Adriana La Cerva
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|Adriana La Cerva|
Drea de Matteo as Adriana La Cerva
|First appearance||"Pilot" (episode 1.01)|
|Last appearance||"Cold Stones" (episode 6.11)|
|Created by||David Chase|
|Portrayed by||Drea de Matteo|
|Occupation||Manager of Club Crazy Horse|
|Family||Liz La Cerva (mother)|
|Spouse(s)||Christopher Moltisanti (fiancé)|
|Relatives||Richie Aprile (maternal uncle)
Jackie Aprile, Sr. (maternal uncle)
Jackie Aprile, Jr. (maternal cousin)
Vito Spatafore (maternal cousin)
Bryan Spatafore (maternal cousin)
Adriana La Cerva is a fictional character on the HBO TV series The Sopranos, portrayed by Drea de Matteo. She is the long-time girlfriend and, later, fiancée of Tony Soprano's protégé, Christopher Moltisanti. For her performance, De Matteo won the 2004 Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series.
Adriana is known as a mobster's dream girl, having grown up around wiseguys all her life by virtue of being the niece of Jackie and Richie Aprile. Growing up she saw and heard plenty, and wasn't at all repulsed by the Mafia lifestyle. Adriana is initially portrayed as shallow and materialistic, interested in the things that Christopher's money could buy: expensive cars, shoes, jewelry, drugs, designer clothing and furs. However, despite the couple growing closer, she becomes a frequent victim of domestic violence at the hands of Christopher, yet she remains devoted to him. She always seems to have Christopher's best interests (as well as hers) in mind. She is very ambitious and wants to have a business of her own; she is eventually set up as the manager of Christopher's Crazy Horse club in Long Branch, New Jersey, which becomes quite successful.
The FBI targets Adriana as a potential weakness in the family's organization. Upon the death of Sal "Big Pussy" Bonpensiero, the FBI looks to Adriana as a close relation to a rising star in the crime family and sent Special Agent Deborah Ciccerone to befriend her. Ciccerone succeeds at befriending Adriana, but they have to abandon the mission earlier than planned after Christopher makes a pass at Ciccerone. Nonetheless, the FBI learns of Christopher's heroin addiction, which they knew would enrage Tony Soprano, and turns Adriana into an informant by threatening her with prison time for cocaine distribution at the nightclub she manages.
Out of loyalty to Christopher, Adriana avoids giving up any serious information on the family and does her best to avoid the Soprano family house in order to have nothing to give back to the feds. Her deception catches up with her after the FBI learns of her involvement in covering up a murder at her club and threatens to press charges of being an accessory to murder against her unless she offers full cooperation, which would include wearing a wire. She reveals the truth to Christopher, hoping they can go into the Witness Protection Program together and start new lives. An enraged Christopher beats and almost strangles her, before breaking down crying. His loyalty to his crime family turns out to be greater than his love for Adriana, and he reveals her status as an informant to Tony. Tony telephones Adriana, falsely informing her that Christopher had attempted suicide at a diner and has been hospitalized, and that Silvio Dante will drive her to the hospital. En route, Silvio stops the car in the middle of the woods. Realizing what is about to happen, a terrified Adriana tries to flee, but Dante drags her from the car and shoots her dead. Christopher is later seen putting some of her clothes in a red suitcase and dumping them, and then leaves her car at the airport.
There was initial speculation Adriana may not have been killed — the primary reasoning for this was her death was not seen, which was unusual in the course of the series; the camera tilted upward, away from Silvio and the crawling Adriana, before two gunshots are heard. De Matteo was under contract to appear in the sixth season, and in her audio commentary on the fifth season DVD, de Matteo confirmed Adriana is indeed deceased, and the show's frequent use of dream imagery instead provided for her return; she appeared in a dream of Carmela's in the sixth season premiere on March 12, 2006, "Members Only". Also in that episode, Carmela asks Tony about Adriana (he quickly changes the subject).
In the Season 6 episode "The Ride", Carmela Soprano runs into Adriana's mother, Liz La Cerva, who tells Carmela that she believes Christopher killed Adriana, and that the FBI came to her with questions about her. When Carmela tells Tony about their conversation, he dismisses her fears, explaining that if Christopher had killed Adriana then her body would have been found by now. Furthermore, he reminds Carmela that if the FBI really suspected Christopher, then they would have arrested him.
While in Paris, Carmela dreams of seeing Adriana in a park, but a policeman tells her Adriana is dead. Carmela is intent on finding her, especially after Liz La Cerva tries to commit suicide. However, Tony and Silvio pull some strings and Carmela is able to continue construction on her spec house, and the distraction keeps her from investigating the matter further.