Re: Episode 6.18: Kennedy and Heidi - Grades and General Rev

#41
Nice analysis of the episode here:
http://mattzollerseitz.blogspot.com/200 ... heidi.html

It's quite long, so I won't quote the whole thing here, but I especially like his comments on the characters of Kennedy and Heidi, and how they relate to Tony:

Besides mirroring Tony and Chris at various stages of their lives, Kennedy and Heidi also represent the two identities inside so many Sopranos characters -- especially Tony, whose deeply submerged true self (the guy who dotes on his kids, banters with his wife and idealizes young mothers and innocent animals) rarely breaks the surface of his toxic cesspool of a personality. There have always been two Tonys, and in case we hadn't figured that out, Chase gave Tony a cousin named Tony Blundetto, a convicted gangster who'd gone straight, and introduced him in an episode titled "Two Tonys," and then, near the end of the season, had Tony B. impulsively revert to his gangster self and go on a rampage. Kennedy is the voice in Tony's head that says, "Do the right thing." To which Heidi replies, "Fuck that." ...

And he does see the light twice in the episode, literally -- first by looking up at the lamp on the ceiling of his hotel bathroom, then by watching the sunset with Christopher's former stripper girlfriend and erupting with joy at the sight of a solar flare that resembled the helicopter searchlights/operating table lamp from his coma experience. "I get it!" he shouts. "I get it!"

But he doesn't. Any righting of this universe's moral scales will be incidental. Tony's been living an expedient life for too long. If he was going to change, he would have done it. He's been going down this road forever. He's had too many close calls to count. Each time, he hears some version of Heidi and Kennedy in his head, Kennedy saying, "Let's go back," and Heidi saying, "No."

Heidi is driving.

Re: Episode 6.18: Kennedy and Heidi - Grades and General Rev

#42
Universal Polymath wrote:Nice analysis of the episode here:
http://mattzollerseitz.blogspot.com/200 ... heidi.html

It's quite long, so I won't quote the whole thing here, but I especially like his comments on the characters of Kennedy and Heidi, and how they relate to Tony:
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.
Tony, his spirits crushed after b-lining to the fridge first thing in the morning: "Who ate the last piece of cake?"

Re: Tony's Trips - Vegas and Peyote (accidentally deleted!)

#43
Little Pussy Malanga wrote:It is no coincidence that the psychedelic expeirience was on Peyote, and not MDMA(Ecstacy), LSD or mushrooms.
Peyote is a ritualistic drug used by native americans for centuries and is more related to Vision Quests and shamanism and is thought of in heavy spiritual terms to use for enlightenment, rather than a party drug like ecstacy.
When we saw Tony with a Peyote button in his hand, my wife and I looked at each other and said "Uh-Oh" at the same time! Having a man with a head like Tony Soprano eat Peyote is a SCARY, SCARY propsition.
Peyote certainly has a better sound to it than LSD or mushrooms (from a cultural perspective), but they're all very similar drugs. MDMA is completely different, and it definitely wouldn't fit with what Tony needed to accomplish.

With regard to Tony on peyote being dangerous, I disagree. The people who have problems on hallucinogenics are people who try to use them recreationally, without understanding how "fragile" a person is for the duration of their "trip". Tony knew what he was after & what to expect, as opposed to getting trashed-drunk and saying, "hey, got anything that will really mess us up?" (then waking up 5 hours later wondering why the walls are melting into the floor)

In my opinion, we see a new Tony from this point forward. Positive hallucinogenic experiences (which Tony obviously had) can change the way you think about things at a very low level (all positive changes, of course). I wouldn't be surprised if he quit gambling after realizing how poor his odds of winning are, or other revelations along those lines. I also see this as his exit out of therapy, completing the arc.

PS - forgetting about all the symbolism for a moment, wouldn't it be funny if dumping the asbestos forced his ducks to relocate back to his pool? :-)

Re: Episode 6.18: Kennedy and Heidi - Grades and General Rev

#44
There seem to be a lot of orphaned innocent little girls in the Sopranos. The original Heidi is an orphaned girl. Maybe this is closer than the football Heidi. Here is the Wiki cliff notes.

Heidi is an orphaned girl initially raised by her aunt Dete in Maienfeld, Switzerland. Dete brings 5 year-old Heidi to her grandfather, the Alm-Grandfather (originally: Alpöhi; "Öhi" is grandfather in Swissgerman (dialect of Graubuenden)), in order to take a job in Frankfurt. Heidi has a delightful stay with her grandfather high on the mountain in his hut, and with young Peter the goat-herd.

Dete returns 3 years later to bring Heidi to Frankfurt as a companion to a 12-year-old invalid girl named Clara Sesemann. Heidi spends a year with Clara, clashing repeatedly with the Sesemanns' housekeeper Miss Rottenmeier, and becoming more and more homesick. Her one diversion is learning to read and write, motivated by her desire to go home and read to Peter's blind grandmother. Heidi's increasingly failing health and several instances of sleepwalking (it is implied that she has inherited a propensity to epilepsy from her mother) prompt Clara's doctor to send her home to her grandfather but Heidi and Clara continue to write to each other. A healthful visit by the doctor to Heidi and her grandfather convinces him to recommend that Clara journey to visit Heidi. Meanwhile, Heidi teaches Peter to read and write.

