Monday, June 11, 2007
Hangin' on to the end
The theme of "Seinfeld," right to the bitter end, was "no hugging, no learning."

The same could be said of "The Sopranos" -- and thank goodness.

The final episode is getting slammed, including in comments on this blog. "That's it?" people are asking angrily. Fade to black? No sudden deaths? No resolution?

But think about it. This IS "The Sopranos." The Soprano family (Tony, Carmela, Meadow and AJ) have lived in a fantasy world, effectively blocking out reality when it's convenient. Dad's not really a "waste management consultant"? All that wealth and security -- I use the word advisedly -- hasn't come honestly? Better to ignore all that. Otherwise there will REALLY be some things to be depressed and nihilistic about.

So Tony, who begins the episode paranoid, ends it paranoid as well. Carmela, who just wants her family together (ignoring the price), gets her family together (ignoring the price). AJ starts the show with no beliefs and ends it the same way. And Meadow, who could be the conscience of the clan, will probably sell out whatever morals she has when she takes that cushy $170K-a-year lawyer job. Of course, she's sold out, too, already.

Maybe the guy who went into the bathroom will come out and blow everyone away. And maybe he won't, the Sopranos will finish their dinner, and Tony will just get deeper into his mental prison, learning nothing ... just as he did at the very beginning, the first time he walked into Dr. Melfi's office. (To paraphrase the old joke, the light bulb has to want to change -- and Tony never did.)

In a novel, David Chase probably could have tied things up with some nice "boats against the current" prose. In a TV show, he has to go with cutting off Journey (symbolic, no?) in the middle of a chorus.

Only the cat gets to enjoy his nine lives.

My only question for Chase is this: Why didn't you use the original studio version of Vanilla Fudge's "You Keep Me Hangin' On"? The version that played throughout the show was obviously a remake of some sort.
Are you kidding me, after 10 years, the show ends like that! unbelieveable!
The finale show was good, up until the horrible ending. Chase chickened out and left us all holding the bag. He is the real crook taking all the money HBO gave him and giving nothing in return. Thanks for nothing Chase!
David Chase is probably responsible for a few heart attacks across North America. When the screen cut to black for those few seconds before the credits rolled, people everywhere must have stared in shock at their cable boxes and uttered some choice Sopranos dialogue.
Chase used Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'" because that's what the entire show premise has been - Tony's world is a fiction that evaporates when he (and we) stop believing it's possibly true. When the screen went blank, I started screaming "No, no, no!" thinking I suddenly had cable trouble. Then I started laughing at the BRILLIANT ending!! We have to decide what happens next and that depends on what we believe. Do we believe Tony and his family should get whacked or should things just keep on going as they have been. That decision is ours.
I am shocked! I would love to know what happens...it made think of all the gangster movies... but with no real ending!
In my mind what happened next is that Tony Soprano woke up next to Suzanne Pleshette and found that the whole thing was the dream of their autistic son, Ted Baxter who turned out to be the only one who didn't get fired or whacked while the rest of the gang was sentensed under the Good Samaritan Law to a year in jail.
Excellent! The ending was masterful (albeit frustrating)!!
I waited intently through all these episodes, hoping for closure. Hoping to finally be able to walk away from this show happily entertained and with a story to tell. But no! I have to guess at how it ends. I have to create my own story. David Chase I need closure. Put the real ending on the DVD and all will be forgiven.
I will NEVER waste my time getting 'involved' in another David Chase movie, tv show, or anything he does. Most seasons were plain boring or awful. The reason we kept watching the Sopranos was to hope for something interesting to happen. Last nights episode was a huge YAWN! This was predicted, by many, all saying this last season is going to be dull, just like David Chase. Given all the hype, we were expecting SO much more. All and all, another season of disappointment. David Chase, dont count on my money at the box office, it wont EVER be there!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
That was horrible. Between the lack of violence and the boring scenes with Janice and Uncle June...
This should've been the most memorable episode. Yet it was just the opposite.
Maybe they'll make a movie, better yet they should. More money for them and a slight chance for satisfaction for viewers. Because that episode obviously did nothing. Even Phil's demise was very anti-climatic. 8 yrs and left with disappoinment..how depressing, lol.
~M
Louisville, KY
It'll end 8 years of the Soprano's, the way you choose. One of the 4 alternative endings,(available on the DVD) of this years set,but only in the BOXED SET, of all the years, for say $600.(probably available in encrypted,uncopyable Blue Ray Digital DVD .
HBO makes, say half a Billion, the actors are done with the series, but still make TENS of Millions on residuals, Unique ending, for the most unique series. No one associated with this series will have to work again. Oh yeah, ante up for a $600 Blue Ray DVD

Just a prediction!
I thought it was Great! The show is not about the mob alone, it was about people, and the show goes on without us.
This is the worst series ending EVER! I can handle nothing actually happening...but to cut to black like someone in the splicing room made a mistake?!? I kept thinking that my DVR or cable had malfunctioned...

This series has been going downhill. I'm not sure why I even kept watching...habit I guess. I shouldn't be surprised by this pathetic finish.
This last season was terrible, punctuated by the no feeling ending. Roll back to season one, with Tony and the ducks. Brilliant writing/acting/directing etc...where did this all go away? This last season did not flow, the story and characters seemed to lack substance. Did anyone feel for the characters that left the stage one by one? Did I care when Bobby was killed, or Chris. I felt nothing! The attempt to end the show, leaving the viewer hanging felt juvenile. If I was in the editing room I would have said,"Ok that didn't work, lets try something different!" To end an 8 year show of this caliber the way they did did was memorable, it was the worst finale ever. I am going to try to forget it.
Very disappointing. Left me feeling like the viewer got “wacked”. I guess we can assume Chase will be going after a motion picture deal now, to continue this saga?
I thought it was a great ending. Real life doesn't climax at a pre-determined point in time. and dramatic events don't wait until 'sweeps.' Chase gave us a snapshop of what ever day is like for Tony Soprano -- he's the king with the sword hanging over his head and he could be killed at any time. Other series end with the "everything's going to be alright" theme, but that wouldn't be an honest ending for this family. It had to either be a dead Tony or this, and personally, I wasn't ready for him to die.
terrible ending, it just shows a total lack of creativity. It's a sellout to "let the viewers decide" how Tony goes on. The idea here is that this was a story...story's have an end. You're the story teller, you don't just get up and walk away.
If you didnt have the guts to write an ending, then you should not have started the story.
It can really be viewed in two ways, brilliant or horrific. The fact of the matter is that those who tuned into The Sopranos last night were on the edge of his or her seats. The twists and turns and misleading cues were great, but for some that wasn't enough. In the end the unexpected happened, and it just happened to be nothing.
I am so disapointed. I kept waiting for something to happen,and nothing ever did.
I don't care what some are saying, last night’s show, The Sopranos, was outstanding. I was on the edge of my seat till the end, and at the end, I was standing up yelling at my remote because I thought I had hit a button and messed the TV up, my wife thinking I lost it, I changed channels and when I came back I saw the credits, I lost it. I missed what would have been one of the best ending ever. I was so angry with myself for blowing it. My wife didn't say a word; she knew if she did, I would have been all over her. Not until about a 1/2 hour later did I read on the internet it was staged. HBO got me, and got me good. I felt like a Soprano who just got whacked. OUTSTANDING!!! It has been a long time since I had this much emotions for a show, last was MASH. Again OUTSTANDING!!!
To me the Saprano's ended perfectly. I was amazed at the concept that the last thing that Tony saw in this world was his lovely daughter arriving. Then a Bullet to his head ended his world. Blank! nothing more for Tony.

We as an audience have always seen things through Tony's eye. Game over. PERFECT ENDING!
Fantastic!! For all of you who continue, even after 7 years of this wonderful show, to miss the entire point of the Sopranos, it's time to move on ... go watch the Godfather on DVD for the 1,000th time and leave this complex and fascinating drama to the rest of us who get it.

The ending was BRILLIANT! We all got to live the life of Tony Soprano for just a moment ... constantly filled with tension ... constantly wondering when and where it might come from ... all the while trying to live the life of an average family man.

Thanks, Mr. Chase. Great ending to what was, without a doubt, the greatest television series ever.
Good bye Sopranos! What a fantastic ending! David Chase ended it the same way he started it, by making you decide how you feel about Tony and "family." Do you think of him as a family man, or as a murderous, psychotic gangster. Either way, last night YOU got to pick the ending!
No one is saying what they think happened. Everyone is just complaining that he left you hanging. Anyone notice how again Chase references the Godfather with that man who was lurking nearby going into the bathroom right before Meadow runs in. Then the screen going blank. Completely blank. No music, no anything. I think they got wacked. Right when Tony feels he again averted complete disaster. Come on, give your takes on what happened. Don't just complain.
My husband and I were watching intently, wondering if Tony would get whacked or the FBI would show up - when the screen went black, we were stunned, then I just started to laugh as I realized that Chase left us with the best ending of all - our own imagination!
Now the audience knows what it is like to get shot in the head.

Brilliant ending!
Maybe they are just gearing up for a Soprano's movie? That would be fitting and probably make a lot of cash.
Those looking for the big ending or so cynical as to think last night was just a set-up for a movie haven't been paying attention. This is how Chase works because as he noted a few years back, this is how life works -- closure is a myth.

Visionary shows through history like Northern Exposure (which Chase also worked on), Twin Peaks and the Sopranos catch the masses, then ultimately can't win; if they stick to their guns, people complain there is no closure (Sopranos, Seinfeld...these are the same people who complain "nothing ever happens" in a Chekov play).

If a great show does go tie things up neatly with a bow on the top, the die-hards say they "sold out".

Last night's episode wasn't perfect, but it was true to the series and a great way to close. ATTENTION HBO: KEEP IT CLOSED.
My take... 1st episode of this season has Bobby and Tony sitting in a boat fishing. Bobby asks Tony what he thinks it is like when you get shot. Tony's response...
"It's like you are sitting there talking then everything goes black..."

I think Tony's end had come...

Just my thoughts...
Maybe there will be a Sopranos movie? It would make a lot of cash.
Not happy with the ending, but it leaves hope that the motion picture is still a possibility...
sucked
I have seen every single episode of this show. And I have to say, I'm glad it's over. If this is the type of product that HBO wants to put out there, I'd rather they just cancel the show. That was absolutely horrible, please tell me that they won't ruin Entourage next.
I thought the ending was great.....I like all of the other viewers thought the cable went out....then I started to laugh....what a great way to end it!
We was robbed. The Sopranos is/was a story, fiction, is faux, isn't so, was made-up...but stories are supposed to have some kind of resolution that gives them meaning. We watch TV, even HBO, not so we can decide what happens, but to enjoy someone's creation, and be entertained, and be satisfied. Who cares what you or I think about what happened to Tony and his family, private and extended? We didn't create these characters and we shouldn't be responsible for deciding their ultimate fate. I say again, we was robbed.
I don't know why there is such a big fuss. The mark of a good story teller is to leave people wanting more. That's what the ending did. All show's end with closure. I'm glad we were left hanging. Lastly, being left hanging will leave people talking and wondering and therefore the Sopranos will always live on.
True Sopranos fans will get the ending. Absolutely fantastic. Perfect. For those that need the "closure," pay closer attention to the characters and the storylines and you'll see why the finale was so good.
This was the worst ending ever to a wonderful show. I, along with millions of other fans, feel tremendously let down. It was horrible.
You only hear silence when they hit you - and in the end, we got whacked. After investing 7 years in the show, our time came, and David Chase whacked us - we didn't see it coming, we saw nothing, and heard only silence.

Maybe in film school that will be thought of as brilliant. As a run of the mill fan of the show 15+ years out of film school, what I wanted was an ending. And instead, david Chase chose to whack the audience, leaving us with nothing.

I will not, ever, watch anything David Chase does again. It was a rip off.
"You never hear the one that gets you."--Bobby to Tony (or something like that)

Excellent ending! I don't know if that's what Chase was trying to imply or not with Tony's perspective and then cutting to black and no sound, but I'd like to think so. And if not, hey--that's fine too. I'm game. It's been a great ride Mr. Chase. Thank you and thanks to all the actors.
The last Soprano episode sucked! Total waste of time!
Chase should be 'whacked'. This episode, and for the most part all of them were pretty lame.
Leave real gangsta film making to Coppola and Scorcese and put Chase under the watchful eye of soap opera fans.
He is boring.
At least it ended with a good song - Steve Perry woo hoo!!! Otherwise, it was as boring as it has been.
Wow -- wonderful! That's called keeping you at the end of the seat up until the last minute. Those of us who are TRUE Sopranos fans know that past episodes have been left with such endings so it was GREAT to let us imagine our own ending.

Going to miss MY SOPRANOS. Both my husband and I are sad to see them done. SALUTE!

PS -- no movie please, my heart can't handle anymore :-)
Maybe someone can start a contest for fans to write their own ending....picking up when Meadow walks in. Best entry wins money or boxed collection of Sopranos or something??
I can't stand everyone whining like A.J.!!! The ending was brilliant -- life goes on, folks.
What a joke ending. A cop-out ending after all these years of following along???
Like many people, I thought my Dish had blacked out at the last second, but then the credits began, and I was incredulous. . .except, on reflection, I decided it was one of the most brilliant endings ever, for a lot of reasons (one of which is that people will talk about it), second, people will keep watching the DVDs and the re-runs, because there is no closure.

One thing I've never been able to do is watch an episode of a series after its finale, because once there's closure, all of the trials and tribulations of the characters seem pointless: we know how it all turns out, so why worry about this or that from a particular episode.

But, people will continue to watch the Sopranos, because there was no closure. . .the individual and often brilliant episodes can still stand on their own, because there's no unintended subtext (at least unintended at the time Chase produced a particular episode). . .at least for the principles, the family (and the series was named for the family. So, now, when we see Tony taking Meadow on a college visit and he has to knock of an informant, we're not thinking, "This is sad, because Meadow ends up dead."

But there is an artistic reason the finale is brilliant: because great characters are supposed to appear to live even when we're not watching them, their lives need to seem three-dimensional and large, not fully contained by the drama we watch--we only drop in from time to time to observe them but their lives play on whether we watch or not--and so, rightly, the Sopranos transcend the television screen.
This was the fourth worse Sopranos episode ever (The worse three were the one's that Tony lied in the hospital bed and forgot how to act). David Chase has reported mother issues - well David go back to your mother and your psychiatrist - You blew it. You had a chance to write a fantastic ending episode - You blew it....
You what is what would been better than nothing?



ANYTHING!

Cop Out!
I think viewer expected Tony to go out in a blaze of glory and that would have been to typical of mob movies and mob shows. This show was not supposed to be goodfellas or the godfather. I like the ending simply because it wasn't what everyone thought it was going to be. For 8 years that show has given the audience exactly what it wanted and expected.
Thank God (and David Chase) it ended the way it did.

My only fear was that Tony would die : that way there could never have been a follow-up of some sort, like a movie.

I nearly had a heart attack when the italian looking guy went to the bathroom. When the screen went black, i was just so relieve...

Maybe there will be a movie, or not, but at least the door is open. It's the only thing that matters.
Shows Chase's contempt for his audience.
Crap Crap Crap Crap Crap
Anyone who thinks this was "art" or classic "Chase" is kidding themselves. This was a fakeout, a cop-out, and worst of all, a sell-out in hopes of a movie deal.

If Chase is the master everyone claims him to be, then he should have finished the story. This is fiction, not real life. These characters _do not_ go on without us watching. They do not exist without us watching.

It is a shame that such a great body of work will be remembered for nothing more than the bad taste it left in the mouths of millions of fans on the last night.
I thought it sucked. After all this time and only one killing? And there are STILL so many unanswered questions, like whatever happened to the Russian in the Pine Barrens? And what happened to Furio? I really thought that all the cliffhangers would have been addressed in this last season.
After I slept on it and got my initial emotions of anger, rage and frustration out of the way – I must admit it is the PERFECT ending.

If you want to think that Tony got whacked, it is open ended enough that you can.

If you hated the series and the ending, you have justification.

If you wanted an excuse to beg for a movie later that allows closure, you got it.

If you wanted something that wasn’t a cheap rip off and has never been done before with a series ending, there it is.
I think you have it wrong at CNN. There was a conversation between Tony and Bobbie about being whacked .. they said you don't feel anything and everything goes black.
Tony was shot in the head.
If that is correct, it was a great way to do end and a great way to show it.
Leaving us to decide what happens to Tony et al is not "brilliant" but rather laziness on the part of David Chase.
At firstI was surprised, then confused. But after digesting the episode I figured IF those guys were FEDS he'd have been arrested, if they were Phil's Guys they would have barged in shooting. I think we witnessed Tony's new "family" his new Christopher, his new Sylvio... Tony will ride again!
There are apologists for every idioit, and David Chase is no exception. This ending reflected one of two things: Chase's lack of imagination (he couldn't satisfy us with his storytelling obviously, so he chose not to try), or an intent to capitalize on future markets (books, movies, etc.) I'm betting on the latter.
Worst Series ending show EVER! Thanks David Chase for wasting 4 years of my life with the last 3 horrible seasons of Sopranos. The only classic Sopranos during that time was the episode before the series ending. You suck!!!!
Has anyone ever read that old story, "The Lady or the Tiger?" What's behind the green doors? Many, many years ago the the assignment was to choose your own ending and write about what happened. Apparently, Mr. Chase has also read that story! Can't wait for the movies that will surely follow. Comeon folks - haven't you ever been "hood"-winked before?
After the fact, I think I get David Chase’s point in ending the series the way he did, and that was indeed his call as series creator and producer. Pragmatically speaking, however, he owed it to the series’ millions of loyal fans to at least have a satisfying finale. Although no ending could have pleased all of the fans, it was not cool to build up all of the suspense and then leave most of us hanging like that. How disappointing! With most of the principals still in place, it looks more like Mr. Chase’s interests lie with making a Sopranos movie. I think the fans should repay Mr. Chase in kind by way of an equally disappointing turnout for the film.
"Wait a minute," I thought, when the screen went black. "The damned cable went out!" Then, the credits started rolling in silence. I still can't believe it. I wonder if HBO and/or Chase expected so many to be so disappointed. I count myself among them, and will cast my vote by canceling HBO later this week.
This was one of the most boring, painful to watch hour of television....
I'm with those that thought it was a great ending. I'm in agreement with those that think that Tony was killed at the end and that's why it went to black.

Go back to what another comment said about Tony and Bobby on the fishing boat talking about what it's like to get shot and everything goes black. They had a flashback of that at the end of the previous episode to the final "Blue Comet" where they show a quick couple seconds of that scene. I think there was more of a purpose to this than just Bobby being shot and killed that episode.

The last scene of the final show is of Meadow walking in the door, and we are seeing it from Tony's eyes. My thinking is at that moment Tony is shot / killed and everything goes black. BRILLIANT!
I'm confused that anyone expected anything other than the unsatisfactory ending that was offered.
Have we not all noticed by now that Chase is to whimpy to offer any closure. It is my opinion that he (and HBO) spend so much intellectual energy attempting to be anti Hollywood that their entertainment is not entertaining but rather always frustrating. Case in point, when Tony's doctor got raped, this was of the most brutal rape scenes ever filmed, and we got no closure... even teased when she discovered where the rapist worked and still did nothing about it. How satisfyiing would it have been for her to tell Tony and have it play out that way.
Finally, at least we got some closure on the Phil issue. As mentioned, that was more than I expected.
Brilliant.

Congratulations to David Chase and the entire cast of The Sopranos. Just as the first episode left me with my mouth hanging open and shaking my head, so did the last.

Left to me, I would have had the guy come out of the bathroom, and take a shot at Tony, only to have Tony.......

And there you have it, my end to the Sopranos.

Bravo
The "Greatest Show On Earth" was The Sopranos, not that circus. I will miss it very much. HBO should get a congressional medal or something.
They should order a hit on Chase for giving us that lousy ending....
The cowards way out!
Hey David Chase,


BOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!
It's like they died anyway. Six seasons and my favorite show is gone, and like this. I guess It would have devistated me more if Tony had been killed. At least in my mind he is still alive and well. I hate that it is all over. It was a great show.
A horrible ending to a great series. People saying that David Chase is a genius aren't too bright themselves -- the guy was creatively bankrupt by the end of the series and the final eposide was an example of a director with nothing left in the tank flailing about pathetically. Sad, disappointing and unsatisfying on so many levels.
HELLO - Did anyone watch the same episode I did??? Tony is DEAD at the end. The whole restaurant scene, right after he walks in....he is dead.
'Maybe the guy who went into the bathroom will come out and blow everyone away.'

I doubt it. If we've learned anything about how to whack someone from this series, it is get in get out fast, the longer you're in the place, the longer someone can ID you (to the cops).

To HBO

Thanks for absolutely nothing. All of the work that went in to building the Sopranos (characters, plots you name it) just got negated by the absolute worst ending ever.

As a whole the series stands at a even zero. What a waste of time.
I agree with the artistic brlliance of the ending. This hasn't been about the heoric ADVENTURES of a mobster, but the LIFE of a mobster. In a fictional world, there is nothing else that happens beyond what the writer shows us. There is no other shoe to drop. The last scene tells it all -- Tony has to continue living the sociopathic life he's chosen. He's with his family, but is paranoid, in danger, and only loosely in control. He gets no comfort. There's a threat in every shadow and a challenge at every turn. And, he's condemned to live this way through the rest of his life. That IS what happens. As with any good anti-hero, Tony's story is complete partly because of the lack of completion. I'm reminded of the end of T. S. Eliot's masterful 1925 poem "The Hollow Men:" "This is the way the world ends. This is the way the world ends. This is the way the world ends. Not with a bang but a whimper."
I have never laughed so hard. The ending was perfect. Look how many of us thought something was wrong with our TV sets. I don't think one person will ever forget the series and we will talk about the ending for years to come.
Chase should be whacked for this! ....but let's wait to see if he gets his movie deal first, this way we might see a deserved ending for dedicated fans.
Okay it's chases's ball and he wanted to take it home. He wants to put a collection of art film cliches as his last shot? I suppose if you have nothing left to say then that's what you're left with.

After all of the many credits were done I was left with the image of Mike Myer's Cat in the Hat saying "I got nothin".

As soon as Tony's coma dream sequence started I had a sneaking suspicion that the Sopranos was about to "jump the shark" (remember when Happy Days had spent itself and all that was left was for Fonzie to jump his bike over a tank with a shark in it (this was just after Jaws came out)?).

I hope the next time Chase takes the time to plan the whole story instead of running out of plot half way through. He had a great climax coming and then we're left with the most compelling thought being to decide if the ceiling should be beige.
The ending was brilliant! I agree with the others who say that those who didn't like it simply just don't get it. Yes, I was expecting something else (although I'm not sure what), but this ending captured the intense anxiety Tony feels on a daily basis- not knowing whether it'll be jail or death waiting for him around the corner. The Journey song was a brilliant song choice as well!
My life already has enough loose ends, I prefer my escapes from reality to at least have a definite sense of closure. Thanks for the cop-out David Chase.
Terrible terrible ending - honestly. Maybe the worst TV show ending I can remember from what was considered one of the best shows. Not only does it end poorly it sheds a poor light on the whole series, IMHO. It leaves a bad taste in your mouth.

I have seen other series finales - shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Sienfield or MASH all were vastly superior.

Mock me if you want but while a show like Buffy not considered 'good' goes out with their best ever. This episode though was one of their slow 'filler' style ones.

TV/MOVIES shows need to have conflict and a RESOLUTION. If you want a mob move - try the DEPARTED. That's how a real master storyteller does it.

