Funhouse (The Sopranos)
|The Sopranos episode|
Tony in his dream
|Episode no.||Season 2
|Directed by||John Patterson|
|Written by||David Chase
Todd A. Kessler
|Original air date||April 9, 2000|
|Running time||59 minutes|
"Funhouse" is the twenty-sixth episode of the HBO television series The Sopranos. It is the thirteenth and final episode of the show's second season. It was written by series creator/executive producer David Chase and co-producer Todd A. Kessler, and was directed by frequent The Sopranos director John Patterson. It originally aired in the United States on April 9, 2000, attracting about 9 million viewers.
It was nominated in the category of Outstanding Writing for a Drama Series.
- James Gandolfini as Tony Soprano
- Lorraine Bracco as Dr. Jennifer Melfi
- Edie Falco as Carmela Soprano
- Michael Imperioli as Christopher Moltisanti
- Dominic Chianese as Corrado Soprano, Jr.
- Vincent Pastore as Pussy Bonpensiero
- Steven Van Zandt as Silvio Dante
- Tony Sirico as Paulie Gualtieri
- Robert Iler as Anthony Soprano, Jr.
- Jamie-Lynn Sigler as Meadow Soprano
- Drea de Matteo as Adriana La Cerva
- and Nancy Marchand as Livia Soprano
Also guest starring
- Sofia Milos as Annalisa
- Louis Lombardi as Skip Lipari
- Frank Pellegrino as Frank Cubitoso
- Nicole Burdette as Barbara Giglione
- Federico Castelluccio as Furio Giunta
- Dan Grimaldi as Patsy Parisi
- Tom Aldredge as Hugo DeAngelis
- John Fiore as Gigi Cestone
- Toni Kalem as Angie Bonpensiero
- Robert LuPone as Bruce Cusamano
- David Margulies as Neil Mink
- Matt Servitto as Agent Dwight Harris
- Suzanne Shepherd as Mary DeAngelis
- Maureen Van Zandt as Gabriella Dante
- Barbara Andres as Aunt Quintina
- David Anzuelo as Flight Attendant
- Kathleen Fasolino as Meadow's Friend
- Ray Garvey as Airport Guard
- David Healy as Vice Principal
- Sig Libowitz as Hillel
- Ajay Mehta as Sundeep Kumar
- Jay Palit as Indian Man
- and Robert Patrick as David Scatino
After Janice's departure, Tony, Barbara and Livia discuss Livia's living arrangements. Barbara's husband won't allow her to live with them, so Tony gives Livia two stolen airline tickets to Arizona for herself and for her sister Quintina, warning her to leave for good.
Tony becomes ill with food poisoning and suffers fever dreams. In one, he meets with Paulie, Silvio, Christopher, Philly "Spoons" Parisi, Hesh and an oddly silent Pussy at the boardwalk in Asbury Park. Tony talks about ending his life due to a terminal disease and douses himself with gasoline before igniting it and awakening. In another, Uncle Junior wanders on a factory site before Tony uses a tower viewer at a distance and watches himself playing cards with Paulie in a depot. Tony shoots Paulie after he speaks.
The following morning, Artie comes over for the menu for Meadow's graduation party only to learn Tony has severe food poisoning. He and Tony argue about his food and Artie believes an Indian restaurant where Tony also ate is the culprit. Eventually, Artie calls up Big Pussy to see if he is sick as well, but he says that he is alright and Artie leaves. Tony then becomes delirious after receiving a house call from his next-door neighbor Dr. Cusamano and eventually manages to fall asleep. Tony then begins to dream about having sex with Dr. Melfi during a therapy session.
In another dream, Tony speaks to Big Pussy, who has taken the form of a dead fish. Finally Tony confronts his suspicions that Big Pussy is a government informant. Awakened, Tony and Silvio soon go to Pussy's house, and invite him to go check out a new boat with them. Feigning diarrhea, Tony manages to use the ensuite bathroom and instead searches Pussy's bedroom, finding Pussy's wire hidden in a cigar box.
Silvio, Tony and Pussy drive to Paulie at the docks. Tony has his final dream during the journey, which involves Meadow's announcing over dinner she is planning to attend Columbia University and Tony's informing his family he has just purchased a new boat. After setting out for a ride on a yacht, Tony confronts Pussy below decks, and asks how long it has been since he "flipped". Pussy initially denies the accusation, but quickly confesses under pressure. He claims not to have given any major information to the Feds and in fact to have supplied them with disinformation, but Tony does not believe him. Silvio excuses himself, claiming to be seasick.
To break the mood, Pussy asks for some tequila, and Paulie pours for Tony, Pussy and himself, offering modest cheers. As Silvio returns, Pussy brags about the girl he used to have sex with at the clinic in Puerto Rico. Tony asks if she ever even existed, and Pussy retreats to a corner, resigned to his fate. Then, he asks to be allowed to sit, claiming his inner-ear balance is off. Tony takes the first shot; Paulie and Silvio follow suit and shoot Pussy to death, honoring his wishes to not be shot in the face. Paulie removes his identifying jewelry, and together they bind his body in chains and weights, throw him off the back of the boat, and watch his body slowly sink into the ocean.