Clara makes the journey the next season and spends a wonderful summer with Heidi. Clara becomes stronger on goat's milk and fresh mountain air. Peter is jealous of Clara and pushes her wheelchair down the mountain to its destruction. Without her wheelchair, Clara attempts to walk and is gradually successful.

Clara's Grandmother and Father are amazed and overcome with joy to see Clara walking. Clara's wealthy family promise to ensure that Heidi never has to see her aunt Dete again.

Re: Tony's Trips - Vegas and Peyote (accidentally deleted!)

#45
I did a few drugs in my college days and what I derive from Tony's situation is this.

His change started with his coma and his brush with death gave him a striking new outlook on life. The outlook itself is a utopian concept that everything makes sense and that each day is a gift. When real life crept back in, he realized that these gifts were turning into pairs of socks (metaphorically speaking). His decaying outlook was a road back to depression as we could easily see.

Now he's been hit with another wonderful gift of insight where he now 'gets it'. Regardless of what it is he gets, it seems to be the same path we saw before. Real life will once again seep in, and his thoughts of 'happily ever after' will once again decay into mediocrity.

IMHO, if his character arc follows a logical path, he will slip again into depression. Possibly even further this time.

Re: Episode 6.18: Kennedy and Heidi - Grades and General Rev

#46
FlyOnMelfisWall wrote:Does anyone know how much memory of a peyote trip the tripper retains after the fact? Do they black out afterward?
The active hallucinogen in peyote is mescaline. Ok, I'll admit that I took it a couple times in college. Don't look at me like that!!! From my experience, I would say that Tony should remember most of the trip. I can recall the time I spent tripping much better then any night of hard drinking at a party. In fact, I would go as far as to say that Tony should remember the peyote trip more vividly then any of his dreams or his NDE.

Some people are asking wither it was the sunrise or sunset. FYI, a trip can last up to 12 hours so I'm pretty sure that it was the sunrise Tony saw.

You don't blackout Fly but your extremely drained and your back hurts. The back thing is more powerful when taking strait up acid but mescaline does it as well. Don't ask me why. Probable because humans aren't suppose to do it??

Re: Tony's Trips - Vegas and Peyote (accidentally deleted!)

#47
deepb wrote: In my opinion, we see a new Tony from this point forward. Positive hallucinogenic experiences (which Tony obviously had) can change the way you think about things at a very low level (all positive changes, of course). I wouldn't be surprised if he quit gambling after realizing how poor his odds of winning are, or other revelations along those lines. I also see this as his exit out of therapy, completing the arc.
I think there is one thing we can count on, and that is Tony, like the rest of the guys in the mob, don't learn much from personal experience. They keep doing the same destructive things, but expecting different results. Psychologists call that insanity...
Christofuh says: "Tony has big decisions to make, like whether or not to have that third sandwich..." :icon_razz:

Re: Tony's Trips - Vegas and Peyote (accidentally deleted!)

#48
royal trux wrote:If this whole thing is indeed headed for a battle of wills with NY, do you see Tony being as locked in as we now know Leotardo is? He's not.
Indeed, I do. Tony seems itching for a fight with anyone and everyone (or has been.) It will be interesting to see if there is any change in his demeanor after he returns from Vegas, but going by what we have seen of him during these past episodes in 6b, I would think it very much in character for him NOT to back down to Phil. And recall that Tony has a problem with authority (even Sil told him that.)
"Leave the gun...take the cannoli." - Clemenza

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Re: Tony's Trips - Vegas and Peyote (accidentally deleted!)

#49
deepb wrote:
With regard to Tony on peyote being dangerous, I disagree. The people who have problems on hallucinogenics are people who try to use them recreationally, without understanding how "fragile" a person is for the duration of their "trip".

:-)
While I agree with your statement above, that is only one side. There are people whom with psychedelics do not agree with AT ALL. They can prepare for the trip, be in a loving/safe environment and still freak out. The thing with psychedelics is that at higher doses it lays out your soul or conscience bare. There are no filters (for lack of a better term). Stuff that is buried deep in your psyche can surface to the front of your consciousness. This can cut a few different ways. It can make for a very enlightening experience in that you are seeing and thinking about things in a way,and from angles, you never have pondered before.
On the the flip side if you have horrors or negative experiences or dark thoughts buried in your psyche, those may be the things that "surface" during your trip. These negatives that had never been dealt with can get to the front of your head and just keep looping there until the person "freaks out" or mentally breaks down. There are people who have been literally driven insane by having those dark items of their psyche gnaw at them during their trip.
This is why experienced "chemical explorers" always recommend that you be in a solid frame of mind before tripping. If there are recent unresolved negative experiences, there exists the possibility that your trip may be a "bummer" because at moderate doses psychedelics tend to amplify your current state of mind.
Now of course there are always exceptions. Someone with the best experiences and happy thoughts still have the possibility of a "bad trip" while those with negativity and bad thoughts may have an elightening, ground breaking experience.

We all know that Tony has some serious unresolved and DARK issues in the recesses of his mind. Hence the simultaneous reaction of "UH-OH" between my wife and I. I would be absolutely terrified to be around Tony Sopranos mind when he is tripping and wrestling with the darker aspects of his mind.

Re: Episode 6.18: Kennedy and Heidi - Grades and General Rev

#50
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.
"Leave the gun...take the cannoli." - Clemenza

Think Tony Died? Consider this...

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