debbie millman

Monday, June 11, 2007

The Last Supper

the first family

With all of the negative press from last nights final episode of The Soprano's, I wanted to add my two cents. I thought it was freaking brilliant. Absolute genius. Heart-attack inducing. Slightly subtle. Highly manipulative (in a good way). The subjective, non-ending ending did what David Chase tried to do all along with The Soprano's: it made us THINK. Not having a "pat," wash and wear type ending was the best possible way to close the show. Naysayers are pontificating on the lack of closure. Please! It was the greatest finale of any show in the history of television.

ADDED 06/12, this just in from my dear friend Andrew:

"Check out these interesting details:

Anybody who says "nothing happened on the Sopranos" is completely missing out on the ending! This is NOT a life goes on ending! And anyone who thinks so should go back and watch it again.

Watch the last scene of The Blue Comet (the 2nd to last episode) first. As Tony sits on the edge of the bed he contemplates his demise.

Then, there's the flashback to Tony and Bobby in the boat discussing being whacked, "You probably never hear it coming." Remember when Tony was speaking with Bobby...basically saying that you don't see or hear death? It just happens and you would never feel it.....aka fading to black.....

Fast forward to Tony in "Made In America" final scene.

So, the point would have been that life continues and we may never know the end of the Sopranos. But if you pay attention to the history, you will find that all the answers lie in the characters in the restaurant.

The trucker was the brother of the guy who was robbed by Christopher in Season 2. Remember the DVD players? The trucker had to identify the body.

As Tony walks in the door of Holstein's he looks into the diner and sees nobody from his family. He is the first to arrive. The there is a very odd cut. The camera cuts back to Tony's face looking into the diner and then cuts back to the diner where, if by magic, Tony is now sitting.

This odd cut is provided to show us that "cut to Tony's face means the audience = Tony's perspective."

Fast Forward to AJ arriving. The are two black youths weren't these guys the ones who tried to kill Tony and only clipped him in the ear, circa season 2 or 3?

And the "Members only" guy at the bar. This guy is credited as Nicky Leotardo. The same actor played him in the first part of season 6 during a brief sit down concerning the future of Vito. That wasn't that long ago. Apparently, he is the nephew of Phil. Phil's brother Nicky Senior was killed in 1976 in a car accident.

Tony takes a look at both. After the "members only" guy walks to the restroom we see a close-up of Tony anticipating Meadow to walk through the door - again - Tony's perspective. Absolutely
incredible!!!! There were three people in the restaurant who had reason to kill Tony and then it just ends. This was Chase's way of proving that he will not escape his past. It will not go on forever despite that he would like it to ......"DON'T STOP" --- BELIEVING....

Suddenly CUT to black, music stops, black screen for several seconds. Tony (and the audience) got WHACKED - and he didn't hear it coming. It is crystal clear and not open to interpretation. WE GOT WHACKED! Chase is showing Tony's perspective.

Tony's finished...and Chase is truly rewarding the true fans who pay attention to detail."

BRAVO ANDREW!

3 Comments:

Anonymous kat said...

I totally agree! Though I will admit, I thought my cable or DVR did something weird and cut out. I had to rewind to double check. When it finally hit me, that that was it, i was like, cool.

6/11/2007 06:00:00 PM  
Blogger minus five said...

besides Dallas.

6/11/2007 07:01:00 PM  
Blogger Never Ending Soprano said...

There's been many theories out there on what the conclusion was with Tony. There has also been a lot of clues from the last 5 minutes that may have summed up the entire series...

The one clue that no one has mentioned that I think may be the biggest one is the juke box. The first song that he looks at was "Who will you run to" and "Magic Man" (by heart) then he looks at the two songs "Don't stop believing" and "Any way you want it" (by journey). But before he chooses his song he looks at the songs "i've gotta be me" and "A lonely place" (by Tony Bennett). Well thats six songs...Yes, I think each represents a season. I haven't decided which song for what season, I bet thats what it is. Also if you look at all the songs on the machine there's no number/letters indicating how to make your selection. So, how did he know what number was "Don't..."? He pressed two numbers, what were they? I think 0 was the first one?

And finally, I think Tony is dead because when AJ emphasized "always remember the good times" its because when tony is gone they will always remember the good times! And so will I...

Brilliant, I applaud the ending!

6/22/2007 11:50:00 AM  

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Debbie Millman has worked in the design business for over 25 years. She is President of the design division at Sterling Brands. She has been there for nearly 15 years and in that time she has worked on the redesign of global brands for Pepsi, Procter & Gamble, Campbell’s, Colgate, Nestle and Hasbro. Prior to Sterling, she was a Senior Vice President at Interbrand and a Marketing Director at Frankfurt Balkind. Debbie is President of the AIGA, the largest professional association for design. She is a contributing editor at Print Magazine, a design writer at FastCompany.com and Brand New and Chair of the Masters in Branding Program at the School of Visual Arts in New York City. In 2005, she began hosting the first weekly radio talk show about design on the Internet. The show is titled “Design Matters with Debbie Millman” and it is now featured on DesignObserver.com. In addition to “Look Both Ways: Illustrated Essays on the Intersection of Life and Design,” (HOW Books, 2009, she is the author of "How To Think Like A Great Graphic Designer" (Allworth Press, 2007) and “The Essential Principles of Graphic Design” (Rotovision, 2008).

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