Pete
I'm still undecided what to think, all I know is from the start of the Journey song until the credits rolled I was on the edge of my seat!!! My heart was pounding out of my chest....
Come on people! Do you all really need to be spoon fed the ending or can you use your OWN imagination??? Thats what Chase did- he knew he couldn't please every single Sopranos fan with the final episode, so he left it so each of us can wonder and decide what OUR own endings would be. I think it was fantastic. I myself would have been left with a really depressed feeling if I had seen Tony blown away after "knowing" him for all these years. I enjoyed being left to sort it out myself! Thanks David!
As some have already pointed out this is the worst finale I have ever seen. The ending in our minds was supposed to make up for the past 3 seasons which were pretty lame and boring.
I thought my cable cut out, when it cut to black........then I just felt empty the rest of the night.
For all the people who need to know what happened to Tony and his family, there is only one answer: NOTHING. They are fictional characters. Someone asked Lawrence Block what happened to one of his characters after a book ended and he was taken aback. They are fictional characters. You can create any ending you like. The FBI agent can quit his stressful job and join the family as an enforcer. He can step in and save Tony from the assassin you did not notice. Tony can see a gun and use AJ for a shield. They are fictional characters.
worst ending and as a result the worst show . . . ever. schmuck thinks he's an "artist" by writing that? RE-FUND!
Oh my God!! at first I hated the ending, but then when I gave it some thought....Wow, what a way to end it. Not only do you have to wonder what happens to Tony and his familia, but you also have to wonder if this was all just a set up to Sopranos coming back in say two years(like the hiatus's they used to take) but just not informing the public about it .

Whatever happens, I will always wonder what happened in Holstein's-
Did they all get shot except for Meadow? Were the weird looking guys actually the feds waiting to arrest Tony? -who knows-Frustrating, but actually very cerebral of Chase!!
The producers of this show have shown a blatant disregard for the viewers since day one. 6 shows here 8 shows there...an entire season off. The viewers have stayed with this one dispite the disdain for us shown in the past 8 years. We deserved better than this. The show showed me absolute cowardice in its failure to resolve itself. The last 3 episodes prior to the finale were just riveting. I fully expected the series finale to be a powderkeg, not a powderpuff. The show's appeal has always been that the characters live in this fantasy but that reality catches up to you. It caught up to so many characters who we came to love watching. It should have caught up to Tony...to not do that is a true injustice to the audience and just gives credence to the self-absorption of the media that creates for itself, not for the paying public.
Horrible ending. It was a cop out by Chase. He couldn't pull the trigger on what he wanted to do, so you took the easy way out and left the dedicated fans dry.

They could have killed Phil last week and saved us an episode and an hr of our time.
At first, I was disappointed in the fade to black ending of "The Sopranos". I mean, after all these years, we were all primed for a dramatic moment to occur in Tony's life. But this morning I awoke to realize the ending was perfect. The song "Don't Stop Believing" was perfect for the finale of the show as well. We all should never stop believing. The ending left it up to us to wonder which way Tony's life will progress. We were left with tidbits of turmoil still swirling in his life: the indictment from the Fed's, dealing with Paulie, the uncertainty of Silvio, Meadows plans to become a lawyer, AJ finally developing an interest and Carmela preparing to build another house. There lives go on, but not for us to see. David Chase left it up to the fans to come up with their own conclusions of how the Soprano family will endure. The only certainty was the whacking of Phil, thus eliminating for the moment, any rela threat to the family.
Chase is just showing off his control issues. And he justifies it to himself by blaming his mother, the inspiration for the show (she was not unlike Livia). Because everyone wanted some sort of closure, he refused to give it to us. OH, HE'S SUCH AN ARTIST! Chase, just take your ball and go home. And don't come out.
You guys can't be serious. Even the writer of the CNN article didn't get it? We've been through 8 seasons of the sopranos through the eyes of Tony. Remember when Tony and Bobby were talking about what it would be like to be killed, well we were just privy to how that would feel. If they wanted the ending to be ambiguous they wouldn't have cut so abruptly to the black screen. Tony was shot in front of his family but the reason why we didn't see any of this was because tony would have had no idea what was going on until it was too late. CNN you need to get a more intelligent writer for this article, because he got the ending and most important thing that happened in the entire series completely wrong.
My wife hated the ending so much that she was still steaming in bed at 1:30 a.m. muttering under her breath about how angry she was about it.

I loved it.

How many of the classic shows have even decent endings? Ones that you even remember? Cheers . . . was terrible. Seinfeld . . . awful. Everyone Loves Raymond . . . how did that even end again? Sex in the City . . . fairy tale. Fraiser . . . train wreck.

I remember (and liked) the ending to MASH and to the second Bob Newhart show. I suspect that I will always remember this one as well.
worst ending ever, making it the worst show, ever. schmuck actually thinks he's an "artist" with that schlock.
The series didn't end, it stopped. Chase really left us hungry for more, but then haven't all Soprano's fans always wanted more. I guess he just gave us what he has always given us, but I really would have loved to have had some type of closure.
Last night I dreamed I was taking a shower at the Southfork ranch...
You guys really need to understand that this is television and most of you couldn't write a script to keep your own mother interested for longer than three minutes. This ending was outstanding! I was on the edge, thinking everyone was about to hit Tony. In the end, it was like it began (two or three guys short of course) with Tony and his family and their story. Chase played everyone and many are taking offense to it, I personally don't mind. I ended up laughing more at myself due to the fact that I turned around to my wife and said, "did you turn the channel?!?"

Great ending.....
This show, like American Idol, should never have made it past "Sweeps Week." I've never watched either, but from hearing my associates talk about them, they're both total disappointments.
I have been watching this show for 7 years, never missed an episode....the fact that David Chase ended the show like this is an embarassment and a dissapointment to all fans.....the fact that there was no closure one way or the other is disgusting....David Chase should be ashamed of himself.......
Great ending, its how the show was and it needed to be how it ended. If there ever is a movie, it better be set in the past...continuing the story would destory everything the Sopranos was for 7+ years
To the writers of the sopranos, I would like economic compensation for the hour out of my life I will never get back by watching the most dissapointing series finale ever!! ..Umm $45 should do it.
The Sopranos series finales was choppy and the pacing seemed awkward and abrupt. It definitely would have benefitted by having one more episode or one more season or just not ending it at all. There are already rumors floating around that a film will be made to tie off loose ends.

That being said, fans of the show like myself probably find themselves relieved that Tony, the flawed, tragic hero of the Sopranos, did not meet a tragic end along with the series.

The finale ended with an unexpected sense of optimism as A.J. pointed out to his father to try and find the positive in every situation and Tony selected Journey's "Don't Stop Believing" as the final song for HBO's most outstanding program in its history.
Everyone needs to quit whining. This was classic David Chase. It left everyone on the edge of their seat wondering what was going to happen next and letting us all decide our own ending. My husband and I thought it was fantastic, especially since it fooled all viewers AND the media.
I think it was just what Tony told Bobby in that boat in episode 1. When you get hit, you don't hear anything. Notice that this was the only episode where the credits did not have any music... Paulie also told him that when you get it, it just goes black... Judge for yourself...
Hearts were racing as that final scene played out (especially since the restaurant is right down the street from me!) and then the black out...

As masterful as it was, it's still a cop-out from the mind of David Chase. Even if they pulled back to show that it will all go on as they have a happy family meal, I would have accepted that. I understand what he was going for, but still it's a wimpy cop-out. Not satisfying in the least. Darn good suspense building though wasn't it?
Genius! Pure Genius. Our imaginations are much more powerful than anything we could have seen. The biggest shock and awe was to leave us with no ending at all after all those predictions. Genius! This way, the Sopranos will live on forever!

BRAVO!! David Chase BRAVO!!
B Townsend
TERRIBLY DISAPOINTING!!!!
A story like the SOPRANOS deserved a blood bath at the end.
The Sopranos was like a wonderful, multi-layered novel. The criticisms that not enough happened come mostly from people who have a comic book mentality, and are incapable of actually thinking about what they are watching. They need action every page, and to have everything explained to them. If they cannot appreciate the textures and underlying currents in a show like this, they should go back to Walker Texas Ranger and other similar deep shows.
Tony DIED, CNN TONY DIED, Change this article please so that you don't confuse people and give them false hope that Tony didn't Die.
Absolutely brilliant. During the week before the airing of the final episode I kept thinking how I wanted them to ended and it ended EXACTLY how I wanted. EVERYBODY had the end that they wanted, just use your imagination. LOL. Absolutly brilliant!

As a side note I always thought that they needed to mention the ducks. That is how we first met Tony and get saw that he got some issues. Remember how obsessed he was with them? How averything started? Guess what? The writer remembered about them and how appropiated that Tony got to hear them.I think the director/writer did it more for us, to remember how everything started as a thank you for follow them all this time. Brilliant! Best ending ever!
We got whacked!!! The audience. Remember the discussion Bobby and Tony had in the boat? Bobby mentions that when you get whacked, you don't see it coming, it just ends. Well, the show ended abruptly and guess what, we all got whacked. The audience. Brilliant!
seems like a perfect place for the movie to pickup...
Chase isn't dumb!
It Ends Not With a Bang, but With a ...

Okay, listen up ... it didn't end with an idyllic family dinner. HE DIED.

No question about it. Not left to your imagination. It wasn't a cliffhanger.

It was a point of view ending. Who has been the main focus of the Sopranos? Tony. Who do you root for despite the fact that he is a murdering sociopath? Tony. So it would make sense that the story would end when HIS story ends.

The point wasn't that it was a nice family dinner that we would all fade out on, the point of having them all meet there at the end with "Don't Stop Believin'" on the jukebox and everyone feeling good about new stuff ... is that it can all happen just like that ESPECIALLY for a mob dude ... you can be just sittin' there smilin' at your wife, poppin' an onion ring in your mouth, watchin' your daughter walk in the door when BOOM ... darkness. The only "cliffhanger" is that we don't know which of the suspicious characters did it. (And frankly, the only twist I found was when they implied he was going to play "My Way" on the jukebox, but then Journey came on ... nice touch.) After all, isn't that how it also ended for Leotardo ... out of nowhere? (Although the way they set that scene up, I knew that was coming.)

I just don't understand how difficult it is to understand the ending ... it's what the series has led up to all these years. What has Tony always said ...? Something about how you don't hear it when it happens? Well, duh. They finished the show out literally following their own lead-in. That's why the screen was black for a few seconds. That's why the credits were silent. The only symbolic part of it was the bell of the front door ... the bell finally ringing for Tony.

If they'd meant for it to be a imagine-for-yourselves cliffhanger, they wouldn't have ended it so very abruptly - midsentence during the song. There would've been a fuller look-ing up movement from Tony then gone straight to the credits - regular credits with full music. Some people have said if they'd added a gunshot to the black screen that would've helped people understand. But that's now how it works ... YOU DON'T HEAR IT WHEN IT HAPPENS.

The ending was brilliant. No cheesy clichés ... just ... a whimper.
I have to admit, I was upset at first with the ending of my favorite show ever. When I woke up this morning, I finally got it, duh. First episode this season, Bobby and Tony fishing, remember their conversation about what it must be like to be shot, and Tony saying one minute you're just sitting there, and then everything goes black? Brilliant, Chase. Game over.
WHAT A LETDOWN BORINGGGGGGGG!!
Those people who have brought up the conversation with Bobby ... obviously, I hadn't thought of that. Terrific.
The song right below the journey song "sont stop believeing" was "Anyway you want it" coincidence?
I guess I was waiting kind of a Godfather moment but I should have known better. I was had.......on the other hand it leaves it up to your own conclusions. Maybe the movie will sort it out.
The only reason I have kept HBO for so long is because of the Sopranos. I am outraged that Chase basically copped out and left us all hanging with no closure. I have not been so disappointed since Geraldo opened Al Capones vault and there was nothing in it. Just like he and David Chase's heads.
I think they did a brilliant job of closing the show. They gave total insight as to where the characters are headed. Tony's going to jail along with his remaining surviving crew, Phil’s family is going down with the flip over, and the FBI guy just blew his job. Sis is on her on, Meadow has her life mapped out, and whinny AJ will have this job until he screws it up or dies in a car crash. The build up of tension and anticipation of the last two shows were fabulous. Thanks for years of entertainment.
Here's why the ending made perfect sense: there was very little that could have occurred that would have been a surprise to anyone. Tony got arrested? No surprise there. Tony got whacked? No surprise. AJ killed himself? No surprise. No matter what comfortable, tidy ending the producers could have chosen to give viewers "closure" or "resolution" would have been criticized as not making sense or not being satisfying. This ending, while certainly uncomfortable, got people talking and no one can say they should have done this or that instead. Against the grain, against expectations. That's what the Sopranos has always been known for, and this final episode doesn't disappoint on that front.
I thought the ending was great - just the message that he will always be looking over his shoulder - that maybe it would have been easier for him if he HAD gotten wacked....
So...At first i was really disappointed but the more my friends and i started to talk and discuss i became very pleased. Did anyone else referrence back to when Tony and Bobby were sitting in the boat at the lake talking about "i wonder if you hear it when it happens" and you probably wouldn't. I mean Tony looks up and the last thing he sees is Meadow (his little girl) come in the door and then blank...Maybe that was what Tony went through...He was shot dead...from the man who went into the bathroom...They even reference the seen of Tony and Bobby in the next to last episode. I think the last Episode was through Tony's eyes.. Especially the last scene... Very very interesting and different. I like it....Its a thinker!
Just like the last coup;e of years, LAME. Altough I did hang in there to the end like a devoted parent hanging on to a strugling child waiting for them to do good.
All you viewers that were disappointed or felt stiffed by the ending - GROW UP!! Real life is never tied up in a neat little package with a bow! However Chase ended this - he would never have won! At least he did not try to please the audience - like most filmmakers do - which alot of times makes movies and tv - vanilla - and all looking the same. He is his own man! People - let's remember that's what set the Soporano's apart and why we loved it so much - it was not vanilla. Chase - did it his way! CONGRATULATIONS!
"You guys really need to understand that this is television and most of you couldn't write a script to keep your own mother interested for longer than three minutes. This ending was outstanding!"

The Sopranos was a good show, but I could write a better one over a three-day weekend. Stop the David Chase idolization, please. Plenty of us in here could write a better show.
Would any ending with "closure" result in this much discussion. Game over everyone go home.

I think the forshadowing (I remember my high school literature classes) with Bobby and Tony in the boat was the key. By not showing it, we have to think it through.

Tony getting whacked on screen would have been a let down
Ok. I get the point. However, it was not presented well. David Chase has created the best series that television has seen in a very long time. But, I dont believe that he was the right director for the last and final episode. He is not known for great directing.When Meadow is walking into the diner, having lived in new jersey all her life and still cant parallel park worth a crap, the shot isnt even a good one. Nothing poignant about it. Like seeing her family sitting together as a smile comes over her face. If she just stood there and watched her family interact through the window. And then FADE to black.That would have told me something. Or this. As Tony is watching the guy seated at the counter. The guy is looking around. Kind of figiting a bit.Making him nervous. Then the two menacing fellows at the juke box. Now,as Meadow reaches for the door, she holds it open for another young lady who, as she enters, the guy at the counter smiles and greats her. A look of relief falls upon Tony's face as he looks over towards the jukebox.And as Meadow sits down a hip hop sort of ballad comes on the jukebox and the two men start moving to the tune. Again relief to Tony. Then he looks at his family and smiles. While Carmella and the kids begin to laugh and chat. Tony smiles. Because, being the boss of the family at that table is what its all about. Not the other family.The camera pulls back, as they all begin to lighten up and laugh. It pulls back through the window of the diner and out into the New Jersey street.And if you want a Journey song to play the end credits? 'Lights'. Tony has learned a valuble lesson. All is well. Fade to black.Again, I understand Chase's intent. But, he did it horribly wrong. It did not do the last 8 years justice. It was very empty.
Bloated, overhyped, and unsatisfying. Yeah, yeah, the ending was left up to the viewers to think about, to paint their own blood spattered conclusions of the fate of the Soprano clan. Sadly, this is not how the show began, played and will be remembered.

With more layoffs than bickering pro athletes, The Sopranos lost its momentum long ago and to those who loved the good old days of the first 4 seasons, this season had some great moments, but the ending left us all wanting more, deservedly so.

No, the final episode did not stink like the end of St. Elsewhere (the worst in tv history), but it wasn't spectacular like everything else in this show was.

Chase took the easy way out as if he didn't know how to end it all. As blunt as this show has been, this finale was a complete letdown, whether people wanted Tony to die or not. All things come to an end and life is full of resolutions.

This ending was not ominous, threatening, shocking, nor fun, all of which this show was for so long. Thanks for a big bunch of nothing, Mr. Chase.
Glad to see someone else noticed the Seinfeld similarity with the Soprano's ending. Both left a "Huh? That's it?" feeling. But both ending were simple, logical and brilliant. To end two landmark TV shows any other way would be disappointing. In the Soprano's case - Tony, Carmella, Aj and Meadow continue life as usual the only difference is we'll no longer be able to watch them since the show has ended. You the viewer can decide your own ending if you wish. Pure brilliance and thanks to David Chase for ending it this way!
If I had a tomato, I would have thrown it at the screen. That was lame - not artistic. He couldn't think of a powerful ending and chickened out.
sopranos movie????????
Last week, everyone was speculating on the outcome of the show. So many possibilities. But the most obvious one was to do exactly what David Chase did: leave it up in the air. This way the viewer can create their own ending and more realistically, the door is still open for the future; a reunion movie, feature, new series, prequel, etc. Very clever indeed.
What a cop out ending, after three years of navel-gazing episodes.
Chase should have kept it to the first three season and then a finale fourth.
I have to admit that initially I was disappointed. However if you go back and watch it again...the end will become more clear to you. You have to admit once the Journey song began playing you were on the edge of your seat....for a good 3-4 minutes....THATS good TV...if you don't like the ending....please do yourself a favor and watch it again.
Chase has secured his future fans - all those who think that the finale was brilliant - unfortunately for Chase, while those people may feel that they are the ones who are artistically intuitive enough to "get it," they are also a staggering minority. Follow the rule of the entertainment world: nine out of ten big hypes will ultimately disappoint.
After sleeping on it , I soon realized it was a brilliant ending.

The show ended on Tony's terms..."there are only two ways things end for a guy like me, dead or in jail" Both options are available with this ending...the FBI and the bathroom guy.

Basically, its business as usual and we don't get to watch.
Was there any significance in the identity of the lady the FBI agent was shacked up with? In addition to her looking familiar she seemed pretty angry. Ideas?
Nice nod of respect to "The Godfather", when the guy went to the restroom. Great job! Isn't that what "the family" is all about? respect?
Worst Ever... Not worth the paper it was written on... I'm glad it finally over!!! Sucked...
Great ending

The man at the counter is Tonys father from the flashbacks. Still wearing a members only jacket. Tonys dad was killed the same way, in a restaurant with his family, and Janice coming late. But maybe this time it didnt happen.
Look - It’s been several really good years. This is probably one of thee best shows on TV!!!

The ending is not "a cop out", not "boring", not "crap" and whatever else you're saying - The writers are definitely not idiots (they've proven that) - actually they're brilliant - they have left the door open for a great movie (which you can be sure will happen) but lets say it doesn't - these characters are bigger than life - killing off some of the main characters (the family) would almost ruin the show. I think it is PERFECT how it ended. Just think about it before you start complaining.
The worst ending I have ever seen. What a waste of my time. I will never watch that stinkin movie David Chase will be making about The Soprano's. The only thing I got out of that show was that Meadow can't park against a curb !!!!
There are many die hard fans out there who expected more of this last episode. Reading the blogs below it sounds like the "blackness" could be Tony's death or just make everyone wonder endlessly what happened. Is there a movie scheduled to come out or not? The only reason why I signed up for HBO was this show and now I am cancelling HBO. It was a disappointment not to tye up any other loose strings except for the one shooting. The real fans should have had a bit more closure for the final episode.
It was the viewers who got "wacked" during this finale. Chase should be ashamed for the ending.
Never watched the show, don't even bother subscribing to cable. Therefore I won't comment on the plot.

It is obvious reactions to this show say more about the person reacting than about the show, the writer or the producer.

Those uncomfortable with uncertainty, or lacking imagination are upset. People comfortable with ambiguity or having a personal creative vision are thrilled.
The last 5 minutes of the show were so tense! Yes I screamed at the end and thought my cable cut out. Oh well, we can always hope for a movie! I loved the show!

Mrs Kuzma
I thought it was raining outside and my satellite blacked out, huh, no rain, what the......

Now i guess I know what its like to get wacked.
We get to decide how it ends...that's weak. Just like the last two seasons that I kept watching, hoping for something to happen. It ended, my wife and I looked at each other, indifferent, and we got up and washed the dishes and went to bed. Very disappointing.
I thought that the Middle East guys would do what they do best, and do a suiside bombing in the restrand and kill the Soprano family oh well
Awful, horrible, disapppointing...I can't believe I wasted an hour of my time last night watching this mess. I gave 8 years of my life to this show and this is how it ends? I feel betrayed...
Finally, a series ends realistically. I'm sick of every series having to have 'the dramatic conclusion' that usually ends with the characters totally betraying what we've come to love about them. (Will and Grace disregard their relationship and don't speak to each other for 20 years???. Elaine, George Kramer and Jerry go to jail for being unlikeable??)In the words of Sylvio,to Tony's Russian girlfriend 'It's like passages. They wrote a book about it.' Relationships end, life goes on.
Befuddled -- that's what I'm feeling. Of course, I will watch the finale again. Maybe I've missed something? I was so convinced that my cable was malfunctioning that I didn't realize until this morning that Tony was whacked! Just nothing -- silence and black.

I am a huge fan but I became a fan by buying the episodes on DVD and watching 3-4 episodes at a time. Watching the episodes weeks apart loses something.
I thought those Middle east guys tony was ratting out would come and do what they do best, by walking into the restrant and doing a suicide bombing and blow the soprano family up. oh well. the ending sucked big time.
I adored the finale! I appreciate that David Chase allowed me to decide the ending. I had been dreading a devastating, bloody one all day, and thank god, I was spared.
Absolutely Brilliant!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
being a loyal soprano fan from the beginning I have grown to expect the unexpected while watching the show and to be thankful for that. Although I found the ending to be well, very much of a let down. No I was not expecting your typical ending scenarios but something would have been nice. Another HBO show called 6 feet under in my opinion had a great ending sequence that showed viewers what could have happened in each of the character's lives. Regardless, I still do not understand why the show ended anyway...hbo can hope that the new series it puts out will compensate but a mobster show is a mobster show...john from cinci is no replacement for sure in my eyes.
OK So recall the convo b/n Bobby and Tony at the beginning of the new season? About whether or not you hear the the shot that kills you. They had a flash back to it after Bobby died. I think the whole family is fine. . .but it's the audience that is dead. Like we don't get to go on but the Sopranos do. Its like we got whacked after all the tension and whatnot of who is going to die, we're the ones that died.

Think I'm off? I don't know, I was pissed at first but after thinking about it, it made a bit more sense. Like they made us wait, painfully, for meadow to get in, and once she did. bada bing pow, we're gonners.
"The Sopranos" creator David Chase's loyalty to an audience who followed his iconic, disturbing study of the evils of hypocrisy, greed and chosen internal blindness among mafia for 8 years must be questioned following an alarmingly abrupt ending that fell flatter than the twin towers.

We, as a nation of hardcore devotees to television series, have become conditioned to expect resolution and denouement at the conclusion of a story. We expect our storytellers to guide us through sequences that construct a story and deliver an ending that puts in place the final pieces of the puzzle.

