Episode 14 “Guy Walks Into A Psychiatrist’s Office…”
Right off the bat, the opening of season two of The Sopranos ups the ante. We’re shown a very cinematic montage, giving us the status of the Sopranos characters as the new season begins. The montage is set to Frank Sinatra’s It Was A Very Good Year. Up to that point in time (January 2000) there weren’t too many television shows that felt so much like an actual Hollywood movie going experience. The Sopranos accomplished that within the first 5 minutes of season two. A montage of similar effect would be used in the Season 6 opener (Member’s Only). The montage does an excellent job of expressing what’s going on with each character without the use of dialogue.
Livia in her hospital bed; pitying herself now more than ever with the guilt of the attempt on her son’s life still eating away at her.
Tony plays solitaire at the Bada Bing; his new roll as the street boss places him alone at the top.
I wonder if they reshot the photo montage or if they took those shots directly from episode 6, Pax Soprana? If you look closely, you see the name Johnny Sack with the title Capo underneath it. Shouldn’t Johnny Sack be labeled as ‘Underboss’? Perhaps the writers hadn’t gotten that far, as of this point.
It’s funny to see Dr. Melfi operating out of a motel room. I believe this is the first episode where Tony goes without a therapy session since the pilot episode. I love how this series could break out of the ordinary and didn’t require any type of repetitive format like most TV shows must do to simply survive. And while I’m on the topic of Tony Soprano’s therapy, it seems that Tony has outgrown it for the time being, although his panic attacks will soon catch up to him. He seems to think that he’s been cured at this point in his life, although there is still a lot of work that needs be done.
Another subtle effect that each season of The Sopranos gave us was that we get to watch AJ & Meadow Soprano aka Robert Iler and Jamie Lynn Sigler, progress from young teenagers to young adults. Very interesting to see how young they looked at one point to where they ended up in the final season.
Christopher is featured doing cocaine in the montage, a lot of foreshadowing on the state of his character and things to come for him. We’ll soon learn how much of a junkie Christohper is. Adriana is one of the few regular characters left out of the montage.
To me, Tony Soprano really looks like he’s dressed like Sonny Corleone in this scene from the opening montage. Just a subtle Godfather reference this time.
The glance from Carmela to Tony as they lay in bed speaks wave’s of the current state of their relationship. It also shows us how their marriage is crumbling right before their very eyes. Throughout this season, we’ll see how Carmela becomes more and more agitated with Tony and how she really doesn’t trust him anymore.
To end the montage, Tony Soprano awakens to a new day and a new season of The Sopranos.
It’s time to get that newspaper. This could very well be one of the first Tony Soprano newpaper / driveway / paranoia shots ever, as well. Thanks to Junior Soprano’s hit on Tony from season one, Tony is now paranoid as hell whenever he spots a car parked in the road near the start of his driveway.
One of the two main antagonists of season two pops up in this episode, aka Pussy Bonpensiero. During their initial discussion, Pussy mentions “the word of a degenerate cop” to Tony. How the hell does Pussy know Vin told Tony something? I guess word travels fast in the mob circles. Can you blame Tony for trying to pat down Pussy in the basement? Tony no longer trusts his friend.
As strong of a leader as Tony Soprano is, it really surprises me that he lets the problem of Pussy go on throughout the whole second season. I have to assume that the fact that Pussy is Tony’s best friend is the only reason why Tony Soprano procrastinates on taking any action on dealing with the problem that is Pussy’s whereabouts and his possible ties to the feds that Vin Makazian told Tony about in season one.
We’re treated to a slew of new characters in this episode. Here’s the list…
Philly “Spoons” Parisi, played by Dan Grimaldi, makes his first and last appearance. Philly is another Soprano’s character who get’s introduced and whacked within the same episode. The cool thing that we don’t know at this point is that Philly has a twin brother named Patsy Parisi (who will also get played by Dan Grimaldi). That fact won’t get revealed to us until the final episode of season 2, Funhouse. The repercussions of the hit on Philly will show up at the start of season three.
Gigi Cestone; one of Junior’s soldier’s, whom Tony has whack Philly Parisi in this episode.
We first saw mentions of Tony’s sisters in Episode 7, Down Neck. This episode introduces the current day Janice (Parvati) Soprano & Barbara Soprano Giglione. Barbara will never really have any major implications on the storyline (besides the fact that she called Janice and told her about her mother’s health status), however Janice Soprano sure will. I find it amusing how many people can’t stand Janice. Along with her mother, Janice Soprano may very well may be one of the most annoying Soprano’s characters ever.
We also meet Barbara’s husband, Tom Giglione, Tony & Janice’s brother-in-law.
Thanks to the absence of Livia Soprano, we get to meet Carmela’s parent for the first time; Hugh & Mary DeAngelis.
