The Sopranos – the ending that was never shown

You may ask what a post about the TV series The Sopranos have to do with a blog about my Road King.

  • Reason 1: as I could not ride the Harley due to winter weather, so I watched the whole 6 seasons in January 2011
  • Reason 2: during my first ride in 2011, the day after I saw the final episode, Made in America,  while enjoying the engine and nature,  I suddenly understood the missing ending

Spoiler WARNING: if you did not yet see the final episode of The Sopranos, do not continue reading…

Lets just recall the last frames of the final episode: Tony meets his family for dinner at a local diner, arriving first. Carmela arrives second and Tony verifies that Carlo Gervasi is going to testify against him and the DiMeo Family. A.J. then arrives and the three Sopranos talk for a while. A man, who has been intermittently staring at Tony as he sits there, gets up from the diner’s counter and glances at Tony as he heads to and enters the bathroom. As Meadow enters the restaurant, Tony looks up and the screen smash cuts to black and silence.

After 10 seconds of absolute silence, the final credits roll without music.

This final episode was first aired on TV on 10th June, 2007, and since then millions of viewers, like me, tried to understand what happened. The writer David Chase was not exactly helpful, leaving it up to us to imagine the ending, like in a fairy tale: … and they lived happily even after.

In the episode “Sopranos Home Movies”, Bobby says: “You probably don’t even hear it when it happens” and I think, like many ohers out there in the virtual world, that these words are the explanation to the “black silence”, that somebody died suddenly.

But for the “lights to go out”, you have to see life through the eyes of the person being killed. As the camera shows Tony, it cant be him. It has to be the person looking at him, and that is from this angle of view his son A.J.

Lock at these 2 frames, the final moment and one from a scene some seconds earlier, when Tony argues with A.J.:

The last frame is clearly a view through A.J. eyes, as he would see his father the moment before the fatal shot is fired.

Here my very own conclusion: A.J. died, and it was a hit clearly directed at the son of Tony Soprano.

As Tony is still worried by possible reactions to the killing of Phil Leotardo, he had arranged for body guards to protect his family members. Carmela, A.J. and Meadow each had 2 “friends” assigned to secure their movements. The routine was that one bodyguard enters the restaurant before their “client”, the others stayed outside to secure the street. They were all at the lookout for potential assassins, but missed the real ones coming.

Shortly before Carmela enters the restaurant, one of her bodyguards enters

Even closer to each other, moving like a friendly team, A.J. and his bodyguard enters. The man may look suspicious from the counter, but he is actually friendly and worries about A.J. and the Sopranos.

Then the killer of A.J. moves into position when A.J.’s bodyguard visits the men’s room

Nobody expected a threat from such a different ethnic background, but we have seen the leader before, check this out

Don’t we know this guy? Isn’t he the “Somali” on the bicycle beaten up by A.J. and his friends? It may not be him, but a brother or very good friend, a gang member, and they have reasons to hate A.J. and his friends. It is sometimes just the wrong confrontation that escalate to murder.

Carmela’s bodyguard, sitting on the other side of the room can not react quickly enough to save A.J., but he shots down the killer and his accomplice in fear they move on Carmela and Tony. Meadow enters the restaurant, A.J. is dead, and the lights go out.

CUT

Or not… please comment, I am happy to read about your imagined ending.

Some suspected that writer David Chase had an ulterior motive for keeping the plot wide open: a future Sopranos movie.

Recently the future already started between him and James Gandolfini, who will star in David Chase’s feature film debut, Twylight Zones, set in 1960s New Jersey. What a coincidence…

James Gandolfini and David Chase

Thank you for many weeks and years of great entertainment

more please….

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14 Responses to “The Sopranos – the ending that was never shown”

  1. After watching the entire series, again, 4th time. I’m wondering if anyone notices that Carmela tells AJ that they are going to Holstroms and he replies that he thought she was making dinner
    ( some Italian dish ) she then goes out and tells Tony everyone wants Holstroms. I know it’s pretty far fetched to think Carmella set up tony. I just never noticed that before.

  2. A. J. shot Tony. Last look at Tony before all went black is from his son’s perspective. A.J. spiraled down in last episodes to nihilism. When his SUV burned he told his therapist he felt relief seeing it all go up in smoke, ending it all. He was a little creep and ended it all. May have shot his mom—who knows.

  3. I don’t agree. As much as we hate AJ (at least I do) I doubt the final Sopranos moment is him dying, even if the little brat deserved it.

  4. I must say I disagree with your theory though it is well written. I think Tony, Carmella and AJ all died. Through out the series David Chase has this 3 thing going on. Look at the zeroing in of the 3 coffee creamers at the diner and earlier in the show, a newspaper headline is shown with a headline of 3 dead.

  5. we really hope david has another episode in his mind, cant wait to see the new one

  6. Read this. I’m not saying it’s the answer, but it is well thought out: http://www.mikecole.org/writing/made-in-america/

  7. Ed Kelly Says:

    Just a thought here – all this reading into the signs, the indications, how about the lack of ending simply signifying that life for the mob in general simply continues, we as viewers had an insight and the blank ending was us leaving. They continue as normal (or as normal as they can!). The mob has been around for a long time, and will continue to be around for a long time, the chaotic life of the sopranos was a snippet that we got to see. It was us as viewers being elimid from the series, not any of the characters being eliminated!

  8. Believe me, I would enjoy nothing more the death of A. J. He is one of the all-times loser-jerks to have ever been created. I wanted him to die in season one and increasingly more with each passing episode. Having said that, it is clearly Tony that dies. Tony hears the bell and sees Carmela (Tony’s POV). Tony hears the bell and sees MOG and A.J. (Tony’s POV). Finally Tony hears the last bell (Meadow)and sees only blackness (Tony’s POV). Every symbol and clue points to this.

  9. i hate to say it, but youre just flat out wrong
    there are WAY TOO MANY signals pointing to tonys death, theyre constant throughout season 6 and start up even before that
    the kennedy and lincoln references alone show that tonys ultimate outcome is not to be ignored
    for the ultimate scene in the series to result in ajs death is just going against everything else in the series up to that point and creates the requirement to throw out so many metaphors, etc. to hint at tony’s demise (or at least NOTHING would make more sense than aj’s death)

    i think youve mistaken the POV filming for just being from aj’s pov. watch this scene, and the one before with junior, and you can see that the camera switches to tony’s own pov multiple times. when it switched from his face to his pov when he would see meadow coming in, this is the time that the man in the members only jacket would have put a bullet in his brain

    • freedomof thought Says:

      You have no right to say he is flat out wrong; the ending is open to interpretation, and he backed up his interpretation of form and how he believes it relates to content.

      Personally, I believe the ending was left open ended in case they decide to revive the franchise in future.

      • He has the right to say ANYTHING HE WANTS! Its called FREEDOM OF SPEECH! He’s allowed to disagree for God’s sakes! Jeez, have a cookie and take a nap Freedomofthought, lol. Funny how your name is what it is and you think nothing of Freedom of Speech.

  10. I find endings like that annoying, do you think they’ve done that to allow for a return season in the future
    Cheers

  11. […] The Sopranos – the ending that was never shown « Road King UK […]

  12. […] The Sopranos – the ending that was never shown « Road King UK […]

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