As grateful as we are to David Chase for bringing us eight (+) years of this utterly brilliant examination of the vices that lie within every human being, to have the screen suddenly go black at such a critical point in the finale certainly seems to be smug ingratitude. While such a going-nowhere ending may have been an artistic choice that Chase was more than free to make, it was wholly unsatisfying and nose-thumbing toward one of television's most intelligent, loyal audiences ... ever. Who can blame us for our indignation and disgust?

I must thank Chase for 85 of the 86 episodes. As for unlucky #86, no thanks. We deserved better than we got. For that matter, Chase and the whole cast and crew deserved better, too.
Very well done. You make your own conclusions until...they make a movie in the future because there was no closure. No one wanted Tony wacked and not with the family there anyway. I'll go see the grand finale at the movies!
the second season sucked, it was so drawn out and nothing really happened and so did this season, waste of time. Who wants to pay for HBO when you get garbage????
The friend Tony killed in the boat said it best, "When it happens you probably don't hear a thing". And so, that's how the finale ended. Tony didn't hear a thing. The guy in the bathroom came out and shot him in the head, before his family's eyes.
I am so torn with this ending. At first I screamed at my father thinking that he accidentally shut the cable box off. The entire time when Meadow was trying to park and it was 10:01 and no one was shot yet my heart was pounding. That reaction alone tells you that Chase did do a good job. At first I was steaming mad at not having any closure but as I thought about it I think that was the best way to end it. Seeing them die would have left a bitter taste in my mouth but leaving it open to interpretation was brilliant. The whole convo with Bobby and Tony looking up and cutting to black makes me realize now that Tony was probably shot, right as Meadow walked into the diner. Who knows! To those who are extremely upset about the ending I say don't be mad that Chase didn't end it how you wanted it, because that would be WAY too easy...
CORRECTION: I meant to say it looked as though he'd play "I've Gotta Be Me" on the jukebox ...

And I'm glad to see a lot of others referencing the conversation in the boat ;-)
To those of you saying this was a "brilliant" finale because it let you, the viewer, decide what happened - would you feel the same if you went to the cinema to see a much-hyped film and then right after the opening credits the lights went up and - presto! - there was no film? Would you think "wow - that was brilliant, now *I* can decide what happened in this movie that I never got to see!!".

This was the worst series finale in the history of popular tv series. To call this "brilliant" is just a way of making yourself feel better for being duped into watching it like the rest of us.
Why did I waste all of those years following the show just to have the writers wrap it up with the laziest series finale in history. They should have taken note of a true Series Finale - Six Feet Under. What a waste. Not to mention the incredible timeframe in which we were left hanging between seasons.
A complete surprise. Brilliant. I did not see it coming. David Chase made me scream! Perfection!
I felt very let down. I have invested 7 years to this show, and to have it end like this! Last night just showed to me why I just about gave up on the show last season. I was among many who sat through the credits waiting, hoping something would happen.
Thanks for an hour of my life I will not get back!
I was hoping and praying that Tony would not die, now in my mind he does live on. I got my happy ending because I was able to use my imagination.... Hats off to you Chase, thanks for the memories!!!
Ok people - what did you expect?
Did you really think Tony Soprano was going to get whacked? Did you really expect closure?
Honestly is there any other real closure unless Tony does get whacked?

He's a bad man, albeit one we love to watch, but he is a bad man who does bad things and deserves bad things to happen to him.
But that's not what any fan wanted to see.
Face it, if Tony (visibly) gets whacked then there is no reason to ever watch the old shows, any new shows or possible a future movie.
So Tony lives on... or does he? Could the fade to black be what him and Bobby discussed only weeks before - you never see it coming, its just like a fade to black...

The symbolism was rampant throughout the show:
The Mother who wants nothing more than her 'family' to be perfect or at least seem perfect, closes the door on the previously delinquent friend because she has now cleaned up and went to med school. Law schools not enough for ya mom? Maybe we all have mother issues.
The lost son desperately searching for his reason to live, finally has the light go on - ok it took a fireball, but he is finally enlightened that its time to wake up.
Uncle Junior - the once fierce and feared mobster has been reduced to an aging decrepit soul with no memory of the life or reputation he spent decades creating - ashes to ashes folks.
Tony still looking for closure with his Mother as he cries out to his son's Dr. - even after giving up on therapy or at least his last therapist.
Meadow - the 'all grown up and moved on and out' daughter who we see isn't done growing up as she wrestles with the one phase of the driving test we all worried about as teenagers - Uggghh Parallel Parking!
And of course - Journey closes the show, Why? because life is a Journey, and while it may be just a silly pop anthem, there is some truth that we cant stop believing. Because if we do - then life really does fade to black...

Yes - for the 80-something Monday morning water coolers are boiling over because of the heat of the discussions surrounding them.
David Chase may not have pleased everyone, but isn't that just another life lesson - you can't please everyone?

Thank you to Rutgers Alumni James Gandolfini for playing a character so true to life, that people everywhere are already missing you.
Thank you Mr. Chase, for giving us the opportunity to tune in once a week to see the lives of these wonderful characters.
And thank you for an ending that allows us to remember them as we would like to.
I felt just as disapointed last night as I did when Geraldo opened up Al Capone's vault. I hope they make a movie so that we can have some closure because I feel like I was left hanging.
I am in utter disbelief that they left the ending open like this. After all the hype of the last two seasons, there really is no ending to the series. I'm guaranteeing they left the ending open in this way so they can make a movie out of this. All I have to say is shame on HBO and shame on the producers for this.
Chase, you are the true "Our Thing" with and an ending like that. We have been robbed!!!
I am your typical Sopranos fan. I don't give a rat's behind about "artistic flair "in a television show and this is coming from a lifelong artist. I've been writing and drawing forever, but I didn't want to be randomly educated by theoretical pretentious mumbo-jumbo ...I wanted an ending. I wanted "Our Thing." Our Thing has been around for a long time. It isn't pretty, and it never has a happy ending, but it always has an ending. I didn't want a stupid cat staring at Christopher's picture for an hour, I didn't want to listen to AJ whine about terrorism for an hour, and I didn't want to watch Meadow Soprano park her car for five minutes. I thought last year was bad, with the far-fetched and dumb Vito storyline, but this ending, this was an insult! Mr. Chase, did you watch The Godfather? Did you watch Goodfellas? Did you understand why they were considered classics? If they ended the way you ended your show, they would be considered bland at best, and definitely irritate the audience. We fans feel cheated, especially fans like me who have been with you since the beginning. I wont be buying the DVD's anymore, and I plan on selling Seasons 1 - 5 to some poor soul dumb enough to buy into this "I'm artistic " BS ending. We know the difference between art and a huge lie and pretentious cra, we've read Frank Miller and watch him do it for years. You might be able to confuse some Simple Simon's out there who search high and low for some pretentious nonsense, but an artist knows art. And that wasn't art. It was garbage. Thanks for nothing, I mean absolutely, positively nothing.
It was just BAD !
The next season will be the best ever! I will be able to imagine everything. The ending was lame. If I knew it was going to be left up to me for the conclusion, I would have been clammering for my writing credits and paychecks. Yes, we were all on the edge of our seats, but that is only brilliant if there is a payoff. Did they get whacked? Did Tony go into the bathroom and retrieve his gay lover? Did Meadow shoot them all and finish their onion rings? Who knows and who cares. The last few seasons really sucked and this just solidified that with a resounding wimper.
Worst episode yet, Boring, Chase took 43 mins before Phil even got whacked, he should have done in AJ instead. There better be a movie in the works in the near future but the way Chase works it could be another 8 years before we see one. Very disappointed, Just like season 6.
The Sporanos hasn't been a good show in a few years. The first few seasons were wonderful then it seemed the writers were desperately grabbing themes from the air, not knowing what to write about. Last night's episode was one of the worst last shows of any series I've ever seen. Except for the final restaurant scene which got the viewer thinking is something about to happen, last night's show was incredibly dull. Just like too many episodes the last few years.
I Can see it now.......
SOPRANOS "THE MOVIE"
If they don't, what a missed chance!
That was the worst Soprano show ever. Boring! For the final season, more could have happened. If Chase wanted a movie, not the way to end the series, now the movie will be as bad and nobody will go. What a complete let down of a good series. Did Chase lose his nerve? I expected more and got let down. Never watching another Chase series again.
Bobby: "I wonder if you don't even hear it coming..."

This line was spoken to us in the first episode of the last nine, and then reiterated to us in the second to last episode.

I am convinced that Tony is shot in the head to close the series.

Final episode title: "Made in America." The guy sitting in the back corner is wearing a "USA" hat. He is the killer.

Even if I am wrong (and we'll never know), it doesn't matter. Ending the series like that was simply the gutsiest move I have ever seen. Pure brilliance.
The ending was fantastic. How can you not like it ending with a positive morale? We all need to savor the good times, because Lord knows, life is dissatisfactory.
David Chase is a coward! Very disappointing finale. Now it's on to other shows ... on Showtime.
In the final scene in the diner ,my heart rate increasing with the anticipation of something mind-blowing about to go down(certain that meadow or carmella were about to be offed..or a.j.coming completely undone..and wiping out his entire family in what appeared to be an escalating delusional state of mind...certain (almost) of the inevitable murder-suicide......
...my jaw hit the floor!
Fade to black? FADE TO BLACK???? WHAT!!!???
"NO FRIGGIN WAY!!!"
...I hit rewind twice...there it was...that same damn black screen, followed by the credits.

Eerily silent.

No out-going song...no next Sunday preview. It was done....
I was speechless.

I HATED THE ENDING!!!
I FRIGGEN HATED IT...DO YOU HEAR ME DAVID CHASE???

Last thing.

BRILLIANT..I LOVED IT!!!!
ABSOLUTLY LOVED IT!
ARE YOU HEARING THIS DAVID???

Job well done.

Fittkitt from chicago.
From start to (yes) finish, that was perhaps the most brilliant episode ever.

The whole ep was almost a throwback to the early days - dialogue was more spare, humor was darker and stranger. But there was something sneaky happening under the surface; Chase was pointing out that none of these guys get happy endings. Either they get got (Phil and so many others), they go senile (Junior), or they wallow in paranoia (Paulie, who ends with a cat stalking him). The theme of crappy endings was everywhere. There is no resolution for these guys, so it wouldn't be right to give one to the faithful viewers.

We know the formula by now. We knew Bobby was a goner the moment we saw he left his cell phone in the car. All we had to do was see Phil's face to know Tony was about to win that battle. So think about that last scene, and how strongly it seemed to spell death for Tony. That's what he has to live with. There's tension EVERYWHERE, the threat of death everywhere, and his family is not safe. That's the real ending of the show, and the only one that fits.

And that was the best use of a Journey song in any situation since the time "Open Arms" got me second base action in high school.
Tony got whacked! End of story. The last thought in his head was about Meadow as she was coming through the door. Your screen would go black and go completely silent too if you got whacked! The shooter came from the side and Tony never felt the sting. Whacking Phil was a bad move. He was out and hiding and on his way of being roomates with Junior. The NY family didn't like it after it was done and they had to make good on it. You never whack a boss! T is dead. Kudos to the music in the whole show and the silence at the end. BRAVO!!!! Let the Sopranos be a shining light in one of the most boring eras TV history. Thanks DC!
An imaginitive ending is more suitable for perhaps a movie that you may have invested a couple of hours in but even then, think how many would be displeased with it even then. But an imaginitive ending for a show that's been running since 1999 is incomprehensible unless one looks at the David Chases' motiviations. I definitely believe his motivation for ending it without an ending is to sell his DVD's with alternate endings and leave room for possible future movie. Thus my conclusion is that cash was the final motivation behind David Chases imaginitive ending and please don't try to justify how in reality there is never an ending, if that's the case, imagine a world where every series and movie ends with a similar ending as last night?
Twin Peaks! The X-Files! Now, The Sopranos!

I am sick to DEATH of shows that PRETEND to be going somewhere, PRETEND to be heading towards a conclusion, then don't.

To those who argue that life doesn't have closure -- why bother watching TV when I can spend the hour living life instead? Fiction supplies form or it's useless.

When Chase realized the show had legs after the first season, he was stuck -- he couldn't complete Tony's character arc -- and the show floundered with ups and downs. When he finally could complete that arc, correct that problem, he chose not to.

To those who think Tony died - it's an opinion, not a conclusion. While I should have an opinion about whether what happened was any good or not, I shouldn't have to have an opinion about WHAT happened.

And what was with that wacky FBI guy shouting out, "I think we're gonna win this thing!"??

Bah. Humbug.
All you folks thinking there wiull be a Sopranos movie, that Chase is "hoping for a movie deal"... get over it.

Chase has a high-end devlopment deal already; He has every studio, major and minor, waiting in line. He's stated again and again that movies have been his goal. And he's done with the Sopranos, as is Gandolfini. Sopranos the Movie ain't gonna happen.

My vote for the ending? I was freaked out at first, but in hindsight, brilliant & perfect. It wasn't a cop-out or a creative failure, but a ballsy move to end the show in a way that truly fit.
I think we've all gotten a little too used to modern American films that have to tie up all the loose ends to get past the test audiences.

If they'd ended the show with the family standing over Tony's casket, we'd all be complaining about the predictable ending.
Tony was whacked plain and simple, and he was whacked through a carefully orchestrated plan of ……..the FBI .
Here are the pieces / clues to the puzzle:
Tony is told of Phil’s plan by the FBI, who logically attempts to preemptively hit Phil’s “team.” Phil’s team carries out its plan but both teams miss the main targets, the heads of the families. Once again, the Fed’s come to the rescue by volunteering Phil’s location to Tony, who whacks Phil. Now only Tony is left, but wait… Tony announces over an open phone (which early in the episode you see is monitored by the FBI) where he is going to be.
Now fast forward Tony is in the restraint……..
Man sitting at counter watching Tony (he never orders)
Man gets up to go to bathroom (Which is behind Tony)
Now
Take the scene ref'd repeatedly by other bloggers with Tony and Bobby in the Boat “Nothing..just goes black”
then
Cut to Tony looking at meadow entering and … cut to black
Right out of the Godfather, you get the classic hit with the Soprano twist
The Soprano family is headless, NY is left will all of its front runners dead or out of position to control. Now the “we won” comment falls into context.
FBI wins. Game over.

Beautiful!!!!!!!
I loved the ending. Everything doesn't need to be tied up in a neat package. You can shoose to believe what you like. I believe the Sopranos enjoyed a nice meal at Holstens and went on with their lives. If you want the guy at the bar to be a hit man, your ending is different than mine. That's the beauty. Stop whining.
The final episode of The Sopranos was pure art! My heart was beating so fast. We all were expecting a final blood bath, Tony's death or the death or a close family member. Well, Chase didn't buy into what we expected and only a true artist can give you that. Bravo! It was brilliant. And for those of you who were disappointed...think (or try to image) that there's a place that exists beyond the end of your nose!
Like everyone else watching, I too was somewhat shocked when the finale ended the way it did. The whole time whil Tony was inside Holston's my heart was racing and my hands were clinching my hair. Everything happening seemed like a set-up for something, whether it be the guy at the bar, Meadow not being able to parallel park, or the two guys that walk in later. I think we all experienced a little taste of Tony's life. I also think they reinforce the idea that despite the mob, murders, money, and gumars, he is just a regular guy eating dinner with the fam. I'm glad they didnt do any over the top crazy ending, it may have cheapened the shows brilliance by doing something the veiwers actually expected. I loved the show and cant wait until its out on DVD so I can put nine years of intrigue, shock, predictions, and anticipation on my shelf to relive whenever I want. Thanks for everything Mr. Chase, and to you Steve Perry, I will not stop believing.
I can't beleive how many people are complaining. You just want everything bring to you in a golden plate, don't you. This was a masterpiece ending like no other before for this type of show. Chase has left us in a state of wondering what happen. We have tonnes of clues which can give us the answer to the black screen. Meaning using our brain...Too hard is it? Take the guy going to the bathroom, definitly a hit man. Meadow having trouble to park, hum maybe that gives a chance for the hitman to shoot at Tony, otherwise Meadow sitting beside Tony would have block the view for the shooting...This is just one way to look at it, so who knows except Chase. One thing is that with an ending like this, we think about it, it botters us. Think back at the end of other shows where we know the end, we close the TV and never really think about it again. Not the case with this one...
Sucked.
Here's the ending...

(Wideshot) Tony lying in bed under a floral duvet, curtains open allowing filtered light to enter the room.

Cut to close-up of Tony in bed (full body shot) (sound of inhale and exhale evident as in most shots in segments)

Slow zoom to Tony's eyes as they open and dart side to side.

(SFX) Sound of running water in background...

Running water stops.

(SFX) Shower door open/close

Cut to wide shot of room showing Tony in bed and entrance exit to bathroom.

Silvio appears from bathroom wearing a bath towel around mid-section and drying hair with second bath towel.

Silvio looks at Tony in bed and speaks:

Silvio: Did you sleep well my little mozzarella stick?

Cut to close-up of pamphlet on nightstand with cover "Sil and Tony's Bed and Breakfast. The best Inn of Vermont"

Cut to close-up of Tony rubbing his eyes

Tony: I had the weirdest dream...

Fade to black
The show's ending was brilliant. VERY BRILLIANT! It is an annoyance to someone who wants everything spelled out in black and white and doesnt trust their own imagination or conclusions. Meadows was painstakinly shown as having trouble parking.. WHY? So she would NOT be at the table at the exact moment of the ending. Why? Because the guy who went into the bathroom poped a gun and shot the three sporanos that were sitting there. STOP! and the black screen for several seconds - that's death all! is that it? NOTHING ELSE?? JUST DARKNESS? as I said VERY BRILLIANT!
As brilliant as it was unsatisfying, I think we get the point. Every moment of Tony's life that remains is going to be like that last couple of minutes of the final episode. Maybe it continues for another 30 years; maybe another second. Either way, every random person sitting in the corner with his coffee or walking past to the bathroom is a potential grim reaper. Sooner or later it is coming. In the meantime, Tony and family will pretend that they aren't living on borrowed time and try to enjoy the onion rings.

That reality is the point. Tony was aware of the random potential threats in the restaurant, but he wasn't as nervous as we viewers. This has been his reality since he joined the mob. The danger of a final scene is around every corner. But, like he more or less told Paulie, so what? If you know that someone in particular is trying to kill you TODAY, you go to defcon4. If it is just another day when randon people from you past and present might show up with a gun, you go out for burgers and onion rings. Otherwise you'd never leave the house.

I'm not expecting any movies; Chase and the cast would probably just consider that boring. I am expecting several alternate endings on the DVD, none of which will be any more real than the others.
How disappointing! There should have been some kind of wrap-up or some comment or something . . . it wasn't even as exciting as a season finale . . . at least those "season enders" left you with something to expect. What a drag. I guess this leaves the door open for a movie (a la Sex and the City) to finally wrap things up... a way to drag all the viewers to the theaters to pay big bucks to get an answer. What a shame!
The last two episodes were the absolute best ever. What a ride! Just a look at all the little stupid idiosyncrasies of Tony, Paulie, and the others, a window peek into their everyday lives. The cat, the chinese fire drill, calling Rhiannon - Rahoodie, I loved every minute of it.

Ahhhhh I'll have fond memories of the Soprano family for years to come.
B-B-B-Boring.
I'd wager that all of you people complaining that the ending sucked and that Chase sold out only watch this show for the violence. You people complain that only one guy got killed, it was boring, nothing happened, blah blah blah.
Typical of the majority, unless it has flashy explosions, monosyblabic dialogue, and a huge body count, it 'sucked'. Well go back to watching Arnold in movies like Commando and Running Man, because obviously that's what a lot of you wanted to see. This show isn't just about violence. The violence is secondary, or better, just a part of the job. And really, what were you expecting? A 'say hello to my little friend' scene with Tony fighting of waves and waves of New York goons in his Jersey home? The show ended exactly how it should have, with life going on.
If you're a true Sopranos fan than you know this kind of ending is a trademark of the show. Countless episodes have ended with the viewer wanting more and asking "wait, what happened?" Only to fill the addiction next week in the next episode.

Fantastic to the last. I'm sorry to see the TV show end; but hope this ended means "Sopranos: The Movie" is just around the corner. Then we can find out what came in the door, or out of the bathroom. We can find out what happens to Sil, if Uncle Jun remembers where his stash of cash is, if A.J. makes it in the material world of movies driving his new BMW, and if Tony is forced to kill off Meadow's fiance for getting too close to family business.

One can hope anyway.

VickieC
Ruther Glen, Va.
The sopranos finale was horrible, HBO should be kicked off, they are fools for paying soo much money to the creator of the Sopranos. I regret ever wasting time with the series, they are money hungry fools.

There's no reason to keep paying for HBO it is a rip off, Sopranos proved it
What the hell was that!
What a horrible ending. I'll be cancelling my HBO.
I thought my cable went off at the last minute because I live in Oklahoma and we were experiencing thunder storms, then realized that was the ending. My phone immediately rang and a fellow Sopranos friend said "What the hell?"

What a disappointment. It could have been SO much better. I think Chase set it up for a possible movie so we'd all come back for more. Not me. No closure. No more of my money or time.

Gina
It's like ripping the last pages out of a good book. Typical Hollywood flakely ending "Imagine your own concusion." Well David Chase, I watched to get a story fed to me and got ripped off so any future projects "Imagine I'm actually watching."
WOW, what a disappointing end to a great show! This would have been a very good season finale, but as it turns out a horrible series finale. If it wasn't for the fact that Leotardo got whacked I would have had no regrets missing the finale episode all together. Chase did a dis-service to all the loyal viewers that have followed The Sopranos. I was hoping at the very least that Paulie would have been whacked,(dude should have been taken out a long time ago) but nothing...except disappointment. So, after watching this show all these years I am left with nothing but questions....what a waste.
Okay, although I was in shock at first, I kind of get the ending, and the point that Tony's tumultuous life will continue to go on as it always has, and we (the viewers) just won't be a part of it anymore. I can live with that. But, what about the rest of the show, and the last two seasons for that matter? This was once one of the best programs ever made, but for several eposides has been a complete disappointment. I kept watching with hopes that things would get better, just to be disappointed again and again. And what's up with the ill placed political comments? They didn't even fit into the story line, but appeared to have simply been thrown in just to get them said.

I'll be cancelling my HBO TODAY!
I kept HBO because of Sopranos for almost 8 years.
Now it is time to cancell !
Especially after this no-brainer-end, what is for real "open end".
Never thought it would end this way.
Seems like the Producer ran out of ideas.
I expected more then this, which is less then nothing.
I was mad at the tv when it faded to black, but truely pissed when I realized it was the director's plan to leave us hanging again. This series started well, but the last 2 years were so disappointing I wouldn't go see a movie if they made one!
It was a great ending! After all they are a typical American family. It ended the way it started, a day in the life of this family.
The ending was not brilliant, far from it. The pace of the last 3 to 4 espisodes have been very dry and slow. Making you beleive it was leading up to a big finish. Bobby could have been in a shower and this season was all a dream. At least that was creative. All the abupt cut did, was to have everyone scream out "That was it?" This will be remembered as the biggest dud for a series finale.
If you had watched any of the previous shows and seasons it was a great ending. The truck driver, the mob looking guy at the counter, and the black guys were all tied to previous episodes.

