HBO News Blog

A New Perspective on THE SOPRANOS’ Final Scene

By Jef Dinsmore on Jul 18, 2013 to The Sopranos


I must admit that I am fixated on THE SOPRANOS yet again. Of course, the reasoning this time around has been because of the death of James Gandolfini on June 18. No solid reason is really needed by anyone to take in David Chase’s six season saga of Tony Soprano and his personal and professional families. It is often high on the list of fans and critics alike and always warrants a look.

I’ll also admit in this piece that I have not been watching a marathon of the entire 86 episodes again but merely a small portion of them. My sole intent is to find episodes that really showcased the abilities of Mr. G. himself. There are many scenes I could have watched; over the past three weeks though I focused on episodes which gave me plenty of good scenes that had Tony with Dr. Melfi, with his family at home and with his cronies out and about their daily business. Here is a quick list of what I watched:

  • Episode 01: “The Sopranos” – the pilot which gave us the story of the ducks in the family pool as related to Dr. Jennifer Melfi.
  • Episode 05: “College” – Tony takes his daughter Meadow to check out a potential college for her and, while he’s at it, also whacks a thug in witness protection with his bare hands.
  •  Episode 26: “Funhouse” Tony takes out one of his own when he silences Big Pussy in the Season 2 Finale.
  •  Episode 30: “Employee of the Month” – Even though this episode was about Dr. Melfi and her rape how Tony comes to her aid are moments not to be missed.
  •  Episode 44: “Pie-O-My” – This is the tale of the race horse that Tony Soprano became fond of to the very end.
  •  Episode 48: “Whoever Did This” – That is the one with Ciferetto’s head in a bowling bag. This episode says a lot about Tony and  just as much about the talent of the late James G.
  • Episode 52: “Whitecaps” – this was the big breakup episode between Tony and Carmella that end Season Four.
  • Episode 86: “Made In America” – the final episode.


Now I know there were of plenty of episodes missed in between; you can spend time in the comments talking up your own favorites if you wish. These were just the eight I decided to watch again in tribute to James Gandolfini.

All of that however, is not the real purpose of this article as you can tell by its title. Ah, the final episode “Made In America.” It aired on 06.10.2007 and has been shrouded in controversy ever since. Viewers were quite angry about the way the scene and the series ended with that abrupt cut-away. The big question loomed whether Tony S. was whacked in front of his family and died in a serving of onion rings or not. There were indications leaning to either scenario. The mystery man eyeing Tony before he ended the restroom and the Journey tune playing made it look like either scenario could play out. So, what happened? I mulled over that myself at the time. It all resurfaced again during my mini-marathon. I finally have discovered six years later the answer or, at least, my answer.

David Chase actually gave his fans a gift, not only the talent of Mr. G, but also with that final scene. He wasn’t rudely insulting and shafting the audience in the end, as was suggested back in 2007, but leaving the power with the audience to write the ending. We, the aficionados of THE SOPRANOS were given the opportunity to decide the fate of Tony for ourselves. It was a surprise way to go that caught us off guard but we, each in turn, figure it out. I now know for certain my ending.

You might think it lame and not very creative of me to draw this conclusion so many years out but I now, upon the death of Gandolfini, can put it to rest. Now, I always felt that Tony lived past that meal in that diner but I never bothered to work out any details of how he lived the rest of his days. If you view, as I do, that Tony S. was in many ways like James G. than it all makes sense now. Both the actor and the character seemed tough on the outside but had a softer quality within. So it seems logical for me to draw one last parallel between them. Indulge me.

No dangerous incidence occurred at the diner that evening. Meadow rushed in a few minutes late and the family spent some quality time. In fact, the idea came up that the Soprano family needed to get away; they needed a family vacation and it was agreed upon to do so. They thought a trip to Italy would be ideal. Both Tony and Carmela were caught up in some issues they needed to square away before that could happen and Meadow & AJ needed prep time as well. Time slipped away and they ended up not working towards that goal but, finally, a few years later the subject was brought up again and they decided to act upon it immediately. It was during this bonding trip in Italy with the family together eating and laughing that they felt whole and happy and then, after all the years of hard work, stress, and violence Tony Sopranos body just stopped.

That is how I have concluded the story of the Soprano family. It ends the same way James Gandolfini’s did. It is simple as that.  RIP Tony Soprano and James Gandolfini.

