Monday, June 11, 2007

Chase-ing an ending

If you say in the first chapter that there is a rifle hanging on the wall, in the second or third chapter it absolutely must go off. If it's not going to be fired, it shouldn't be hanging there.
- Anton Chekhov

Apparently David Chase is not a fan of Uncle Vanya.

I've read allot of different theories about yesterday's Sopranos series finale, and while I appreciate the episode's ability to inspire discussion, I am disappointed with the shows execution. I was not looking for all the loose strings from the previous 6 seasons to be tied as tight as my stomach but some sort of resolution would have been nice.

My take on the ending: the guy who walked into the bathroom (ala Godfather) was not the hitman because he would have no reason to hide the gun in the bathroom in the first place. And the black dudes seemed innocuous. So I think Chase was really just trying to show how paranoid Tony had (rightly) become and how he would have to go on thereafter.

The other compelling idea I read, was that Tony was whacked in that scene but never saw or heard it coming (ala the conversation he had with Bobbie at the beginning of the season). This idea is flawed - in that we rarely (if ever) saw life through Tony's eyes, and we were not, when the screen went black - but it is interesting nonetheless.

That being said, I thought the final scene was a bullshit cop-out. I've read a bunch of French Existentialism and some of it's fucked three ways from Sunday, but you know what? I dig it. And I always will, but there is a time and a place and the series finale of Sopranos was no place for Sartre to be rearing his froggy head. In my opinion, the only way to have properly ended the Sopranos, would have been to have the episode take place several months after the penultimate episode (Chase & co. have done it many a time in the past), this would have allowed for flashbacks and for the previous several months to unfold at a rhythmic pace. That way if Tony were, killed, indicted, or turned states evidence, we (the viewers) would be able to see the fall-out on the F(f)amily. Obviously that is not to be, but if they make a Sopranos movie or another season, after that ending, then Chase and all those who applauded his "artistic vision" should have to publicly apologize for accepting that nonsense.

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