The Sopranos. Done and dusted. It was one of those shows that I missed out on when it first started airing. Probably because I wasn’t nearly as TV obsessed as I am now. Some time ago Sky Atlantic started from the very beginning with the show and being the current TV obsessive I am now, I couldn’t not pass up giving this show a watch.
Now this wasn’t a marathon watch. This was a one episode per week watch. Well, near enough. So, bare with me if the details for me have become a bit fuzzy over the months. And there will be spoilers. So if you haven’t seen the show and have a small inclination of watching, please move on!
The Sopranos is an epic TV show. I do understand why it’s up there in amongst the best TV shows ever lists. The Sopranos will probably be in my top 10, that’s for sure. All down to Tony Soprano. James Gandolfini’s mob boss, Tony Soprano, is one mother of a character. You know, no matter how ruthless and cold he was at times, I couldn’t help but be on his side while he was being that cold ruthless bastard he was. Especially in a lot of the scenes with Melfi. There might have been a couple of times when I yelled at the TV screen, at Melfi, to shut up.
It’s rare for me to remotely like the leading character in most TV shows these days. The Sopranos is one of the exceptions where Tony Soprano was my favourite character in the bunch. Epic father figure. Titan of a mob boss. I’d want him on my side in a fight, that’s for sure.
The entire cast of characters are all pretty amazing though. Very strong. Characters I loved to hate. Well character. Janice. Wow. The moment she hit the screen I wanted her gone. At every turn. And yet, she lingered!
What really surprised me about The Sopranos was the humour. It was more prevalent in the earlier seasons. Sure it was a dark and sinister show at times, but there was plenty of humour in it. Paulie was the source of a lot of the humour. But I remember having a few good laugh out loud moments.
It’s hard to figure out which episode was a favourite of mine. They’re all blurring into one at this point. But the one that really stands out for me is Pine Barrens. Effectively a bottle episode and boy was it a good one!
I will admit, the final half of the final season felt like a bit of a whimper. I loved the lead up to the final season with Tony shot by Junior. And the dreams. Oh my god! I LOVE the dream sequences in this show. Every single one of them. Especially the ones Tony had while in his coma. Surreal, but grounded in a reality.
I digress. The the final season? It’s left me confused. Sure I enjoyed parts of it. But towards the end there felt like a rush to get things done. Suddenly Christopher was dead! And Bobby! People were getting shot, there was a mob war breaking out. Then it ended. Now, don’t get me wrong, I like an ambiguous ending. But what the fuck? I was left wondering what the hell. Thankfully the Internet’s pretty handy in these sorts of situations and I was given some reassurance reading the ‘definitive’ explanation of the end. It certainly made me look at that final scene a whole lot differently and appreciate the genius of it a bit more!
Even if The Sopranos did flounder a little bit in the final half of the final season, I think it’s still up there as a GREAT TV show of our time. So glad I decided to give it a watch.