Another round of up and coming wannabe gangsters show up this season, known as Matthew Bevilaqua & Sean Gismonte.
Finally, we also meet Tony Soprano’s creepy lawyer, Neil Mink. Neil will be Tony’s lawyer through the final episode of The Sopranos.
At the Bada Bing, Silvio Dante does a Godfather impression as the guys are welcoming back Big Pussy. “Our true enemy, has yet, to reveal himself,” Silvio speaks. Immediately after, the camera cuts to Big Pussy laughing at Silvio’s impersonation.
For those of you who are rewatching season 2, please pay special attention to all scenes that feature eggs in them. Season two starts a Soprano’s trend that’s similar to the oranges trend in the Godfather. It seems that eggs foreshadow death in The Sopranos. We see Carmela making eggs this episode, however this theory hasn’t sprung to life yet, but it will. Keep watching for them!
On the subject of Livia Soprano, Tony repeatedly tells Janice & Carmela, “she’s dead to me.” Although around other people, outside of the family, Tony will pretend that everything is alright between him and his mother. Tony really holds a grudge against her for what she did. Contrarily, he has forgiven Junior and places most of the blame for the hit on his mother.
It’s easy for Tony to pretend on the outside that everything is okay, however we soon realize that it’s not. Tony gets hit with a panic attack while rocking out to Depp Purple’s Smoke On The Water in his car and crashes. Perhaps it was Janice that brought on the stress? Christopher? Livia? It takes a car crash / panic attack for Tony to realize that his troubles are boiling up inside of him again.
It’s quite weird seeing Tony with an alternate shrink. However it’s funny to see how quickly the shrink jumps ship when he realizes what type of business “Mr. Spears” aka Tony Soprano is in. Tony probably realizes that he had something special with Melfi for her to keep him on as long as she did. The temporary shrink makes mention to Analyze This, a movie that some have compared to The Soprano’s about a mobster who see’s a shrink. In turn, Tony refers to Analyze This as just being, “a fuckin’ comedy.”
At a bbq, Tony hear’s Pussy remark to Silvio about a “broad he claimed he was fuckin’.” I’m guessing that this makes Tony question the story Pussy told him about the woman he was seeing while he was missing. We can see the wheels in Tony Soprano’s head go into motion as he starts to see Pussy in slow motion as he cooks over the grill and smokes his cigar. It becomes quite evident to us that Tony is looking at Pussy differently now. This is another great Sopranos scene where there are no words needed to convey what’s going on inside of Tony Soprano’s head. The trust is gone.
Tony also looks like he’s about to have a panic attack. Perhaps Pussy is the cause of the return of the panic attacks?
Listen carefully to the scene when Matt & Sean question Christopher about Tony Soprano. They question Chris whether he’s ever capped someone with Tony. Sean remarks about Tony, “Naw he’s too big for that, he doesn’t get his nails dirty.” However Sean is a wrong. Later in this season, Tony will kill Matthew Bevilaqua and will indeed get his nails quite dirty. These writers love their foreshadowing.
We see Christopher hit Adriana for the first time during a public fight, after she calls him a junkie. More foreshadowing on Christopher’s character development. It was quite refreshing to see Adriana hit Christopher back. Although if Christopher hits a woman in public, don’t you think someone would’ve stood up to him? He wasn’t necessarily a made man at this point, although he does roll with Tony Soprano. Matt & Sean witness Christopher Moltisanti’s weakness first hand.
Tony Soprano gets rejected by two psychiatrists in this episode. Dr. Jennifer Melfi’s trust in Tony is gone, although he does mention to her his panic attack / car accident, which will play into Jennifer’s guilt. The same guilt that she feels about her patient who committed suicide when she wasn’t available, thanks to Tony Soprano.
Shortly after leaving the diner where Tony confronts Dr. Melfi, we hear a truck horn as it drives by. A few episodes later (Toodle-Fucking-Oo), Melfi will dream of Tony getting into a car accident with a truck and will hear a simliar truck horn. In fact, the scene in the diner between Melfi & Tony started out with a huge truck passing by as Melfi sat alone. Her subconscious has been set into motion.
Tony contemplates the rejection. We don’t see many shows where a character is simply thinking about the events that just took place. We expect Tony to discuss it with Carmela as she makes him some lunch, but he sits there, silently eating. Tony never mentions to Carmela what’s going on between him & Melfi and how she has rejected him.
Season two will continue to bring us a lot of violent moments, but at the same time, regular life moments. The kind of little moments that are so true to life that The Soprano’s pulled off. It’s those little moment’s that bring this show to a whole other level. I believe it’s one reason why so many people can somehow relate to Tony Soprano, even though he’s a cold blooded killer.
Finally, while thinking about the meaning behind this episode’s title, I realized that it could be a play on the fact that Dr. Melfi’s current psychiatry office is a hotel room, and as the title infers, at this point, that’s a joke.