Toodle-fucking-oo (2.03)

Richie Aprile makes waves in SopranoWorld
as he cripples Beansie
and tries to get into Janice’s yoga-pants.
Meadow and her friends make a mess at Livia’s house.

Episode 19 – Originally aired Jan 30, 2000
Written by Frank Renzulli
Directed by Lee Tamahori

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Richie Aprile, just released from prison, muscles his way into SopranoWorld.  His very first lines of the episode, when Adriana asks him if he needs a ride, is, “I wanna walk.  I want to see if I run into any of the old crowd.”  And he literally does this later—he runs his car into Beansie Gaeta.  But before doing this, in his first scene of the series, he gives Beansie a ferocious beating.  At Beansie’s pizzeria, the camera first shoots Richie from a very high angle, compressing the already diminutive man.  And then the camera captures him from a very low angle, magnifying his intensity and savagery as he beats Beansie.

Hi -n- Lo

The varied angles here emphasize both his shortness and his toughness.  In confrontations with Tony later in the episode, the short and tough Richie stands defiant despite Tony attempt to use his height to intimidate him:

tony and richie

All of this imagery places Richie squarely in the tradition of the classic Tough Guy, very similar to those short, brutish characters played by James Cagney and Edward G. Robinson.  Chase had originally wanted actor David Proval to play “Tony Soprano” but later felt that he looked “too right” for the role.  I think Chase’s instinct was correct.  Proval certainly would have excelled at playing a Classic Mobster type of character, but The Sopranos is not a Classic Mob Story.  Proval might not have been able to key into the American everyman dimension of Tony’s character to the same degree that James Gandolfini was able to.  Proval shines here instead as the villain.  Season One did not have a quintessential bad guy—Livia and Corrado definitely do not fit the classic “bad guy” mold.  Richie Aprile fits the mold to a much larger degree, and he becomes the prototype for later villains like Ralph Cifaretto and Phil Leotardo.

Richie is a multiple threat to Tony Soprano.  He is establishing alliances with several family members who give Tony stress: Corrado, Janice and Livia.  He insinuates to Corrado that he would be more than willing to extinguish Tony if Corrado wishes it.  And he is reigniting an old romance with Janice.  The two first run into each other at a yoga class, and although Janice was not very warm to him, Richie is clearly interested in her.  Being a villain himself, he may not mind Janice’s beastly personality.  In previous episodes, various images and references alluded to Janice’s poisonous, reptilian character, and at the yoga class in this hour, the instructor says “Lifting up into cobra” just as the camera pans to capture Janice in the cobra position:

janice cobra

Richie brings flowers to Livia at the hospital, but he may really have made the visit hoping to find Janice there.  There’s a funny little moment when Richie enters Livia’s room, and the other patient thinks that he is a nurse.  Perhaps she mistook his shirt for a nurse’s scrubs:

nurse richie

It is an odd shirt, with a plunging neckline and curiously placed pockets.  From his very first scene, in which he sports a Members Only jacket, we understand that Richie is no style maven.  I am not picking on his fashion sense here.  I bring it up because his sense of fashion will become a sticking point later in the season.  He will give Tony a peculiar leather jacket which becomes a major source of tension between the two men.

There is an inverse mirroring between Richie and Tony at this hospital.  Although Richie sent Beansie to the hospital with spinal injuries, he only goes to visit Livia, whereas Tony visits Beansie without stopping by his mother’s room upstairs.  With his faux scrubs, Richie is a false nurse, whereas Tony attends to Beansie with a nurse’s care:

2 nurses

The scene in Beansie’s room could have descended into gushy tenderness.  Poor brutalised Beans may never walk again, and he worries he may not even be able to wipe his own ass anymore.  Tony responds, “Your nose is as far as I’m willin’ to go,” and the two men share a laugh.  As we’ve seen him do before, Tony is able to deflect sentimentality without losing his compassion, and it is an ability that endears him to us.  Tony Soprano is that relatively rare character in American art—the Villain Protagonist.  Tony can be a monster, no doubt, but by positing him against bigger monsters like Richie, it becomes easier for viewers to root for this imperfect protagonist.