Have the followers of HBOWatch given this any thoughts in the past month? The series is certainly readily available in a number of formats. If there is anyone out there who also feels the need to watch it, or I should say re-watch it, as it has surely been seen by anyone who is a fan of HBO and this site, right? You can find it on HBO On Demand and HBOGo plus, it has been airing on HBO Signature. There is also your home collection, whether you got them on VHS or DVD. Also, while I’m at it, I might as well advertize that the  complete collection can also be found on such places as Amazon for purchase. No matter how you enjoy the show you will be able to experience Mr. G. at his finest.

I leave you with this little clipfest courtesy of  Huffington Post.

  • ben

    i like this idea. i never thought tony died myself. in interviews chase never seemed to want to make tony pay for his crimes. as for the cinematic ques to his death id say chase was just setting up tension, and what happens when tension builds in real life? usually nothing.

  • Topsy

    Eugines brother shot Tkny dead. Eugi es wife said …put a bullet in his head….Eugjne had the Members only jacket as pointed out by Vito.

  • Jason Kovalik

    My theory…. The entire series doesn’t represent Tony’s life…. Rather it represents Melfi’s fascination with Tony’s life… With tony no longer a patient…. And the presumably out of the news, Melfi stopped thinking about Tony altogether, and her Tony Fantasy went away…

  • jhk655

    This a such a childish interpretation of the final scene. I think all the clues are there to suggest tony was killed in the diner.
    first off, the direction, editing and camera work in the final scene was all done purposely to give us the impression that he died in that final scene. for example, the man in the Member’s Only jacket, Tony’s killer, the camera spends a lot of time following his movements. The camera doesn’t spend half as much time following any of the other diner patrons which denotes the significance of this man. The man passes by tony and enters the bathroom, And after about as much time as it would take to enter the restroom, pull out your weapon, and exit, the bell rings as meadow enters. Tony looks up, just as he had every other time a new patron entered the diner. However this time, instead of getting a camera shot from Tony’s perspective, like we had gotten every other time the bell rang and tony looked up, we get the (in)famous cut to black. This is literally saying “Tony didn’t see or hear anything at this point, like he had every other time that bell rang because he was shot in the head”
    To back up this point, If you’ll remember earlier in the season, Tony has a conversation with Bobby about what its like when you get shot. bobby says “I bet you don’t even hear it”. The show goes so far to make this phrase salient as to repeat it again in Tony’s memory only a couple episodes prior to the finale.
    As for the song, “It goes on, and on, and on…” Is not a direct commentary of Tony’s life “going on” after this scene. That is an absurdly simple and facile argument. It is more of a big-picture commentary on organized crime as a whole. The falling of a boss, A new boss rises, families dissolve and unite, etc. The game doesn’t die with tony, it goes on and on, and we got a glimpse into the intimate life of one of its bigger players. The song starts out revolving around 2 individuals, and then evolves to show that these individuals’ story represents a greater theme.
    This is the finale scene of the final episode of the final season of a hugely popular and influential show. If you think these elements were anything other than carefully selected and organized, you have to be crazy. Like with all good art, you have to think about it just a little bit to understand what’s going on.

  • ian

    I agree on the perspective. The view was closer than where tony was sat. I believe he lived and we had a glimpse of what life was like now for tony. We were thrown in and out of a period of his life. He most likely went to jail on a rico. Or flipped himself and became what he said he would never do. I would belive he was killed if we had a glimpse of meadow before the blackness and all the shots of people entering were from tonys seat. I think when chase says its all there he means…thats it. Thats all you get. A glimpse of what life living like that is like. No more. No less. In the end we didnt see him die or get shot. The show ended. Thats that. Make up your own ending if u like. Personally i wouldnt have liked an ending where tony dies. Or one where he dosent pay for his crimes. Im happy to believe maybe he lived but paid later. But thats the beauty with the ending.

