Tony and Little Vito

#1
This has probably been discussed but it seemed to me that Tony and little Vito's stories in a way mirrored eachother. Tony is starting to question everything and it seems that the main theme of the last five episodes is his relationship with his father. He is just starting to accept what a piece of shit his dad was, ordering Tony to kill someone at only 22. When Tony says to little Vito "I'm sure you miss him, whatever he was," he could easily be talking about his own dad. And when he shows concern for Vito's daughter "Her dad's gone, her brother's a psycho, and her mom's a basketcase" he could be saying the same thing about his younger sister who he saved from the family.
Tony and Little V both seemed to be falling apart in response to their feelings. Tony's gambling is going against the only lesson his dad ever seemed to teach him "Never gamble, Anthony." The sight of watching Tony piss away all of his winnings in the first seen is followed by little Vito knocking over tombstones. Both Vito and Tony have no respect for the dead, as Tony goes agianst the one thing about right and wrong that his dad ever taught him.
When Tony yells at Carm and says some of the most hateful things to come out of his mouth in years, the next scene has Vito literally stepping in his own shit. A not too subtle metaphor. "He's stepping in it. Is he crazy?"

Re: Tony and Little Vito

#3
That scene of him stepping in it reminds me of "The Usual Suspects".

Victor Solzay(sp?) is having some conflict with a rival group of gangsters. They want him to change his mind about something but his will is too strong. So they kidnap his family and is holding them until he changes his mind about something. He decides to show them what "will" is all about.

So he walks in and kills his whole family himself and then looks at the gangsters. Can you imagine how they felt? They figured that by holding his family they could force him to do something. But now, he has gone ahead and killed them all himself. What chance do they have to keep breathing in the next two minutes if he is willing to kill his own family? Sure enough, he takes a long look at them and then blows them all away too. All but one, so that he can tell the story. Pretty powerful, huh?

Somehow I was reminded of that when Little Vito took a shit in front of his school mates - right in the place they all shower - If little Vito was willing to do that, I wonder how many of them might have thought their Columbine was at hand?

I'm guessing LV might have thought, "I'll show them what crazy is" or something like that. He may have expected them all to be scared of him after that. But it didn't work out that way.

Re: Tony and Little Vito

#5
kubkins wrote: When Tony says to little Vito "I'm sure you miss him, whatever he was," he could easily be talking about his own dad.


I also took that line as a little window into Tony's current mindset re his own father. There's something about the overlap and disconnect of "love" versus "respect" in all this.

Love of parent for child is supposed to be a given, there from the moment of birth and earlier. Love of child for parent is a lot different, obviously. By the time it seems to be a phenomenon distinct from mere familiarity or the security felt by the infant at receiving food, love seems to develop gradually out of the child's burgeoning feeling of "belonging" to someone, of being loved unconditionally by that person, and out of respect, even awe of the parent's knowledge, power, and abilities.

So there's a definite respect or pride factor for the child, or the desire for one, that is mixed up in "love". I remember Tony's tale of seeing his dad beat up a guy that owed him money and how Tony, despite fearing that power, proudly told all his friends how tough his dad was. It wasn't unlike my siblings and I once arguing with another neighborhood kid about whose dad could beat up the other's and whose dad had a "bigger gun", LMAO.

As the child matures, begins to see his parents' power in perspective, and starts to process more complex social values, the loss of respect for a parent can be devastating. We've seen this most acutely with Meadow but also with AJ. It becomes very hard to maintain love without respect and vice versa.

I'd wager that Tony's difficulties long ago with rejecting his father's way of life owe as much as anything else to a need to continue to love him and feel love in return, especially given the lack of love from his mother.
Tony, his spirits crushed after b-lining to the fridge first thing in the morning: "Who ate the last piece of cake?"

Re: Tony and Little Vito

#6
I thought that Tony empathized with Vito Jr, and agree he saw connections to himself. That is why I also got a kick out of the solution he chose - to send the child away, to strangers, who may beat him to get the point across. In essence he threw the kid away, which is how you get out of that world. But he also in a way threw him to a strange world where he could escape the life he was in. The mother, Phil and Tony all chose to either pass the buck or tell the kid to shut up and be a man. Being a real man with his family means being a thug. Vito Jr is messed up that his father was a punk, but the end result is the damage is the same as having a father who is a mobster.

Re: Tony and Little Vito

#7
Tony threw Vito Jr. to a place that will either mean his death or will give him a way to deal with his very hard life.

He needs a totally different life and not one with his mother in another place on this earth where she keeps up the fantasy his parents spun for him.

The "best" solution for Vito Jr. only came because of a lot of misdirected aims at helping him, and yet it may, in the end, be his best chance. Or, he will be another Columbine kid.

Re: Tony and Little Vito

#9
I agree that Vito summed up the whole situation for everybody with the "What am I supposed to do about it," line. Even Phil seemed lost when it came to trying to help people in his own family, which he put into the position they are in because of his quick dispatching of his Cousin's husband. I figure we won't see more of this plot line but if we do I imagine little V will be doing better.

Re: Tony and Little Vito

#10
This whole episode was about fatherhood. Uncle June taking the other patient (who obviously had father issues as well) under his wing and then rejecting him, leading to the younger man's rebellion. Without his father, Little V becomes a Goth loser who is in a constant state of rebellion. I think the little V plot line is there to further illustrate that Tony is not a good surrogate father (and neither is Phil). Tony has also failed to be a good surrogate father to Christopher, who is at the point of wanting to kill Tony. I think this will be further illustrated this week when he has to handle AJ as he reels from Blanca's dumping of him. Will Tony have constructive advice or just tell AJ to "be a man like Gary Cooper". I bet it will be the latter.
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