We further empathize with Tony when we see what he has to go through with his little monster at home—Meadow.  She and her friends wrecked her grandmother’s house, and now she has manipulated her way out of any serious punishment.  Tony perhaps has less power to deal with his kids than with crazy mobsters like Richie.  All of the kids demonstrate here that they can be manipulative little demons.  AJ reveals he pretended to like Janice’s soymilk only because she was giving him a ride to the video store.  Hunter says she uses her bulimia to get out of punishments, and suggests to Meadow to start purging whenever she wants to avoid being disciplined.  Meadow brags that she got her parents to “punish” her by taking away her Discover card for 3 weeks.

Meadow asks Hunter how long it will take for their parents to “realize that we’re practically adults responsible for ourselves?”  This conversation takes place while the two girls make an all-out mess cooking French toast and singing along with TLC: “I don’t want no scrub.”  A scrub, of course, “is a guy that can’t get no love from me / hangin’ out the passenger side of his best friend’s ride / tryin’ to holler at me.”  But here, “scrub” functions as a hidden pun—the girls don’t want to scrub up their mess, neither after making the French toast nor after fouling Livia’s house.  Despite Meadow’s claim that they are “practically adults responsible for ourselves,” they seem like little girls trying to avoid any kind of accountability for their actions.

scrub1

When Janice first heard about the damage to Livia’s home, she advised Mother and Father Soprano to go easy on Meadow by quoting a Zuni saying: “For every 20 wrongs a child does, ignore 19.”  After seeing the mess at the house that she plans to move into, Janice apparently figured this must be the one wrong out of 20 that should not be ignored.  She storms into the Soprano home, calling the parents out for allowing Meadow’s bullshit.  Meadow overhears the ensuing blowup, and whether prompted by this argument or by her own feeling of guilt/self-preservation, she goes to clean the fouled house.  She may not want to scrub, but that is what Tony finds her doing at the end of the episode.

scrub2

Tony seems dumbfounded at finding her here.  He may not be sure what exactly prompted Meadow to come clean the house.  Or he may be wondering, duh, why he didn’t think to include cleaning the house as part of her punishment.  I guess the answer is that he is not exactly a man who is used to being held accountable, and a man who spends his life avoiding deserved punishments might not know how to mete out a just punishment.

THE DOCTOR IS (STILL) OUT
A chance encounter between Tony and Dr. Melfi at a restaurant gets the good doctor thinking about him again.  She discusses this former client with her own psychoanalyst, Dr. Eliot Kupferberg.  “Toodle-fucking-oo,” she grumbles to her therapist, wondering why she chose to say such a childish farewell at the restaurant.  Further analysis leads her to the conclusion that, “Young girls are not accountable for their behavior.  I think ‘Toodle-oo’ was the action of a ditsy young girl.  I regressed into the girl thing to escape responsibility for abandoning a patient.”  Through this epiphany, Melfi is contrasted to Meadow.  Meadow acts like the “ditsy young girl” for most of this episode, shirking responsibility and accountability.  When Melfi eventually resumes therapy with Tony in a later episode, the viewer can better understand the reason why she does so because of the contrast that is made to young Meadow here: as an adult, as a doctor, Melfi feels she cannot shirk her responsibility to Tony Soprano.

The scene in Kupferberg’s office shares a formula with the scenes that occur in Melfi’s office.  The camera stays taut and the editing is unobtrusive, allowing us to focus on the dynamic dialogue.  Visual dynamism is achieved in both offices through the artwork/statuary and through staging.  In both offices, the chairs are not placed flat against walls but are situated more centrally, creating background space behind the characters.  This background space allows for depth of composition, correlating with the idea that the therapist’s office is a place to pull yourself away from the flat background of daily life—it is a place to put yourself in the center of focus for in-depth explorations of the psyche.

eliot's office

I think there may be a deep cleverness in casting Peter Bogdanovich to play Dr. Kupferberg.  Bogdanovich is the director of notable films such as Paper Moon and The Last Picture Show.  But before becoming a film director, he was a film analyst, writing articles for Esquire, publishing a book on Orson Welles and working as the film curator for the Museum of Modern Art in New York.  By placing this real-life film analyst in the role of a psychoanalyst on the series, Chase may be giving a nod to the large body of analysis and critical commentary of The Sopranos that was already developing by Season Two.  When Melfi and Kupferberg explore the significance of her adieu, “toodle-oo,” they mirror the extensive study that has been done of episode “Toodle-fucking-oo” (and the series as a whole).  Viewed as a stand-in for critics and analysts, the Kupferberg-character legitimizes the in-depth analysis of the show that I and others have attempted.  On the other hand, Chase may be mocking our simplistic or wrong-headed or arrogant attempts at analysis.  (The latter possibility seems greater when we see how pompous or clueless Kupferberg can be at times.)  Andrew Anthony, in a 2002 article for The Observer, “Deconstructing Tony,” writes that many Sopranos critics and academics have gone completely overboard:

