by Justin Crockett
So, news is coming out today that the creator of the beloved Sopranos series has basically admitted that, no, Tony Soprano didn’t die in that diner all those years ago.
In an interview with Vox, show creator David Chase was asked if Tony was dead. To which he replied, “No. No, he isn’t.” Why Chase would reveal that information after years of being asked the same question is purely speculative. If somehow you’re just being born, or have been disassembled a decade ago and just recently reassembled, here is that final scene from the show:
Lots of things going on in that final few minutes. You’ve got onion rings, the most historic parallel-parking abortion ever captured on film, and a diner full of people who got dressed in 1984 and just woke up. A suspicious man walks by Tony on the way to the potty, and then it cuts to black. Viewers were outraged, you know the whole story by now.
My question is, why does David Chase feel he needs to explain himself? Even with the death of James Gandolfini, why do these questions have to be answered? There is a trust that exists between us, the audience, and the people that work to put the work of art into the population. If that trust exists, why can’t the final scene of a great show just exist on its own? The creator of the art has no obligation to appease the masses. Why does it matter if Tony Soprano lives or dies at the end? It’s ok for something to be a mystery sometimes. It builds buzz. It gives the art a life of its own and assures its timelessness and future relevance.
The only thing I can imagine, is that with the unexpected death of Gandolfini, David Chase was kind of giving him an homage, saying that while the man isn’t here with us anymore, he does live on.