I intentionally waited a couple of days before writing this entry. Immediately following The Sopranos series finale on Sunday night I posted this entry which featured the song that played during the pivotal closing scene. In the comments, there was a discussion about the episode and I revealed some of my thoughts. Two days removed, I'm ready to go on the record.
When the episode cut to black suddenly, with Meadow walking in the door and the word "stop" heard in Jorney's "Don't Stop Believin'", I was ready for the credits to roll, but I wasn't happy about it. I was angry at David Chase, royally ticked that he would do this to us. There was no resolution, no closure, no sense of finality. It was total SNAFU and it will all continue to unravel, only I won't be able to watch. I was disappointed.
About twenty minutes later, I started to come around. To quote a comment I left on that entry at 10:17, "It's not what I was looking for, but it's probably what I needed." Part of what I liked about the Sopranos was that it didn't do things just to do things. It's a well acted, well written show and very difficult to predict. I never knew where we were headed, and I could accept that I'd never know.
Two days later, I love the ending. I intend to watch that episode again in its entirety and I'll probably watch that closing scene a half dozen times on demand. Every shifty looking character in that diner had me on the edge of my seat. Every time Meadow hit the curb parking her car, my heart rate increased. This series had me riveted and that final scene was no different. The fact nothing happened is brilliant. Tony never paid for his chosen lifestyle. My boy Paulie Walnuts is still kicking. It is what it is, and why should it be anything else?
I've read theories as to what really happened in that diner. Some claim it's the Lady or the Tiger conclusion. Did Tony look up because he saw Meadow or did he see his killer? I have no doubt he saw Meadow. Tony, his wife and his two children were united for a typical family dinner out. Paulie Walnuts is probably breaking someone's gonads right now. I'm just sorry I can't hear the crack.
The Sopranos, it turns out, was never about mobsters and violence and organized crime. That's the family business, but this show was about Tony and his family. Tony's prime concern was keeping his family together and safe and at the end they're in tact and unified, for better or for worse. Perhaps that is closure...