It’s no wonder Gandolfini stoops, carrying that weight of symbolism around his shoulders.  That Tony also visits a shrink, and that shrink in turn visits another shrink to discuss the problems of seeing Tony, makes him even more a target for intellectuals than he is for rival gangsters or the Feds.  Not only does he face imminent destruction but also endless deconstruction.  North American academics…are determined individuals who will not waste two words when a chapter will do…Phrases like ‘referencing the new narrative spaces’ and ‘circumscribed marginality’ can knock the sense out of you, having already had the sense knocked out of themselves, and whole paragraphs brazenly make no concession to comprehension.

Yowsers.  But yeah, he gives an accurate description of much of the Sopranos scholarship.  He also writes, however, that “any program that features a U.S. marshal called McLuhan is worthy of close textual reading.”  So: academic jargon and intellectual bombast have made much of the Sopranos analysis unattractive and inaccessible, but the series itself is deserving of the attention it receives.

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COUPLA MORE POINTS:

  • Kupferberg says that Melfi cannot blame Tony for the patient that killed herself because she was out of her office; the patient might have offed herself if Melfi had been on vacation.  It is a salient point which probably helps lead Dr. Melfi back to Tony Soprano.
  • We learn that Janice/Parvati has a son named Harpo, but he has changed his name to Hal.  This solidifies the parallel between her and Livia, as Livia also has a child that has tried to abandon her given name.
  • “Feech” and his cardgame are referenced here.   He and the cardgame are mentioned again next season by Ralph Cifaretto.  We will finally meet Feech LaManna in Season 5.
  • Los Lobos’ “Viking,” the closing song, is about a short tough guy, probably chosen to underscore diminutive Richie’s forceful entrance into Season Two.

38 responses to “Toodle-fucking-oo (2.03)

  1. The Savvy Svengali

    I’d like to add there’s another undercurrent to Tony’s inability to mete out punishment. Deep down, he probably fears that if he tries too hard to be just and righteous, Meadow will resent him even more for being a hypocrite (she must know Tony is a man who does far wore things and never gets his just deserts), deepening the gap in their relationship.

    That must be in his subconscious when he tells Carmela, “if she finds out we’re powerless, we’re fucked.” Part of him must know that he simply doesn’t have the moral authority to punish his children.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well said, Svengali. The only authority that Tony has is what he has claimed for himself with gun in hand – but he can’t wield a gun at Meadow, so he truly has no authority over her.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. thedalitrauma

    Is the scene in the restaurant the first time Paulie makes a wisecrack and then repeats it again to Tony? “Did you hear what I just said?” That joke never gets old.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Juan Valdez's Donkey

    The parallels of the Richie/Meadow storylines are also mirrored in an interesting, true Sopranos fashion. I would say it starts with “if she finds out were powerless, we’re fucked” line. As Svengali pointed out, Tony does not have the moral authority to punish Meadow, but similarly Beansie finds out that he is powerless, and in turn gets turned into “a shopping cart”, as Richie wields his mob-code made guy authority; Meadow seemingly acquiesces, but manipulates her punishment down to nothing, whereas Beansie stands his ground, powerless, and is utterly fucked.

    As Hunter suggests to Meadow to “start purging”, as in spilling your guts out, as in being a “rat fuck”, she reaffirms the lack of authority in families, in contrast to famigilias, where purging is the fast lane to the grave.

    Later, when Tony visits Beansie in the hospital, and he brings up the possibility of being a rat, Tony says the mob washes their own dirty laundry. This will amount to some money being thrown around, but little else punishment for Richie in direct connection to Beansie. For Meadow, she owns up to her mistake, takes responsibility and literally washes up her own mess.

    In terms of growing up, family values forces Meadow to, while Richie and his famiglia values condones his barbarous behavior and allows it to continue unabated, which ultimately will lead to his death.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Carmela has a sister? Tony mentions in her in this episode, when they’re in bed arguing about how to punish Meadow for the party. Do we ever meet Carmela’s sister?