  • signaturechic

    i just finished watching the whole seasons completely and it was blissful…i dont think tony died at the end of the show i really think it was meadow who dies….think about it. I think it was significant that her old friend visited in that episode also they (the family) finally met her bf. I also think it was significant the focus on her parking her long it took and all that. I think when she ran into the restaurant that was when the guy opened fire but rather than hit tony he actually hit meadow. Ofcourse, (as we saw) tony reached for his gun and killed the guy but then its all just too much as meadow lays there bleeding …all her potential, her goodness …gone. If i was writing the end this is exactly what would happen..meadow dies (as i describe) , tony gets indicted ( as the lawyer said he probably would), he feels incredible guilt because of what happened to meadow and Carmela cant stand being with him anymore because it reminds her too much of what happened

    • Ryo Shenmue

      1 – Tony doesn’t carry a gun. 2 – The numbers of Meadow’s parking attempts match the attempts occured at Tony’s life during the series. 3- The last scene in the diner was made mainly to reunite the entire family because The Sopranos is a family drama masked as a gangster drama. It’s not important if Tony lives or dies, just that at the end he was having dinner with his messed up family, knowing that his life was always going to be incredibly paranoid at every moment(whether he was going to die a few seconds later or not).

      • signaturechic

        Actually Tony does carry a gun I don’t know if you remember that episode where hew polls up to the house and Aj and friends were pulling upbehind him ….only he doesn’t know it’s aj so he opened his car door grabbed his gun and when he sees its aj puts it back and greets them…..I watched the whole series recently so it’s fresh in my mind

  • bcoyote

    “it’s all there”

    The very first scene of the entire Sopranos series is a camera on Tony as he sits in Melfi’s watiing room. We see him through the legs of a female statue, as if he is being born.

    The very last “scene” is the blackness. Death. Plain and simple.

  • Phil Retardo

    I fucking hate the fact that Silvio died, he was my favorite

    • JP McCarthy

      Me too… but did he die?? I thought he was still in hospital? Dying but not dead.

  • Anthony

    I have no conclusion personally, but I just want to bring up that at the end when Meadow is thought to be coming in the door, Tony then quickly reaches into his pocket. Could it have been Meadow going in and Tony reaching into his pocket for no reason? Or was it someone else and he was reaching for a gun? Just another unanswered question, but another possibility.

  • BarbDwyr

    Tony did not die in that scene. Think about it. Why was that final scene shot from Tony’s POV? Why did everyone in that scene remind him/the viewer of someone else? Why was every little detail read so much into? Why did the tension build up to the point of the blackout? Because that’s what it was. Chase allowed the viewer to experience Tony’s anxiety and subsequent blackout. Brilliant stuff!

  • D. Watts

    And of course Tony is dead…What was the name of the episode where Chris is killed? Kennedy and Heidi? 2 infamous moments in TV history. One, an assassination, the other a movie that cut off a football game right before the game winning play. Sound familiar? It’s an assassination that won’t be televised.

  • D. Watts

    People! You need to read this a little closer…The author is not suggesting this is how he really thinks it ends..he is simply sharing with us how he’d like to imagine it does in light of Gandolfini’s death. It’s a bittersweet eulogy for an actor he obviously admired. He knows it is not a legitimate “theory”, and was not asking for yours. He’s just saying goodbye.

  • Darby O’ Gill

    this is a horrible theory… Choose your own ending? garbage. Sorry, what are you thinking???

    • D. Watts

      He was thinking Gandolfini died too young and wanted a creative way to say goodbye. If you read it closely you’d understand that. He knows that’s really not how it ended. It was a eulogy for an actor he admired

  • Dominic

    Let me start by first saying The Sopranos is by far the best thing that’s ever been on a TV screen. I first watched all the episodes straight through when I was 17, and have just finished watching them all through again at 24.

    I’ve spent years convincing myself Tony didn’t die, but it was out of hope more than anything simply because I love the character so much. He was clearly whacked in the final scene by the ‘Members Only Jacket’ character who walks past him into the toilet, and shoots him on his return when Meadow enters the restaurant. There is numerous references to the theory that when you’re ‘whacked’ you don’t hear anything, you just end. This is clearly demonstrated with the cut to darkness at the end, and it carries on for a significant amount of time before the credits come up, showing Tony now experiences nothingness, he’s dead.

    My theory behind why Tony was whacked is as follows: The 5 families of New York would not have been very impressed at a relatively small New Jersey mob family came out on top in a war with one of the New York families, they wouldn’t want the New Jersey family getting too powerful. That is the most obvious reason for his demise in my opinion.

    I was honestly upset watching the final episode because I know the character dies and also the magnificent actor who portrayed Tony Soprano is also now dead. Rest in peace James Gandolfini. Legend.

  • Dominic

    Let me start by first saying The Sopranos is by far the best thing that’s ever been on a TV screen. I first watched all the episodes straight through when I was 17, and have just finished watching them all through again at 24.