Remember the show was based on how Tony juggled his "family" life and his family life.
All of us Soprano fans wanted more of a climax - but the end was just that ... THE END
You gotta be kidding me. I welcomed this show into my home for the past decade and many times I was dissapointed. But last night, the finale, the last episode ever, well....it was not the way this show should have closed the casket.
I'm beyond words. Many scenes satisfied while many others did not. David Chase should have done a few things in my eyes.
For one he should have continued with the intensity of the second to last episode "The Blue Comet," the best episode of the season. Secondly, why wasn't this finale a two hour beast. Instead HBO airs John from Cincinnati. Ohio, really.
I like many in the Soprano nation feel slighted and cheated this Monday morning, hell I called in sick to work because I still can't figure out what the hell happened last night.
It was okay, acted out just like any other show they've had. But here's what I think is going to go on...Meadow is planning on getting married to the lawyer. I think David Chase is going to do a movie and the movie is going to open with Meadow's wedding, just like the Godfather.
I missed this season's episodes. But I watch the last episode at my friends house. Thank god I didn't waste my time.

You could tell Chase put this together last night, no thought was put into the finale.

This final episode deserves " three whacks and a burial *** " for wasting my time.
Guys, Tony get whacked. Didn't any of you see it? The guy who was sitting off to the side who kept looking back was a henchman of Phil’s and if I remember right he has been in previous episodes. He goes into the bathroom presumable to come out behind Tony and kill him. Meadow is outside and as she is coming toward the restaurant - which by the way, is the vantage point that Tony would be seeing her from - she has this look on her face that has a few different interpretations. Is it agitation for not being able to park and being late? Is it fear of something she is seeing? Finally, you see Tony and then the screen cuts to black. Does anybody remember the conversation Tony has with Bobby in the boat about getting hit? He says you'll never see it coming. It will just cut to black and that is exactly what happens. The screen cuts to black. Admittedly, it would have been better if you see meadow coming in to the restaurant from Tony's point of view and then everything cutting to black instead of the last shot being Tony but I think Tony gets killed and I think Chase did it in a way that would be clear to loyal watchers of the show. I think it was brilliant.
The final show and ending was all but mobster movie material. Carm, aj and medow are in hidding from the most ruthless mob in amreica and somehow tony lets them go out as if nothing. Medow is off to NY city for lunch and AJ is taking the public buss to where ever alone and unprotected. Please.....No way is that anything like the MOB. The ending was the biggest disapointment. The director sacrificed the violence and core value mobster film material to make this a litterary work. I am very disapointed and so is most everyone i know.
You have to be kidding me. If I knew the Show would have gone of fthe air the way that it did then I wouldn't have wasted my time watching it every Sunday. What a waste!
This was even worse than the "Seinfeld" finale. My husband and I were bored. David Chase sucks. The show was disappointing. Vapid. Disjointed. Rushed. BOOOOO!!!!
Oh stop whining about how Chase let you down. That was one of the most suspenseful episodes ever - and it tied up a lot of loose ends. It's always been about family and emotion not just spraying bullets. So get over it.
Interesting that they were playing an old Little Feat song "All That You Dream" as he entered the restaurant for the final scene. My favorite group of all time!!
What a huge disappointment! I wasted $10.95 a month while the series ran, since I only pay for HBO when "The Sopranos" was airing. I‘ve watched every episode, and to have it end the way it did, just makes me angry with writers of “Ground Breaking” series. What a load of crap! I just sat in my chair rewinding, restarting my TIVO, calling the cable company, and even going on-line to search for some kind of clue as to what happen last night. As I really thought the picture went out, and then the credits start rolling. HBO, please sue the writer(s)and get your millions of dollars back for an ending, anyone could have written.
To those who were disappointed by the finale, I have been disappointed in the past as well.

At some point I realized that this is art. It's not always going to conform to what we expect. That's the way life is, too.

Go with the flow, ride with the tide, enjoy the episodes for the unexpected thoughts, feelings, and emotions they can incite in you.

Watch them again in re-runs or on DVD. Chances are you'll see something you missed the first time around.

Or just appreciate the brilliance of the acting, directing, and writing. We may not have always liked the direction the show took, but no one can ever say that they didn't give us their absolute best effort in all 86 episodes.

If anyone involved in the show happens to be reading this, I would like to thank you for entertaining me so well. I don't think I've ever enjoyed anything on television this much.

It's not the subject matter, it's certainly not the despicable characters. It was the performance. You raised the bar.
Great ending now that I've had time to think about it. Tony in the past always so paranoid let down his guard for the first time. Never looked at the guy with the baseball hat on, never looked at the guy sitting at the counter, even when he walked by the table to go to the restroom. Is Tony now able to relax or was NOT being paranoid this one time to end in his and/or his families demise?? Who actually came in the door? We assume it was Meadow but we never actually saw her? Lot's of ways this could end. Family get caught up in a hold up about to go down? That would be ironic. Death that has nothing to do with the mob but just a randon act of violence?
It's amazing to me that everybody wants to know "what happened". Apparently people have to be spoon fed everything. The meeting with uncle Jun, the last visit with his sister. Endings without endings. That's the beauty of the series ending, its open for debate forever more. Even if ended with a more definate thud, the story could still go on. This was just a better way to go about it.
I thought the last show would be a very good one, since the season was really pretty boring.

I was very disappointed with the ending. BORING!

I wasted my time watching this season. I wasn't impressed at all.

Thank goodness it's over. Now I can get started watching something interesting and exciting.

Good Bye Sopranos
I was surprised but Tony is the hero of the show - even though he is evil - Bad guys do win. I thought the show was disgusting but I watched ever episode. Had a good laugh when Phil died. I think I am a sick individual. Dr. Melfi I need an appointment!
With the amount of emotional comments posted here, it shows the brilliance of the ending.
Any of David Chase's upcoming films should be Boycotted. This is $#%#$^%. TV shows are meant to give closure. I feel like a GF I LOVED for 8 years, told me she was going to come over to give me sex, but instead kicked me in the balls and left on a midnight train to Georgia....never to hear from her again..
Hated it!!
Closure smosure. Who needs closure
The series was brilliantly written and performed. Get over it. Our kids are dying in Iraq
Brilliant, my emotions ran wild last night and it was fun. Talk about controlling your audience.
I think it was one of the series best episodes. Brilliant!
No, Tony did not have to die just to please the audience.
It was a very realistic ending.
Great job and now on to the next series!!!
Chase was not original. Andy Kaufman pulled the 'make the masses think something is wrong with the broadcast.' It was comedy. It did not work with the Sopranos. Chase was just lazy. The attitude of 'let them write their own ending' was just wrong. That blew big time. What a waste.
I thought this was a horrible ending to the "famous" Sopranos. For those of us who have watched this show every step of the way - I was truely dissapointed that there was no grand finale and I thought this had to be one of the most uncreative endings to a great series.
David chase has again showed that he only cares about the writing aspect. He gives little thought to the viewpoints of the great unwashed viewers that often have to make sense out of his mismatched writing.

To name a few, we've had Tony on a horse in the living room, his coma dream sequences, the inexplicable segment when Carmela goes shopping. Now we have an ending that provides not even the smallest sense of closure. Obviously leaving the door open to a movie or another series.

This season wasn't too bad. Of the last two, only perhaps two or three episodes in each were good. The others were pedantic plodding time wasters.

I won't bother watching any of David Chase's next projects, be they Sopranos or otherwise.

...at least when the Babylon 5 series ended, there was closure... and more specifically in a very gracious and humourous cameo by the writer, he appeared as a maintenance person that turned out the lights.

That's class. Chase has none. He's just a hack.
At first I was disappointed with the ending. I thought it was lame to bring everyone into these peoples' lives for so many years and then not have explicit resolution or closure when it was time to say goodbye.

Then I thought, maybe they intended to whack Tony, but all the threats from fans to HBO saying not to whack him forced him shave off that part of the end scene.

Then I thought, maybe they took the easy way out and left it hanging so that every fan could decide or imagine for themselves what the ending would be. Everyone could have whatever fantasy they want about what went down next. I like this idea yet it was somewhat cowardly, in my opinion, to not take a stand on a specific ending, and have some closure for this show.
The ending was brilliant. Chase hammered home the message Tony tried to give to Phil in the hospital..."We can have it all...slow down and enjoy things...like your grandkids"
Thats why he showed the grandkids steamrolling over Pop Pop at the gas station.

..and the cat was great karmic comedy.

I hope they get to the Big Screen.
Closure smosure. The series was brilliantly written and performed that's why everyone watched this long. Stop whining and get a life.
Brilliant!! First, noticed that Tony is not at his usual favorite restaurant, not in an Armani suit. He's been reduced to this gritball diner eating onion rings (not ziti!).

And just when everything looks like it's back to normal - actually everything is going better than normal with AJ having a job, Phil is dead - the screen goes to black.

David Chase is a genius. He foreshadowed this ending last week and in the first episode of the season. "Everything goes to black."

Do we really have to see Tony's lardness slumped in the booth in a pool of blood as Phil's henchman drops the gun and walks out of the restaurant? No, Chase thinks the viewers are smarter than that.

Apparently, half this post is not.
Sorry Mr. Chase... Not that violence was needed.. The fade to black was certainly stupid at best. The family getting together and being Normal Soprano's did not bother me. I could have lived with the wonder if any of the suspicious people in the diner were targeting the family. The fade to black was the pitfall...
In any event, you certainly do get people talking.
I will miss my Sunday nights..
You sorry clowns would have been mad either way. Just say what you feel, we're all mad that the only good show on television is over. I loved the ending, I would like someone to name one movie, show, or anything for that matter that had you on the freaking edge of your seat like that at the end. Then the screen goes black and everyone is like OH SNAP WTF COX, Time Warner, Directv, etc! It was about time to veer off from the textbook endings of gangster drama.
honestly, i think that the people who didn't like the ending have absolutely no clue what the show has been about all these years. i'd also say that they probably aren't even real fans, they just wanted to see blood get spilled and nothing more. this was an appropriate ending to the show. it would be too easy to just have everyone get whacked and end it like that. instead, david chase wants to make us think. unfortunately, in our easy bake oven society everyone demands instant gratification and nobody wants to think, it makes our heads hurt. get over it, that ending was the way it should have been ended and at least they were more creative than most generic mobster movie endings.
That was either one: An intentional giant FU to the audience. Or two: There were a lot of people yes-ing David Chase and telling him his doody doesn't stink. Anybody who believes the Sopranos finale was genius needs to read the Emperor's New Clothes. That show stunk. Plain and simple.
I thought the finale was great, it left some questions unanswered, but stayed true to the whole unpredictability of the show. The whole restuarant scene showed viewers how our outlook has changed in the past 9 years. We became paranoid and saw every person in the restaurant as suspect. We were left exactly where we started, in the daily life of the Soprano family. There were loose ends, but that's the nature of the show. I was glad Tony wasn't popped in that last scene!
You guys are all funny!
You have watched this show for a bunch of seasons and at the end of every season there are like 6 to 12 story lines that never get tied up. Next season they are never mentioned. Did you expect a nicely wrapped package with a shiney bow at the end of this show? You may have hoped for that but please lets be honest, there was no way that was going to happen. Phil getting whacked was all you could have hoped for, after that it was GAME OVER time. Deal with it.
Seinfeld ended that way, the West Wing ended that way. What did you expect?
The way I look at it Chase did it the way he did either 1] as if the "audience" got whacked while watching or 2] we were watching from Tony's point of view and he got whacked so we didn't see what happened. Otherwise he's just playing with us and setting us up for The Movie.
Screw Chase! F-him! This ending sucks axx! Someone kick his axx when u see him! BS ending man. Totally out of line. I hope he's getting a good laugh out of this joke.
A major dissappointment. A horrible unimaginitive ending consistent with the weak plot development and writing characterizing the last two seasons of the show. I have calcelled ny HBO subscription.
I'm a little stunned by folks who don't consider last night's ep to be an "ending." Why does it have to end with a death? Is that all the show is about? This isn't "Six Feet Under" - it's "The Sopranos," a show about mob guys who have chosen very difficult and squeamish lives. Why should the ending "resolve" that?

The one constant of the entire show is tension. No death has been cathartic - one just leads to more. As "safe" as Tony was after killing Phil and winning his henchman, he and his family are in just as much danger now. That's always been the driving force behind the show, and it was clearly in charge in the finale.

Did Tony get whacked? Maybe. The stage was certainly set. But the point is that you don't know - and that's making your heart pound. Would you really have been happier if you heard the shot, or saw the gun? Wouldn't a release of tension been a true anticlimax?

Yes, there were tantalizing hints that Tony perhaps just caught one in the brain, but I don't think David Chase was trying to make us solve a mystery. I think he was trying to give us a taste of Tony's life. There is no peace, no release, no climax. The show even ended before one more dinner with the family...because after that there would be more business, more threats, more tension. The perfect ending.

But if a movie IS in the works, I take everything back and call Chase a weenie.
Either way,the ending was great. If they are dead,or Tony along, it was a brilliant way to depict it. Through Tony's eyes. Not ours. He would not know it, would not hear it, not feel it. If it didn't happen this way, the show certainly is dead. It faded to black as well. Over. Done. Caput. To be no more. Figure it out for yourself. Whichever way you like better. He gave you that choice. We got what we wanted. We were all on the edge of our seats. We got a scare, we were teased. We got our own ending. Love it. Will miss it immensely.
This was a real heart-breaker! Not that I wanted to see Tony die, but some form of closure to the series. This left NOTHING- no Meadow taking over the family business, no Tony killing Paulie, no Soprano family getting killed, just Phil getting rolled over (just reward- what an as$%#oe).

Did they do this to leave it open in case they can talk "Tony" into another couple of seasons? How do you WALK AWAY from this kind of money? Do they have so much money that they simply leave America hanging?

Troy Meyer
Frustrated in Kansas City
How strange that so many now claim that David Chase "sucks" because they didn't like the ending. How quickly they forget how good The Sopranos consistently was. The ending was honest and seriously, outrageously, incredibly suspenseful. How else could it have ended? Close to perfect.
After rushing home from a family outting to skipping the basketball game (even though Lebron and the CAvs lost) to jumping on my sofa to watch the LAST EVER episode of the Sopranos, I was truly disapointed.

After last weeks episode was so gripping, I thought for sure that this would be the treat of a lifetime. It was awful. As we watched the time tick by, we thought what is goign to happen. In the end NOTHING happened. I will not be purchasing this season on DVD. What a total waste of money!!!!!!!
THis ending is right up there with the Dallas series ending, when the guy wake up from a dream. Stupid. Thanks for nothing Mr. Chase. Do you really think people are going to ponder for years what happens to TOny? NO, everyone will forget about this in the months to come. I should've watched reruns of MYTHBUSTERS instead.

Brian, Bolingbrook, IL
lazy writing. pure and simple.

however, on the flipside, how could you expect anything else? dreams and things of symbolism - the freakin' lighthouse for godsakes.

popularity and hype killed this show. it robbed us of closure.

i both appreciate and loathe the ending at the same time.
I loved the ending. I did feel like I was "whacked": lights out! that is it! Didnt see that coming! The only way David Chase could provide closure would be to kill Tony or send him to prison. (both sad and predictable) This way we can all end it the way we wanted. I dont need a picture to figure that out. I will also miss my Sunday nights.
This was the best season ever-
The critic called it "brilliant but perversely unearthshaking;" I call it a major cop-out!

And since when do you need a reservation for a family diner, as Carmella announced that she had called the place, before they went to dinner?

Unless, of course, they are planning a full-length movie in which case they need people to stock the film.
I have yet to see the episode but from what I read I thought this was a brilliant ending. All of the viewers that are complaining in my opinion are just used to the same boring "reality show" tv that's been shoved down our throats over the years where they can expect closure when a winner is announced during May sweeps. This type of ending allows viewers to think and discuss what possibly happens next for Tony and his family. For those viewers who want closure from a TV show, tune in next May when a fat girl and beatboxer get stand on stage next to a gay man with a tiring british judge ridicules them before a winner is announced.
Perversely brilliant, but still horribly frustrating. Reminds me of the summer cliffhanger 'Who Shot J.R.?' except that we never find out what happened. When I first caught it I was thinking 'what the...' but after revisiting it this morning I like the idea of using one's imagination. Keeps the brain active instead of sitting there like sheep having everything spoon-fed to you. Gonna leave it at that before I get started on another topic...
Boycott the movie... or at least just wait til it comes out on DVD and rent it.
David Chase sucks! That was Very disappointing... I will never watch his shows again.
Too bad they didn't leave us with something, if they didn't want to whack Tony at least the feds could have hauled Tony out of the restaurant, leaving us with something definite to question...F/B
How do some people not get it??
Tony was whacked, "never heard it coming"--the one that got him.

There was no "fade-to-black." It was instant blackness, an instant end. All the episodes were from Tony's point of view and this was no exception.

There is also a little something called foreshadowing. "I wonder if you hear it coming" was replayed before the finale starts. There was a reason for that.
After considerable thought last night and this morning, and reading Blogs, listing to the radio, and friends, I think Tony got whacked. The episode was mostly from Tony’s perspective and the cut to black, no music nothing, just the way he described it to Bobby.B in the 1st season.

The more I think about the last episode the more I like it.
Wow. Such a great ending but so many viewers are disappointed?! People swearing off future David Chase projects?!

The more I think about it, the more I think the ending was perfect! There is no way it could have been wrapped up neatly with a pretty little bow on it which is, apparently, what people feel like they deserved. This isn't Disney, folks!

And for those of you who think Chase lacked imagination or creativity with this ending, or that he copped out, well, you're probably the one who lacks imagination. You should probably stick to shows with shallow characters and simple plots so that you will always be "satisfied."

Bravo, David Chase. Bravo.
This ending was just boring. Yeah, we're supposed to fill in our own ending, yadayada. When I watch anything, entertain me, don't make me figure it out! Tony, all warm & fuzzy? puke! Where was the arrogant, vicious, whore-mongering guy we've come to know and love? Chase didn't even whack that whiny little AJ or annoying Janice & they really need to be put out of their misery. I give this ending a D-.
The Sopranos finale. Two Thumbs up to David Chase. Brilliant! Last thing we needed was another bloodbath ending. That final scene had my girlfriend and I at the edge of our seat wondering what was going to happen. Tony in the restaurant awaiting the arrival of his family. Watching everyone walking in, searching for one song to play. Another two thumbs on the music..Home Run David Chase. With Don't Stop Believin" playing The suspicious guy who walks in alongside of A.J. Meadow arrving late trying to park her car. The guy walks to the bathroom. Meadow runs across the street, tony hears the door open, looks up and "Bam" Black Screen. Leaving all of us to draw our own conclusion. My conclusion. Tony won and not a shot was fired.
what an arrogant way to end a great series.
What a freakin' mess that was!!

A terrible way to end a show...

No need to continue with my HBO subscription...already cancelled it with DirecTV.com
Typical internet sniping. The problem is you all wrote your own endings weeks, months, hell, years ago, and you didn't get to see that resolution on the screen. There's a reason for that - you didn't create this series. If you're so talented and think you can do better, go out there and write 86 episodes, win countless awards and accolades, and become appointment television for millions of people. Here's the ironic thing, though: Chase's cut to black ending allows each and every one of your endings to be how the series ends. Had Chase killed Tony or had him indited or had AJ become Donald Trump's helicopter pilot, you wouldn't have that option - and you'd be stuck complaining about how that ending didn't match yours.
Why the hell would Tony take his entire family to such a greasy low class diner? And not one of them complained about not being caught dead in such a place?? NOT even AJ??

Were they still not in "mourning" for the sudden demises of Chris & Bobby and even SILVIO in the hospital?

What about Janice thinking aloud about finding new husband??

These are some cold blooded MF's if you ask me!
Great ending. Did they finish their meal and walk away or did the Fed. hired hit man walk out of the men's room and blow away the Soprano's?

I would have to think they walked away.

Great series that will be missed.
People, people, don’t you GET IT?

The man going into the restaurant bathroom? “The Godfather.”
The café? Looks just like the one in the “Pulp Fiction” scene.
The cat? Remember Marlon Brando in “The Godfather?”

Go back and watch carefully, early in the episode, as Tony painstakingly peels an orange. Anyone remember “The Godfather III?”

Throughout this incredible final episode, Chase incorporates scenes from famous mobster movies. And, he inserts elements from his own life.

Tony visits AJ’s therapist and starts talking about his mom. Anyone who is a real Sopranos fan knows that Chase based the character Livia off his own mom.

Early in this episode, Tony and the guys are in the “safe house” watching an episode of “The Twilight Zone” in black and white. Listen closely. A television writer is pitching a new series to a producer. The producer responds, “Television is looking for quality…the writer is a commodity.” Hello, get it?

For those who say this episode lacked creativity….go back to watching your afternoon soap operas.

Way to go, Mr. Chase. Brilliant.
The only disappointing thing about the Sopranos finale, was having to deal with the impending "that really sucked" calls from friends who know how much you have put into enjoying this masterpiece tv series. I can really tell who gets the Sopranos and who is watching because their DVD of Goodfellas got scratched by these calls. The most powerful moments of the series were through the dialogue, not how many people were whacked an episode. I will really miss it all.
I imagine one aspect of the ending that ran through David Chase's mind, and caused him to smile to himself, was that this ending would polarize viewers. Remember a couple seasons ago when HBO ran promo ads themed around "cooler talk"? Well, Chase insured that with this ending.

Unfortunately, for me, that's one of the few levels on which it succeeded.

I give Chase his due - it was unique, hadn't been done before, and I think certainly does tie it back with all the "If the end comes by a bullet to the head, things fade to black silence" inferences.

However, frankly - that's not good enough. Not nearly good enough for viewers that have been loyal viewers of the show, paying monthly to watch it, for 8+ years.

For those that say it's a brilliant, avant-garde, artsy ending leaving things open to interpretation that is only limited by one's imagination, they're certainly entitled to their opinion.

For me, it was the biggest cop-out ever. It's as if Chase knew he couldn't please all the viewers, so he abdicated the responsibility of trying to please any. Whether Tony died, went to prison, went into witness protection, etc., there would be viewers disappointed - but does that mean you don't even try to bring it to some resolution?

As so many others have pointed out, these are fictional characters. They DO NOT live on in make believe mob-land, so once this show’s complete I don’t really care if Tony theoretically lives on in fear, guilt, and self-loathing which ultimately overtake him.

Chase started telling a story 8 years ago. Many of us got interested in his story, and came along for the journey. Stories have endings. Period.

If I bought a book and read the first 890 pages leading up to a climactic finish, only to discover that the last 10 pages were deliberately left blank, save for the page numbers at the bottom, I WOULD NOT think how clever and brilliant it was! I would feel like the brunt of a bad joke, and thoroughly cheated, just like I do with this "ANTI-FINALE".

Having said all this, The Sopranos was a great series that brought us a lot of enjoyment for many years and its legacy won't be reduced to this last episode. Thanks cast and crew for a great ride!
YOU GUYS JUST DON'T GET IT!!!!!

Chase is Brillliant!

Tony in the kitchen eating an orange which symbolizes "The Godfather" for those of you who do not know anything about mob movies. You know then that the end is not going to be good for Tony.

NOTHING EVER ENDS GOOD IN THE MOB! DEATH OR JAIL!

Tony's need to be out of the spot light in the last few seasons never came and now he is more powerful then ever and never happier. THE SHRINK NEVER HELPED!!

The FBI guy who does not care if Tony is good or bad at the end of the day, is happy that his guy and case did not get wacked but instead it was Phil and the other teams case that went away.

Tony's family all sitting there accepting who and what they are. They are sitting there as a happy family when you know that there is a 90% chance that they have a Ricco case on Tony or that the guy is coming out of the bathroom to turn the lights out on Tony.

Who care if you don't know which one happen but at the end it has to be one of the two.

MOBSTERS ALWAY END UP DEAD OR IN JAIL! CHASE JUST LET US DECIDE THE OUTCOME OURSELVES!!!!

