Catching up with The Sopranos

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The Sopranos

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.


  1. This was a show I discovered in the video store. They had the DVD’s for rent, so I got one just to see what it was about. After finishing one I returned immediately and got everything they had (although it wasn’t even the complete first season). Was hooked on it and loved it. Agree with you on the ending, didn’t like it.

    I used to watch a lot of TV shows, but now there’s hardly anything I watch anymore. Last Friday discovered 2 Broke Girls, which I think is quite a funny comedy show, so will watch more of that show, but besides that there isn’t anything I’m following at the moment.

    • The ending just… I felt so cheated!

      TV’s becoming very hit and miss for me. Maybe it’s because I’m realising I don’t want to be spending hours and hours watching any old crap!

  2. What a Coincidence !! Even I was doing The Sopranos run over the last few months. I rather am. I still have last few episodes left. But more importantly, I have almost same thoughts on it. I hated Janice like I wanted to throw things at her, I LOVED those Dream sequences throughout – By FAR, favourite part of whole series. I wasn’t sure what exactly to think of Tony Soprano – most times it would look right from his position but then he was such a jackass and Yes, Dr. Melfi. By the end of 4th Season, I would be like ‘Here Comes The Genius’

    It’s Nice to know that someone else also thinks on the same lines. 🙂

    • It is good to hear that someone else is sharing my thoughts too! Watching a show that’s not on the air anymore and just forming opinions without having anyone to really banter with about the show is something I miss. But glad my thoughts are shared!

      My god, Janice… what a character. She had a knack for just getting under my skin! Every single time.

      Hope you enjoy the last few episodes!

  3. Dont worry about not having understood or loved the ending. Its one of the most divisive, maligned endings in tv show history. I’m firmly in the camp that it was a chickenshit cop out in order to keep the door open for a potential movie someday. I hated that final scene HATED IT.

    Youre also right that the last season limped across the finish line. The gay bed and breakfast diversion, the fact that the cast was all fat(ter) and old(er), the cut to black ending. Gahd.

    But even with all of that, this was still a top ten all time dramatic show. Awesome at so many points in time. 😀 Glad you finally scratched it off your list!

    • Yeah, the limpness of the final season can’t totally make this show a failure, which is a huge testament to the show itself.

      The ending… it still haunts me. I keep wondering whether I gave it a chance at all. Then remember it and realise, it was a cop out!

      Sopranos movie? I would watch the hell out of that.

  4. I love The Sopranos, but I never did finish the series. I think I made it up through season four, but got distracted with other things. I would like to start back from the beginning because it has been years since I last saw an episode. I do remember the Pine Barrens quite vividly, though. What a great episode.

    • I think season 4 is where I started to wane with it. I remember season 4 being a very high point for the show. It was tough to keep going at times!

  5. I’ve just borrowed the entire collection on DVD. I’ve never seen a single episode but after hearing all the hype I’m looking forward to getting stuck into it. Thanks for the recommendation Jaina.

  6. So glad you liked this one! Definetly in my top 10 of best series ever too. Pine Barrens is my favorite episode, Paulie and Chris are so funny! And the dream sequences were indeed terrific.

    • Paulie and Chris had me cracking up in that episode! Paulie especially.

      In my Top 10 best series ever too. Just so damn good. Now I just need to get on with The Wire.

  7. Glad you dug the show… seems like I agree with nearly all your thoughts: the show was hilarious, but more so in the beginning, and the final season definitely cashed in a bit, but all in all, an iconic, effective series.

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