the soprano is a show with a huge cast, with dozens of main and supporting characters. Understandably, on a New Jersey Mafia crime show, these characters have a pretty high death rate. Most of these deaths are fairly well paced, and the deceased are often well-developed characters.
Other times, however, these deaths can be a bit too sudden and happen to characters who could have used more screen time. Some characters definitely needed a few more episodes to flesh out, and some need them more than others.
This article contains spoilers for The Sopranos.
10) Jack Masserone
Jack Masserone (Robert Desiderio) owned a local construction company and had connections to the Soprano team. Tony Soprano (James gandolfini) uses his construction company as a front for all kinds of illegal operations, like no-show and no-work jobs, and the HUD scam.
It would have been interesting to see Masserone’s role in these schemes: it is strongly implied that he is somewhat of a reluctant participant given that he would later become an FBI informant and appear uncomfortable in the process. every scene he’s in. Sadly, Masserone is killed in the same episode. he was revealed to be giving information to federal authorities, so we never get his point of view.
9) Karen Baccalieri
Bobby Baccalieri (Steve schirripa) is one of the few gangsters in the series who has some sort of conscience and moral compass. He is not prone to violence, sadism or infidelity, unlike his colleagues. A prime example of his kindness is shown by the love he shows towards his family, especially his wife, Karen (Christine Pedi).
Sadly, the couple have very little screen time together as Karen only appears in two episodes and then unceremoniously dies in a car crash. It’s a shame his character was killed off so soon, as it would have been interesting to see what Bobby’s family life was like before he was completely turned upside down. It would also be interesting to see Karen’s take on having a criminal as a husband who was relatively “normal” compared to her “co-workers.”
8) Lorraine Calluzo
In season 5 of the series, New York’s Lupertazzi crime family is in the midst of a civil war. Their boss, Carmine Sr., is dead, and his son, “Little” Carmine Jr. (Ray Abruzzo), and the Deputy Chief, Johnny Sack (Vincent Curatola), want the throne. One of the first victims of the war was the loan shark Lorraine Calluzo (Patti d’Arbanville), who holds the distinction of being one of the two female gangsters in the series and appears to be the only female gangster in New York City.
Lorraine is a pretty obnoxious person: she’s casually racist, her life is based on shaking off debtors for money, and he’s just a tough head. Still, she could have used a few more episodes to flesh out her character. She is in an unusual position, being the only woman in a patriarchal and paramilitary criminal enterprise. It would have been interesting to see her stay a few more episodes before she got hit.
7) Eugene Pontecorvo
Eugene “Gene” Pontecorvo (Robert funaro) is a little different from the characters on this list. He has a lot of appearances: he’s in almost a third of the episodes, but unfortunately only has a handful of lines. It’s also a shame because Funaro plays his role of low-level gangster very well.
One episode only develops the character of Gene and allows Funaro to flex his muscles as a dramatic actor, and that is “Member’s Only”. Gene received a massive inheritance from a deceased aunt and wants to use it to leave New Jersey with his family and never return. He is not only unhappy with the criminal life he leads, but he is also in a hurry to get information from the FBI. Gene, unfortunately, concludes that he is the only thing holding his family back and commits suicide. Gene’s arc is tragic but would have been more effective had his role been a bit bigger.
6) Burt Gervasi
When Burt Gervasi (Artie Pasquale) was tied to death by Silvio Dante (Steven van zandt) in the penultimate episode of the series, you’d swear that’s her only appearance. Burt, sadly, is barely seen until this point, although his death is a huge plot point.
Burt was not killed for no reason. Sil discovered that he was planning to get off the ship and join the Lupretazzi family when New Jersey and New York were on the brink of war. His decision to betray his family has a butterfly effect. Burt tries to leave the ship and wants Sil to come with them: he is then killed by Silvio. Silvio informs Tony and Bobby, and they try to hit New York first. While trying to kill the head of the Lupretazzi family, they accidentally kill a civilian. By the time they realized their mistake, they let their guard down: New York quickly retaliated and decimated the New Jersey rulers. Burt’s character and death had a major impact and he just deserved a little more screen time.
5) Makazian wine
Before The Sopranos was a cultural force, John heard was one of the few big names in the show. In season 1, he played the role of Vin Makazian, a rogue detective in Tony’s pay. Heard played Makazian perfectly. Makazian was a shady cop with a drinking and gambling problem and had a taste for abusing his authority.
Still, Makazian was a deeply broken man whose only friend was New Jersey gifted Tony Soprano, and Tony hated his guts. Makazian was eventually arrested in an illegal brothel and subsequently forcibly suspended. Having nothing else to live on, Makazian committed suicide. Heard played his role a masterpiece, and it would have been fantastic to see him beat the suspension and become a recurring character.
4) Gigi Cestone
In a series with 62 deaths on screen, capo Gigi Cestone (John fiore) death is probably the least worthy. He was playing a card game with his team and got up to go to the bathroom, but suddenly died of a heart attack while on the Porcelain Throne.
Gigi’s role in the series is primarily to babysit Ralph “Ralphie” Cifaretto (Joe pantoliano) to become a captain. It’s clear Gigi got the promotion because he wasn’t as violent or impulsive as Ralph, not because of his leadership skills or his ability to make money. We get a few glimpses of his personal life through his dialogue, like how he has kids who will be in college soon, but that’s it. Gigi could have at least used a few more episodes to flesh out her character and role as captain.
3) Mikey Palmice
The Sopranos is a show filled with cruel, cranky, and violent gangsters, but the king of them all should be Mikey “Grab Bag” Palmice (Al sapienza).
Very few gangsters really enjoy the violence they inflict, but Mikey is an exception. He wears a smile on every murder he commits, every beating he inflicts on others, every malicious comment he makes. He’s a character who truly revel in the misery he causes to others, but Sapienza brings that character to life and brings a lot of charisma to the role. It’s a shame that Mikey only lasts until the Season 1 finale: his future exploits would have made great TV.
Plot (Ariel kiley) has only appeared in one episode of Season 3 (“University”), but her ghost looms large this season and the next. His death underscored the gangsters’ cruel indifference to ordinary people.
Series creator David Chase and his fellow screenwriters must have been tired of viewers idolizing and laughing with the Soprano crew, so they pitched audiences with “University”. The episode centers on Tracee, a young topless dancer from Bada Bing who is in a relationship with Ralphie. Ralphie, being a self-centered sadist, treats Tracee like dirt even though she loves him. Things come to a breaking point and the two have a heated argument where Ralph beats her to death with his own hands. Tracee was an innocent young woman whose only mistake was falling into the wrong crowd. Kiley deserved at least an extra episode or two to flesh out the character.
1) Carmine Lupretazzi, Sr.
Carmine Lupretazzi, Sr. (Tony lip) is the best boss in the series at a mile and a half out of the country. All the other big bosses in the series, from Johnny Sack to Phil Leotardo (Franck Vincent), even to Tony himself, looks like bickering kids over Carmine, Sr.
The bosses of the show are often motivated by personal feelings and are extremely quick to anger. Not Carmine. He never smiles and rarely sweats. The only thing he thinks about is the basics, for anyone involved in “their thing”. Lip plays the part of the old school gift, but he only shines in Season 4. Carmine dies of a stroke early in Season 5, in one of the many surprising and unexpected moments in the movie. series. Even if only for a few more episodes, it would have been fantastic to see Carmine stay a bit longer.
NEXT: “The Sopranos”: Why “Pine Barrens” Is Still The Best Episode
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