does she think is going to happen, that they'll march with him in a gay pride parade?). And Carmela's gone from a strong woman who grew to bitterly regret her life into a wife who pouts when Tony hasn't broken the kneecaps of the building inspector yet. Dull, dull, dull.


Ed Sikov said...

I totally disagree. We spend what you call "an interminable amount of time" witnessing a suicidal man weighing his absolute humiliation against his desire to live. If you want action action action, go to an action movie. Harumph. Also, Tony's response to the whole thing was a great mix of disgust and self-reflection.

Anonymous said...

I must disagree as well. I am enjoying this season very much.
Carm and Meadow's change of heart both seem to be a result from the realization that Tony will not always be there to provide. They both decided that they may like the comforts provided by his lifestyle when faced with the fact that it may all end. Carm's interest in payments, intrigue and jealousy with her friend's (Pussy's wife)business success, and Tony's failure to push through her permits all seem to suggest that she is realizing she cannot depend on men in her life and exploring a more active role. They both became more aggressive at the same time as Tony lost his power and leadership and became more thoughtful and questioning.
I also thought showing Vito reflecting on what his life could have been as his fate was being sealed by Meadow (who would be the least likely one to condemn him) was interesting and plays into her change of heart.

Michael in New York said...

Hmm. I saw a guy antiquing. And what about the editing. It took forever to get him to that small town and then he falls asleep and then he wakes up and looks around the room the next day before we finally cut to Carmela. What purpose was there in seeing him wake up? None. Then towards the end we see him looking in the window of the antique shop. We cut away for ten minutes and when we come back he is STILL looking in the window. Plus there's the fact that this guy is apparently getting checked out by the cook at the diner. I know there are men who like Bears, but the idea that this guy is getting scoped out regularly beggars belief. (I know, I'm superficial.) My problems with Meadown and Carmela especially are how they've reverted. Carmela seemed strong and pro-active for a while, taking charge of her life, getting the real estate going, fighting with Tony and generally taking responsibility for herself. Now she seems to have backslided into waiting for him to take care of things for her, quite a disappointment considering how far she'd come to in the past two seasons. Tony's reaction to his being gay was somewhat interesting. As for wathcing Vito "weighing his absolute humiliation against his desire to live," well that might have happened with a better actor, but this guy is very weak and seeing him stare at a waterfall does not make me connect to him emotionally in any way. I think sftom is right about what carmela is realizing, but she already realized that two seasons ago so why do we have to see her have the same insight all over again?

Michael in New York said...

On the other hand, I'm interested that you guys liked it. All I heard to day was considerable negative feedback from other Let's-bash-the-Sopranos bandwagoners like myself. Harumph.

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