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  5. Richie lectures Christopher about raising his hand towards Adrianna. Isn’t this how Richie ultimately meets his demise.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I’m not sure Richie & Janice were quite married yet, but I’d be surprised if Richie was an exception from “Do as I say, not as I do”. I got the impression when he lectured Christopher, that it was more of a power play, than concern for Adrianna since he did it in front of Tony.

    He struck Janice because she goading him about his gay son. So many interrelated themes here, but this was the culmination of Janice’s many veiled references to the inadequacy of Richie’s manhood. He thought he could slap her back into line, but he underestimated her. Tracee wasn’t so lucky when she went after Ralph’s manhood. Funny that Ralph later had his own run-in with Janice, and took a tumble that could easily have landed him next to the remains of Tracee & Richie.

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  7. I want to know… who made Meadow clean that house? I know she didn’t do it on her own. I always think Janice had something to do with it.

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    • Agreed. If it wasn’t Janice directly, it was at least the threat of Janice that got Meadow scrubbing.

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    • Overhearing the Janice/Carmella discussion may have triggered, or enhanced the guilt feelings in Meadow. As manipulative a teenager as Meadow can be, she clearly has a conscience and has not descended down the path of darkness her father, aunt and grandmother have. I never at all got the impression she felt threatened or forced into cleaning the house. Guilted, sure. But you can’t guilt someone who doesn’t have a fundamental sense of right and wrong.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Btw, Ron, your point about Tony (and Carmela for that matter) not thinking of the obvious punishment of cleaning the house is spot on. Forcing her to directly address the damage she did would be the starting point for most parents, and far more focused than any monetary punishment. The fact that direct atonement is so foreign to Tony at least, is very telling. And that Meadow essentially comes up with it on her own provides great insight into her character as well. Interesting though that Tony DOES go this route in the near future by requiring Richie to (indirectly) build a ramp for Beansie. He certainly has shown the ability to take advice and apply it in different ways.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. When just randomly picking an episode to watch, this is a re-occurring one for me. The Richie Aprile character is excellent, and very well played by David Proval. This guy even looks like a mobster in real life. He is such a prick in this season; such a prick it’s his only season! Awesome analysis on the camera work in the pizzeria. It really makes him a bit of a “savage” when beating the shit out of Beansie. I like to watch the people in the background and their expressions. Imagine sitting there and a guy in a member’s only jacket hits another guy with a coffee pot. (Thank you Chase for scenes like this) We haven’t seen a character on the Sopranos like Richie yet, and I’m not sure we did after him either. Ralphie was an evil SOB, but Richie really seemed to get a rise out of Tony, didn’t he? Ralphie may have been scared of Tony but I don’t think the Richie character showed much fear for anyone or anything. After 10 years he is out of jail a few days and he is opening fire in the middle of the street! WTF. The scene where he literally drove into Beansie was tough to watch. He was even smiling, smoking a cigarette and “putting it in drive.” I especially like the way he stands up to Tony and has a don’t give a fuck attitude. All new concepts for this show in regards to Tony. We actually see Tony a bit powerless on how to deal with Richie. You have a good point on him being powerless within both families. Great point on Richie’s awkward shirt, I never knew why it was strange but it certainly is strange. Its most likely left over from his late 70s/ early 80s wiseguy wardrobe. Regarding your ideas on the old school / new school mob type, Richie definitely falls into the old school. He even manages tells this to Chrissy the first time he meets him. Interesting.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I think that Janice criticizing Carmela’s parenting made Meadow clean the house. I bet she didn’t expect her mother to tell Janice to keep her mouth shut about her kids. Meadow knew she did wrong, and likes to be able to play the parents for fools. But deep down she knows better, and I guess she appreciated her mother for once. That was a disgusting thing to do, and I think she realized it.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. If you have ever been to Brooklyn, you would see those polyester clothes everywhere, and also that was the style in the 90’s when Richie went to jail. I wish I had a nickel for everyone of those horrible pants and shirts I saw in those days. They don’t know how to dress…

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  11. Meadow tries to explain the party was escalated by the appearance of Steve. Tony’s response that Steve just happened to be trying doorknobs ‘till he hit the jackpot, stops Meadow in her tracks and is yet another example of his clever use of words to make his point. Much like his line “All he did was slip you a wafer?” to Carm about Father Phil’s overnight stay a few episodes ago. It is both a humorous and effective tactic.

