Episode: Johnny Cakes (SE6, EP8) Characters: Patsy Parisi, Burt Gervasi and coffeeshop
This scene makes clear in a humorous way how global corporations will crush
the mob. Patsy and Burt are making collections in the old neighbourhood. They walk
into a newly opened Starbucks-like establishment trying to squeeze out the manager
for protection money. But the manager explains the new realities to them: ‘Look,
every last fucking coffee bean is in the computer and has to be accounted for. The
numbers don’t add up, I’ll be gone and somebody else will be here.’ Patsy: ‘It’s
over for the little guy.’
49. Happy Reunion
Episode: The Knight in White Satin Armor (SE2, EP12) Characters: Tony, Janice and
It has been a while since Tony last saw his mother. They hit it off immediately.
Tony accuses her of ruining Janice’s love life, but Livia can’t even remember anything.
‘You tell me when have I ever done anything to any of you? I suppose now you’re not
gonna kiss me?’ This woman just loves to create confusion, Dr. Melfi would say. When
Tony walks out the door, he trips and drops his gun. Livia is standing behind him
and is clearly laughing. This reminds of the therapy session in which Melfi asked
Tony to come up with a happy childhood memory and all he could come up with was his
father falling down some stairs and everybody laughing. It’s great how complex themes
in THE SOPRANOS are worked out.
48. Don’t Get Me Down
Episode: The Blue Comet (SE6, EP20) Characters: Tony, Silvio and Bobby
Before the operatic violence in THE BLUE COMET is about to break loose, there
is this perfect ‘lighter’ moment in which Tony and Silvio pretend to box when they
hear Cavalleria Rusticana, a reference to Scorsese’s boxing film RAGING BULL. It
reminds of the good old days that are now nearly gone.
47. Pitching, Not Catching
Episode: Unidentified Black Males (SE5, EP9) Characters: Vito Spatafore, Finn De Trolio
and Security Guard
Finn catching Vito giving a security guard a blow job on the construction site
is one of the big ‘WTF!!!’ moments in THE SOPRANOS. Vito’s secret is based on true
events in the real Jersey mafia. It will lead to a whole storyline in the final season.
46. Woke Up This Morning
Episode: All 86 Episodes Characters: Tony, New York and New Jersey
‘Woke up this morning. Got myself a gun.’ This is one of the greatest credit
sequences in television history. The makers were very wise to never change it during
the course of the series. The action moves from New York, where all classic gangster
tales are set, to New Jersey, a new setting for wiseguy life. The soundtrack by Alabama
3 creates a hyper cool atmosphere that suits this series like Rocco DiMeo’s leather
jacket. It gives viewers the perfect two minutes to get into the mood for the episode.
45. Something Good
Episode: Where’s Johnny? (SE5, EP3) Characters: Junior and Tony
In later seasons, as Tony is getting colder and colder, this is one of the
few emotional moments where he still displays some human feelings. Junior is getting
demented, so he says all these nasty things to Tony. Since probably part of it is
caused by Alzheimer’s, Tony is trying to find out Junior’s true feelings for him.
‘I mean, don’t you love me?’ That expression on Junior’s face should give him the
answer he is looking for. Yes, he does. Beautifully acted and directed.
In the New York power struggle, aspiring boss Gerry ‘The Hairdo’ Torciano gets
clipped on orders by the other candidate Doc Santoro. The hit takes place in a restaurant
and is technically one of the finest filmed murders on the show. The sound effects,
the blood, the slo-mo… The audience doesn’t have a clue of what is going on until
you see the shooter and Gerry going down. This is really what you would experience
if you’d be witness to an assassination in reality. Great work.
43. Coming Home
Episode: All Due Respect (SE5, EP13) Characters: Tony and Carmela
After barely escaping from the FBI at Johnny Sacks’ house, Tony returns home
without a scratch. He wasn’t even named in the indictment, only his feet got a little
wet. The man is too lucky sometimes. This is another excellent season ending. It’s
a lot of fun seeing a mob boss running through the snow and the song ‘Glad Tidings’
by Van Morrison is perfectly used here.
42. Bada Beng!!!
Episode: The Blue Comet (SE6, EP20) Characters: Silvio Dante, Patsy Parisi, New York
Killers and biker
It’s truly impressive how these writers can make you root for the bad guys
every time. Despite of everything they’ve done throughout the series, you don’t want
guys like Tony and Silvio to get whacked, making THE BLUE COMET, a thriller of Hitchcockian
proportions. In this adrenaline fuelled shootout, Silvio gets shot into a coma. Patsy
manages to escape and a hapless biker is collateral damage.
41. You Sopranos Go Too Far
Episode: Sopranos Home Movies (SE6, EP13) Characters: Tony, Carmela, Bobby and Janice
After some Karaoke, the Sopranos play a game of Monopoly. Everybody’s drunk.
They sure know how to build a party, these Sopranos, but they’re a little too drunk.
After some tension about the Monopoly rules and an embarrassing story about Livia
and Johnny Boy, Bobby explodes when Tony starts to tease Janice with her history
in giving head (‘under the boardwalk’). A massive fight erupts with a spectacularly
high ‘oh no’ level. Bobby wins and Tony has a Monopoly house stuck in his chin. Brilliant
family fight, just brilliant.