7/10 “The Sopranos” came to an end in June 2007, one month after I graduated high school and worked as a pool cleaner. Despite having never watched a single second of the show, I vividly remember what a pop culture phenomenon the show and particularly the ending was. My boss and I would listen to talk radio while driving from pool to pool and I still recall the radio stations being abuzz with talk of the infamous, hard cut to black. While I normally do all I can to avoid spoilers in reviews, one can’t talk about the final season of this show without talking about the divisive ending so there will be mild spoilers later on in this review. Before we get there, let’s talk about the rest of the season. This season is a third longer than every previous season but despite taking longer to watch, I didn’t mind the added episodes. Each episode had a purpose and there wasn’t much in the way of filler. The acting remains phenomenal with plenty of dark humor and fantastic dialogue. Having seen the progression from season one is truly something to behold. The children growing up into young adults, the characters who die, how 9/11 changed the show and some of the commentary on America, war, wealth, family, etc. This truly is an epic saga and although I completely disagree with people claiming this is the greatest show of all time, if you have a good amount of time and enjoy mob/mafia related films/shows, this is a must watch. While overall this is a good, final season, there were definitely elements that bothered me a bit. When the show ends, there were minor character arcs that aren’t mentioned, some unsatisfying lack of conclusions, unanswered questions, etc. The biggest question running through my head was why the show even ended here? The ending is so abrupt and there could have easily been a seventh season since so many plot threads were still continuing/going strong. Was David Chase and the creative talent behind the show just ready to move on? Now we get to some spoilers so be warned. The final scene has Tony meeting his immediate family in a diner for dinner and just as Meadow is walking through the door, the show abruptly cuts to black in silence and holds there for 11 full seconds, before the end credits begin to roll. There has been much debate over this ambiguous ending if Tony Soprano was murdered or not and after having given much thought to the issue, I tend to lean on the side of Tony being murdered in front of his family. Death symbolism and death itself is brought up a bit in the last few episodes and we even get a flashback in the penultimate episode from when Tony and Bobby Baccalieri are on a boat discussing death. “You probably don’t even hear it when it happens, right?” Bobby asks that to Tony and in that final moment, you hear nothing as we cut to black. This contrasts when Tony finally wakes up from his coma and we cut to an all-white screen, representing Tony coming towards the light of love and life. When I surmised why the show even ended at the moment in time when it did, Tony dying would be a definitive reason to end the show. If he survived, like some people believe, then why wouldn’t the show have had at least another season? In the end, I was a bit disappointed by how the show abruptly ended, no matter whether Tony lives or dies. It felt like an odd place to end the show and these stories could have continued. Subplots like Tony and his therapist have very unsatisfying endings that left a sour taste in my mouth. Despite the engaging plot, strong pacing, perfect acting, realism, etc. I couldn’t help but feel underwhelmed in the show’s final moments. Not to say that this final season wasn’t overall solid, since it was, but I guess you can count me in with the fans who didn’t find the ending as brilliant as all of the pretentious critics did. As a show, “The Sopranos” did leave its mark upon pop culture and there is a lot to admire about the show overall. The show had its ups and downs and is a little overrated in my opinion but if you have a lot of spare time and have never seen it, you could do a lot worse. I just wish the ending wasn’t so abr

#WhatAboutMob? / #GoodbyeChristophersRobbin / #CutMeSomeSlackSack / #LeaveItToCleaver / #PhilOfTheFutureShock / #MobMentality

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