The confrontation between AJ and Tony

#1
This is probably my favorite scene of the season so far (with maybe the exception of Paulie talking to Tony while he's in a coma). Great acting. and a lot of emotion.

Tony basically telling him that he's not cut out to be like his old man. That maybe in some ways he's envious that AJ is a "nice person."

There's plenty to talk about. Please direct all posts concerning the scene in this thread.

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Re: The confrontation between AJ and Tony

#2
I agree that it was an absolutely stunning scene. Gandolfini is so completely real that he could make anyone look like a good actor beside him. He's just going to inspire that. But Iler deserves his own credit for delivering in such a big way.

And the writing . . . AJ's invocation of the Godfather annecdote was priceless, showing how he literally was conditioned to think that it was his duty as a loving "civilian" son to seek revenge on a man that would try to kill his father.

What most moved me about the scene was Tony actually telling AJ that going after Junior was wrong. I'm not sure if he was saying it's wrong to kill any person or just wrong to kill a family member.

Whatever the case in that regard, he clearly felt it was wrong for AJ to kill anyone because it "wasn't in AJ's nature", because he was a "good guy", for which Tony was grateful. This begs the reverse observation, that Tony must think that he himself isn't a "good guy", that it is in his nature to kill.

To me this is a very interesting admission. It really is the closest I've ever heard him come to issuing a fair moral appraisal of the kind of life he's led. He still can't accept the responsibility that comes with any capacity for volition or choice, blaming it on a defective nature (genetics, predispositions, etc.). But he can at least acknowledge that "good" people don't kill and that it's wrong to do so. Other than his glib and half insincere "fat fucking crook from New Jersey" line, it seems to be a first.


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Re: The confrontation between AJ and Tony

#4
I actually felt bad for AJ, the little prick. Every where he goes people just want to hear about his dad. Any respect he gets is through his dad. People also assume he's connected and has money, not knowing that AJ's parents want him to be ... just like them.

Actually I'm surprised they don't just have him run the Crazy Horse, maybe with someone acting as his mentor so he doesn't sell the whole place to the gypsies. He has made the realization that he has no idea how to pay for the $2000/night party life he wants ... I think he's ready for direction.



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Re: The confrontation between AJ and Tony

#6
There were a few things in this scene that stood out in this magnificent scene to me.


1- AJ got sick, literally. Before Tony went off, AJ casually said that his stomach hurts. Then after all the yelling, AJ gets sick on the car tire. He doesn't just gag for a second, either. Just a few episodes ago, Tony himself gets sick after he beat up the new bodyguard. Has this been the only time in the series where Tony and AJ hurled?

2- Tony calls AJ out on the coma situation. He gets in AJ's face and tells him he did "Nothing!", "Zero!", a "Big F@cking J#rkoff!" quite emphaticallyemphatically. There was a pause and reflection from AJ afterwards, you could tell that it really hurt him to hear his father tell him this. It didn't seem to matter when Carm became upset over the same issue.

3- When Tony tell AJ that he's a nice guy and that it isn't in his nature- AJ attempts to convince his dad that the opposite, in fact, is true. Now, I know that doing blow the night before might have been a factor in tugging at his emotions- but did anybody else get the feeling that this was the first time he reached out to Tony in attempts to make a case for a position for himself in "The Family"??


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Re: The confrontation between AJ and Tony

#7
<blockquote>Quote:<hr>Whatever the case in that regard, he clearly felt it was wrong for AJ to kill anyone because it "wasn't in AJ's nature", because he was a "good guy", for which Tony was grateful. This begs the reverse observation, that Tony must think that he himself isn't a "good guy", that it is in his nature to kill.<hr></blockquote>

I don't think Tony actually was using "good guy" as a term of endearment. He knows his son is a loser, and moreover that he's not even a nice guy.

It would be hard for Tony, as a father, to tell his son what he really thinks of him. Tony knows his son is no good and will never amount to anything, but he can't deal with that. He'll just go on protecting him, bailing him out, and giving him money.

AJ is an accident waiting to happen. IMO he'll be the next character to "buy the farm." The "passing out" scene in the bathroom was a prelude to that.

--
BobbyBuz
"Everything happens for a reason"</p>

Re: The confrontation between AJ and Tony

#8
I agree that this scene was a keeper, for many reasons.

1. AJ has "struck out" at the one thing he thought he might always have going for him; namely, the possibility of following in his father's footsteps. In the scenes with his "friends" it has become painfully aware to AJ, I believe, that he is only seen by others as the son of a mob boss. I think in AJ's head, up to this episode, he has had an unconscious "crutch" to fall back on. This episode has irreverisbly put that notion of himself to "sleep with the fishes."

2. Tony's journey to his true self is poignantly made very real to him in this dealing with AJ. If he genuinely wants what's "good" for his son, he's going to have to name what's "bad." Thus we see him declaring going after Junior as the wrong thing to do.

3. I think this encounter, in tandem with the scene of avoided adultery, undeniably point the series in a particular direction now. Tony is in communication, for the first time, with his conscience--read this religiously or simply from a moral grounding. My wife was really moved by these two scenes. She said, "Wow, he's actually being a good husband and father, at his own expense."

I believe Tony's sails have caught the winds of the Spirit, and he will inexorably be drawn into a climactic battle between good and evil. For the first time, I see Tony going against the Cosa Nostra--maybe not via the Feds, but against it nevertheless. I hope the Stugots II is quite seaworthy!

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Re: The confrontation between AJ and Tony

#9
<hr />I didn't understand when Tony said to AJ words to the effect, "... and what did you do? A big fat zero."

Was he criticizing AJ for blowing his attempted murder of Junior?

That was the opinon I got. But it goes against every thing else he says.

If I'm mistaken, can anyone explain just what Tony is referring to in that part of the scene?

Edited to change: AJ for blowing his attempted murder of AJ


</p>Edited by: <A HREF=http://p098.ezboard.com/bthechaselounge.showUserPublicProfile?gid=splishak>Splishak</A> at: 5/1/06 4:01 pm

Re: The confrontation between AJ and Tony

#10
I thought for a moment that Tony meant AJ didn't get the job done and, thus, failed yet again at something.

But in light of T's pov in reprimanding AJ for getting involved in "his" business, this angle doesn't quite add up.

Instead, I think it means that Tony's being in a coma, near death, didn't manage to help whip AJ into shape. Instead, he drops out of school and becomes an even bigger "jerk-off."
We've seen Tony express anger/disappointment a few times now regarding AJ during his coma.



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