This episode one must be in the right frame of mind to watch it, so it can be either a 4, or a 9.
From the surface, all it drives the plot forward is for us to know where Furio comes from. Also provides some perspective, for later on understanding how Tony can always call "cousins" from the old country to solve problems.
Like another user previously said, it also shows how criminal operations in the black market come full circle, in a global scale.
I think Chase's objective, was to juxtapose what's going on in America - Carmela dealing with a friends divorce, Janice's 'Hippy' views on traditionalism - with Tony in Italy, actually in contact with the culture their whole american sub-community is supposedly based on. This episode is the one which most clearly paints this 'monographic' picture of patriarchy in the Italo-American cultural background - and its innerworkings, like the passive-aggressive mothers (matriarchy) puppeterring from the background. i.e. the dichotomy between these big macho 'Heads of Family', who in their adulthood still need their every basic need cared for (the food, the cloths washed, etc).
As far as I can see, Chase isn't being ironic in this aspect... and certainly there are pervading aspects of societal & cultural background that sip through to the individual. But for anyone with any notion at all about different cultures, this rigid
portray can't be seen as anything other than anecdotal & cartoonish - (as much as I sympathize for Chase not having had the most ideal parenting in his youth I must say
that) in any country you'll find all types of people: extroverts, needy, introverts, depressive, highly successful, highly independant, suicidal, etc
On the one hand, I actually like the way he tried to juxtapose these two realities (America & Italy) to convey his point. On the other hand, I found it way too stereotypical, almost lacking real insight.
AJColossal wrote:But Falco is tremendous as always. The scene where she tells Angie that she'll never leave Pussy (but is really trying to convince herself about Tony) is tremendous and really where I knew she was every bit as equal to Gandlofini in her role on the show.
I actually saw that scene as the boss' wife being also the boss of the wives, and keeping them in line. Maybe it warrants another check to investigate what's going on, on the character's inside.
badabellisima wrote:Is there really any true in-the-open female bosses out there? i never hear about them in the FBI stories, etc.
This is absolutely true. I am very curious to mafia stories, whenever I find them in newspapers or magazines, and this portray "Our man kill each other" is very much true, in the last 7/8 years I have read several real life reports on women talking the helm of criminal organizations in Italy, as their husbands are in prison or ill, or dead.