Strange as it may seem I missed out on the Sopranos when it was on television. So I was lucky that Santa brought me the box set for Christmas. As an avid watcher of crime drama and reader of crime fiction I thought it was time for me to catch with the rest of the human race!
The first scene of the first show is something that would appeal to Inspector Drake as we see Tony Soprano in the chair during a session with his psychiatrist. It is scene that takes us straight into the world of Tony Soprano. He could almost be a bank manager were it not for the occasional remark from the psychiatrist about Tony Soprano’s circumstances.
After learning about Tony Soprano’s chaotic home life and his panic attacks we get to meet his family, including some wild birds that play an important part in his life and I guess will feature again in the series. It’s hard being a criminal, of course, especially one who has a difficult mother as well as family members who’d like nothing than for Tony to fail.
It took me some time to become accustomed to the strong New Jersey accents that derailed me following the plot as smoothly as I’d have liked. American television and viewers in the UK too enjoy dramas involving the mafia and organised crime. And all of these programmes focus on developing the characters in the family saga. There’s scene in a restaurant where Tony Soprano’s psychiatrist is waiting in a long queue for a table but when Tony arrives he arranges for her to jump the queue, much to the surprise of her husband. Cheesy trope, maybe but great entertainment. And it signals to us how really intimidating Tony Soprano really can be although we didn’t really need any reminders after an brutal beating he gives a man who’s indebted to him at the start of the programme. Only another 85 to go.