    I’ve spent years convincing myself Tony didn’t die, but it was out of hope more than anything simply because I love the character so much. He was clearly whacked in the final scene by the ‘Members Only Jacket’ character who walks past him into the toilet, and shoots him on his return when Meadow enters the restaurant. There is numerous references to the theory that when you’re ‘whacked’ you don’t hear anything, you just end. This is clearly demonstrated with the cut to darkness at the end, and it carries on for a significant amount of time before the credits come up, showing Tony now experiences nothingness, he’s dead.

    My theory behind why Tony was whacked is as follows: The 5 families of New York would not have been very impressed at a relatively small New Jersey mob family came out on top in a war with one of the New York families, they wouldn’t want the New Jersey family getting too powerful. That is the most obvious reason for his demise in my opinion.

    I was honestly upset watching the final episode because I know the character dies and also the magnificent actor who portrayed Tony Soprano is also now dead. Rest in peace James Gandolfini. Legend.

  • Ritz

    I NEED to re-watch lol

  • WG Ervin

    I like to believe Meadow came rushing in, not because she was late (she couldn’t have been too much because the others had just sat down). The chiming of the bell signified good news. Hope. A light. The addition of another little Soprano. Meadow was coming to tell them all she was pregnant. Don’t forget WHY she was late. Why would Carmella bring up Meadow having an issue of birth control “switch up problems” of all things? Second point, one thing the show always held true to was keeping the idea of the Sopranos world as “grounded” as possible. New York was transitioning to it’s new family boss and would NEVER take on another war at that point, so in all likelihood there was no hit man in the shop at all. So the next practical thing would be that Tony would be found guilty and go to jail for his previous gun charge. Sucks but think of how much they played up Carlos and him flipping on them to the feds. It was Tony’s last business headache and written so for a reason. Why a full blown meal with his attorney and hearing the bad news at the Bada Bing of all places? On a side note, I’m just glad Paulie went unscathed, though he was left with the ghosts that haunt him symbolized by the cat he despised that came and sat beside him. In all it was a brilliant show, with amazing directors and cast, but in the end Tony Soprano wound up like he started: distraught and alone but this time not in a psychiatrists office but a jail cell.

    • Darby O’ Gill

      Wow…. just when I thought I heard it all. I know I sound like a jerk and I am sorry, but nooooooo way on the baby thing. That’s just such an odd thing to take away from the episode.

      Anyway, the simplest answer would have to be the most likely here, as we were left with so little. The only conclusion one could draw, if they were to draw ANY conclusion (and let’s face it, we aren’t supposed to ‘choose our own ending’ that’s such a silly suggestion), would be that Tony is dead. Either he is dead, or there is literally ‘no ending’. We have no choice but to accept one or the other when you think about it logically. So I think he, and possibly all of them, are dead.

  • Matt Rider

    That’s incorrect. David chase: “it’s all there”. Tony was offed by members only jacket guy. Black screen is just Tonys perspective (he no longer has one because he was executed).

    A tony death is logical too. New York couldn’t let him live after their own boss was wacked. Too many hitters would be out there.

  • pot

    it would have been easier to understand that we were seeing the people enter the diner from Tony’s perspective if we had actually seen them from Tony’s perspective, instead of seeing them (after Tony’s raised eyebrow look each time the bell rings) from the perspective of someone sitting at the counter in the diner .. oddly enough, from the Member’s Only Jacket guy’s seat

    • Darby O’ Gill

      I just watched it and have I no idea how you could possibly reach that conclusion, let alone be confident in it. The people walking in are CLEARLY seen from Tony’s perspective. But honestly I’d love it if I missed something, so please enlighten me

  • D. Watts

    I think you’re all terribly missing the authors point…This is how he’d like to think it ends in light of Mr. Gandolfini’ s death…He doesn’t believe these were Chase’s literal intentions, it’s a bittersweet farewell to an actor he admired

    • Darby O’ Gill

      It’s nonsense.

      • D. Watts

        …did you read what I wrote? How can it be nonsense if he’s just sharing what he’d like to imagine it being? He knows it’s not what Chase had in mind.

  • Tony

    He dies in the diner in my opinion. I know that we will likely never get a 100% confirmed statement from David Chase, but in my opinion he got whacked by Members Only Guy. Here are my reasons:

    1) There is the obvious scene in the first ep. of season 6 part 2 when Bobby and Tony are sitting in the boat with the quote, “you probably don’t even hear it when it happens” or something to that effect.