GREAT EPISODE
I can't believe everyone is missing the most important dialog in the final sequence. Carmela asks Tony if he spoke with the lawyer and he said "Yeah, it's Carlo. He's going to testify." which means Tony and his whole crew are going down. There is no other conclusion than that.
The final episode of "The Sopranos" was David Chase's revenge at HBO for forcing him to do another season when he clearly was tired of the story, the characters and the hype of his "Family." Some will read too much into the ho-hum, anti-climatic final scene of what was one of the best shows in TV history. They will say how "brilliant" the final sequence was with all the tension being built as potential hit-men were systematically identified and dismissed by "genius" camera work and editing. These hipsters will crow about the sublime irony of ending the show in mid-frame as Meadow dashes across the street into a potential shooting gallery. Genius? Sublime? B.S!! Chase shows his contempt for this show, HBO and yes the fans by ending the show with not even a whimper, but but a yawn. He shows a superior, "I'm an artist and I am no longer stimulated by this subject" attitude and I think purposely wrote a milque-toast ending to one of the seminal Television shows in the history of the medium. Instead of having Tony go out with a bang he goes out with a mouth full of onion rings. Is that riveting, appointment television? Maybe for the Food Network, but not for a network that made it's bones as a place for edgy, avant-garde original programming. I hope someone at HBO gets "whacked" for approving that crap as the final episode of one the most popular dramas ever on TV.
IT DID END WITH TONY GETTING WHACKED! At fist I too thought it was about moving on and enjoying the "good times" in life. However the last moment of the show when it goes to black was Tony being killed. If you remember to the very first episode with Tony and Bobby on a boat at Bobby's lake house Tony says something along the lines of you never see or hear anything...everything just goes black. Also the people in the diner had all been in past episodes. The man going to the bathroom, a co-worker told me, was Phils's cousin. Not to mention the brief look on Meadow's face right before the show ended. It was seen through Tony's eyes as he kept looking up at all the patrons walking in. His eyes met Meadow, then he was killed and it all went to black. GENIUS!
This was another horrible episode in a really pathetic season.

-no character development (except AJ)
-no flow within the plot
-just another opportunity to Chase et al. to show off.

For those calling it "Brilliant", answer this: Why did Tony never even recognize that Phil was dead?

That's not brilliance. That's not knowing how you want the final episode to work when you film it. Alot of people identified with this show (I live about a mile from where Phil was killed), and this show abandoned them. Pathetic.
Brilliant!
While I feel the first two seasons of the Sopranos were brilliant, I'm sad to say that I felt the series steadily went down hill. I can't tell how many times over the last few weeks I heard talk about how The Sopranos was the most brilliant show ever on HBO....WRONG...that would have be Six Feet Under.
This show has been wildly over rated for years, the first few seasons had merit, but when the show slid into meandering mediocrity, the critics still heaped way too much praise on a show that had and has lost it's way, the last episode proved it, nothing to say but repeat the same old tired scenes and the ending, was a statement from Chase saying, "Guess what folks, I no longer have any ideas for this show" The Sopranos has died a slow and extremely boring death.
Would not want it to end any other way.
I cant beleive all these people who are calling this polished turd "Brilliant".
I am reminded of "artsy" people in an art gallery looking at an egg thrown against a canvas as they call it "brilliant!".
As a dedicated watcher I had an investment in this show and the pay off is to learn what happens.
That didnt happen and I think that Chase is the Kenneth Lay of TV shows.
HE RIPPED US OFF!
Speculation of what happened is for SEASON finales, NOT SERIES FINALES!
BOO!
Well that ending was enough to get me to whack my cable bill down a few bucks a month. HBO's gonna take a dirt nap and I'll just hang on to Showtime. Dexter's a better series anyway.
OK so the season and series did not end in an phenomenal way - hey the last 3 or so years have not been up to par with the earlier years. What got to me most was all the time Chase took in between some of the seasons in order to get us all worked up only to be absolutely disappointed in the end. Of course I had to continue watching to see if things would return to where they were but Chase missed the mark.

Obviously many of us are disappointed with the way the series ended - perhaps Chase wants to do a movie to continue on with the saga (but what characters are left which we would really care about seeing again) or maybe this has become such a large part of this life he could not let it die. I do not think we will ever know.

Will there be more - I doubt it. Gandolfini said he was glad it was over since he was carrying Tony around with him for 8 years! I think Chase just did the best he could with what little imagination he had left.

Cut to black - keep it that way!
People the answer to the question is this. There is no answer.

Life goes on. Good or Bad. Life goes on. Did Tony change. No. After he was shot he had a chance to change....but he couldn't and wouldn't do it.

It's just that simple. If you were upset by the ending...you just didn't get it all along.

Dr Melfi realized it last week. There is nothing more she could do to help. He was hopeless and unwilling to change.

Remember when they were in AJ's shrinks office...he tried to do it again....even Carmella noticed.

Life goes on.
Tony doesn't die...who would have killed him?...the NY thing was settled....Tony's life goes on as usual...just like the rest of us...
very bad,that's not how you end a show that has a very devoted fan base- just plain disappointing.
I loved it. The mystery of the mob is the blind fear it creates. One never knows where/when/how it will appear next. One never knows what evil lurks behind the next door. During the final scene(s), my heart raced, my mind thought of a hundred different endings and, as we fade to black, life simply went on for this mob family. For now. Perfect.
I think in one moment one of the most successful series on television turned into a dismal failure. We watch TV to be entertained. If we want to think about the ending we'll read a book. I believe in any series its the writers responsibility to write a resoultion to the story. Even M*A*S*H had an ending. Very Poor Show David Chase!
The series finale was entertaining to me and I have to say I am satisfied with the controversy surrounding the ending. The way I view it is the way David Chase directed this last episode it was obvious that it would stir up so much controversy, whether good or bad. The point is, nobody likes Paris Hilton, yet she is talked about on the news as much as Iraq is. Nobody wants to see a car accident yet we will all drive slow to see what's happend. I just feel that an ending that show's Tony's murder or Tony in jail or some sort of closure would be the satisfaction that would give us something to enjoy temporarily - give each other high fives and talk about for a few days and then slowly fade away in our memories. Controversy, whether good or bad, lingers for a very long time. I think David Chase put a stamp on the Soprano's series that was well planned. Just a thought...
Final Episode deserves - "three whacks down and a burial"

It was bad, worst episode ever.
wait for the movie
The series finale was entertaining to me and I have to say I am satisfied with the controversy surrounding the ending. The way I view it is the way David Chase directed this last episode it was obvious that it would stir up so much controversy, whether good or bad. The point is, nobody likes Paris Hilton, yet she is talked about on the news as much as Iraq is. Nobody wants to see a car accident yet we will all drive slow to see what's happend. I just feel that an ending that show's Tony's murder or Tony in jail or some sort of closure would be the satisfaction that would give us something to enjoy temporarily - give each other high fives and talk about for a few days and then slowly fade away in our memories. Controversy, whether good or bad, lingers for a very long time. I think David Chase put a stamp on the Soprano's series that was well planned. Just a thought...
I was sick to my stomach when the first credits rolled after the thunderous silence that so loudly accompanied the black screen. The ending is a supreme let down. Chase, in real life gangsters go out one of two ways; dead or in jail. It is not the responsibility of the viewer to determine Tony’s fate that is your job! You left us with nothing. As my heart raced as the scene brilliantly unfolded I was left what the F? and thought “You’ve got to be kidding me???”
We are the ones who were wacked. Their lives are going on without US!!!

Brilliant!

BTownsend
Kentucky
It was a brilliant ending. Any other specific ending would have been inferior and/or seconded guessed.
Use your imagination, write your own ending. Don't always depend on others to think for you. Chase wasn't lazy, as some are claiming, the complaining public is. Use your mind and think for yourself. That was Chase's message.
Tony couldn't die because he was all men. Is Tony good with some evil, or evil with some good in him? Isn't that the way it is for all people? And the story continues. Of course it does because life continues, with all it's complexity and unknown.
The show has always been unpredictable, but the surprises evolved naturally. The ending of the series was a trick, very out of character, very “Look at me.” I was disappointed.
You least expect it before getting whacked… then the world turns black
I thought the end was brilliant. While we all expected Tony to get whacked, nobody saw this coming.
This ending was stolen from the 1999 movie "Limbo", check it out.
Only, then it made more sense and it was a movie. This "copy cat" ending used for this long running show with a loyal fan base was mean.
Dissapointing, to say the least.
The much - hyped finale seems to be little more that bits and pieces of other shows that were collected off the cutting room floor. Pieces that could've been used as bridges tying one scene to the next had the show been in mid-season.
On second thought, had the show been in mid - season, last night's version would've been referred to as the 'jumping the shark' episode.
Even though we knew Chase wasn't going to button up this thing of ours in a nice, neat package, neither did we expect quite so many loose ends.
Phile Leotardo got hit, sure...even though it was barely acknowledged.
An artistic ending in the diner?
Sure, especially with the baseball capped guy walking into the restaurant bathroom a la Michael Corleone in "The Godfather". But still, as we've seen for 85 of the 86 episodes, David Chase is capable of much better.
Why are people so mad? I mean, seriously, does there always have to be resolution? Life goes on, as it should for the Sopranos. The more I think about it, the more I get that ending (and love it).
All the people complaining that it was a bad ending, didn't get it, plain and simple. It was a BRILLIANT ending. Tony Soprano, is dead, that was the significanse of CUTTING to black mid show. he suspected it, but never saw it commng. "Everything just goes black" to quote the first episode of the season. Who knew that that was a major clue to the ending of the series. Subtle and pure genious on Chase's part. It's the perfect ending letting us "imagine" how it happened. I'm glad we were not insulted with some cliche' ending. I want more, like everybody else, but it won't happen. It's over
I've got a humorous, adult take on the final episode. I won't post it here so as not to clog up the commentary, but if you're interested you can read it (and learn a little Italian) at newwest.net/bobwire.
Now git!
Guys, they just had the trucker on Howard Stern, and he point blank said that the ending was all a dream.

Note: Tony walks into the diner and sees himself already sitting there, that's when the dream starts.

The trucker is the brother of the trucker that was killed in season two by Christopher. He's sitting at one of the tables...this is in the credits.

One of the guys that was sitting at the bar was Nick Leotardo--this was Billy Leotardo's son, Phil's newphew. Again in the credit..listed as "guy at the bar".

The Boy Scouts that were in the show, were the same Boy Scouts that were at the train shop where Bobby was killed.

Interesting, eh? Tony was dreaming he was with his family, but all his enemies were still there at the same place they were.

That being said - the fading to black could be him (Tony) snapping out of his "dream"

What do you guys think?
The ending surprised me, I thought everybody would be dead! But, after sitting in disbelief, staring at the black screen for a moment, I realized I actually loved it!

Thanks, David, it was 8 great years!
Ridiculous.

Two possibilities: A) Tony got whacked by the guy in restaurant. "They say you don't even see the one that gets you, coming." The screen went blank as the bullet ended his life. B) They tied up a few loose ends (Phil, family, etc.) and just let the rest float out to see. Life goes on for the Sopranos, but we can't watch anymore.

Those are my two theories. My personal feelings. Very disappointed, pissed and unsatisfied. I wish there was a little more closure but that's that and there's nothing I can do about it. I thought the episode as a whole was weak and I was not impressed. Now even worse: I thought this was a 2 hour finale. So when the screen went blank and then (finally) the credits started rolling, I had no idea what the hell was going on. I was even more confused just because of the credits. I'm sitting there throughout the show, looking at the clock, anticipating the end and WHAM-O! It ended and I wasn't even expecting it. I was nice and calm thinking there was an hour to go. Now THAT was the part that sucked the most for me. But that was my own stupid fault.

Final word: After this last episode, and a good chunk of this whole season, I will not miss the Sopranos. It was a good show and at times a great show. However the longer it was on, the more and more the episodes became 50/50. They were either great or they were lame. There was no middle ground. I thought this last season wasted a lot of time on threads that were not important and not detrimental to the story but rather things became very "big picture". They had 6.5 seasons. 86 episodes in 8.5 years. That's not even 11 episodes a year. Lame and frustrating as well. When all is said and done, I'm glad I got to see the Sopranos as they happened, but I am glad it's over now. I'll miss the shining moments but at the end of the day, the waiting between seasons, the lame peripheral threads, the finale, etc. - These things outweighed the strong points. Farewell Tony and Co. and I wish you well... wherever you may be.
My take on the whole Sopranos season was that it was somewhat of a dissapointment. We watched, week in and week out, episodes where nothing was going on with the exception of how delusional and deranged AJ was. I was highly dissapointed and it did not meet my expectations.
With the exception of the very ending of course, which I though was brilliant.
The show ended on Tony's last breath. It was the perfect mafia hit -- so silent he didn't see it coming. And because the show was told from Tony's perspective, once he was dead, there was nothing left to see.
Tony had to die after having Leotardo whacked. The other NY families would not have tolerated that.
I think that that was teh ebst ending for Sopranos. To give the ending that no one was guessing and it held true to Sopranos style, without turning into most successful series that needs to resolve everything like there is not another day for the characters.
Are you kidding me Mr Chase? The show gave me the illusion that it knew where it was going all these years, with its heavy foreshadowing and overt symbolism, it has been hinting at something more spectacular than that 'choose your own adventure' peice of trash I watched last night. I was under the impression that you knew where you were going with this series the whole time. In the past several seasons I've defended the shows meandering plot lines and irrelevant episodes to many of my friends. We've waited ridiculous lengths of time for new seasons to begin, and had to alter our schedules to make sure we dont miss new episodes. Apparently the pressure was too much Mr Chase? Did your characters become too dear to kill off? Did the actors refuse to let it end violently? Or is this really all about squeezing yet more product out of this enterprise? Are we to expect a sopranos movie now? I wouldve reccamended against it up until now, and I already feel duped for watching the last several seasons, but at this point I demand you go back and write a real ending. As beatiful as my imagination is, as creative as I might be, I prefur that you write the ending, I didnt follow this series for 8 years to make up my own ending! Think about all the shows that get canceled before their final episodes, that never have the chance to resolve their stories, this show might as well have been canceled several years ago, because we'll never know WTF happened to all those loose ends!
I hear and see all these complaints about how the show ended. Personally I don't think it could have ended any better. When we first caught up witht eh Soprano Family it really wasn't the begining, it was just A begining. When we left them, it was the end, just an end. We are left to think about what COULD be happening right now. Did the guy come out of the bathroom and blow everyone away? Does Sil live? Does Tony go to jail for the gun charges? Was it Carlos who was going to testify?

I do have to say it took me a few minutes to pick my lower jaw off the ground when the screen went black just as Meadow was opening the door to the dinner, but after thinking about it, Do any of you REALLY want to see Tony die or turn snitch on his own "family"?

We ALL grew to love this VERY DYSFUNCTIONAL family, and CHase gave us all a reason to hope for this family. I aplaud D. Chase and all the actors in last night's episode for giving us ONE OF THE BEST FINALE'S EVER!!!! Maybe not in action, but in Drama and hope.
People HBO is going to make a fortune off of you. The creator of Sopranos is going to add the 4 alternate endings in the box set, which they expect you to pay for like suckers. In the end, HBO makes a fortune, and the suckers lose a fortune.

Why even both paying for the HBO series, better off renting them at the video store. HBO should be sued for ripping off the viewers.
High potential, low kinetic!!
Not surprised. Actually I didn't even watch it. I'm tired of the roller coaster ride after 8 years. The first two seasons were riveting, but it's like another writer took over after that. I've only watched it the last couple of years when nothing better was on. I couldn't even tell you the relationship of some of the characters any more.

Black is a perfect color....total absence of light (or meaning in this case).

I can only HBO finds a better use for their newly opened time slot!!!!

A one-time fan....
What a lame ending. We pay money to be entertained. Dance monkey! I guess that is what you get when you drag Chase back to keyboard.

I canceled my HBO right as the screen went black.
I thought theending was horrible. I too thought my cable had gone out. In my opinion, David Chase should have let the writers write the last episode rather than himself writing it.
My god what a simply beautiful ending. FLash Sopranos fans will say this was a CRIME.

BUT if you are a REAL Sopranos fan you saw this as PERFECT.

Sopranos is not about the mob, its about the family and life. The last ten minutes told you everything we needed to know and David Chase threw the greatest red hearing tension builder ever seen on TV maybe evn movies.

The scene where Junior is told he was boss of Jersey and all he says is nice. Tony realizes then that all this, mob stuff in the end it means nothing.Thats why he had the tears.

And the last scene was bringing it all home, Chase teases the flash fans who want bullets flying to beleive they're gonna see a monumental bloodbath.

But it was never about the violence, or the mob.

It was about life, its not always good, its not always ups. So you have to enjoy the good times when they come because Life doesnt stop (Journey song get it kids?) And you just have to keep on beleiving and living.

Carm is progressing, AJ has turned a new leaf, Meadow is moving on, and Tony will continue down his viceral empty life of crime with the only reafirming thing that truly matters in his life.

Family.
For 8 years this series has been on of the best ever on TV. Sure the series had the ups and downs but, the finale was horrible. Sure Phil met his demise but the ending was left open!!! I just hope for the movie!!!
How can I say awesome? I knew I would cry at the end of a show that was part of the last 8 years. But I didn't know the tears would be from the frustration at the ending. Thank you Mr. Chase for daring to be different. When you started the Soprano's it had dared to be different, so in true fashion you kept it up to the end. My hat off to wonderful actors and actresses that kept me entertained for a few years.
There was nothing masterful about the ending. To keep it simple, it was a BIG F-YOU to the fans.
I'm all for being different and artsy... but that was ridiculous. You CANNOT end a series finale like that. I cancel my HBO subscription as soon as the screen cut to black. I thought my cable went out... worst ending to any show of all time. You guys suck!
The Ending of The Sopranos Explained
(My post on CNN.com)

The answer is subtly spelled out in the final scene.

Tony ... dies.

If you didn't get this, watch the final scene again and notice how the film maker goes through great lengths to put the television viewer in Tony's shoes, and show every last detail of the restaurant and its occupants from Tony's perspective.

Notice the hit man who enters through the front door, sits at the bar, and then goes off to the restroom at Tony's right.

The last thing Tony saw before his life ended was his daughter entering the front door of the restaurant.

At that point the hit man emerged from the bathroom and fired a round into the side of Tony's head. He never saw the shot coming, because he was looking at the door, and not to his right.

What happens when when a person is fatally shot in the head?

Fade to black.

Because Tony never saw the shot coming, the audience didn't either, since the entire scene was shot from Tony's perspective.

The reason why so many people felt "whacked" by this ending. ladies and gentlemen, is because you *were* "whacked"!

Who had the motive to "whack" Tony so horribly, in front of entire family? Phil Leotardo's people of course. This was their revenge for Phil getting whacked by Tony's goons in front of his own family, by a shot that Phil also, never saw coming.

I thought that this was the most masterful ending possible to the Sopranos series, and I will be thinking about it for a very long time.
I missed the NBA final 1st half(Cleveland fan) to watch and be in the number for the Sopranos series finale. I was left with..what the *$($#^ ???? Maybe there will be a Soprano Jr.

Paulie never lets me down. I enjoyed the scene with Paulie, the Cat and the Broom. That was the highlite of the Finale. Paulie hair is finally coming into its own. Everyone looked kinda old.

Thanks for the memories. Thanks A&E for the reruns.
All of you pretentious turds who claim those of us who wanted resolution "don't get it" are kidding yourselves. Chase is a cowardly storyteller who bailed out rather than risk it by actually "ending" the show. The ending wouldn't have been as intolerable if it hadn't been built up for as long as it had. Don't tell me "The End is Coming" and then not even bother to have an end.

What a joke...
Boo - stink, stank, stunk! I waited all season for that????
i would have been more entertained watching the "Tony Awards" than watching Tony Soprano. Everyone I have spoken with feels the same way. What the heck? I feel ripped off.
What do 'they' mean - Use your own imagination. That's why 'we', yes WE, pay HBO, who in turn pays David Chase the BIG bucks to come up with a finale, not with a hanger! That's rediculuous!!! I'm not the one being paid to come up with my own conclusions! I paid to be entertained!!! I'm not alone in this but if there's a movie, I'm boycotting it and I'll watch the movie on DVD or HBO at someone else's house!

After that finale, I'm finished filling Chase's AND HBO's pockets! And I watched the Soprano's when no one even knew what it was. Yea, I loved the series. I just hated the finale, and a bit more after that.
OMG - Pathetic and an insult to the fans. Unless of course the door is being left open for a major motion picture project....
This was totally awesome.
We'll never know.. but "Dont Stop Believin" b/c although the movie never ends it goes on, and on, and on, and on!..
The east coast and west coast feed of the Sopranos ended differently - meadow in one and not the other - look it up
The ending was realistic. One Mob Boss kills another over Money. Tonys life lives by the Minutes. You never know whats gonna happen next. The way he made you think the guys in the diner were there to knock off tony was great....because a mobster is always looking over his shoulder.
Wait, wait, wait a minute!!! That's right, I forgot. Tony did see himself. What is that? I saw it and let it go. Did Tony see himself though? Or did we just see two Tony's? Was it his "soul" already out there, waiting, because he was going to die? I thought it was clear that Tony and maybe all of his family got wacked, until I read the comment about Tony being there when Tony walked in. I am now officially confused and unhappy. I thought it was a neatly wrapped up episode until now. Help. David Chase you have some "splaining" to do.
Tony is dead. All the people here who are angry and wanted to see him killed, too bad its not the way Chase does it. We saw the life of mobster through Tonys eyes and we saw what its like to get shot in the head. He left it hanging out there for peoples imagination, its not cheap, its not a cop out. Tony is dead, and the guy in the bathroom killed him. I know you didnt see a body, but do you ahve to to know what happened?
Tony's dead. NO DOUBT ABOUT IT. The sudden blackness was intended to not only convey Tony's death, but to give us, the audience, a sense of the family's stunned and confused reaction. I hated the ending at first but I now feel it was brilliant on a number of levels.
Brilliant? Fantastic? Perfect?

Did we all watch the same show?

This is the most pathetic episode of the Sopranos series.

I am glad it is over, the writing over the past few seasons was terrible. And judging by the last episode, would have only gotten worse.
Totally frustrating – I was appalled at the ending. Our Sopranos party was dead silent at the end – what a piece of garbage -Chase. Tony waking up in the hospital in a post dream sequence would at least have been better.
To all of the people complaining, I don't think David Chase could have won...Tony gets killed, it's a "cliche" ending. Same if he ends up on the slammer or in the witness protection program. We'd still never really know "what happened." This ending was brilliant! The tension I felt for the last scene alone was worth the price of admission. In that scene, you could see that even though Tony got away this ime, he and his family will never be at peace. Them getting together as a happy family for dinner was a big lie. Loved it!
Perhaps I need a refresher on the meaning of "brilliant," which seems to be how many people characterize this finale. I for one found it utterly boring. The entire episode was fragmented and frankly meaningless. Was that point? If so, the same could have been achieved by not airing any episode at all...at the minimum, I had hoped to be entertained. This was an episode in which David Chase appeared to take his artistic sense way too seriously and forgot he owed his audience for everything.
DUH, what do you expect from cable TV? This is why I don't watch any of it—simply mindless entertainment. Yes, you all got hooked, and now you are just unsatisfied fish out of water. But, Mr. Chase became rich and then treated you as mindless morons. Can't wait for the movie or extended DVD or whatever else he sells you next...
Chase's only mistake was assuming that his audience was smart enough to follow slightly obscure clues. The people blasting him and HBO, claiming that they have wasted the last eight years of their lives are simply too ignorant to see the the craft with which he delivered the ending. Bobby and Tony's conversation, the way Phil dies without even turning his head, the prolonged silence at the end and throughout the credits, which always come with background music--all these are obvious clues to the audience that Tony's life ended, and all that was left was black. You don't have to use your imagination, they don't live happily ever after, the show ends when the story ends, and the story was the life of Tony Soprano.

