Tony's "offering up" Melfi to Artie

#1
It was curious to me that Tony initiated the subject of a referral of Melfi to Artie if for no other reason than his apparent ability to have recognized Artie's behavior as psychologically unsound as opposed to "bad" or solely obnoxious or intrusive. But, what may be most intriguing is T's willingness to share his prized object. Two possible interpretations of his generosity:

1. He experiences Artie as a globally impotent pathetikin, and therefore no threat at at all to his special relationship with Melfi.

2. He is resolving his libidinous transference (crush) with Melfi; therefore, may feel less possessive.

3. Hell...maybe he just values therapy; wants to spread the word.

If Artie pursues this referral, I shall be interested to see how JM handles the ethical implications of a dual relationship: treating her current patient's friend.

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Re: Tony's "offering up" Melfi to Artie

#2
she wasnt in this episode at all i think, maybe Tony doesnt need her anymore and wants to close that chapter?the way he spoke to chris in the end seemed very self confident and sophisticated.
he might regret that one day though.
what wondered me most is that he offered her to Artie out of all, Artie has shown himself often uncontrolled and drunk in the past, that guy could talk.although melfi might cure those things..but in the end it looks as if tony has learned enough to now cure artie himself, who goes back to cooking then.and i think these two have been so good friends for so long that tonys offer was just somewhat upright, artie still got charmaine.wasnt there once a scene where tony was dreaming of building the italian church in NJ with artie as his boss?weird stuff.
but he has given the offer now and that thing is over imho, he himself sent artie back into his kicthen, so he has him...tony is back in full force i guess.

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Re: Tony's "offering up" Melfi to Artie

#3
OE, very interesting point. I especially thought it strange given how guarded Tony is at times with what he tells Melfi about his life. At various times we have all wanted Tony to just actually open up to Melfi, instead of the few moments of unguarded sincerity when he actually makes progress.

Given Tony's tendency to keep his own little secrets from Melfi, it does seem surprising to me that he would refer a childhood friend, who has known him for a long, long time and who generally has a poor opinion of him to speak with his own therapist.

Or maybe that was a subconscious desire to reveal more of himself to Melfi? That seems like a bit of a stretch to me, but I agree, it did strike me in a powerful way that Tony referred Artie to Melfi. I'm just not sure exactly how yet.

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Re: Tony's "offering up" Melfi to Artie

#4
<blockquote>Quote:<hr>... maybe Tony doesnt need her anymore...<hr></blockquote>
Maybe so. He does seem to have turned over a new leaf. Whether or not that's long-lasting, we don't know, but Tony probably thinks he has changed for good.

But actually I think he just wants to share something he thinks is valuable and helpful -- therapy. He really cares about Artie. It says a lot about the depth of his feelings that he would offer to share Melfi with him. Kind of like his previous offer to "share" the pole dancer with Artie?

Artie really is all woe-is-me (Poor me!). I hope his love of cooking returns, and he pulls himself up out of the muck.

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Re: Tony's "offering up" Melfi to Artie

#5
It's pretty obvious that Tony is trying desperately to be a decent human being... but clearly it's hard for him to be anything other than what he really is--a crime boss. It's almost like the scene from Godfather 3, only in Tony's case the thoughts are internal "I try to get out, but they keep pulling me back in." It's as though he wants the positive aspects of "the life" but not the negative parts (the killings) anymore. I mean, he farms out Rusty's killing rather than have someone he has to look at regularly do the killing--as if the farther it is away from him, the less guilty he is. The same thing with Christopher's "gifts" from LA.

Sounds like Tony is trying to be like real-life Joseph Bonano. He was considered a relatively kind, and caring boss--so much so that the commission let him retire. Maybe Tony's thinking about retirement down the road...

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Re: Tony's "offering up" Melfi to Artie

#8
Melfi will refer Artie to somebody else based on conflict of interests. I would be suprised if she didn't.


Ethically there would be no way that she could see Artie and she would certainly have to recommend someone else... and anyone who's ever been in therapy would know this... anybody but Tony of course.. and I think the offer was made for two reasons.. one is, that he does indeed care for artie.. he must.. considering the things artie says to him? anyone else would be dead for less.. the other reason i think is that she is, in his eyes.. something of a possession (albeit one he doesn't have much control over) and he just wants to show her off.. the body and the brains.. just a thought

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Re: Tony's "offering up" Melfi to Artie

#9
OE, it was one of those "hmmm" moments. I personally related the gesture to the moment on the boat when Artie started crying and Tony told him he "hated seeing him like that" because he knew Artie could start thinking "crazy shit", i.e. wanting to kill himself. Since Artie actually did try that before, Tony has reason to fear the depths of depression that Artie could be sinking into.

So I see his motives as essentially pure, altruistic. Of course I also think he wouldn't see Artie as a rival, in any sense, for the special fascination Melfi has for him (and he's right). So it wouldn't have felt like a risk, in that sense. In contrast, I don't think he would have referred someone like Johnny Sac, for many reasons, including possessiveness.

I don't see Artie in the least pursuing the suggestion, so I don't think it will ever reach the stage of Melfi having to confront a conflict of interests.

I also don't necessarily take this as a sign that Tony has lost all romantic interest in Melfi. I doubt he will ever lose that. I sense more that he has resigned himself to the fact that it will never be fulfilled.

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