    2) Flashback to the previously mentioned scene in Blue Comet when Tony is thinking about the death of Bobby, near death of Silvio, and probably thinking about the possibility of his own death as well.

    3) A.J. says that Tony’s favorite scene in the Godfather is when Michael retrieves the gun from the bathroom and kills the two guys in the restaurant. Well, MOG walks past Tony and goes into the bathroom. In my opinion this is a homage to the GF and foreshadowing that the guy comes out of the bathroom and shoots Tony.

    4) There is one other killing in the last episode and it is Phil Leotardo-Tony’s New York counterpart. He gets killed in front of his family as well.

    5) Soprano seasons are constructed like novels. If you think back to the first chapter (season 6 ep. 1- “Members Only”), Gene kills a guy in a restaurant wearing a Members Only Jacket.

    6) I read a great article that mentions how David Chase established a POV shot from Tony’s perspective each time the bell rings at Holstens. Each time the bell rings Tony looks up and we see his point of view as he looks at who walks in. Well, the last POV shot is “blackness”. The bell rings, Meadow walks in, Tony looks up, and he sees black because he has just been murdered.

    7) Earlier in season 6 part 2, Jerry from New York gets shot at a restaurant in front of Silvio. I think two restaurant killings in one full season were put in intentionally to establish a pattern. David Chase even brought this scene up when discussing the final scene on the show and what happened. Also, Silvio doesn’t realize what is going on until Jerry has already been shot 2 or 3 times.

    All of this, to me, is evidence that Tony got whacked. The bigger question to me is why? Did Butch lie to Tony when they called truce? Was killing Phil in front of his own family too much for The New York mob to take? Did Tony’s own gang get fed up with him? I would be interested to hear someone elses take on this.

    • Gunther

      The other clues I found; Chase says
      “it’s all there” and that he didn’t trick the audience with the ending. Well. Meadow trying to park the car and having trouble is building suspense towards something happening. What else could it be? The end of the series? I don’t think so. How about her father’s death. Also, the screen goes black but the credits don’t come on the screen for 7 seconds or so. That means the show is not over – it’s still going on. This goes back to Tony’s POV. If the show were merely over, the credits would have come up sooner.

    • Ambers_Jacket

      Your sixth point mentions the fade to black from Tony’s pov. But the fade to black is actually from a shot looking directly at his face. The fade to black was from an angle more from the door. Almost as if from Meadow’s pov given she had just walked in.

      I believe Tony got whacked. But I guess I don’t understand why I have seen many posts and articles that say the fade to black is from his perspective.

      • slagbot

        The important thing is that it is not a fade to black. It is a cut to black.

        The established sequence was
        A: bell rings
        B: shot of Tony looking up at the door
        C: POV shot from Tony’s perspective.

        So this is consistent: bell rings, shot of Tony looking up at the door, cut to Tony POV shot, which is simply the blackness of death, never hearing the shot that gets him. If it was a “fade to black”, it wouldn’t have followed the pattern.

        • JP McCarthy

          I like your number 6.

  • Andrew Mast

    Reading all of these comments brought up a scene where Carmela is yelling at Tony about saving money in case he dies… she says, “Well, let me tell you something, or you can watch the f*cking news…everything comes to an end”.

    My alternate ending is that Tony is shot again in the restaurant but survives, albeit in another coma. While in the coma, he returns back as “Kevin Finnerty” right after the Members Only episode… but this time, he actually walks into the house at the family reunion and never looks back. Remember one of the last episodes where he does shrooms? He’s sitting by a canyon watching the sun come up and sees a flash of light from the sun. It triggers something in his unconscious, that continual rotating and flashing light he kept seeing out the window of his hotel at the Omni… he exclaims, “I get it!”. Then when in the hospital, he’s watching Kung Fu and says, “I remember watching this as a kid.” I always felt he subconsciously connected the monks with the Kung Fu characters. I always felt that his coma experience was something more than an entertaining “filler” while he was in the hospital.
    If the season did continue (and it would have been a failure without James Gandafini), what might have happened is that Silvio Dante would recover from his gunshot and would go on to take over as boss. When Tony was in the hospital in a coma, Silvio mentioned to his wife that he was actually lined up to be boss, but turned it down saying that he was more of an behind the scenes guy. However, he’d have little choice at this point because of their sacred vows and Tony dying from his restaurant gunshot. Paulie already expressed in Made in America that he’s getting too old to step up, so he’s out of the picture as well.

