Tony's departure from therapy was bone-chillingly serious. It was a sober, realistic reflection of what has and hasn't been accomplished in his therapy. We have all unfortunately been in this place in our practices, with patients for whom our own hopes for personal growth far exceed their own. Tony mocks Melfi both this week and last, almost like a lover trying to help a partner through a breakup by being the biggest jerk possible: "Here, hate me a little more and this will be easier for both of us."
What does this termination presage about Tony's termination from the series? Gandolfini made a lot of noise last year about wanting out of his role as Tony Soprano. Could this be the writers' preparing us, letting us down easy? Will Tony not survive the pending confrontations between Carmine's crew and his own? I won't place any serious money on this premonition, because I have found trying to bet on the Sopranos even harder than on the market, but since it crossed my mind, I wondered if it crossed any of yours? Meanwhile, it's two weeks to the showdown.