Use your brain before you make hypocritical statements about a show that gave you something to look forward to and something to talk about for many years.
You've got to be kidding me! I'll take a leap of faith and estimate there is a large % of Americans who DON’T prefer to suffer an ending to a highly successful, long running show "Left up to their own imagination." I'll estimate David Chase is brilliant enough to come up with something better than a, "You'll never know. or Maybe this, maybe that..." ending. It's not like the Soprano's was some literary significant saga where the audience is supposed to take away some meaningful insight. This story was about mobsters, mobster families and everything associated with the two. Give the viewer what they watched the show for in the first place, sensationalism, captivation and some good ol’ mobster violence. Chicken sh!t ending if you ask me.
Chase may be feeling smug today that so many people are talking about his show and so many of those are didn't see what he must have thought was a brilliant and obvious ending BUT there is only one obvious conclusion to this...

Any ending that leaves so many FANS upset cannot be viewed as a success.

I was there from the beginning and I too feel like I have invested years of my life for nothing. If I had to do it over again, knowing what i know now... I wouldn't and that's is the biggest shame of all.
Like everyone I thought my cable had gone out. But then as the credits started I realized Tony got whacked. I sympathize with the fans who wanted a clear closure but as quoted from earlier episodes "the end comes when you least expect it...everything just goes black", paraphrased. I only watched the series 'on demand'. I never watched it week by week from the beginning. I thought it a clever, very well written series, but not my favorite series. I thought the ending very clear - Tony got whacked, probably by the guy who went to the bathroom. Why else would he keep looking at Tony? There's your closure, Tony got whacked as any amoral gangster should. I couldn't like Tony as a person but as a character interesting. Tony got whacked. And the producer has what he wanted, everybody's talking about it.
Not that I mind ambiguity, but this ending was such that it left me not caring about what happened after the blackout. Did he get shot? Was it all a red herring? I suppose the "true" Sopranos fans will enjoy debating this for years to come. For me, it seems like the creators just didn't care enough to write a well-crafted ending.

Several previous comments have defended the closing scene by saying stuff like: "Real life doesn't climax at a pre-determined point in time. and dramatic events don't wait until 'sweeps.'"

Well, first, this episode did end at a deliberately chosen point in time, with the difference being that this cutoff point was about a minute earlier than what most directors would have chosen. "True to real life" would entail ending the episode after another, less climactic scene. Of course, doing that wouldn't attract as much attention.

And this was a sweeps/end-of-season episode if I ever saw one.

Come on--no matter how good it was, The Sopranos was still a commercial piece of entertainment, not a piece of art. And, since David Chase is not endowed with the skills of James Joyce, I say that he should have written an ending.
They couldn't have ended the final episode any better than they did. That was nearly perfect how David Chase concluded a brilliant series. So why is everyone so upset? Would you have rather seen Tony and his entire family murdered while eating dinner at a family diner? Or, would it have been a better conclusion if Tony were murdered and his family had to sit there and witness the horror? I didn't think so. The hit series ended with a ridiculously tense moment that most-likely had every viewer one step from pulling their hair out. Everyone was tricked into believing that the final scene of Sopranos was going to be a bloodbath; it wasn't. David Chase left us feeling the same way that Tony will be feeling the rest of his existence, or at least for a long while. With the music of Journey playing in the background, the cut-scenes to Meadow attempting to park the automatic parallel-park Lexus, the cliché-like happy ending comments, I don't believe David Chase could have ended the Sopranos any better by displaying acts of tension and struggle throughout each character. Of course, they could have packed the entire 1-hour episode with everything that could have possibly happened; but, they didn't have to, which is why HBO is clearly a step above every other network when it comes to conclusions to hit series (e.g. Six-Feet Under, Sopranos, etc.). If you ask me, The Sopranos went out in style. Also, I'm hoping they DON'T make a movie; the entire series will be devalued.
Didn't Bobby say "You probably don't even hear it when it happens." Great ending!
what a waste of my time for the pat 9 weeks !
So let me get this right... Either Tony's dead or in jail? Where are all the people who rooted for Tony to get away with it all? Here's the ending: Meadow gets married, works her cushy job, gives Tony lots of grandbabies. Carm goes into the real estate biz and becomes a millionaire, divorces Tony and marries some young stud. A.J. becomes a megahit hollywood producer and director. Tony retires to a little villa in Italy, keeps gambling, getting with women, eating/drinking whatever and dies comfortably in his sleep.
It was like 10 years of sex without the be "O"...why did we bother?
They couldn't have ended the final episode any better than they did. That was nearly perfect how David Chase concluded a brilliant series. So why is everyone so upset? Would you have rather seen Tony and his entire family murdered while eating dinner at a family diner? Or, would it have been a better conclusion if Tony were murdered and his family had to sit there and witness the horror? I didn't think so. The hit series ended with a ridiculously tense moment that most-likely had every viewer one step from pulling their hair out. Everyone was tricked into believing that the final scene of Sopranos was going to be a bloodbath; it wasn't. David Chase left us feeling the same way that Tony will be feeling the rest of his existence, or at least for a long while. With the music of Journey playing in the background, the cut-scenes to Meadow attempting to park the automatic parallel-park Lexus, the cliché-like happy ending comments, I don't believe David Chase could have ended the Sopranos any better by displaying acts of tension and struggle throughout each character. Of course, they could have packed the entire 1-hour episode with everything that could have possibly happened; but, they didn't have to, which is why HBO is clearly a step above every other network when it comes to conclusions to hit series (e.g. Six-Feet Under, Sopranos, etc.). If you ask me, The Sopranos went out in style. Also, I'm hoping they DON'T make a movie; the entire series will be devalued.
Just like Tony Bennett had answered to the question (and Bobby and Tony had talked about in the boat in the first show of this season)...What happens when you get popped?

Two things: 1. You never see it coming and 2, Everything fades to BLACK.
At first probably like many people I cussed the cable company. Then when the credits appeared I could not believe want I was not seeing an ending, closure something more than a black screen. Then I decided to watch it again on the west coast satelite. I then relized that this is the only way it could end. We all want more, now it's up to us to countinue or end the saga in our own minds. Bravo!
The Episode was brilliant - no one knows what will happen next in anyones' life...
As frustrated we are with Chase's ending, he is trying to give us something that many of us have probably lost, as is evident by our harsh reaction to those final minutes of this episode: imagination.

You can take the end of Sopranos anywhere you want. Chase sets us up with the perfect scenario to finish Sopranos in a way that we can individually be happy with. There is no possible way he could actually give us an ending that would appease everyone, even a small group of fans.

By not giving us an ending, we can create our own climax and enjoy the ride down. We don't need to be spoonfed a happy (or sad) ending - we're all grown-ups here.
I think the show ended brilliantly. I have been watching since day 1 and any fan such as myself might agree. They could not go crazy, killing everyone involved, it would have been wildly unrealistic. Tony said last season when he was shot, that "when you get shot, everything just turns black." So perhaps the shady man killed him, or perhaps he will go to jail as they eluded to. Either way, it gives us something to think about forever...
Not decent, not bad... Terrible to be honest! I DVR'd it and had to HBO on demand it afterwards to make sure it wasn't a glitch in the recording. The cut to black seemed like a technical error. Would have been a great cliffhanger for any other episode but the last. You can't do that to loyal fans. Chase must redeem himself with a movie.
Vanilla Fudge's "You Keep Me Hangin' On" was played throughout the last show...the music was great, the ending was terrific, and to those who didn't get it - Nothing to be ashamed of, you just might want to stick to shows that do not require thought, and everything is spelled out and predictable.

RIP Tony
What a crappy ending. You can't really call it an ending though. I watch tv to be entertained, not to see some family ordering onion rings. David Chase wussed out on the ending. I thought this whole last season was kind of boring. Things kept happening that I hoped would be resolved at the end. No luck. I've heard talk about a possible Sopranos movie. As far as I'm concerned "Fuggedaboudit!"
There's a saying: The journey is more important than the destination..or something to that effect. If you enjoyed the characters and the stories over the years, the ending should not be the most important thing. It's the end of our eye into Tony's world, but it goes on. Look at it that way.
like many of you, I too was a little disappointed, however, I think it was classic Chase work. Alot of you are saying he "sold out" when actually selling out would have been giving the audience what ending they wanted, not what ending HE wanted. Instead I think he stayed true to the characters
Horrible!!!!! Absolutely appalling. Worst ending of any series ever. No closure, no wrap-up, no resolution to Tony's character arc. It was no ending at all. Chase should be taken out and horsewhipped for treating fans of the show this way. We have been following this show for 8 years and we, the fans, get urinated on in the end. I get what Chase was doing (in real life there isn't always resolution, or closure, or things aren't always exiting and dramatic). But guess what Chase- THIS ISN'T REAL LIFE IT IS AN HBO SHOW ABOUT THE MOB!!!!!! IT should go out with a bang, it should be exiting, dramatic, and there should be some kind of closing with Tony Soprano's character arc. David Chase is evil. However, that under-age chick that AJ was getting with was smoking hot!!! I give this episode , and the entire series 6 for that matter, a grade D-.
give me a break! this was a waste of time and very disappointed in the writers and the entire season. there were so many stories they could have developed upon they didn't like finding out adriana wan an informant, or developing the gay lover story, something. this season just made a jersery girl who loved the show...a bit let down....
I wonder how many will follow through with threat to cancel HBO. CNN, please do a follow-up story.
It was a horses--t ending. As it is all about the money in hollywood Chase/HBO will make a truck full of it when they sell the finale season DVD. The hook will be that the other endings that were filmed will be included in the DVD. Good luck to the suckers that are willing to pay to see the REAL ending
Here's how I would have ended it.

1] It would have been better if we would have gotten a more exposed view of AJ's girfriend. She's hot and would have provided some nice eye candy.

2] I would have liked to see Meadow get kidnapped by the guy on Silence of the Lambs and thrown into a dungeon to be used as a sex toy.

3] Carmela should have been fed a silver bullet right in the back of the throat. Fitting for ridding us all of that whiny voice.

4] And Tony should have taken one like a man - right between the eyes with an onion ring in his mouth.

5] AJ would be left sitting in the booth crying like a baby and pissing all over himself.

Now that would have been a great ending.

"If life were like the movies, we would not need movies!"
Come on. Choose your own ending. That was the point. People have been guessing the ending for weeks, everybody with a different idea. This way it happens, everyone wins. Does he get wacked? Do they all get wacked? Do they live happily ever after? I don't know, you decide.
Only a true creative mind & artist could or would come up with such a brilliant ending.

.............But I look forward to see the Movie (in about 3 years)
Just a couple of comments on the fade to black -

If Tony was whacked it was not likely from the guy in the bathroom - that would have indicated some type of pre-planning. The decision to eat there was impromtu that only the family knew about. The guy in the baseball hat would have been the more likely assasin.
to all of you congratulating yourselves on your intelligence. Get a grip. The ending was not an ending. The show was never through Tony's eyes, it was always through the camera's eyes. Did the camera person 'go black'?
Only a true creative and artistic mind could or would come up with such a brilliant ending.

..............But I look forwad to seeing the Movie in about 3 years.
The diificulty with a series is that it must continue, with something to leave you salivating for more, so that you will come back to watch next week. Series are inherently frustrating. With The Sopranos, David Chase has had a fine time playing with his audience. He has been successsful in pulling us back for more with his nuances and inuendos and even attempts at metaphor. However, none of this never really completely worked. There was always possibility in the show's genius, but it usually came down to just leading us on. It might would have worked in a film, but after eight years it would have been fulfilling to see something, anything, really happen. I have read a revies that called the show brilliant. I think that our standards for brilliant need to stretch a little bit higher.
Tony got whacked, as seen through his eyes (black screen=death). Not only did the cat stare at Chris' picture, who is dead, but he stared at the building/spot Tony left right after he offerred the job to Paulie for the second time. Also, the last thing seen was his daughter walking in with a seemingly anquished look (perhaps she was staring at her father getting killed?).
Tantalizing, intense, and the only way to end such a magnificent series. It was brilliant in how it raised our pulse rates and left us wanting more.... The perfect transition to a feature length film in 3 years....

I applaud David Chase, ALL of the actors, and ALL the people who contributed to such a great series.
Very upset - after all these years of being a devoted fan, we were reduced to a black screen at the most crucial point! I just sat there thinking my TV was on the blink. Not happy at all.
Just like Tony, the show was a whackjob waiting to happen.

Forgetaboutit!
Chase's only mistake was assuming his audience was intelligent enough to understand an ending that was only slightly obscure. The clues are there if you use your head, and several have already posted them. Bobby and Tony on the boat. Phil getting shot without turning around. The prolonged black silence and silent credits, which always come with background music, etc.

Fans are quick to say how terrible it is because they want a pool of blood or a gunshot to tell them exactly what happened. How do you feel about quantum physics? Think its boring or crappy? Probably because you don't understand it. If you didn't understand that everything went black as Tony got killed, and that he never heard or saw it coming, you probably are dissapointed by an ending which requires you to use your brain.

There are no loose ends. Tony died, and so did the show. Silent black. Life does not go on, they don't finish their meal, nothing. You don't have to use your imagination, just your brain.

For everyone who says they wasted their time on the show, you are the biggest hypocrites. You know The Sopranos gave you something to look forward to, something to talk about, and now, something to think about. Just because the ending is beyond your intellectual limits doesn't mean David Chase is an idiot. It means you are.
I'm in between about the Sopranos finale. Overall, I think the final episode of the series was weak, however, I think the ending was pretty creative and did the job. See, people are summing up the entire finale with the last scene and you can't always do that, especially in this situation. Now I personally was disappointed with how it ended, but again, it proves that life goes on, no matter who you are. With that said, I opposed this decision because there wasn't one bit of closure throughout the entire episode on any previous character, storyline, etc. I think if there was some kind of closure to one or two topics, then the final scene would be ok and acceptable, but there was nothing in this episode, no action, no closure and for this reason is why I think it was a poor finale.
All of you people who are saying that David Chase is lazy and that he copped out need a reality check. This ending was anything but lazy. Lazy would have been just having Tony and a crapload of people wacked. This ending was pretty amazing.

Initially, I thought that whole episode was very random, not to mention the WTF I felt when it cut to black (didnt think my cable was broken, just thought he's ending it like this??!?!). However, as I thought about it more and more it was really genius. Tony resolved his issues with everybody in both his families: Phil got wacked. Tony finally realized how bad Uncle June's condition was. AJ got out of his depression. Tony accepted Meadow's decision to become a lawyer. He made sure that Janice was taken care of financially, as well as Bobby's children. Etc, etc, etc.

People seem to forget that this is a show about Tony and his families. Chase told us what happened on that front. What happened to Tony is left for us to decide.

I like the idea that the audience was wacked. I didn't think of it that way. It's an interesting spin on the whole thing.

Great work, Mr. Chase!
The people on here posting negative opinions about the finale really don't get the big picture. In addition to having the texture and feel of a 1940-50's gangster/mystery movie and some very intense lighting, the ending just added to the whole "suspense and mystery" to the episode..if anyone thinks this is the end of Tony and his crew; think again. It's been left open so that Chase can create his vision/idea for a full length movie (blockbuster) in the next couple years. This show has given him more clout to pull this off than perhaps any drama that's ever been on TV. Chase only failed if he wasn't able to have a person's mind racing in all directions at the end and thru out the episode.
Everyone, go back to episode 1 of this season. Bobby and Tony musing about what comes after death, and Bobby says something to the effect that he sees death as "you see them coming and then everything fades to black." Tony was killed. No doubt. Even last week's episode has the clip when Tony is thinking about his times with Bobby. Who did it is the question. My money is on the guy who went in the bathroom. It's a shame that it had to be with the family.

Fantastic show, fantastic ending. I was mad, but this morning it clicked. Beautiful.
Count me among those who first screamed at their faulty DVR, then got mad as hell, but upon reflection think it was a great ending.

No matter what ending Chase had chosen which brought "closure" (Tony hit, Tony lives, indictment, et.al.) there would be just as many people screaming that the ending got it wrong, and sucked.

I also like the "fade to black" reference from the first show of the season.

First reaction....D-. Now....A.
How did the ending leave you hanging or wondering what happened next? The final episode wrapped up almost everything. What becuase Tony didnt die or go to jail you became frustrated? The big question heading into last nights episode was who would win the war and what would happen to Tony? New Jersey won and Tony's life will continue on as always. I think some people just wouldn't have been happy unless Tony got killed. The last two minutes were a brilliant way to keep your heart racing until the shows final moment. Truth is once Tony made the deal with New York the show reached its final conclusion (from the mob side). The rest of the episode wrapped up things on the family side.
a great show and not a bad ending. this ending leaves people guessing and doesn't leave the bad taste in mouth or leave you remembering Mr. Gandolfini as the eight year tough guy who gets wacked or if you wanted that ending you could imagine it. although, I think u2's with or without you would have been a better song to end show with
David Chase could have made up for the last few weak seasons by ending the show with some closure. The quote from last week "family doesn't get touched". Did they just kill Tony or wipe out the whole family? Who ordered the hit if he was killed? His only enemy we knew about was now dead. To have a draw your own conclusion to a show that spanned that much time was awful. If you compare the first 3-4 seasons to the "Johnnycakes" like soap opera it changed into is like night and day.
What a joke! I can't believe I had my HBO turned back on just to watch the last season of the Soprano's. The first two seasons far surpassed anything in this final season; and the finale....ONE BIG JOKE!

Today my HBO gets turned off and I will NEVER get involved in another HBO series. How they could, in good conscious, allow this ending is amazing. Of course, what do the HBO execs care...their millions rolled in regardless of the quality.
what a crap review on cnn. try watching the show.

The guy at the bar is also credited as Nikki Leotardo. The same actor played him in the first part of season 6 during a brief sit down concerning the future of Vito. That wasn't that long ago. Apparently, he is the nephew of Phil. Phil's brother Nikki Senior was killed in 1976 in a car accident. Absolutely Genius!!!! David Chase is truly rewarding the true fans who pay attention to detail.

So the point would have been that life continues and we may never know the end of the Sopranos. But if you pay attention to the history, you will find that all the answers lie in the characters in the restaurant. The trucker was the brother of the guy who was robbed by Christopher in Season 2. Remember the DVD players? The trucker had to identify the body. The boy scouts were in the train store and the black guys at the end were the ones who tried to kill Tony and only clipped him in the ear (was that season 2 or 3?)."
So far no-one has commented on the significance of the onion rings in the final restaurant scene. Tony orders onion rings for the table and one by one each family member puts a whole one in their mouth. Who eats onion rings like that ? It looked like the family was taking communion wafers. Did this absolve them of their sins ? Did Meadow not need this ?

John-
I liked it. My initial take was that the feelings we all had as Meadow was parking her car; as the tension built because you KNEW something was going to happen in the last minute; those are the feelings that Tony will walk around with forever; never knowing when it will happen or where; never knowing if this will be his last meal or if he will live to see tomorrow. Could he have been whacked as it went to black? Certainly a possibility. It was such a surreal and uncomfortable scene. Truly masterful.
ARE YOU KIDDING?!! I can't beleive
they wasted time on that. The whole show bounced around, what? NOTHING.. They could have and should have done something better than that. People waited years for them to come back and they followed again when they did...This
is how they insult fans who watch? Sad. In this season was very obvious that the writers were at a loss! The ending I thought would save what was missing...NOT!!
The key to everything is the funeral scene; this was, after all, a funereal episode. The chatter about American Idol makes Chase's ultimate point. Like Simon, he gathers big bucks playing to the stupidity of the mass audience. Don't Stop Believing, you bunch of idiots. Don't you guys get it yet? Chase laughing all the way to the bank. Great art! Yeah, like Idol is great singing. And he's right in your face insulting you, but you don't even notice.
ending the series with journey was real ballsy........i liked it
That was the most disapointing ending I have ever seen! For any fan who has just spent the last 8 years faithfuly watching every sunday,we feel very cheated. The writer cared more a movie deal for himself than giving the fans what they deserved! It was a selfish thing to do and if there is a movie I won't set myself up for more disappointment by watching it.
ALL THAT IS LEFT TO SAY IS YOU OWE US!!!
No matter what anyone says --- Let me just say --- Humans need closure. Why do you think in our society we have wakes for our dead? It helps the mind and body move on. Yes it was an interesting ending but.... I felt betrayed. This ending was no ending. We spent far too much time over the years to not get what we need. All the money this show makes you think someone could have come up with something better!
I loved the ending. I cheered when it hit me as the credits rolled. Tony is still there alive. No good reason for NY to hit Tony now. How the FBI agent saying "we are gonna win this" what was that about?
HORRIBLE! IS ALL I HAVE TO SAY! Chase and the other writers should not be able to write for another show. It just shows why there are so many reality shows because everyone is so lazy and unable to be creative. There were so many stories that could have been developed upon for the last season, Adriana the informant or developing the gay love story ab
Great ending. Closure is a myth...One major theme of the show is that life goes on, whether there is death, flipping, busting someone out... At the end, we are left with our own story line to complete. Chase made his series in his own vision the entire time. He doesn't owe us anything, he just has to be true to his vision and he did. I loved it and all those who didn't, start writing your own show.
PLEASE..what a loser finale.
All a setup for movies or something else for CHASE and HBO to make more money.
WHAT A LETDOWN to these viewers of so many years...
It could have been so much better.
Chase knew the fans wanted to see some top men get killed so he hand Sil and Bobby wacked in the prior episode. Chase also knew the fans wanted to see Phil get killed so he had him wacked 45 min into the final episode. Chase knew the fans wanted to see a great ending to a great 9 year running show but instead left us all screaming at our Tivo's.
LOVED IT! Make the ending however you wanted it to be. Loved the whole story line w/ the cat, hilarious!
My husband and I are late bloomers when it comes to the Sopranos. But that doesn't mean we were not glued to the tube last night. In some ways we were very flusterated and it was a great let down not to knwo what happens to our fave family. But in a way its nice to speculate ourselves. I knwo Tony and his family will survive. Could it be the reason for this last meal is that they are going into witness protection.....I guess we will never know for sure.
What a brilliant ending! Those people that are crying about not having closure should seek an imagination instead. I hope that this is the final episode of Soparanos, and they are not leaving an opening for a movie. That would make this the worst ending, then.
I don't care what some of you guys say - it should not have been left to the viewer's imagination. I was also looking forward to an "ending" to a show I lived with for so many years. Those of you who think it would've been impossible, look at "Six Feet Under". They tied up all the pertinent loose ends; we knew what became of all our favorite (!) characters. In fact, they continued showing us what happened to them generations later!
I think the cutters (editors) did a great job leading up to the blackout...the suspense build-up was methodical and textbook. However, I would have done a fade-away rather than a cut to black. With the fadeaway, the music would have gotten louder and the voices would have dropped out. Perhaps even a mild audio disruption behind the blaring music would have given us more food for thought. This cutaway was a cheap excuse for so called poetry. Kinda like looking at a blank canvas and admiring what could be.

In any event, it's certainly no surprise given the lack of respect the series had for it's viewers with the constant delay's, poor storyline during the previous season, and to top it all off, lack of imagination to introduce material constant with the original production we grew to love during the very first season.