    I’m a huge Sopranos fan. I probably shouldn’t brag about it, but I have been watching Sopranos episodes every night as a night-cap for the last 2 years. I start on the pilot and watch them all over and over. I know so many minor details and I never stop picking up on new ones… .Many things I say to people are quotes from the show. Yet, I never connected the POV concept, I feel embarrassed to admit it!

    Sorry for the long comment, I’m just enthralled by this show!

    • D. Watts

      Yes. That is exactly how it ends. And then once a Kung Fu master he travels the country and outer space kung fuing bad guys. I agree 100%!

  • Victor Marinaccio

    The Tony point of view shots each time the bell of the diner rings would lead you to believe that he’s killed as Meadow walks into the diner. As Meadow enters and the bell rings what should’ve been Tony seeing his daughter is instead a black screen. Tony is dead.

  • RazorShines

    I knew instantly that Tony was killed when it went to black. The Bobby foreshadow, flashed again in the episode prior and common sense, you won’t hear the gun shot till after the bullet hits you…. Speed of light is faster than the speed of sound. I told all my buddies this theory and they all dismissed it with ire towards David Chase. Once I read the mastereofsopranos theory, I knew my theory held ground.

    • guesty

      speed of light vs speed of sound doesn’t matter. it’s speed of bullet vs. speed of sound.

      • D. Watts

        Of course speed of light matters numb nuts…that’s the whole point of the black screen..the sound would’ve come after if Tony were alive

  • Al Foil

    Sorry, my mistake, it was Christopher’s warning to Paulie and Tony after his coma dream. That’s where the warning came from, which in turn causes Paulie to see the psychic.

  • Al Foil

    The interesting thing I found, having just completed the series from start to finish, is that in episode 22 Paulie Gualtieri goes to a psychic and is warned about 3 o’clock for him and Tony. If the guy from the diner in the ‘Members Only’ jacket did in fact come out of the bathroom and shoot Tony, it would’ve been at Tony’s 3 o’clock, based on the way he was facing.

    • RazorShines

      Also, Paulie gets the call about his cancer at 3:00 and Tony dies at the 3:00 position. Completely correct

      • Ollie Smith

        Been trying to figure out that 3:00 for ages. Good work!

  • LincolnX

    I agree with the interpretation laid out in great detail here: I take solace that Tony paid for his crimes, but he didn’t needlessly suffer.

  • c. christiansen

    I cant agree with Dennis more…David Chase clearly wanted the audience to understand that Tony S. is being wacked. As Tony S. states in earlier episode that when you die you don’t going anywhere, everything just goes black. I thought about that statement the night of the last episode and after re-watching the entire series and cant come to any other conclusion. I cant believe that if the intention was to tell the audience that ” THE SOPRANO FAMILIY IS A OK”, the final scene would not have taken place at the Sopranos home with all of the family by the pool and Tony on the grill.

  • Dennis Goulet

    Going to have to vastly disagree with your ending. David Chase said it
    himself: “it’s all there.” And, it was. Think about it… one of the
    first cuts of the final scene was looking down the pathway from the door
    into the diner showing the viewers its layout and Meadow’s clear view
    to her dad’s murder. Camera’s continuously focus on the dude in the
    jacket who sat down right in front of Tony at the counter and was
    tapping his fingers nervously. Why do you think they focused so much on
    her parallel parking mishaps? Because she’s a chick and can’t parallel
    park? No, it was illustrating to the viewer that if she were on time,
    she would have plopped right next to her father obstructing the
    to-be-killer’s path to whack Tony. Three or 4 people walk into the diner
    with the bell ringing each time. Each time the bell rings, Tony looks
    up and Chase shows his point of view by focusing on the door each time.
    He doesn’t focus on the guy in the jacket walk in because AJ is right
    behind him and looks back down at his menu. The pattern of bell ringing
    and camera showing Tony’s point of view to the door happens about 3
    times and on the 4th time the bell rings, Tony looks up and it cuts to
    black and then again, if the director’s pattern continues, would cut to
    Tony’s point of view which in reality it did… it cut to darkness
    because Tony was killed and the ‘darkness’ goes on for about 10 seconds
    until you finally see the credits.

