Well that’s a lot. In order to finish all of the stories they wanted to tell–but also not to have to negotiate another season’s worth of contracts with the actors, season 6 is really two seasons in one. The first is slightly shorter than the other seasons at 12 (instead of 13), while the second half is only 9. So one big season? Two small? Doesn’t matter that much when you’re streaming them back to back.
All told, it’s a fitting send off to the show. Things really escalate in a number of interesting directions, in particular dealing with the relationships of Tony with Christopher, Vito’s secret, the New York family (Carmine and Phil). There are also a few B plots in the family (Carmela’s house, Meadow (but not Finn, he’s just… barely mentioned), and finally a bigger plotline for AJ–right at the very end.
And then… it ends. Say what you will about the ending, but I think it actually really works. Thing of any number of characters (such as Ade) who never really get closure. That just comes with the life.
Overall, it’s a fascinating, dark show full of human drama amplified by the insane mob lifestyles. It’s a difficult show to watch at times, full of sex, drugs, and murder (oh my), but I’m rather glad to have finally watched.
I suppose I should pick up the Many Saints of Newark next, while it’s on HBOMax. Onward!
Members Only: Weight loss? Dancing? Long hair? A baby. So much has changed… Interesting to see how hard it is to get the mob to let go of you… and the next stage of Uncle Junior’s degradation.
Join the Club: Oooh boy. That was a surreal episode. Given that it’s episode 2 of a season, we all know how it’s … probably going to end up. But still, it’s surprisingly tense.
Mayham: Poor Syl. Poor confused ~Tony~ Finnerty. Fascinating to see the impact Tony involved had on everyone when it’s gone.
The Fleshy Part of the Thigh: Mob bosses and tornados and buttshot wounds. Tony’s back… but what’s changed?
Mr. & Mrs. John Sacrimoni Request: Man that is quite a lot of work for a wedding. I feel both ways on that. He did the crime… but it’s his daughter’s wedding. It’s good to see Tony back in action—and how much that is physically costing him. And then Vito. Oh Vito. I suppose that was a matter of time.
Live Free or Die: Homophobia and racism through the lens of the mob. Oh boy. Not to mention Bush/Afghans/Taliban. 20 years…
Luxury Lounge: Oh Artie. Such an off plotline. I’d say get back to the mob stuff… oh right. That’s how that ends.
Getting Ben Kingsly as himself was a nice touch. Oh Chris, stick to the mob…
Johnny Cakes: Tony’s back… and Vito’s still gone. I hope the best for both of them, but I’m sure that’s even possible. AJ’s realization that perhaps being a Soprano is not so great as he’d wished it was is an interesting enough plotline, but I’d rather less of it.
The Ride: Fallout of Christopher/Adriana… now who is Kelli even? Also this is not Paulie’s season. Which I suppose it has never been Paulie’s season. Such is (mob) life.
Moe n’ Joe: Tony and Janice… oh that’s a lifetime of baggage. Vito settling in… but that’s unfortunately not his life. And Johnny has a plea deal… so I guess that’s his (now). Everything is a mess. In a … good way?
Cold Stones: Paris! And Vito. :( Now that’s a contrast.
Kaisha: Well that escalated. Not exactly quickly, but certainly escalated. And Christopher… oh Christopher.
Soprano Home Movies: Tony may have changed, arguably for the better… but his relationship with Janice certainly hasn’t.
… also who plays Monopoly in the best of times. With that free parking nonsense no less. I’m not at all surprised it ended badly.
… also also poor Bobby. Should have stayed away from Janice.
Stage 5: Well that was certainly an opening. Thought we had the wrong movie… but it’s Christopher. Watching a TV show of an audience full of mobsters watching a movie about themselves is pretty surreal.
Also… a bum rap for Johnny Sacks. I liked him well enough, given all any of them have done.
Also, what in the world happened to Finn… Or AJ and Blanca for that matter although she’s at least still around.
Remember When: Tony’s on the run for a man 25 years dead while all the while Junior’s trying to rebuild his empire… in a manner of speaking. I didn’t expect to see Junior much any more, but this—it really works.
Chasing It: Tony is absolutely obsessed with gambling all of a sudden… It’s interesting to dig into, but feels rather abrupt. Also AJ and Blanca. If you don’t know the answer, don’t ask the question.
Walk Like a Man: Centers around AJ’s depression after Blanca. I don’t know if we’ve really seen enough AJ to really earn this especially so late in the show, but it’s interesting.
And then Christopher/Paulie. Oh, that’s going to be interesting. One way or another.
Kennedy and Heidi: That’s… not at all what I expected. Oy. And so begins the end…
Also after such a huge deal about gambling last time around; only for him to go to Vegas and it’s no big deal?
The Second Coming: Seasons of not really being sure where they’re going with AJ… abs now we’re closing out the season with a depression/suicide storyline. It seems tangential to the main story and the timing is weird. So it goes.
Ironically I suppose, I liked the Meadow bits quite a bit more. Finn vanishing is weird, but it’s nice to see Meadow accepting that her father is her father but moving beyond that.
Blue Comet: The Phil situation goes (even more) nuclear and AJ continues to deal with depression. Guess which plot I prefer… Interesting when it all comes together I suppose.
Melfi’s secret in the open is certainly a thing, not to mention the firing.
Oh how it escalates…
Made in America: Well that was certainly a way to (mostly) wrap things up. Such an ending. Oh AJ.
AJ: Right. My ultimate goal is to qualify for helicopter pilot training,
Afterwards go to work for Trump or somebody.
Well that aged… well?