"No Good Deed Goes Unpunished" . . .

#1
Those were Hugh's words to Carmela way back in the first episode of the first part of this season. One of those little aphorisms that rings in the brain for a while.

Somehow I get the distinct feeling that it will prove prophetic regarding Tony's own downfall. As Chris said last year, "Tony takes this terrorism shit very seriously". We now know how seriously.

Tony with his bleak world view and "who gives a shit attitude" about the rest of humanity; Tony the stone gangster who has nightmares about flipping and suffers tachycardia when the subject turns to rats; Tony who in season one was willing to risk death rather than swing a deal for witness protection. Like another Jersey native, though, he is still "born in the USA." He is still "Made in America", as the promotional poster for this season reads, and there's still something in his makeup that separates him from people like the hijackers who flew planes into the World Trade Center.

And so he is the same Tony who tonight willingly gave information about two suspicious Arabs to the FBI in exchange really for nothing particularly valuable or certain for himself. He did it because something in his conscience told him to do it. He even called up the guy in his crew that was dealing with these Arabs to ascertain their exact names and a cellphone number.

In doing so, and especially after seeing what transpired with Chris and how willing, even eager, he seems now to flip just to spite Tony and that whole crew, I get the feeling Tony has planted the seeds for his own demise. He has unintentionally put the FBI onto an investigation that could yield serious charges against Chris (trafficking in illegal weapons, credit card fraud, forming the basis for a RICO case). With legal and personal circumstances now ripe for Christopher to flip once and for all, he will do it and will give the FBI the smoking gun against Tony in the form of Ralph Cifarretto's head and hands.

Chris was supposed to burn Tony's clothes that night, but he was not shown doing so, and he'd already left the Bing when Tony called his name that morning. I have a feeling he kept those clothes, complete with ample amounts of Ralph's blood, so he would have his ace in the hole if he ever needed it.

The irony is almost too perfect: Tony's most justified homicide, in my mind, will be the one that puts him away. And his most noble impulse of citizenship will start the ball rolling.
Tony, his spirits crushed after b-lining to the fridge first thing in the morning: "Who ate the last piece of cake?"

Re: "No Good Deed Goes Unpunished" . . .

#3
Rike wrote:Even if chris flips and turns Tony in for Ralph's murder, do you think there is really time in the remaining episodes to have Tony go to trial? I think it's very possible that Chris rats Tony out, but I see something else happening to Tony before he could ever stand trial.


No, you're right. Barring some huge departure from style, they will not do some flashforward that will see it to that conclusion.

However the essential charges that would lead to a RICO conviction certainly could be filed in the remaining time with the inevitable result implied. Or perhaps knowing the inevitable is coming could touch off something else that makes it moot, like Tony lamming it or even killing himself. I thought there was a little too much bravado in his "I can handle it". Depression made him contemplate suicide before, and I could see it happening again.
Tony, his spirits crushed after b-lining to the fridge first thing in the morning: "Who ate the last piece of cake?"

Re: "No Good Deed Goes Unpunished" . . .

#4
It's interesting to think that Tony and Chris both may get the other pinched by the feds. What's even more interesting is the dynamic that is going on.
When Tony says I'm talking to 'some people' to Chris, and Chris replies "some people?", then hesitates before saying "oh f*ck...yeah", we see that Chris knows that it's the feds. Why does it seem so acceptable between Tony and Chris, that they have such a close relationship with the feds?

What also interests me is agent Harris' concern for Tony. Even though this has been playing out for some time, doesn't it seem unusual that Tony's crew is so complacent with agents Harris and Goddard hanging around.

I wonder if the agents have some form of spoken or unspoken agreement going on, even before Tony's cooperation this episode. Or maybe the agents are playing both sides and duping NY for information as well.

My guess, or maybe hope, would be that agents Harris and Goddard play a protective role toward Tony's crew in the event of an all out war.

Re: "No Good Deed Goes Unpunished" . . .

#6
Aren't the ideas that Fly is describing (based on last night's episode) just too neat and would lead to a tidy ending? If it were any other show I'd see the ending Fly talked about coming a mile away but this is David Chase we're talking about here. Something tells me all this attention is piled on the Arabs, the FBI, Chris potentially flipping and Tony about to decompensate in therapy precisely because Chase doesn't want us to be looking/thinking about... what? Because whatever it is we're not paying attention to or is being swept under the rug is precisely what I feel Chase will spring on us as his Season 2-type one-two punch. The way I see it there are two regular episodes left, and then the typical "Sopranos" two huge episodes (two season finales basically) to end it all.

