Hollywood Reporter- The second era of The Sopranos has come to a close. Talking Sopranos, the popular podcast started by show alumni Michael Imperioli and Steve Schirripa as a project to help ease fans’ stress during the pandemic, concluded Monday. It premiered in April 2020.
The duo thanked fans from the bottom of their hearts for the huge amount of support for the project, which resulted in 91 episodes and one best-selling book, Woke Up This Morning: The Definitive Oral History of The Sopranos.
The hosts did not get into specifics as to why they were winding down, but it seems pretty clear they have addressed nearly all they could with essentially every single actor and some crew who were involved with the series. Plus, both actors are juggling other projects.
Well, well, well! You know this guy is always interested in David Chase (the creator & showrunner of the Sopranos) dropping some knowledge on what some of the stuff in the show meant since he's pretty much the only voice of authority when it comes to that stuff in our wonderful year of 2022. It started off confirming that Tony would never leave some ham behind somewhere. Even if it was a canned ham at a safe house. It'd be a goddamn sin to let it go to waste.
Schirripa also asked about the significance of the canned ham that Tony is carrying when he returns home from the safe house in the series finale, “Made in America.” Chase admitted it meant something, but it was not that deep. “They were in that other house and there was a canned ham, and, ‘We can’t leave that! We have got to take the ham. Let it go to waste?'”
Chase then said the fella he regretted killing off the most was Big Pussy which I guess is pretty fair. Not to mention poor Vincent Pastore is probably one of the most well-known Sopranos guys out there yet he only has a paycheck for 2 seasons and a few flashbacks to show for it. Sad. Very sad!
To get the ball rolling, Schirripa asked Chase asked if there was a character who he regretted killing. After a moment’s thought, Chase gave his answer: Salvatore “Big Pussy” Bonpensiero, who was played by Vincent Pastore.
“It was too soon because we all loved that guy, and we loved the actor also,” Chase said. “But, it made for a great story. What can I say?” Bonpensiero was killed by the gang at the end of season two after Tony (James Gandolfini) deduced (and then confirmed) he was an FBI informant (“Funhouse,” the 13th episode of season two.)
And my personal favorite thing he revealed was whether or not Ralph actually killed their beloved horse Pie-Oh-My which he OBVIOUSLY did. I thought it was cool how much he equated that to really being more of a revenge which honestly has never really crossed my feeble mind!
Chase then finally confirmed that yes, Ralph (Joe Pantoliano) did in fact kill his racehorse, Pie-o-My; an animal that Tony was greatly fond of and making great money on at the track. Tony would later strangle Ralph to death for being cagey about whether the fire that killed the horse was accidental (“Whoever Did This,” the ninth episode of season four).
“Tony had it right,” Chase said of the suspicion. “But the thing is, when he was beating up on Ralphie for killing Pie-o-My, it was really about that girl who he killed, Tracee (Ariel Kiley).” Tracee was a young dancer at the Bada Bing! who was involved with Ralph and shows affection toward Tony in the way of a friend or daughter, much to Tony’s rebuffing. Still, when Ralph beats Tracee to death in “University,” the sixth episode of season three, Tony flies into a rage and assaults Ralph over the cold-blooded killing.
Finally a fantastic question in who was actually more evil- Livia or Janice? Now THAT is a great question. Livia obviously sucked, though once you consider the ridiculous things that Janice has done like instant messaging little Bobby to scare him, doing blow among other things in the family bathroom with Ralph while his girlfriend is in the dining room, or quite literally killing her husband I think it's an easy W for Janice.
Chase also agreed with Schirripa when he said that, in his opinion, Janice (Aida Turturro) was more evil than Livia (Nancy Marchand), her and Tony’s mother. “Livia came from a time and a place in New Jersey that wasn’t very enlightened. There wasn’t a lot of money, but they were working-class people. So there was a lot Livia didn’t know. Janice had every opportunity. She was Hindu, she had been all around the world. And she still was very corrupt. Livia had a criminal mind, in a way.”
That t'was a great podcast listen overall though if you're a fan of the Sopranos. David Chase may not be the most engaging fella in the world, but goddamnit as I previously stated he's the man with all the info.