On this I bid farewell and goodnight !

yours truly,
eyetie3000@yahoo.com
I was extremly disappointed about the ending. As with many people I thought my cable malfunctioned. But with the way it appeared Tony would of been shot in front of his wife and son. But we will never know. Hopefully they will have an alternate ending on the dvd set.
Unfortunately while Meadow was still parallel parking the car, my screen went black because my cable service actually did go out.
THANK YOU DAVID CHASE!!! I found the final moments of the final episode artistically ambiguous, classy, smart, humorous, and above all, fulfilling. The world and characters that The Sopranos have given us are so fleshed out and three dimensional that it would have been cheap to end the show with any tidy closure -- other than the closure of knowing that the world continues, even after we can longer watch it. Chase leaves us with a keen perspective of what Tony's life is and always will be: a desire to have his family and live the American dream, complicated by a life of crime that will always have him looking over his shoulder for the Feds or the next assassination attempt, or both.

I LOVED IT!
This is what Chase wants...us talkingabout his ridiculous ending. People can say "Well, now we can believe whatever we want"..."The Sopranos have always been ambiguous...such is their life". The truth is, let's stop talkinga bout it. That is the only way to let it be known that it was junk. That as fans, we are let down. So what if Americans need closure! Give it to us. We all paid for our HBO, we deserve some more respect. I feel punk'd and Chase should feel like a failure. I will never look at Sopranos the same way...
After intially being in the "that was the worst ending ever" camp, I've done the math and realized that it is in fact brilliant. No show has ever had the gumption to close like that. Risking alienation of the entire fanbase to create something unusual has been chase's MO all along.

Believe what you want...and I believe for certain that Tony was killed. The careful shots of Carm, AJ and Tony placing onion rings in their mouths is clearly symbolic of communion. And in a way, chase was murdering the viewer as well. To bring that level of realism to a television show is truly groundbreaking, and I must truly stand and applaud.
Just like Seinfeld, Chase is a victim of his own success, and as was the case with the Seinfeld series, I don'think there is any ending possible that would have been satisfying to the audience as a whole. I give Chase kudos for not caving in to what he knew was going to be an outcry.

As for the ending itself, believe what you want. I think that was his intent. My personal feeling is that being killed would be a better scenario for Tony considering his dysfunctional family and the possibility of prison.

I'll admit though, the blackout thing before the credits came off as more of a stunt to me. I went from pissed (thinking I missed something), to laughing once I realized what he did, to being pissed again that he did it so cheaply.
I am very happy David Chase has decided to end the Sopranos Series on HBO. If Mr Chase started the first season with any of the basic writing that went into the last three seasons, HBO would have cancelled the show after the third episode. I would rather watch the first two seasons over and over again then have to waste 5 seconds programming my DVR to watch a show go into its next season with zero to go on...Space aliens try to whack Tony? No thank you...

PS..HBO do us all a favor and get rid of John From Cincy and get your butts in gear and make more Curb Your Enthusiams. Shows that more than just I give applause for kicking ass and taking numbers.
Although I agree watching it in real time was quite suspenseful because you got a taste of his dual life (i.e. always wondering who might be out to kill him, at the same time trying to have a family dinner), where is the storyline to support that he is about to get whacked at the diner?

Phil is dead. The hit was sanctioned by his own family. So who is going to kill him?

Are we the viewer supposed to invent all the possible options as to why Tony was killed? Rogue assassain, escaped maniac, obsessed fan, someone he screwed over in the past, etc. etc.

I have a degree in English Creative Lit, so I have no problem with Chase being "artsy" but at least give us the ammo so to speak. Make it so there's doubt that Phil is really dead, or that his family really betrayed him, or create doubt around Paulie or one of the other underlings. You can't resolve that NY story line, switch to an FBI investigation one (which was way rushed, btw), and then leave us with black.

Where are the pieces to let us imagine, if that's what Chase really wanted?

An example would be this. Lets say you're making a movie about a baseball team. Bases loaded, ninth inning, two outs, etc. All the drama. The pitch comes and as the batter swings, fade to black. Fine, then you can say does he hit the grandslam to win the world series or doesn't he. You can draw on your wishes and clues that were left for you along the way.

Using the example above, what Chase did was show us the grand slam winning hit (ie. killing Phil), then takes us to the celebration of running the bases, being swarmed by his team, etc. Then ends it with the player taking a shower in the lockerroom. A bar of soap slips off the wall and rests near his back foot, fade to black. So now what. Did the player slip on the soap and crack his head open. Does the player notice the soap, harmlessly pick it up, and return to rinsing off.
One Word.....GARBAGE!

We deserved an ending that lived up to the hype. The car should have rolled over Chases Head for producing such trash.

I feel cheated as do most, we stuck with this crap for years and were left hanging...A show that ended with more time spent on a cat than anything else.

Pathetic!
What a great ending! Why is everybody so upset? If you've been watching the show from the beginning, you should realize it couldn't have ended any other way.
I have always been been drawn to David Chase's shows, not because of his name, but because of his characters, so I can't say that I'll never watch another thing he's written. I can & will say is that I will NEVER get involved with another HBO series. Once The Wire ends I'm cancelling my subscription. After the way they left Carnivale, Deadwood & to a lesser extent Rome, that's why you all should be screaming!
So many people say that Tony took one in the head after watching Meadow come in the door. I had the episode on DVR and watched the end probably 10-15 times to try and draw a conclusion. You can't draw the conclusion completely that he was shot and it was lights out.

IF, the last scene would have been from Tony's perspective looking at the door, then it would have been lights out for sure (thank you bathroom guy). However, the last image before the screen going black was looking AT Tony after the bells on the door rang, not as if we were looking from his perspective and we saw him go black.

Anyway, I thought the ending was fantastic. My heart was racing and I got the unexpected. I don't mind using my imagination. My problem was with the rest of the episode. They spent waaaayyy to much time on AJ.
Few things. At first I thought the ending was terrible but after thinking for a while it was great. It left it open so the series can come back in 5 yrs after none of the actors get jobs. Two it leaves it open for a movie (still shouldn't wipe Tony out at that point). What about have a throw back and have a new Soprano series when it was Tony's dad and Junior running North Jersey, show Tony growing up, bring back mother (that would be awesome). Anyone that did not like this ending is not a real fan. Everyone that says the show has been in a downslide for years is out of their mind. Good job Chase. Bring it back...
Excellent ending. All of the fans that are complaining are morons!
What a perfect ending! We watched a 9 year segment from the life of the Soprano's - we peaked into that life when the show came on and now that life continues without us. We saw a few hours of their lifetime - how disappointing it would have been to miraculously have their story end just because we weren't able to watch it anymore. The Soprano's reflected life, not real, but a life. Live's don't start and end with seasons and series - they live beyond that.
Spectacular ending Mr Chase. Thanks for not selling out Tony and the ending to a phenomenal show by leaving us to wonder what has happened to Tony and his family. Thank you for not answering all our questions and wrapping up this series with a neat little ending whether it would have been The feds hauling Tony off to jail or watching Tony get whacked in the restaurant. Bravo on a great ending to a great show. Tony we will miss you.
This is for all you people stating that David Chase isn't a genius...


This might clear it up a bit!!!


"The guy at the bar is also credited as Nikki Leotardo. The same actor played him in the first part of season 6 during a brief sit down concerning the future of Vito. That wasn't that long ago. Apparently, he is the nephew of Phil. Phil's brother Nikki Senior was killed in 1976 in a car accident. Absolutely Genius!!!! David Chase is truly rewarding the true fans who pay attention to detail.

So the point would have been that life continues and we may never know the end of the Sopranos. But if you pay attention to the history, you will find that all the answers lie in the characters in the restaurant. The trucker was the brother of the guy who was robbed by Christopher in Season 2. Remember the DVD players? The trucker had to identify the body. The boy scouts were in the train store and the brothas at the end were the ones who tried to kill Tony and only clipped him in the ear (was that season 2 or 3?).

Absolutely incredible!!!! There were three people in the restaurant who had reason to kill Tony and then it just ends."

This might clear it up a bit
I've always enjoyed the Sopranos...even though it IS David Chase, what a disappointing ending...very little conversation between the family members...a few onion rings...fade to black...I feel like I was setup for a BIG letdown...shame on you David!!!
Sorry to hear that Frank. But you know it'll be on again all week. I thought my cable went out.
Bottom line, this indistinct final episode clarified the complete disintegration of creativity the sopranos had experienced ever since season three. We were hanging on for an ending that would erase our memories of the previous four seasons of innovative futility, and instead received the same old buzz kill that has finally left our interest completed fatigued, and evaporated any hope of this show leaving a legacy...shameful
Chase is reported to be a good friend of J.K. Rowling. Wait until the final Harry Potter book ends with a cut to black. The storm you will see then will make the current outrage at the Sopranos' ending seem like a tempest in a teapot.

R.
Jesus Chist!!!! Can you people get a grip on it? TONY WAS WHACKED!!! It's over and Paulie was the last man standing. There is no alternative ending or any fade outs or cross disolving when you get whacked from the back of the f-ing head! There will not be another episode of the Sopranos ever. No movie, no action figures...it's done. What's with the big "alternative ending" talk? Tony was a WHACK JOB!
The show ended for me almost like the beginning. Paulie still complaining and getting a tan, Tony sitting outside their hangout. Sil was missing but I believe the cat was really christopher. They all are just oblivious to what is happening around them, happy , rich and unconcerned with anything or anyone but their family.
This show was crap. This entire last season was crap. Pop culture has passed the Sopranos by and the ending typified the herky-jerky plot lines and endless whining that characterized the last few seasons. Good riddence to bad rubbish.
I think most of the people posting here missed the point of the screen going black.

Remember the row boat scene that was flashed back to numerous times throughout the series? During that conversation, Bobby said that when you get killed you won't know. One moment you are there and the next "you are gone, dark, black".

It's clear that Tony was killed, and just like Bobby said, you didn't see it coming, it just suddenly went black.
I loved it...it was unexpected and left us wanting more! Bravo!
Lots of people here think they know everything, but remember that DC has very deliberately thrown us lots of red herrings.

There are plenty of messages that point to Tony getting whacked, and not just the Tony/Bobby conversation in 78, but also just a few episodes ago when Sil was talking and didn't hear the shots killing someone a few feet away.

But we will never know if this is actually what happened, because there is nothing actually happening. It's fiction.

The door is opening, the bells are ringing. You don't know what's coming. Is it your beautiful daughter? Is it someone who is going to blow your brains out? What a great place to leave us as viewers. We're stuck right there, and we don't know what's coming next. We can't. There is no next. THAT is an ending.

Who needs closure? I love the definitive way this show ended. Kudos & thank you to all involved.
The real problem with the ending of the Sopranos, as I see it, is that it tells us it is ok to be a mobster, a killer, a thief, a womanizer, a thug. It is ok to abuse women, to cheat on them, to run people down with a car, to break someone's legs. To do whatever you wish, to whomever you wish, and end up rich and admired and in charge. There was no judgment day for Tony and no punishment. That isn't right. (In my imagined ending, after the camera stopped rolling, he somehow got exactly what he deserved.)
The only way I will accept that lame excuse for an ending is if Chase wanted the entire audience to experience what it is like to get shot in the head by someone you never even knew was in the restaurant.

Of course, that is the only way an ultra-cautious mobster like Tony would have let his guard down. I agree that the ending like that was telegraphed with Tony and Bobby's conversation in the boat. A bullet in the head doesn't wait for the song to finish (or you to finish saying good-bye to the grandkids) - it just ends everything.

So Tony is dead - period. If that is the case, I have some closure, albeit, little satisfaction. In any case, kudos.

That being said, if Chase tries to milk the cow with a movie or another season, I will not watch, because then the other bloggers who felt ripped off will have been right.

So the ending that some think was up to us to decide is still in Chase's hands. I hope he doesn't disappoint us (any more than he already has).
What a complete joke! I wish I could be as bad at my job as Chase is and still get paid - in fact paid SO WELL _ the Sopranos fell off over the years anyway so it doesn't really surprise me but I'm pretty sure that if God was a Sopranos fan, Chase just secured himself a special place in hell!
You know, if we'd heard a sound effect of a gunshot as the screen went blank, there would be no doubt as to what happened. I think Tony might have gotten shot--the POV was from the hallway to the bathrooms--but the sound didn't have time to register.

I agree with everyone who says this was a brilliant ending.
OK. Thanks to those that pointed out the Tony was killed, that the screen went black because we were looking through Tony's eyes. He was looking at his daughter and that was the last thing he saw. Add the fact that the guy at the counter had gone to the bathroom and had the chance to sneak up on him.

Chase better own up to this if this was his intention. Hiding behind "I prefer to leave it up to the audience" is both cowardly and unoriginal, more the latter. I think he deserves the benefit of the doubt for now. And we deserve an answer just as much.

Let's see if he's "a stand up guy"
People need to undestand the beauty of this ending. Did you really need to see Tony get whacked or go to prison. This way you see the family having dinner after all the chaos of the past month, Meadow looks scared as she runs in to meet them, it shows what they have to put up with and endure once again living this lifestyle. All the suspense leading up and then black... awesome, I can't wait to watch it again closer.
But...but, I'm an AMERICAN; and I want to be TOLD what happened to Tony! I want to be TOLD what to make of that ending! I want to be FED an ending with no loose-ends!

Bah, guess I'll just go off and watch more FOX News now.

--believes David Chase did good (because some of you needed to be TOLD the above was sarcasm, right?.
Duh, Tony is dead and Carmela was the one who had him killed!!!!!!!
You must be dense not to get the picture from the soprano's last night. tony didn't have to die, this episode was the perfect wrap up. AJ succeeding where christopher couldnt. the real son coming through where the figurative son couldnt. meadow got her lawyer job, carmella got her house. junior fades off into dementia, his work with the crew proving to be meaningless and tony indentifying. tony making peace with janice. pauly tanning outside the butcher's. and like every soprano's episode it leaves the ending wide open where anything you imagine could possibly happen. it is a much more satisfying ending then tony getting whacked. its as close to a happy ending you could get with a mob themed subject.
WHO SHOT J.R????? THAT WAS A GREAT FINALE....

...THE SOPRANOS WILL BE BAAAAACCKKK
Pathetic----the entire last season was a waste of time
In trying to rationalize closure and a clean ending, do you think that seeing Meadow come through the door was the last thing Tony ever saw? After that there was nothing for him...Perhaps it was all over before our [his] eyes!
Excellent series, however the ending was disappointing...to say the least.
Just like Tony Bennett had answered to the question (and Bobby and Tony had talked about in the boat in the first show of this season)...What happens when you get capped?

Two things: 1. You never see it coming and 2, Everything fades to BLACK.
WOW! David Chase is a master of SUSPENSE, which implies THINKING, people...how about NOT having everything handed to you on a platter and, for once, creating the ending yourself? A novel idea? Probably not, but Chase stressed that the whole basis of this 8 year story was the PEOPLE and their intricate, often humorous, complicated, hypocritical, loving, sensitive-yet-sometimes sinister lives..... not just a quick "whack" of a character to appease the violence- mongers out there. If you really took time to get to know this FAMILY over the last 8 years, with their authentic ups-and-downs (mob activity aside), they are like any family....NOT knowing what comes next, taking one day at a time and most always NOT having a neatly packaged fairy-tale ending. That's why the BLACK OUT at the end makes perfect sense. I don't know what my life is going to bring minute to minute and neither did they. Boring sometimes? Sure. Frenetic sometimes ? Sure. Angry sometimes (ok, alot of the time)? Sure. Humorous sometimes? Sure. And sentimental and loving sometimes? Absolutely. THIS IS REAL LIFE. The depth that Chase developed in each character, especially Tony, over the years was sheer brilliance and has been utterly entertaining for me. Bravo, maestro di Cesare...e grazie!
Come on now. No ending would have been satisfying. My first reaction when the screen went black was that Tony had just been killed. My second thought was that David Chase didn't want us to have to see our anti-hero get whacked. Then I remembered the boat conversation with Bobby B.-- as others here have also mentioned. It all goes black. I will watch the first episode of this season again to confirm this, but that was the big clue here. We are not supposed to fill in the blank with our own imagined ending. Tony is dead. As far as last season's dream sequences-- brilliant. Tony was visiting his own personal Hell, or at best some type of purgatory. What could be worse for a guy like him than to be a working stiff, stranded, helpless, without any identity? No we all have to move on, get a life, or see what else is on.
I couldn't believe it ended that way, it was horrible! If your going to completely end a tv show, you need to tie up the loose ends. Not leave you hanging as if there is going to be a sequel! I didn't find it "brilliant" at all. It was disgusting. There are lots of "everyday family" shows on tv right now. I expected the Sopranos show to be different and that's what always intrigued me.
So one of the most well-crafted television series ever ends on what amounts to a publicity stunt. How sad.
After all these years, this is how it ends ? Wow
Chase showed us that he's an amateur. As Capote once said "That's not writing. That's typing." I wasn't a huge fan of Six Feet Under but the series finale was brilliant. Maybe if Allan Ball gives a seminar, Chase could attend.
At first I was also shocked like the majority of The Sopranos viewers. However, after hearing the following explanation it kinda blew my mind.

Think of the ending in this perspective: The viewer was the one being 'whacked.' We will never know what happens, but isn't that exactly what David Chase wanted? I believe so. I like the feeling of being in constant suspense, and actually going through the sense of instant death. Isn't that what Bobby, Sil, Phil, and many others experienced on their journey through the television show? It is amazing!
This left me with a feeling as follows:

Imagine letting a friend stay with you - whatever length of time. When he leaves, you realize that friend has stolen something you prize.

That is how this final show left me feeling - utterly betrayed and disappointed.
I hated at first too, but after I thought about it more I realized it was brilliant. Tony is definately dead. That's why it's abrupt, black, and slient. That's how death really is. Tony died, show ends. Great ending.

As for the reactions of the fans, well, I think Chase fully expected the backlash. He even foreshadows it... when A.J. burned his car, it was really Chase burning away the legacy of the Spranos - he didn't need or want his Soprano fans to enjoy his next creation for the Sopranos... he wanted only the hardcore fans. Well, after this finale, that's all he's got left. A great ending. I never really care for Chase but I will definately pay attention to his next project. Brilliant man.
Being a big fan of the show, I was really disappointed with the outcome. I really expected more from the creators. I hope that in the near future they decide to air all 3 endings that were shot.
This was the most diappointing ending I could ever imagine. It was a waste of an hour of my time. If I would have known it would end like this I would have never watched it. HBO, David Chase and the actors should all be ashamed to have ended such a good series this way. It seems to hold what I had told friends before. This series really should have ended a year a go. It was just holding on for whatever reason. I knew the series was over when they did several shows of Tony dreaming that he was a salesman. Those few shows were just as disappointing as the ending. The shame of it all here is that HBO is on the top with all the wonderful series they are doing. To end such a popular one this way was a disgrace!
People tuned in to see what was more or less a 50/50 chance that Tony would survive the last episode of the series. What happened was that Chase found a magical 1%.

The entire episode was smartly written, directed and shot. Go back on watch it again in a week, after you have read all the various blogs...this episode will grow on you!!!

BTW...how good was that girl in the diner...the one eating french fries...sitting over Tony's right shoulder?????? :) GOOD JOB A.R.R.!!!
Obviously they are going to make one more run for the gold and turn this ending into a grand Sopranos movie, durrr, and stop thinking it was a bad ending, its what kept you watching the show, the never well defined endings, you people need to get out more, rofl.
By far the worst finale I have ever seen. I'm a 60 year old woman that thought a lost of David Chase until now.....
I thought the finale was great until the black clouded my mind. Everything was lining up...Leotardo was whacked and I really thought Tony would make a lifestyle change and head for witness protection to spare his family anymore drama...On the bright side,it leaves open a window for a movie or HBO special. I need some closure!
I am surprised that no one has mentioned that the cat might have been a foreshadowing of fates. I was left with the impression that Paulie was whacked as we last see him trying to get a suntan and the cat was meandering nearby. Am I the only one who felt that way? I guess that's why I buy into the theory that Tony was also killed at the end of the last scene.
It was a disappointing ending to a show that declined season after season. It is appropriate to leave the viewer wondering with some unresolved issues but not that open ended. The film and sound editing was very poor quality as well. It really looks like the last few seasons Mr. Chase and his crew was really not trying. And please, next time leave out all the political messages. If I am paying 12 dollars a month for HBO I want to be entertained, not bombarded with sprinkles of underlieing political agendas. Maybe if it was a two hour final they could have added 40 more minutes of the cat.........
My take...

The whole show felt very surreal to me, right from the opening scene. It has taken me all morning to figure out why I did not want to be disappointed with what appeared to be a poor final episode to such a fantastic series. Then I started going over the little things I picked up on and I strongly feel there is only one distinct conclusion...

TONY IS DEAD...shot in the bedroom he was hiding out in. The final episode's situations all reveal Tony's desire to forgive and be forgiven. His desire for his family to now live in peace, without fear. All the scenes are a product of Tony's DYING THOUGHTS. Until the final scene in the diner with past characters seated at tables and the Soprano family seemingly too happy to be together...the black screen is the dealth of Tony Soprano.

Watch again to pick up on all of the symbolisim weaved into the scenes, and realize the little details that seem a bit odd. Then you will agree and mourn Tony's passing.
I think Tony got shot from the guy in the bathroom. He told Bobby something about everything going black when you go on the boat in an earlier episode. That's exactly what happend. The End!!!
The ending SUCKED, someone must of pissed off the writers or Chase!!!! The whole entire final episode was a joke!
Fabulous ending! The audience gets whacked. All goes black because you're not part of their world anymore.

Steve Perry tells you the how it ends for Tony. We, my friends, are the ones it's over for.

"...Some will win, some will lose
Some were born to sing the blues
Oh, the movie never ends
It goes on and on and on and on..."
Pardon the French, but this was the greatest mindf### in television history. I could think of no better way to end a series that was full of mindf###s from the beginning. This was brilliant. You sad humans that need closure for everything got what you deserved. The rest of us got delighted and went to bed happy. All hail David Chase!
While I do not like how the show ended, I agree with a previous statement...

"I think you have it wrong at CNN. There was a conversation between Tony and Bobbie about being whacked .. they said you don't feel anything and everything goes black."


When Tony looked up at the door as Meadow entered, he probably got whacked by the guy from the restroom.
Hold on,and fasten your seatbelts,the Sopranos will be out in a 3 hour movie in a theathre within 2 years,this was already rumored last year,so no big surprise with ending,James Gandolfini will probably be offered about 30 million for the Movie Role.

Tony
FROM Montreal,Canada
It was perfect. It was the only way, logically, to end: we will always wonder........
It seems there are two types of fans here: those who loved the story and those who loved the show. The former enjoy the entertainment of the mob scenes and are annoyed at the psychological ramblings of the family scenes (hence, they've thought the show was dull the last few years, when the mob violence decreased). The latter love the show for the way it mixes the ultra-violent mob life with a more humorous, tumultuous life of a father and his family.

Count me in with the latter, and with those saying they LOVED the ending. While Tony's final fate wasn't decided, we got hints that lots of things might have happened (including his death). But we also got a lot of other loose ends tied up. The ducks didn't come back, but the cat did. The shadow of Tony's mother once again reared her ugly head, leaving us to think that maybe this all was her fault after all. And we finally got the message that Uncle June isn't faking it, and has gone off the deep end. None of Tony's family has really learned much of anything, which is consistent with their characters' actions the last 8 years.

While it would be a cop-out in many other series to end things like this, in this case it's the only way it could have ended that WOULDN'T have been a cop-out. Having Tony end up getting shot on-screen would have been as anti-climactic as any ending I can think of. Instead, we find that life goes on (whether Tony's does or not). I wish more TV shows would end like this, rather than trying to force-feed the audience the ending result it craves. Life doesn't involve years of plot lines wrapping up in 60 minutes, and TV shows don't need to, either.
I guess I wanted to see evil get what evil deserves. Whether it be Carmella, Tony, AJ, Meadow) someone should have paid--emotionally and financially. The most satisfying ending for me would have been Tony's demise. Carmela, who turned a blind eye on Tony's line of work so she could continue to enjoy her lavish lifestyle could have been left to fend for herself. A for sale sign on their tastelessly gaudy home. No money for college for Meadow. AJ in the army not because he wants to be but because he has to be. Anyway, that's how I'm going to end it for myself since David Chase didn't appease me.

