He Is Risen (The Sopranos)

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For the religious phrase, see Paschal greeting.
"He Is Risen"
The Sopranos episode
Sopranos ep308.jpg
Episode no. Season 3
Episode 8
Directed by Allen Coulter
Written by Robin Green
Mitchell Burgess
Todd A. Kessler
Cinematography by Alik Sakharov
Production code 308
Original air date April 15, 2001
Running time 54 minutes
Guest appearance(s)

see below

Episode chronology
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"Second Opinion"
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"The Telltale Moozadell"
Episode chronology

"He Is Risen" is the thirty-fourth episode of the HBO original series The Sopranos and the eighth of the show's third season. It was written by Robin Green, Mitchell Burgess and Todd A. Kessler, directed by Allen Coulter and originally aired on April 15, 2001.


Guest starring[edit]

Also guest starring[edit]

Episode recap[edit]

As Tony Soprano enters Dr. Melfi's office for his regular appointment, he learns that she accidentally double-booked. The other patient is a woman named Gloria Trillo who works as a saleswoman for Globe Motors, a Mercedes-Benz dealer. Tony is intrigued by her and asks Dr. Melfi why she needs therapy, but Melfi reminds him that she cannot discuss other patients' problems with him.

Thanksgiving draws near, which is likely to bring animosity between several members of the family. Tony is still angered at Ralph Cifaretto over the murder of Tracee, stating that he "disrespected the Bing" as well as him and the organization. To add insult to injury, while gambling at the Bloomfield Avenue casino, Ralphie refuses to greet Tony, which is customary and is exercised all around them by the rest of Tony's crew. When Ralphie finally acknowledges Tony's presence, he does not accept Tony's offer to have a drink with him. Tony contemplates that he may need to put Ralph "out to pasture", but doesn't want to, as he is a particularly good earner. Later, while getting the turkey for Thanksgiving, Tony remembers that Ralphie and Rosalie Aprile are set to join them for Thanksgiving dinner, therefore he forces Carmela to lie to Rosalie, saying there will not be a Thanksgiving this year due to Carmela's father's poor health.

Rosalie believes the lie, but both mothers also notice the budding relationship between Meadow and Jackie Jr. After the Thanksgiving dinner, Jackie arrives at the Soprano house to invite Meadow to a movie. They end up in a parked car near Hunter Scangarelo's house where they make out, but Meadow warns Jackie that their relationship is unlikely to go anywhere at the moment. Days later, a very drunk Meadow steals Jackie's car keys while he is playing pool and runs to the parking lot. Jackie runs after her to prevent her from driving, but Meadow is already in the car. She then almost causes an accident and drives down a slope and crashes. Meadow is unharmed but Jackie's Chevrolet Cavalier is wrecked. Jackie Jr. consoles the shocked Meadow, and she then expresses her will to go with Jackie instead of being driven home.

Ralphie understands that Carmela's excuse for disinviting the Apriles to Thanksgiving dinner was due to his argument with Tony. Ralph expresses his dissatisfaction with Tony to fellow made men Eugene Pontecorvo and Vito Spatafore. Livid and even considering setting up a hit on Tony, he seeks the counsel of New York mobster Johnny Sack, who advises Ralphie to give Tony a believable and genuine apology. Ralphie reluctantly agrees. Sack informs Tony of this ahead of time but also suggests him to give something to Ralph in return, for example, elevating Ralph to the rank of capo, but Tony refuses. At Nuovo Vesuvio, Ralphie approaches Tony while he's eating, but is not invited to sit while asked by Tony what he wishes to see him for. Ralphie does a complete mea culpa, humbly apologizing for all his past indiscretions, including disrespecting Tony's request for a drink and killing Tracee, blaming it all on the cocaine he was using at the time. Ralphie ends up leaving without being offered anything from Tony or even much acknowledged. This infuriates him and he again approaches Johnny. Johnny says the way Tony acted at Nuovo Vesuvio was "posturing" and "part of the game."

