Goodbye, James Gandolfini

I know I’m a bit late to this but had to do this…

Just making a short post about something I thought I would never do on this blog. This blog was never meant to cover any news that have nothing to do with incel. However, after receiving the news on James Gandolfini’s death I felt compelled to say a few words here. This is not a comeback post and has nothing to do with the remainder of the blog at all.

James Gandolfini, an actor best remembered from his role as a mob boss Anthony Soprano in HBO television drama The Sopranos, died in Rome on June 19 2013.

I was never affected by a death of any celebrity. In fact, as morbid as it may sound, in most cases their death seemed to me like their last entertaining act. Until yesterday, when I actually burst into tears after the initial shock, repeating Tony’s words from season 2 after Christopher was shot – How could this happen?

I first encountered The Sopranos in 2000, when the first season started airing on my national TV station. Being just a kid back then I was unable to watch every episode and saw most of them in bits, mainly due to my lack of discipline about turning the TV on at the exact hour. Of course, I was too young at the time to really think about the character of Tony Soprano and the fact that I never saw a single season in its entirety due to the fact that I didn’t watch it regularly didn’t help either. This was before I had Internet or even a computer so TV was the only way for me to see the show. I remember seeing some episodes, though. “College”, which I was really impressed with, comes to mind. Anyway, what I did see was excellent.

I had eventually seen bits and pieces of all 6 seasons but had mostly forgotten about the show by 2008, immersed in stuff like growing up. It was already spring 2008 when season 6B of the now already finished show started on TV. I did start watching the show again but by that time I already had my own computer and I have decided it was finally time for me to see every second of show from beginning until the end.

So I did and I think it is probably the best TV series I have ever seen in my life. I say probably because I am not one of those people who is absolutely convinced it is the best. Some shows make some things better. Also, since the show is that good all the faults it has are much more obvious. They include a pilot that’s somewhat dated and cartoonish now, which is actually, to a smaller degree, something that could be said about entire season 1 (probably more of them by now) or season 6 running out of ideas by introducing the story of Junior shooting Tony. I could probably find a few more, like some unnecessary subplots or parts of some seasons meandering too much or certain episodes seeming too slow or groggy for today’s world, always striving for better and more dynamic content. When I say that certain parts after season 1 look dated maybe I’m not being objective. Maybe it was, at least partially, because of my conditioning. We European viewers aren’t used to shows almost exclusively dealing with white, conservative parts of the American society.

But aside from these complaints, The Sopranos are probably the best show ever. My personal favorite is season 2, though there are seasons which were probably done better. I loved the changes in how the show was done between seasons. There was already a change after season 1 but season 3 changed things considerably. The show was always modifying and improving.

The focal point of my fascination was Tony himself. His transformation from a congenial slightly overweight family man he was in season 1 to an obese monster deprived of any emotion and humanity, a huge, physically imposing beast contemplating murders of his closest associates for slightest infractions was truly disturbing and magnificent at the same time. This transformation mirrored the transformation of the show itself. What was once full of light and outdoor scenes became a dreary, dark show by Season 6.

Despite his character having many traits I lack I could see parts of myself in Tony, mostly in being intolerant of dumb people and prone to anger. I loved his character and Sopranos and this is why I’m so hurt by his death.

As you can see, this text is all about The Sopranos. Unfortunately, I have barely seen one film he played in.

Goodbye, James. You will forever be remembered.