Saturday, May 22, 2004

Why Don Corleone, and Every Other Decent Italian, Hates Tony Soprano

I have had this argument more times than I care to remember. My brother-in-law still cannot believe I hate the Sopranos. After all, I’m Italian, and I love the Godfather, so The Sopranos seems like a natural.

How can you like The Godfather and hate the Sopranos? Well, let me tell you all, I hate the Sopranos, and so would Don Corleone.

Before I continue, I am not on of these Italian Americans that say mafia movies ruin the reputation of Italians. I live in New Jersey; I know plenty of Italian Americans who do a good enough job on their own without Hollywood’s help.

So, why does Don Corleone hate Tony Soprano? There are plenty of reasons. Let’s take some quotes. When Johnny Fontaine is crying in the don’s office at Connie’s wedding, Vito asks Johnny, “Do you spend time with your family”. Johnny replies, “Sure I do.” Then the don says:

“Good, any man who doesn’t spend time with his family could never be a real man.”

Not very Tony Soprano, who spends half his time at a nudie bar.

Next, at the meeting with The Turk, Sonny makes a costly error by “speaking when he should listen”. The Don blames this foolishness on Sonny’s infidelity with “that girl” Lucy. Again, this is something Tony Soprano would never say to his child. Tony Soprano would certainly approve of Santino’s behavior.

I think it is pretty clear how the don would feel about Tony Soprano. Pretty much the same way I feel about him, that he has no honor, no courage and the he is definitely, not a real man.


CRAIG said...

I can see your point, and although I've only seen a handful of episodes, I don't think Tony and his crew are suppossed to be likeable guys. The way the series is heading (based on what I've seen) is the downfall of the entire family. None of these guys are good or honorable, and they are going to get it in the end. Hate him or not, it is still a hellava program though.

T-_Bone said...

You are right, they probably are not supposed to be likable, either way I really do not care for the show. The worst part is that The Soprano's has invaded sports radio. I can't stnad when these goons on FAN and ESPN Radio go on about the show.

Sweetie Guy Hutchinson said...

Kudos on a well thought out point of view. I too am a big Godfather fan (meaning that I like the three movies, not that I am 7 foot 5, or something.)
Don Vito Corleone and his family have always appealed to me, I think because their story is about family, not the mafia.
I always loved the dichotomy of a Mafia boss who loves his family and refuses to take part in the drug trade.
I watched the Sopranos once, and I didn't like it. To be fair, it may have been a bad episode. Nonetheless, it was the love for family that I found missing. I felt like I was watching a version of the Godfather with 10 Sonnys and 5 Fredos and no Vitos or Michaels.
I find this with most other mafia films I see as well.

BTW- have you ever seen the Godfather Complete Epic or Complete Novel For Television? They are edits of the two films in chronological order. Amazingly these presentations, in my opinion, are even better than watching the films separately.

T-_Bone said...

Thanks SGH - I actually did see the Epic once and I liked it. I bought an old version of the Epic on VHS as a gift for someone and watched it and was suprised by how much I liked it better. Your point about 10 Sonnys and 5 Fredos is right on. I have only seen the show a few times myself and found that to be the case. That's why I don't watch it anymore.

CRAIG said...

SGH? Come on T, just call him Sweetie. You know you want too.

T-_Bone said...

BD Guy would get jealous