Hours later, Carmela receives a phone call from Livia, who is being detained in the Newark Airport security office for possessing stolen airline tickets. Within minutes, FBI agents arrive at the Soprano home with a warrant, and ask to search the residence. One agent reveals he has already searched Tony's car and found the stolen tickets. Tony is handcuffed and taken to FBI offices for questioning, right in front of Meadow, who has suddenly arrived with her friends, and is now mortally embarrassed. Tony becomes unbalanced at one point and almost falls, appearing weak in front of the FBI agents. The agent in charge notes that mob boss Tony Soprano is "weak in the knees," but instead of his usual bravado to the agents, Tony angrily responds that he's got food poisoning and is led into a holding cell. Soon after, his lawyer Neil Mink, has him released on bail, in plenty of time to attend Meadow's graduation the next day.
Later, at Dr. Melfi's, Tony goes off on a rant about Indian people, because of his food poisoning, and even more against his mother. Dr. Melfi challenges him to confront the recent sorrow which she suspects he may be harboring underneath his pose. Tony stubbornly refuses to delve into his state of mind, and continues with distractions by bluntly talking about his sexual dream with her, before finally leaving the session, smugly and tauntingly singing.
The following day at Meadow's graduation ceremony, Tony proudly watches his daughter accept her high school diploma. There he also tells Christopher that he is proposing him to get his "button" and become a made man. Tony then sees David Scatino, who tells Tony he and his wife are getting a divorce, that he will be living and working out west with a cousin in Nevada, and that his Georgetown University-bound son, Eric, could only afford to get into a state college (since his father had blown Eric's college fund gambling with Tony). Later, Tony and Carmela throw Meadow a graduation party at their house, and the episode ends with a montage of Tony's two "families" celebrating together, interspersed with the images of the various illegal enterprises through which Tony makes his living: Barone Sanitation, an adult movie theater, a person selling calling cards on the street, Teittleman's motel, the now-abandoned, empty office where the "Webistics" stock scam took place. Carmela looks for Tony among the guests, and sees him, as we do, standing by himself in a corner of the living room, slowly lighting a cigar and blowing out the smoke, with a faraway look on his face. This then fades into a shot of the ocean at sunset, the waves crashing on the shore.
The episode marks the first appearance of:
- Aunt Quintina: Younger sister of Livia Soprano and mother of Tony's cousin Tony Blundetto.
- Pasquale "Patsy" Parisi: Soldier in the Soprano/Gualtieri/Moltisanti crew and twin brother of the deceased Philly "Spoons" Parisi.
- Salvatore "Big Pussy" Bonpensiero: shot to death by Tony, Silvio, and Paulie for being an FBI informant. His body was tossed into the ocean.
- In the scene when Tony's mother calls his home for help about the stolen airline tickets. Carmela answers the phone. When she hands the phone to Tony, she says: "Here, the fun never stops".
- In Tony's dream, he is on the boardwalk in Asbury Park, near the Palace Amusements funhouse with the famous wide-eyed clown painted on it known as "Tillie".
- David Proval and Aida Turturro are no longer billed in the opening credits, although Turturro returns next season as a full-time cast member.
- Just as in the season opener, "Guy Walks Into a Psychiatrist's Office...", Silvio does his The Godfather Part III Michael Corleone impersonation in the dream, only in the dream he is referring to Pussy: "Our true enemy has yet to reveal himself".
- In his dream, Tony sees Pussy as a fish who notes that two other fish on either side of him are sleeping. The reference is to death, as in "sleeps with the fishes" from The Godfather, and it foreshadows Pussy's ultimate resting place, the ocean. Pussy actually himself once said the phrase, in the pilot episode, when he corrected Christopher who misquoted The Godfather.
- Every time Tony dreams in this episode, there is a creaking sound in the background. This is the same creaking sound the boat at sea makes when Pussy is shot.
- The song played throughout the episode, including the end credits, is "Thru and Thru" from the 1994 album, Voodoo Lounge by The Rolling Stones (and sung by Keith Richards)
- The song played on the radio of Tony's car, and in his last "fever dream" is "Free Fallin'" by Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers
- The song that Pussy puts in the CD player and plays in the background while he confesses to being an informant is "Baubles, Bangles and Beads" by Frank Sinatra
- The song Meadow listens to on the radio in her room, while she is sulking after Tony is arrested in front of her friends, is "Diamonds & Rust" by Joan Baez
- When Tony leaves Dr. Melfi's office after retaliating when he feels she insulted him, he sings "Maybe Baby" by Buddy Holly and The Crickets
- After killing Pussy Bonpensiero, Tony watches a 1960s broadcast of The Temptations on television, performing "Ain't Too Proud to Beg"