I didn't hate the ending. It was ominous. It just wasn't enough. The hour (and 5 minutes) went by too slowly. I found myself somewhat bored and my mind wandering. Why couldn't this, the final episode, be as good as "The Pine Barrows" episode. Oh, well. It's history now.

Now I guess nothing can ever beat the ending of Six Feet Under. The last episode of SFU simply blew me away. All those vibrant, vital lives. To see them grow old and die. I cried like a baby. I saw my own life flash by me. Gone in the blink of an eye.

All those who are really angry and depressed it's over, try Showtime's The Brotherhood. It will cheer you up. There are still good shows out there. In fact, The Brotherhood is what the Sopranos should have been.
It was a stroke of genius!!
Nothing about the Sopranos was, or should have been, a neat little package tied in a cliche bow.
Brilliant and perfect!
BEST FINALE OF ALL TIME!

Love it or hate it, the show was about the journey of the characters. Like most great literature (or pornography for that matter) the ending doesn't matter as it is all about the journey. (The Journey song at the end was indeed very telling). Viewers that hated it, don't get what great writing is about. Read: Gone with the Wind, Tender is the Night, the Blind Assassin, Life of Pi, Age of Innocence, Portrait of a Lady...almost ANY Henry James novel for that matter, any Martin Amis novel, any Margaret Atwood novel, etc.... Many of the best stories of ALL time, in great literature and film, have ambiguous, do-it-yourself endings full of meaning. If you want a definitive, lazy-man's ending, stick to Nancy Drew. This is NOT TV, this is HBO!
As a hard-core Soprano fan, I was atad disappointed that the ending was not more decisive, even though I did not want Tony to die
David Chase has done what he's always done, make us talk about it. That is why the show got so popular, is because the following Monday, everyone would be talking about the show in one form or another. Think of it this way, the story is over, we decide how we think it ends, to us, and that's it. He accomplished what he set out, was to tell a story everyone would be talking about for years to come.

I personally feel, Tony got whacked. I can't remember when in the series it was said, some BS session, someone mentioned: "Hey, do you think you hear the gun fire the bullet that kills you?", and the response was... CUT TO BLACK!
Bottom Line:

Chase did not show us any ending.

Therefore, we must assume one of our own. Or make the assumption based on what was given us throughout the series.

2 factors stick out: Tony's comment to Bobby about being whacked and everything going black and Meadow's face as she entered all lead to Tony being whacked by that guy, along with the diner being filled with past actors and such.

So someone was whacked, either us or Tony. It leans towards Tony getting hit.

But of course either way, the ending is bunk. Sure artistry is always ok, but to end a hit series like this shows the arrogance of Chase and the rest of the producers.

Of course, since Chase didnt show us and ending, it will no doubt not end to series since it obviously does leave an opening for a movie! Money money money if there is one....they would be dumb not to make a movie on it. Of course, Chase is so predictable enough to not make a movie on it and leave it hanging.

bottom line is someone got whacked, us or Tony. The last couple of seasons have been somewhat dissapointing anyhow, but it is still a surprise to end such a show in such a pitiful way; it reminds me of the indianapolis 500 and how pitiful that race has become due to George's control of things.
Easily the most brilliant series finale ever. Many of you just don't get it. And you never will. What a pity.
That was awesome ... anyone that wanted some dramatic ending were band wagon jumpers and truly never understood the Sopranos at all. It was brilliant!!! They will always live on in my mind like the legends they are. Live on Sopranos! Awesome characters!
Your are all nuts - it was the perfect ending .... a non-ending. What better way to end a saga where everything is based on contrive speculation and deciet and under-handedness??? A non-ending is the best way of fulfilling everyones and no ones expectation all at the same time ... so we can spend all this time writting about it rather than talkng about it around our office water cooler - what I need to get back to doing somehting called work
WOW!!!! AMAZING!!! OK, at first I was really angry. I mean really, really angry. I can't believe though that no-one has posted by now what happened. The only thing I saw that was right, was that in the last scene we are seeing through Tony's eyes. Remember when he was speaking with Bobby...basically saying that you don't see it happening? So here is what I found out. The guy at the bar is also credited as Nikki Leotardo. The same actor played him in the first part of season 6 during a brief sit down concerning the future of Vito. That wasn't that long ago. Apparently, he is the nephew of Phil. Phil's brother Nikki Senior was killed in 1976 in a car accident. Absolutely Genius!!!! David Chase is truly rewarding the true fans who pay attention to detail. So the point would have been that life continues and we may never know the end of the Sopranos. But if you pay attention to the history, you will find that all the answers lie in the characters in the restaurant. The trucker was the brother of the guy who was robbed by Christopher in Season 2. Remember the DVD players? The trucker had to identify the body. The boy scouts were in the train store and the black guys at the end were the ones who tried to kill Tony and only clipped him in the ear (was that season 2 or 3?). Absolutely incredible!!!! There were three people in the restaurant who had reason to kill Tony and then it just ends. This was Chase's way of proving that he will not escape his past. It will not go on forever despite that he would like it to "don't stop". Not the fans!!! Tony would like it to keep going but just as we have to say goodbye, so does he. No more Tony and I guess we are supposed to be happy that Meadow didn't get clipped as well (she would have been between the shooter and Tony) since she is the only one worth a crap in that family. Thank you David Chase for making it so obscure that I feel bad for hating you at first. Absolutely amazing!!!
This ending makes me want to listen to Breathe Me by Sia from the Six Feet Under finale...so I can remember what a real series ender is.
As a person that has been creative writing since she was in fifth grade and living in the world that Tony Soprano's children grew up in...I am very blessed and pleased that Mr. David Chase did not insult my intelligence on who, how and why the world works the way it does. Humanity is a tricky business and unfortunately or fortunately (depending on your philsophy on life...past present & future) we all can be heros in our community (heros is a nongender term for humans, regardless of race, religion, sexual orientation, class, social clubs of association or education) ...as an ecological engineer (environmental engineer, wildlife ecologist & conservationist by degree from the State of Florida) the globe faces a challenge that can not be solved in "hollywood" but in our own living rooms, street corners and polling stations. Democracy only works as well as the people work for democracy. 1775-1776 was the revolutionary war and guess what it is 2007...what are WE going to do about the themes and personal struggles all the characters in the Soprano Saga has brought to the "culture that is American Entertainment"? Thank goodness HBO is not for children because children are not going to put forth the ideas and perserverance and energy conservation that is going to make a global impact.

Unfortunately as a 31 year old wife, step-mother and daugther...I have enough children to raise in my house and community...I hope that others that watch the show and wonder just what will happen to Tony "next season"...think about this...what happens to Tony is what is going to happen to us as a country, as a people, as mothers, fathers, sons and daughters....

Political? NO, just honest. And I was always taught that honesty is the best policy because there will always be someone out there smarter than you and not to mention the obvious, but until it is said it isn't very obvious now is it? Honesty is the best policy because there is always someone out there whom has walked the path I tread today...

Thank you for reading and thank you for being about freedom of speech because don't we live in the Land of the FREE and the HOME of the BRAVE? Yes, we do. I do very much live in a State that set the tone for the "hanging chad" drama for CNN to follow so closely and I like to think that I live in the Land will "NEW HOPE" is created from within each of us.

God Speed.
Well... some people say this wa a great ending.... Maybe for Chase it was great. I'm sure the he and the rest of the crew thought it was witty and cool. But for the viewers.. it sucked. Last I checked... Entertainment television was supposed to be 'Entertaining'. The whole episode was full of idle banter and nothingness. I could have hung out at a 7-Eleven to hear that....

HBO gets cancelled this week at my house... See ya.
The final episode was a waist of time, just like the last 2 seasons. I kept waiting for the show to return to it's original glory, not to be.

As for the ending, Six Feet Under had a great ending, summing up the entire premise of the series, it was both touching and thought provoking. The ending for the Soporanos' was like the season, tired and just ready to "quit".
Brilliant!! This was an ending that conveys Tony's mind to absolute clarity. So many viewers wanted to see him "whacked", so many biewers wanted to see him make it all right, so many wanted to see him go to jail...so many wanted him to face the classical tragic hero's end, to pay for his shortcomings and sins. Tony's mind is so multifacetted, and in order to even begin to end the series in this manner the last show would have lasted forever and been hoplessly choppy. If you want Tony to die...so he died, if not, so he didn't. If you wanted his family to succeed...so it did. It's up to you, it's your ending. Are we all so mindless that we need someone to show it to us. Chase has showed us onscreen what so eludes so many other director...the viewers ability to decide in imagination, as close to a book as possible. BRAVO. I think we are all "standing at the precipice of an enormous crossroad" when this series ended last night.
Tony is shot before the black out. Think about it: when he enters the diner all of a sudden time changes (speeds up)...almost like a dream sequence. Remember when he got shot by Uncle Jr? Dream sequence. The time with his family at the table seemed really odd and the fact that he pays no attention to the man who is eye balling him at the counter, the two black dudes that show up, etc. Would also explain why Meadow can't park her car. It's all a dream that Tony's quickly extstinguishing brain in putting out. Then Meadow finally comes in (maybe) and he dies.
What a great ending...just like life...nothing neat and tidy. Characters' lives don't end when their series ends. I like the fact that Chase has left it up to us to imagine how the Sopranos' lives will unfold over their coming years. The only thing I might have done differently, which is ridiculous as it's not my show, would have been to have Tony get up from the table to go the bathroom just before the fade to black.
I was all to happy to believe Tony lives on and all is the same, but sadly I believe Tony was killed right at the moment the screen went black, it just makes more sense. A great but sad ending. I will miss the entire Soprano family, but especially Tony.
Tracey
Absolutely perfect!! I mean who really wanted to see Tony get killed? Chase did a excellent job at putting the viewer directly into the same emotional state that Tony lives with every moment of the day. I agree with those say that the episode itself could have been a bit more "Soprano-ish"..but the ending allows us to continue to visualize what happened next..as well as leaves the doors open for more things to come. And YES, a movie would be the next logical step!!...can't wait!!
I think it was wonderful, like a great novel that you hate to finish reading -- your mind goes over what would happen next, and most of us did that in our minds. David Chase left us wanting more, and we will and do as simple as that...it was a great series and will go down in history not for its ending, but for its daring bravado to be explicit and real -- just think about the roaring 20's, 30's when "drive bys" where an everyday thing in some of the biggest cities in America.
I thought it had a terrible ending. After all these years then THAT!!!!
We deserved more than that.
Life, uninterupted!
Brilliant on so many levels.

Yes, it could have had some 'closure' but at some level it was closure. The Sopranos are a family living their lives and at any moment that could turn into tragedy.

I thought my satellite went out also but when I realized what happened, I was surprisingly glad it ended that way. It wasn't typical and I applaud David Chase's courage to choose to do an ending like this one.
I guess David Chase won't care, since he's rich, but most Sopranos viewers will probably never watch anything of his again. The polls are overwhelming. The fans were ripped off. If some author wrote books without endings, how long would people keep reading? Then again, HBO seems to love to screw over their fans. Carnivale? Deadwood? Now the Sopranos? Great shows with horrible, horrible endings.
All of you who feel ripped off by David Chase...

Please just shut the hell up!

Did you really think that Tony would go down in a hail of bullets at the hands of Paulie? Perhaps roll on the crew and go in the program? Or perhaps Phil's crew killing Carmela, Meadow, or even AJ? What show have you been watching for the last eight years anyways...

Chase did pull a fast one apparently. On most of you. The sopranos was never really about the gory side of mob life. It was a story about FAMILY. I found it appropriate that the series ended with the Soprano family sitting down and having dinner together. If you stop and think about it for a second, the final episode kind of blended in with the first (and best) season.

So all you Mamalukes are gonna have to learn to live with it. Tony lives!

Excellent ending to a very fine series. We'll miss you T.
Most people have missed the subtle clues that Tony was already dead when he arrived for the final dinner. He in effect did not realize he was dead until Meadow opened the door and he looked up.

The clues are as follows:
Tony is not wearing the same shirt seated as he had on when he walked in.
Tony pauses and he looks up to see himself seated at the table.
Aj walks in as if the guy in the Members Only jacket was not present ( a fellow ghost or the guy who pulls the trigger when Meadow opens the door and Tony goes to black)
The black guys and the guy in the USA hat give futher credibility that Tony is dead watching himself.
Check the episode when Tony had a near death experience in Orange County, as the ending was exactly the same type down to the song, AJ commenting about onion rings yet when they arrive Tony then remarks that he ordered them before they all got there.

I like everyone else thought originially that Chase's fade to black was to leave the ending to our imagination, but now I am convinced it was a masterful way of showing that Tony was dead already!!! Best show ever in the history of T.V. !!!
First off, the Journey song is very symbolic. The lyric "Oh, the movie never ends, it goes on and on and on and on" describes the entire episode. It was the same old Soprano clan, with all thier issues, carrying on as normal, right up to the end. But Tony did get whacked. Remember a few years ago he and Bobby were fishing and discussing what it would be like to die. Tony said "you don't see it coming. everything just goes black. Well, the final scene keeps switching back and forth from Tony's view of the room to the viewers looking at him. When it goes black, he has been shot by someone in the room, your seeing it from his view point. "everything just goes black. Just like he told Bobby.
I think the finale was perfect and it stayed true to David Chases' art and vision. Everyone is focusing on the ending, but what about the other great moments from this episode?

Like the tour bus that drives by when Phil's guys are walking through Little Italy? You hear the speaker on the bus proclaiming that Little Italy once made up over 40 square blocks but it is now down to one street. As he keeps walking, it abruptly turns into China Town, demonstrating how the times have changed and demise of the Italian stronghold that once existed. To me it was a sad realization and I actually felt bad for these guys.

Or Tony and Carmella's visit to AJ's new therapist? Tony couldn't help himself and starts going on and on about his mother and the same old sob story. If looks could kill, Carmella could have whacked Tony right then and there! It was a perfect way to demonstrate that Tony has in fact learned nothing about himself nor changed at all.

And how amazing that for the past 10 years we've been in love with and rooting for Tony Soprano...a sociopath, cold blooded killer, adulterer, misogynist, racist, etc. In the end, even the Federal agent that Tony befriended loved him, and disclosed the one piece of crucial information that led to the hit on Phil. That was great...so fitting!

All in all, I am happy for the ending that Chase provided with us. I've enjoyed mulling over the different outcomes in my mind and I like to think of the Soprano's as really being out there some where, still living on. Thanks to David Chase for a great 10 years and an amazing piece of art (and entertainment).
If you look at IMDB site, there is a quote from David Chase:
"Network television is all talk. I think there should be visuals on a show, some sense of mystery to it, connections that don't add up. I think there should be dreams and music and dead air and stuff that goes nowhere. There should be, God forgive me, a little bit of poetry."
Says a lot.
The screen goes black! I scream, "What the hell!" I was in shock at the ending! I felt robbed! I was on the edge of my seat....the tension building....the camera panning everywhere. It was like riding through a fun house not knowing what was going to jump out at you. I just knew Tony was going to get whacked. Did the guy going to the men's room have a gun hidden in the toilet like in the Godfather? And what about the other people we see in the café the camera kept showing? The guy in the ball cap...was he FBI or an assassin? What about the young couple in the booth? Why so many shots of them? The two black guys coming in the cafe? Why did the camera pan in on them? But as Van Zant said on a radio interview, (and I paraphrase)...you have to give the ending some time, and think about it. Don't jump to conclusions. I did that. Then I thought, "How else could the show have ended?" Tony gets a bullet? The whole place blows up killing the whole family and all the people in the cafe? What an anti-climax that would have been. No, we were left right where we all started years ago....not really knowing what will happen minute to minute, or week to week. At the end, Tony having diner out with his family was a stressful experience. Still so much drama and tension is his life. He watches everyone in the cafe....the place was a probable death trap. You could see it in his eyes. He can never rest. He looked tired. He is detached from his wife and family even though he is sitting with them at the table. No real meaning to the conversation. He and his family are still trapped in their own worlds. Nothing had really changed. Was the ringing bell at the door the last thing Tony heard, and his daughter the last thing he saw before he got whacked with a head shot and then everything goes black??? Remember how Tony told Bobby that, you never see coming the one that gets you? Or was the show's ending just "pulling the plug" on the TV because....the end of the series had finally come? The beauty of this ending is that WE get to decide the outcome. My thanks to David Chase and all the cast and support staff for many fine years of entertainment. The Sopranos will be missed! But all good things must come to an end......whatever that end may be.
Ok, so i've read all the comments. I too was very upset with the ending. But after thinking about it i thought it was brilliant. after thinking about it i thought tony died, well people not so! cut to very last scene, camera ON tony, very key here. Camera was looking AT tony through meadow's eyes. Screen goes black. Who dies? if anyone dies its MEADOW!! Only that would leave it open for a SOPRANO'S THE MOVIE. Tony didnt die, he saw death, the death of his daughter.
"At the end, you probably don't hear anything, everything just goes black."

This quote is very pertinent, but it does not show that Tony Soprano died. It shows that the "Sopranos" died. The show's death is blackness, no music for the credits. Bam! Assassinated series.
I just had a hunch this morning and I went and checked. Did anyone else notice that in the final scene in the restaurant that Tony is wearing the same shirt that he had on when Uncle June shot him. I found the scene on U tube and compared the 2 shirts. Let me know what you all think.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T0k0VX-rZ5Q
its not the same shirt...shirt in final scene has black collar....same type shirt but not same one...maybe black collar is significant....i donno....this is really bothering me...Chase needs to write a really fat book.....then a movie based on the book....it just can't end here...just cant...gimme more!
What is it with people, does everyone HAVE to die in a season finale? Why can't families continue life as normal (or as normal as can be being in the mob)!

Leave it to peoples imagination what they think may/may not happen if the series had continued......
I thought it was great. Too bad all you people who want instant gratification are mad. Maybe you will use your imagination this time. Perfect ending to one of the best shows ever. Hey, get over it..it's realistic!
if the man who went into the restroom was a hit man he would of killed tony as soon as the man walked threw the door to many people saw his face. tony n the famly will move on maybe he will go to prison. but other than that we got wacked we knew to much.
The only reason I kept HBO on my cable service was because of the Sopranos Series.

The series was brilliantly written and produced and highly accurate in its depiction of member's dual life in La Cosa Nostra.

However, this potentially epic series that might have set new standards for cable television was in the end as tragic as the lives of its characters and their victims. David Chase's attempt at subtle sophistication in the closing scene of the show was not artistic, it was simply a disappointment, or as some viewers have remarked "a flop".

Now I can cancel my HBO. I only wish I could have known how the series was going to end and that I too was going to be one of Tony's victims in the long run. I could have saved myself a lot of money.

What a shame.
Not sure if it's been said already but I would say this ending was not FANTASTIC or even a ripoff. It was and should have been expected. Tony gets whacked? Doubtful. Through 10 years, he has eyes all over his head and suddenly he doesn't. Don't buy it. It ended like that because the episode shows Tony reaching status quo again. The turmoil of both families has subsided (for the moment) and he carries on...as always. One thing Tony is and has proven to be is a survivor at any cost. AJ jogging along and Tony chanting the Rocky theme. The underdog Jersey 'glorified crew' has survived and even triumphed since a NY boss was waxed and Tony remains. He's 'decapitated them and will deal with what's left' to use Phil Leotardo's words.
I liked the ending, some of you need to read more, maybe Shakespear; for using your imagination instead of needing spoon fed. (read some studies on brain activity while watching TV) Myself I perferred the scene where he is racking leaves. The ordinary chores of life, can became times of reflection when you wish your life were different or you had your first childhood expectations and innocent dreams of "When I grow up I want to be" instead of the path obligations and expectations of others took you. Of course we can say he had a choice, and he does like all survivor/abusers. If a person does not have faith in change he is not likely to take the risks and the rewards of dropping everything and really walking away. For the web of the lives of others that also hold him where he is in his reality of lies and violence. His little girl still believes Daddy has had a raw deal and not disullioned yet with the illusion of his life. With her there is no condemnation to need repentance, forgiveness or punishment in his fifedom; where he knows who his enemies are even the posiblity of those in his own household.
I was fine with the ending. I totally disagree with those who would describe this ending as diplaying a lack of creativity. All of the possible endings that viewers have thought about (ie: Paulie betrays Tony, Sylvio betrays Tony, Tony goes to jail for life, and even AJ becoming the gangster he never was and killing his own father) would lack creativity. Any viewer can come up with them.
This ending reminded me of the end of the Chinese film "To Live" where a typical Chinese family that the viewer has followed from pre-revolutionary China, up through the cultural revolution sits down and shares dinner. We see them just getting on with their lives. This Sopranos finale is similar. Also, Tony lives every day with the threat of death. This episode, especially the final scene, gives the viewer a sense of what this is like. Uneasy lies the head...With the door opening and the customers/possible hitmen coming in, it brought to mind the hit of Joey Gallo at Umberto's. And again, the one customer going into the bathroom brings to mind Al Pacino's trip to the bathroom in the Godfather. I will miss this show....
Yes, the end may have some commercial impications. They can always come back. Tony is not dead. Sylvio is not dead. Paulie and Patsy are not dead. Maybe we will see them again.
Brilliant ending, just not an ending for people who like their TV "spoon fed". The cut to black and silence so suddenly is because Tony Soprano was killed and the last thing he saw was Meadow coming in the door. If the viewer had been shown a bloody hail of bullets and then it ended there wouldn't be anything left for people to talk about. Since it's very first episode The Sopranos has ALWAYS left people talking, and now David Chase has made sure we will continue to keep talking about it long after now. Bravo!
By the way, Little Carmine set Tony up.
Sadly nothing is left to the imagination of the audience... Nothing is more clear than Tony's dead..

He is wearing the shirt he wore when Junior shot him, only it now has a black collar..dead
He is indeed wearing a different shirt when he walks in..the change of shirt can thus only be viewed, in such a realistic serie, as a symbol of death..

Nothing has ever been random in the Sopranos..

Melfi ends the therapy..depicting dead..

New York already tried to kill Tony twice, his family allready tried twice (June and his mother and then again June when shotting him..): Meadow tries to park her car twice yet she's not succesfull.. The third time only does she succeed.. Again symbolising Tony's unfortunate death..the third time "they" do succeed

In episode s6e20 the girls in "the bing" are dancing to The Doors, "the end". Yet Chase doesn't let you hear the voice of Jim Morrison.. Thus hiding the obvious thruth.. Like the final episode..

The whole 6th serie from episode 13 is full of symbolic nearing death clues.. I really don't wanna go on.. Seek and U shall find..

"You probly don't even hear it"

All of you thinking Chase left the final episode to speculation have obviously never recognised the genious that is Chase.. the genious that is The Sopranos..

I'm gonna miss you Tony..
Asalud
Right now... I can't think streight. Do I love the ending, accepting my own fantasy to fill the blanks? I don't know. Can't say. I can only promise you that tomorrow when things have settled down a bit I will love the ending and the ingenius thrill it gave me. The day after i'm afraid i'll hate the ending, curse the producer, curse the crew and my t.v.
Later still i'll think fondly of all the different endings i'll have created in my mind and hate them at the same time... This probably won't stop until I forget the show completely. It's the only way it can end. With an open ending like this people have been given open opinions as well, and in a sense my opinion of the show will now never reach a conclusion...
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