    • Jef Dinsmore

      Your interpretation of events are just as vaild and as interesting as anyone elses. Again, I feel Chase left the answer in the hands of the audience. I chose my path and now you chose yours and I thank for sharing it.

      • Dennis Goulet

        Thank you sir. And, thanks for interacting with your readers. I think that speaks volumes for bloggers – professional or amateur. I just think it’s too hard to ignore the ‘hints’ and ‘signs’ that Chase gave in prior episodes: 1. The episode with Bobby and Tony in the boat where Bobby siad “yeah, you never hear it happen” referring to getting whacked as a mafia man and Tony even had a flashback of that when he realized it was about to go down between the NY Mafia and NJ Mafia. 2. Silvio witnesses Gerry Torciano’s execution, but Chase puts the footage in slow motion and cuts out the volume, only turning volume back on after Silvio has been covered in Torciano’s blood …again indicating ‘you never hear it happen.’ 3. And this might be the biggest one. Episode 1, Season 6 titled “Members Only” when Eugene asks Tony out of the mob so he can move to Florida and enjoy his $2million inheritance. Only does Tony later deny him that (relayed via Silvio) because he took an oath. But, after the FBI puts more pressure on Eugene to produce more information, he decides to hang himself wearing a what? A “Members only jacket” …which was the same jacket the shifty eyed fella at Holsten’s was wearing and who perceivably killed Tony. Blood in, blood out.

      • guesty

        your misinterpretation and unwillingness to look at the actual evidence rather than crafting an impossible fantasy scenario pretty much invalidates your blog. Chase didn’t leave it up to you to decide. he gave you a definitive ending and you’re choosing to ignore it.

      • Guest

        Dude, I would really rethink the ‘choose your own adventure’ angle. It just doesn’t jibe at all with the series, and I think you will find most fans have a hard time buying that.

      • Darby O’ Gill

        Dude, I would really rethink the ‘choose your own adventure’ angle. It just doesn’t jive at all with the series, and I think you will find most fans have a hard time buying that.

  • Brittsten

    Well you are right, your ending was note very creative. Not only because you “steal” the fate on Mr G but also because you fail to adress the likely upcoming trial against T,

    • Jef Dinsmore

      No, I did not forget the trial. I mention that they didn’t go to Italy until a few years later. That leaves room for trials and loose ends. Loopholes or mistrial or whatever occurs and then I move them towards a happier ending.

      • NAUGS

        No gonna happen Carlo is going to testify against Tony there’s not gonna be no mistrial no win for Tony Carlo no’s way to much stuff and like the lawyer said someone (Carlo) is giving grand testomony statements. Tony was fu#ked as soon as they fliped Carlo buddy.

    • Dennis Goulet

      I thought the ending was VERY creative. I thought that my first time seeing it, but it was very artfully and brilliantly done.

  • Neil-sax

    I just watched the final episode on HBO tonight. I had not seen it for a long time. It shows the creative talents of the production staff. Tony’s live was always a mix of drama and violence but the interaction with the people around him as well as everyday problems and happenings that we all face is what drew us closer to his character. The final scene proves that. If it was 4 hours long we all still would have stayed glued to it.
    The final scene is not about the end of the show but about the “Journey” we all took there together. Enjoy where your imagination takes you, even watching it again so many years later.

    Thank you James.

  • Whoa spoilers, Jef JEEZE! Haha I’m actually starting the series for the first time now and loving it. The ending was so ubiquitous that I could’t avoid it anyway. Nice piece!

    • Jef Dinsmore

      Sorry about that. I guess I assumed all the fans of HBO would have watched the series by now. Enjoy it!

      • Okay, I just finished this morning and WOW.. what a great show.
        Anyway, I respect your view of the ending, Jef but I think there were too many clues pointing to him dying. Plus he’d probably be in jail anyway had he lived. Didnt hate the ending as others did. Would have been the same whether they showed his head exploding or not. That’s how it happens in the real world… just black.

        Liked your insights!

    • Joseph Merrill

      Are you for real!? You clicked on an article about the ending! What did you expect!

  • Nahojism

    I always interpreted the last scene as if the audience got “wacked”. No more Sopranos for you! :) The last scene also captured very well how it must feel to be a professional criminal. Being paranoid all the time and never being able to lower your guard really. What a shit life they live.

  • jimm james

    don’t understand why the finale caused such outrage. if he had gotten shot, or they just panned away while the family was eating a nice dinner, would have really been that much better?

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