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  12. I agree that Tony, and his crew, have a way for making the viewer “root for the bad guy”. But, I have to say-and I wonder if you and/or your readers agree-that the more times I watch this series, I root for them less and less. I never cared for the Sopranos kids and that stays the same, but I used to like Tony and Carmela a lot more than I do now. I think she bothers me more than anyone because of what a hypocrite she is. You’ve address this, so I don’t want to come across as offering new information. But, she gets different emotions from me each time I watch. First, I enjoyed her. Then she annoyed me. Then angered me…now her hypocrisy is laughable, to the point of me being able to dismiss her tears and sadness completely without a shred of empathy. She knows what’s what, she is too weak to do what she knows needs to be done…and then cries for herself when the very reasons that she has a life of luxury come back to bite her. A horrible woman who so many applaud. I’d rather watch Paulie and those who know what they are–despicable as that may be–than this phony.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I see this dislike of Carmela often in discussion groups and such, and it does intrigue me a bit. Sure, I see the point. Yes, she is a hypocrite. But who isn’t (hint, answer is no one, not on the show, and not in real life). Clearly she is tormented by both her hypocrisy and her inability to rectify the situation. And she fully understands the ramifications if she does attempt to break free, not just in terms of her religion, but I the impact it will have on her kids and herself. This is tragic, and I guess it’s easy to say you made your bed and all. But I don’t hate or feel disgusted by Carmela, I feel sorry for her character. She is truly trapped. Partly by her own actions, or inactions, of course. But we see this happen all the time in the real world. These people need our help, not our scorn.

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      • The more times I rewatch the series, the less judgmental I feel towards these characters. (But I have to admit my sympathy for AJ doesn’t grow by very much…)

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        • Yes, AJ is by far the toughest for me to sympathize with, at least of Tony’s family members. I think it’s because I am probably what many would call a pragmatist, and AJ is pretty much as far from the practical end of the spectrum as one can get. At least in his older teen years, up until nearly the end of the series. But I guess that’s what can make things so difficult. How do you get through to someone you cannot understand?

          Liked by 1 person

          • AJ isn’t brainy and doesn’t want to be. He isn’t athletic and doesn’t want to be. He may have subclinical ADD. And his parents have no idea how to deal with that combination and are only superficially interested in finding out, mostly to get AJ on track to behaving as they think he should, not because they’re at all interested in his inner life. Meadow is bright and able to focus, so even though she gets “pulled back in,” she had the potential to break out of her parents’ world, and she can see what it is. Plus she knows she has her father’s approval as Tony recognizes parts of himself he likes in her (while seeing parts of himself that he doesn’t like in AJ, as he tells AJ in the pizza/bedroom scene). AJ wanders around without a clue, and nobody takes the trouble to give him any except sometimes Meadow. He’s an example of a certain type of kid, probably not unusual apart from having the Boss of North Jersey as a father and a bunch of mobsters as “uncles.” His leisure activities seem to consist of playing video games and going to the mall, and there were probably thousands like him in the upscale suburbs of the Northeast. His family has plenty of money, and AJ wants for nothing, except guidance from someone who takes a real interest in him beyond trying to teach him manners and getting him to do his homework. Growing up, he never had any real responsibilities. He is given chores onlly when his parents want to punish him for a wrongdoing, but I don’t think he really ever washed Carmela’s car to make up for tearing an expensive shirt in the fight at school in Season 1, and later he apparently has no idea what a gutter even is. So where is AJ supposed to get a work ethic? He starts out as an affable, unremarkable kid who could have turned out a lot better if he’d had a mentor or a strong male role model other than Tony. Instead of being an involved father, Tony is too busy with his own personal dramas and business issues. The best scenes involving AJ are probably the ones in the first couple of seasons when Tony is giving him some positive attention and AJ practically shines with it: when Tony makes them ice cream sundaes in Season 1, squirting canned whipped cream into AJ’s mouth and so forth, and when Tony lets AJ drive the powerboat in Season 2.
            A beautifully written and acted set of interactions between them comes in Season 2 (in “From Where to Eternity”) when, as Tony is arguing furiously with Carmela about a vasectomy, AJ in the kitchen drops a casserole of food (some fuckin’ ziti, maybe?). Tony turns his fury on AJ, saying some cruel things implying that AJ is a pathetic fat kid who Tony is ashamed to have fathered. Later,Tony tries to make it up to AJ by bringing pizza and Coke to AJ in his room. AJ is clearly gun-shy (after what he said about AJ, Tony brings him food, which I’d be wary of too, if I were AJ), and it takes Tony a little time and a seemingly heartfelt apology and explanation before AJ cautiously warms up and forgives his father. It may be the only time Tony is that open and self-revealing with AJ. Then, as they’re about to dig into the pizza together to seal their bonding, Tony gets the phone call about Matt Bevilaqua’s whereabouts and rushes out, leaving AJ looking wilted, left to eat pizza alone–which he does, because food is comfort to him, which is one reason he’s heavier than Tony would like.
            Robert Iler wasn’t one of the better actors on the show, but with the right scenes, he didn’t do badly. Unfortunately for the character, AJ’s arc requires that he become more and more damaged by the combination of his personality and his upbringing. Robert Iler might not have been able to manage a meatier storyline or even to play his scenes in the later seasons with enough depth to make his character more three-dimensional. By contrast, Jamie-Lynn Sigler was a terrific actress from the start, and it must have been easier for the writers to make Meadow a more interesting character than AJ.