Gigi Cestone, capo of the Aprile crew, meets with Tony and explains to him how Ralphie's driving ambition to unseat him combined with the stresses of closing a contract and putting two kids through school is bothering him, but that he will not let this affect his production. Silvio Dante comments to Tony that the weight of Gigi's responsibilities are driving him to an early grave and Junior Soprano tells him that, while Gigi is strong and capable, he is not fully respected by his crew, especially with an ambitious Ralph making trouble; therefore he will constantly be undermined by them. Tony laments that despite this he cannot replace Gigi without looking indecisive and weak; notwithstanding that, there are no suitable candidates. Junior tell him that such predicaments are just part of the job of being boss. Gigi, despite having problems with his bowels, enjoys turkey sandwiches at his business hangout with his crew, appreciating Ralphie's absence. Later that day, Gigi is found dead on the toilet of a heart attack. Tony is consequently pressed into the decision who to elevate to captain of the crew.

At Gigi's funeral, Tony scopes out his potential candidates who are all sitting next to each other on a couch. Vito, who is wiping the sweat off his forehead, Eugene, who is sleeping, Donny K., who is straightening out the wrinkles in his tie, and Ralphie, who sits on his own in a chair in the corner, tapping his cheek impatiently. At another dinner in Nuovo Vesuvio, Tony tells Ralph that he has been bumped up to captain. Ralphie is ecstatic but also wondering if Tony did this because "someone was constipated and blew a gasket", meaning Gigi, or if he actually earned it by merit. Tony tells him to be happy with the decision and makes no further attempt to nurture Ralph's ego. Ralph then asks if he is going to join him for a drink, but Tony gulps down the remainder of the drink he already has and exits, leaving Ralph sitting alone at the table.

Tony later visits Globe Motors and asks Gloria if she will accompany him on a test drive. They end up on Tony's boat, where it is implied that they have sex. Gloria is then forced to cancel her therapy and call Dr. Melfi to inform her. Dr. Melfi then hears a man's voice in the background.

First appearances[edit]


Title reference[edit]

  • It is a reference to Aaron, Janice's narcoleptic, evangelical boyfriend, who asks Jackie Jr. if he has heard "the good news, He is risen" (of Jesus Christ's resurrection).
  • Could be taken as an ironic reference to Gigi's death, or a more literal one to Ralphie's rise to captain, since Silvio refers to Ralphie as a "rising star" in the episode.
  • This episode originally aired on Easter Sunday.

Cultural references[edit]

  • When Tony tells Carmela to disinvite Ralphie and Ro for Thanksgiving Dinner, he references The Jetsons, stating Ralph's not going to Mr. Spacely's house for dinner.
  • Silvio warns Tony that Ralph is the type to pull a "Jack Ruby" on you, referring to the sneak-attacking shooter of Lee Harvey Oswald.
  • When Jackie Junior comes into Ro's kitchen, Ralph greets him, "Oh, Fabian!"
  • The deaths of Elvis Presley and Don Simpson. At the funeral of Gigi Cestone (who dies of heart failure while on the toilet), all are in agreement that Gigi's death, while natural, was arguably one of the most embarrassing ways to go. Anthony Soprano states that it's "..how Elvis went." Silvio Dante mistakenly replies, "That guy in Hollywood, too. 'Don' something. Producer of The Simpsons."
  • Tony references Sun Tzu's The Art of War on a couple of occasions.
  • Silvio Dante refers to a dog with two bones -- an apparent reference to Devo's 1980 song "Freedom of Choice" (which supposedly referred to a Latin poem, but which actually altered an Aesop's fable about a donkey and two bales of hay)
  • Tony references "Prince Matchabelli" when he intends to reference Machiavelli's The Prince.


  • The voiceover on the Mercedes TV commercial, which Tony watches before going to bed with Carmela and which makes him think of Gloria (who works as a saleswoman for a company that sells the cars), is voiced by Joe Mantegna, who also voices mob boss Fat Tony on The Simpsons, as well as played Joey Zaza in The Godfather Part III.



External links[edit]