TV Club

Will Tony Become a Real Gangster?

Hey Jeff,

Welcome. You picked a great time to come back.

Last night’s episode was certainly a damn good one. Made up, for me anyway, for that 20-minute-long dream sequence the week before.

I guess I can no longer describe Silvio as useless. He definitely knows how to kill distraught women.

We’ve suspected for weeks that Adriana was going to get whacked. What we needed to know was Who, How, and When. Well, last night we got answers for all those questions. And the screenwriter had us, at least me, going there for a while. When Christopher began choking Adriana, I didn’t think he would strangle her, that his good sense would eventually kick in. But as the scene continued, and his hands remained around her neck, I thought that maybe he really would choke her to death. It seemed possible we’d have another Murder Machine redux, with Chris calling Tony Soprano to dispose of Adriana’s remains the way they got rid of Ralphie C. after Tony killed him in a rage.

After Christopher left the house to buy cigarettes, and we saw him at a gas station observing how other people live, you got the sense that he just wasn’t willing to give up the $50,000 car and all the rest to go away with her. And when Tony Soprano called Adriana and told her Silvio was coming to pick her up, you knew it was just a matter of time.

Hey, and how about that Tony Soprano? For this week, at least, he acted like a real tough-guy gangster and actually seemed, finally, to be coming around to taking care of his trouble-making cousin Tony B. I got the sense that he’s going to take care of him in two weeks—Hey, we got Memorial Day off!—in the season finale.

Gottta love that Johnny Sack, though. Sent Little Carmine packing and told Tony where to get off in that scene under the bridge. Tony hinted that he would let Johnny whack his cousin and asked him to make it quick, not make him suffer, because, after all, Tony B. was his cousin.

When Johnny Sack refused, Tony thought about it, thought about telling him where Tony B. was, but in the end, he refused to knuckle under and told Johnny Sack to go fuck himself. That could mean war, but in the end, my suspicion is that Tony Soprano will redeem himself—as a gangster, that is—and whack Tony B. himself, or have his men do it. My only question is how he’ll let Johnny Sack know that Tony B. is dead and avoid a full-scale war. (Maybe he won’t.)

Lots of other interesting plot lines and subplots. I’m still not sure that Christopher won’t decide to turn on Tony Soprano. That beating Tony gave Christopher for snorting heroin may have been called for, but it could be that the screenwriters are trying to give us a clue that Christopher will defect and become a turncoat. Or maybe not.

I’m still trying to figure out what to make of the bathroom scene in Tony’s long dream when Tony tells Finn’s old man that he did his homework and shows him a copy of The Valachi Papers, Peter Maas’ classic about the first American mobster to break his vow of omertà. Was Tony Soprano thinking about cooperating?