Re: "No Good Deed Goes Unpunished" . . .

#8
dad1153 wrote:Aren't the ideas that Fly is describing (based on last night's episode) just too neat and would lead to a tidy ending? If it were any other show I'd see the ending Fly talked about coming a mile away but this is David Chase we're talking about here. Something tells me all this attention is piled on the Arabs, the FBI, Chris potentially flipping and Tony about to decompensate in therapy precisely because Chase doesn't want us to be looking/thinking about... what? Because whatever it is we're not paying attention to or is being swept under the rug is precisely what I feel Chase will spring on us as his Season 2-type one-two punch. The way I see it there are two regular episodes left, and then the typical "Sopranos" two huge episodes (two season finales basically) to end it all.


I hear you, dad. It's hard to even venture a forward-looking analysis because the show always figures out a way to surprise you.

On the other hand, over a season's worth of evidence that Pussy was a rat led to an obvious conclusion (albeit one of two): Tony and crew found out and whacked Pussy. Over two seasons of dalliance with the FBI led Adrianna to one of two inevitable results for her: betrayed by Chrissy and whacked by Tony.

Even Tony's lawyer tried to tell Tony years ago that it was just a matter of time before the Feds got enough to bring him to trial on a RICO case. They are motivated by an ambitious lead attorney and have spent too much money and time to settle for less at this point. We've repeatedly seen Tony luck out, luck he has no idea was even working for him, what with the suicide of Gene and the other capo's heart attack (can't recall his name now for some reason). Now Larry Barese is talking and giving up 25 year-old corpses. Christopher seems next.

And as DH and others have asked, where the heck is Murmur? I doubt he was just forgotten. He was a principal in the credit card scam and, IIRC, a liason or witness in some of the dealings with the Arabs.

I feel certain we won't see any RICO charges through to a trial, but I feel just as certain the Feds will file or have charges ready to file by the end. And that's because the show does ultimately lead to the inevitable result a good percentage of the time.

To me, the curve ball, or potential for one, lies in Tony fundamentally confronting things about his life and his father that he has been unwilling to do in 6 and a half seasons. With good reason, some feel he will never confront those things, will never really change. Others hold out hope that all this teasing hasn't been a waste and that he will breakthrough.

Tony's known for years his own inevitable result: dead or in the can. And so the surprise has to come from somewhere else, something inside Tony himself, if it's to come at all IMO.
Tony, his spirits crushed after b-lining to the fridge first thing in the morning: "Who ate the last piece of cake?"

Re: "No Good Deed Goes Unpunished" . . .

#9
I have a feeling he kept those clothes, complete with ample amounts of Ralph's blood, so he would have his ace in the hole if he ever needed it.


Why am I reminded of a little blue dress?


I had to look up "tachycardia". For those who would like to know:

tachycardia : relatively rapid heart action whether physiological (as after exercise) or pathological.

I wonder if it is the same kind of "tach" like in a tachometer (the instrument that tells you how fast your car engine is revving).


Over two seasons of dalliance with the FBI led Adrianna to one of two inevitable results for her: betrayed by Chrissy and whacked by Tony.


I am reminded of Tony once telling Chris to stay on the sideline when it looked like there might be a war between Johnny Sac and Little Carmine. He wanted to stay on the sidelines and then try to pick up any crumbs that hit the ground in a true rat-like strategy.

Well, the Feds are the owners of that strategy. Tony and Chris can each rat the other one out and the Feds can just pick them both up and send them both away. How nice would that be? They just sit back and let the two rats do all the work for them. They get what they've always wanted and don't really have to even break a sweat.

Re: "No Good Deed Goes Unpunished" . . .

#10
FlyOnMelfisWall wrote: Depression made him contemplate suicide before, and I could see it happening again.



That's brilliant! What if it's this:

Tony's self destruction has been one of the few, if the only, long running theme throughout the entire shows history. He's always ruining things for himself, causing drama and making life miserable for everyone around him. What if, this thing he told the FBI is his ultimate demise. His refusal to continue therapy (even though he "has to", it's more about a refusal to help himself) is what drove things over the edge. He tells the FBI, they do an investigation, bust Chris and Tony, and Tony kills himself. His own self destruction, his emotional wall that was just starting to break though, is ultimately his demise. It's like the Floyd album "The Wall", he's reaching a point where he has to either break down the wall, or suffer the ultimate consequence. Maybe this is more what the singing of "Comfortably Numb" was all about.
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