It’s been seven years since The Sopranos finale, and any lingering frustration that viewers had with that final scene was probably superseded by the Lost finale and later the Dexter finale, so most people have probably gotten over it. I mean, a black screen and an ambiguous ending is much better than boating out into a hurricane and washing up weeks later as A LUMBERBACK.
But for whatever reason, EW decided to ask Michael Imperioli to interpret the end of The Sopranos, and for a new generation of viewers who are going to discover The Sopranos for the first time in a few weeks on Amazon Prime, THIS IS IMPORTANT. Also, spoilers, so get out of here, new generation of viewers.
Basically, Imperioli — who played Christopher Moltisanti in the series — said that he spoke to showrunner David Chase about a year before the finale, and Chase told him how it would end. While Imperioli says he Chase didn’t tell him exactly what it meant, he thinks he knows.
“My opinion is that … we were in [Tony's] point of view in the last moments of his life and that’s it. He’s not expecting it, it comes out of nowhere and if you were shot, if someone assassinated you, I don’t know, basically everything would go black and [David was] putting us in those shoes at that time.”
So, basically: Boom. Dead.
There it is, folks: Michael Imperioli thinks that Tony was shot and killed, and therefore, Tony was shot and killed. Mystery solved. We can all finally move on with our lives, though we will probably never know what came on the jukebox after the Journey song or if Meadow ordered regular fries or curly after her father was shot.
Some things, I guess, we’re just never supposed to know.