Re: inconsistency between season 1 and 2??

#3
Thanks for your reply. He definetly put the house on the market but I'm also fairly certain that he stated the house was sold. I'll need to re-watch and check. However, the writers could always claim that Tony was just telling Livia that the house was sold to try to put an end to her reluctance to accept being at the nursing home and/or to be argumentative and get under her skin.

Re: inconsistency between season 1 and 2??

#4
Season 1 episode 11 "Nobody knows Anything" - Tony tells the administrator of the nursing home to give his mother a message that "the house is sold. They accepted the counter-offer."
Later in that episode, Livia tells Junior that Tony sold the house.
In the next episode, while having dinner, Livia whines about having her house sold out from under her.
However, when season 2 begins and Janice arrives, the previous info is ignored - Tony speaks of his intention to sell the house and then he and Carm view the interior - which has been dmaged and soiled allegedly by invasion - with the real estate agent. Subsequently, Janice removes the For Sale sign, etc.
The original storyline that the house was sold was ignored and changed to allow the contentio between Tony and Janice, and then to allow Janice and Livia to move back in. The original scenario may likely have been developed when Livia's (and possibly Nancy Marchand's) death was anticipated.

So, the writing was great but not perfect.

And perhaps all of the alleged planning, hints and foreshadowing that leads many to believe Tony was definitely murdered as the screen cut to black was largely coincidence and not part of some fully conscious overall continuity.

Re: inconsistency between season 1 and 2??

#5
I am not sure comparing a possible minor retcon about a house being not sold when there were indications that it was, compares to a climatic and definitive ending of a series.

The only thing I can suggest if it is a troubling loose end (like the Russian in the woods) is that the sale had fallen through, maybe someone forfeited their deposit, or Tony simply lied to convince Livia that it was sold.

Chase did say that he had a clear ending in mind right from the beginning of the series.

I don't think the ending was a coincidence or a random jump cut for the sake of it.

Despite any apparent inconsistencies, the writing was brilliant.

Re: inconsistency between season 1 and 2??

#6
I agree "capo" conkom that the last line of my posting went off on a flimsy tangent, which was completely unrelated to the original thread post and subject. I probably shouldn't have included it as it touches on something that detracts entirely from the intended focus.
I had previously pointed out that the writers could simply claim that Tony was trying to irritate Livia and also agree that what often seems like a completed real estate deal could likely fall through. However, if you view the presentation of the subject in season 1 and in season 2, such reasons appear to be more of an after-the-fact excuse to change course and allow for newly thought of storylines.
I have often said and written in the past that the writing was great, genius, "brilliant", and among the best entertainment and fictional writing ever.
That does not mean that it wouldn't - like most everything else - have some weakness or flaw.
As for the fate of the Russian, that's a loose end that didn't need to be addressed as nothing else was built upon it. There was no emphasis on a storyline involving business with the russians, no hints of their contingent or leader suspecting Soprano family involvement in the disappearance; I don't even think anyone from that russian organization ever appeared again in the series.
I also understand that Chase had the ending envisioned very early on. That does not necessarily mean that "Tony is shot when the screen goes blank" but rather that Chase likely planned the scene, ideas and events leading up to it, his intended meaning and use of elements, and perhaps even the cut to black and silence. It does not mean that every possible clue from several different points in the series that have been put forth as evidence in support of theories of definitive closure were all part of elaborate plan that needs to be analyzed and interpreted as precise fact.

Re: inconsistency between season 1 and 2??

#7
The Sopranos had imperfections around the margins, no doubt. The occasional discontinuity and switched actor will kind of pop out when I rewatch the series, then you have glaring flaws like CGI Livia, the unnecessary Columbus plotline from "Christopher", and the obvious stock footage of horse races and a plane landing in a couple S4 episodes. Most of these can ultimately be reconciled, though. The sale of the house may have played into Livia's motivations in the last couple S1 episodes, but in retrospect it was just another little drop in the ocean of resentment between her and Tony.

As far as foreshadowing of the ending, I would say existential dread was a central aspect of The Sopranos since pretty much the beginning - Tony was always quite conscious of the implications of his profession, he always had the fear that he might get unexpectedly killed. And I believe Tony died when it cut to black, because his death makes the final episode, and the series as a whole, much more poetic and sublime than any other interpretation of the ending.
Taps, lights out, 2200 hours. What's missing? Give up? Television.

Re: inconsistency between season 1 and 2??

#8
zwingli wrote:[...]and the obvious stock footage of horse races and a plane landing in a couple S4 episodes. Most of these can ultimately be reconciled, though.

I'm glad someone else noticed these, especially the plane landing. It's in The Strong Silent Type, when Furio returns from Italy (just before the shot of him looking out at Burger King signs and whatnot from the taxi). It's really weird because it's such an extremely grainy, obviously stock-footage kind of shot, looking like it's from the 70s or 80s at the latest (and it probably is). I'm kind of surprised they couldn't get anything better than that! Not that it really matters. The horse-race in Pie-o-My is more distracting because it just seems so silly the way the guys are yelling and cheering at what looks like a tinny, grainy televised image from 20 years ago and yet is presented as if it's their actual unmediated perspective of the race from their view up high at the tracks. I think the show got better at this by the time of Chasing It, which has a horse race in the casino which feels pretty seamless in comparison.
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