Finis, Redux

I won't go on too long about this, I promise.

I watched my first episode of The Sopranos on VHS. I was living in Champaign, working third shift, and one morning after I got off work I ran some errands and ended up at Blockbuster. I'd heard things about the show--good things, usually--but nothing too specific. That Blockbuster, though, was pretty terrible. Not too much selection. I'd seen the first two seasons of The Sopranos on the shelf for a few weeks, and I figured what the hell, I'll see what it's all about. In less than a week, I'd been through the first two seasons. I wasn't able to check them all out from the same Blockbuster, though. Sometimes, the tape I needed was out, and I'd have to go to another video store. I think I probably used four video stores in seven days.

Later, I watched Season Three on DVD. And when Season Four was about ready to start, I got HBO, just so I could watch The Sopranos. I also ended up getting into Six Feet Under and became pretty invested in boxing, too. I've had HBO ever since.

And tonight, as pretty much everybody knows, is the end.

Back in grad school, back when I first ordered HBO so I could watch The Sopranos, I had a conversation with a professor one afternoon about the show. For some reason, we started talking about how it would end. "There's only one way it can end," my professor said. "Tony has to die. It'll end like a Shakespearian tragedy."

My first response, mostly in my head, was, "No way. They won't do that."

The way things have been shaking out, though--and I won't spoil things for those of you who are waiting for this season to come out on DVD--he was pretty much right.

And the way Tony's been acting this season, it's almost as if they've been preparing us for it--justifying the day he gets his.

But I'm still not so sure. Apparently, you can bet on who's going to die tonight. And not only that. You can also bet on who's going to die first, second, and third.

The odds right now (or, rather, the last time I checked) are 150-110 that Tony will live.

I'm not going to be betting, but I will say here that I think he's going to make it. I don't know what exactly that'll mean for the pygmy, and I don't know what kind of "closure" all of us fans will have if Tony doesn't die, but there's my guess.

Maybe you do need a gynecologist to know which way the wind blows.

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