            Liked by 1 person

            • I agree with you about Jamie-Lynn and Robert, but I think the writers did a great job tailoring the material for Robert. I’ll get into this more in season 6, in the series endgame.

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    • Nasty prick that Richie is, I do find myself sympathising, or at least understanding his grievances with Tony, a lot more on this latest re-watch. I forgot how much Janice (inadvertently?) pushes Richie against Tony this season.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Who do you think got her to clean the house? I’m voting Janice.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. One thing I really noticed on my most recent viewing of this episode (thanks to Alan Sepinwall, whose recaps I have also been reading as I rewatch, and who mentions several times the pleasure Tony seems to take in giving beatings, strangling Febby in “College,” etc.) is how much joy shows on Richie’s face as he beats up Beansie in the pizzeria and when he runs him down in the car. Richie obviously loves violence but, while probably no saint in prison, would have to have keep himself somewhat buttoned up to avoid even more prison time. Now he’s out of the can, pretty much the first thing he does is smash a guy in the head with a coffee pot, hit him with a chair, and punch and kick him, right in front of the world. Before long, he’s chasing Beansie with a gun and then, when he gets away, running over him with an SUV, with a look of satanic delight on his (Richie’s) face. Now he’s *really* out of prison, able to perpetrate the violence you can tell he loves.

    Liked by 1 person

    • He enjoys violence so much that he even fetishizes the threat of it—he puts that gun to Janice’s head during sex…

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      • Good point! Richie tells Junior at the doctor’s office to put on his clothes because “I’m getting a chubby.” The chubby probably really happened when he was smashing the car into Beansie. Something else your comment made me thinkof: When Richie was “getting his joint copped” at the Bing, probably the first sex since prison (Tony earlier asked him whether he’d gotten laid and Richie said no, but he was trying), he didn’t seem that into it. I thought it was because he resented being an object of charity instead of finding his own piece of pussy, but maybe it was because it was just too dull, with no violence even simulated.

        Liked by 1 person

        • In retrospect I think it was your latter point. Richie wants to take things, he does not want them given to him. Like a T-Rex in Jurassic Park, he doesn’t want to be fed, he wants to hunt. Yeah, he appreciates Tony giving him $50k, but he also clearly states what was his is not Tony’s to give. Throw in the sexual fetishes and it paints a pretty clear picture of his psyche.

          Liked by 1 person

  15. It is really odd the different interpretations of Meadow’s cleaning when it seems so obvious to me. Meadow’s character, while portrayed as a typical manipulative teen, is the one character that is destined to survive the “family” and have a normal life. Meadow cleans the house because of the guilt she feels after overhearing her mother and Janice fight. She realizes that she really did not have any consequences and would never get any of significance. However, she does feel personal responsibility and cleans the house indicating her solid moral compass despite the lack of any around her. This one scene defines Meadow throughout the entire series.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m not at all sure Meadow is destined to survive the “family.” At the end of the series, she is engaged to Patrick Parisi, who is a lawyer, if I remember correctly. And Meadow had decided to go into law to defend white collar criminals. The impression I got was that Patrick and Meadow represent the next generation of the “family”: more professional and educated and at one remove from the down-and-dirty criminal enterprises but no less corrupt.

      Liked by 1 person

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