FlyOnMelfisWall wrote:Very insightful, creative analysis there of the names. But I would propose a different meaning.
We know why Kennedy was one of the chosen names: because JFK is the romanticized stand in for Johnny Boy Soprano.
The only connotation the name Heidi has for me is the famed incident from the late 60s or early 70s when a showing of the children's movie Heidi interrupted a live broadcast of an NFL football game and caused a flood of protests at the network. I still haven't heard any other proposal for why this name was chosen for the other girl that makes any sense. Heidi Fleiss makes sense for Chris' stripper girl in Vegas but not for the passenger in the car. So I'm sticking with "football" Heidi.
Football is the ultimate macho sport, the game Tony himself played an excelled at, the sport that could have provided an alternate destiny for him had his coach gained more influence in his life than the Johnny Boys and Juniors and Paulies. It's the sport to which physical violence is so integral that the participants must wear copious padding.
Heidi as the driver of the other car interrupts the "football game" that is Tony's life, the macho, violence-driven sport of mob life, complete with violent, mobster father figures. If you buy that Tony killed Chris in a sublimated act of murderous rage against his own father, who "poisoned [Tony's] soul" with his gangster role modeling (and I'm almost totally convinced of that now), then Heidi could not interrupt the football game if she turned around. If Kennedy got her way, Chris would have either lived or died entirely of his accidental injuries. The In Camelot mythology would have continued, and Tony would have had to wait for another day, perhaps never coming, to have his cathartic moment of paternal slaughter. The football game, in other words, would have continued.
I'm not sure we "know" why Kennedy was chosen as one of the names, but I have read the suggestions you and others have made and they make some sense, especially as it relates to the Johnny Boy/Chris angle. However, I don't buy the Heidi portion of that - what does Heidi interupting a football game have to do with the Sopranos? And though I see some of what you wrote above on football, that seems stretching the symbolism just a tad or grasping at something to make the symbolism work.
But clearly there is a reason why Chase picked two specific names and further, these two specific names.
I suggest that Kennedy and Heidi are more representative of the sides of Tony, much as that blogger suggested - one is the side with a conscience and the other looking out for #1. What is interesting to me, is that the roles seem switched. Kennedy is the one that suggests they should go back and Heidi refuses. I would have thought Heidi would be the innocent (especially given the history of Kennedy accidents.)
But as I was thinking on this last night, I was also reminded of "Unidentified Black Males" and how this phrase tends to represent the lies Tony (and his crew) tells himself and others to justify this life and his actions. But here, we have not just two white girls, but both named specifically in the episode title. They are the catalyst and Tony is no longer able to ignore the truth. Obviously, there are some differences as to what people believe that truth is (what it is that Tony "gets"), but in the end Tony murdered Chris. In cold blood. He cannot ignore that or blame it on anyone or anything but himself. The attempts to throw some sense of mercy onto it - "look at the carseat" do not work (notice how Carm walks away with disgust after Tony brings it up to her) and finallly Tony must not only admit that Chris is dead, but that he truly has no remorse over his actions.