David Proval as Richie Aprile
|First appearance||"Toodle Fucking-Oo" (episode 2.03)|
|Last appearance||"The Test Dream" (episode 5.11)|
|Created by||David Chase|
|Portrayed by||David Proval|
|Full name||Richard Francis Aprile Sr.|
|Nickname||"The Illustrated Man"|
Raritan Township, New Jersey Zanone Bros. Private Carting waste consultant
Fulton Fish Market fishmonger
|Significant other||Janice Soprano (fiancée)|
|Children||Richard Aprile Jr.|
|Relatives||Jackie Aprile Sr. (brother); Rosalie Aprile (sister-in-law) |
Jackie Aprile Jr. (nephew)
Kelli Aprile (niece)
Adriana La Cerva (niece)
Vito Spatafore (nephew)
Bryan Spatafore (nephew)
Richard "Richie" Aprile Sr. is a fictional character on the HBO TV series The Sopranos. Richie, who was portrayed by the actor David Proval, was a capo in the DiMeo crime family and the older brother of former family acting boss Jackie Aprile Sr.
Richie is one of the most ruthless characters on the show; he is impulsively violent, callous, irascible, and greedy. He made his first appearance in season two, recently released from a ten-year prison sentence, and soon began to cause trouble. Feeling disrespected by Beansie Gaeta, Richie ran him over with his car, leaving him unable to walk. There was continual tension between Richie and Tony Soprano, who was younger and had been subordinate to Richie before his prison term, but who was now boss of the family. He also rekindled an old relationship with Tony's sister Janice Soprano.
Richie Aprile, the older brother of acting DiMeo crime family boss Jackie Aprile Sr., was a capo in the DiMeo crime family before being sent to prison for ten years. Two prisons are mentioned that he was incarcerated in Green Haven Correctional Facility in Beekman, New York and New Jersey State Prison in Trenton, New Jersey. Louis "Louie" Gismonte, a incarcerated mobster who was serving time with Richie in New Jersey State Prison in Trenton, New Jersey who worked in the license plate machine shop with Richie is a paternal cousin of Sean Gismonte. Livia Soprano tells Richie that she always liked him and that she believed he was very nice to his mother. He attended Sacred Heart High School (New Jersey) with Janice. Livia would always complain when Richie came by the Soprano household to pick up Janice for a date and would honk his horn in the street. Livia told him that "Pimps beep!" Richie was previously married and fathered a son, Richie Aprile Jr. In "Toodle-Fucking-Ooh", Tony is talking to Beansie about his diagnosis of paraplegia and says that Paulie has a cousin who was run over by a forklift and broke his back but is now dancing in tango competitions. Tony comments on Richie's physique saying that he should try out for the NFL coach Bill Parcells. Richie ran Beansie over with his car for complaining to Tony about Richie trying to "shake him down " for a piece of his pizzerias. It is possible that Tony might be really talking about Richie Aprile's son Richie Aprile Jr. who is a professional ballroom dancer. Richie makes tripe and tomatoes and gives the dish to Carmella, something he says that only Carmella and Richie appreciate with their culinary palettes. While Richie was in prison, Jackie died as a result of intestinal cancer. Many believed that the stress of being acting boss brought on Jackie's cancer. Richie came back to a very different family, with Tony Soprano as the boss. Richie had known Tony since before Tony had become a made man; Tony himself recalled for years he had to buy dinners at Benihana and Peter Luger Steak House for Richie and Jerry Anastasia. Tony and Richie had gotten along in the old days; Richie claimed to have intervened on Tony and Jackie's behalf when old-school mobster Feech La Manna wanted them viciously beaten for robbing his card game.
Richie still sees Tony as his younger brother's friend and subsequently has difficulty accepting orders from him. Richie feels he is entitled to more control and a higher ranking position in the family for having paid his dues in prison. Tony promises to give Richie his due, an offer which Richie immediately rebuffs, saying Tony doesn't have the authority to do it.
Richie's tensions with Tony escalate throughout Season 2. One of Richie's first actions as a free man is to confront his old partner Peter "Beansie" Gaeta and try to claim money from him out of his legitimate business investments. When Beansie fails to attend Richie's welcome back party at Bada Bing, Richie tracks him down again and threatens to shoot him. Later, Richie waits for Beansie by his car, and when he goes to get in, Richie rams Beansie with his car, crushing Beansie between the two vehicles. Richie then puts the car in gear and drives over Beansie again. Richie is later forced by Tony to make amends by building Beansie a ramp for his wheelchair; instead, Richie sends a construction crew to tear up Beansie's house, never putting in the ramp. Richie comments to Paulie and Silvio: "I'll build a ramp up to your ass, drive a Lionel up in there."
Richie lends money to Tony's childhood friend Davey Scatino and eventually cuts him off when Scatino starts to miss payments. Scatino manages to get a seat at Tony's high-stakes executive game despite owing Richie money. However, Richie turns up and when he finds Davey playing he flies into a rage. Tony intervenes because he cannot afford to lose face by allowing one of his players to be harmed and sends Richie home. Tony later punishes Richie for his disruptive behavior at the executive game, for which Richie feigns apologies by presenting Tony with an "old school" leather jacket. After the game, Scatino is so heavily indebted to Tony and Richie that both men take over Scatino's sporting goods store, Ramsey Sports and Outdoor.
Richie dislikes Tony's protégé Christopher Moltisanti because of his violent relationship with Richie's niece, Adriana La Cerva, and warns Christopher of the consequences should he ever hit her again. Christopher's two young associates, Matthew Bevilaqua and Sean Gismonte, learn of Richie's dislike for their boss, and shoot Christopher, hoping to impress Richie. The shooting goes wrong, however, and Christopher survives. Richie had nothing to do with planning the hit and when he learns of it, he refuses to help Bevilaqua and chases him off his premises.
Richie and Janice Soprano, Tony's sister, used to date in high school. When Richie gets out of prison, he and Janice resume their old relationship and eventually get engaged. Janice frequently encourages Richie to defy Tony, because she wants to be married to the boss.
In the end, Richie prepares, with the approval of Tony's Uncle Junior, to take over the family as boss. Richie approaches acting capo Albert "Ally Boy" Barese to ask for his support in his takeover bid, but he declines. After weighing his options, Junior realizes he is better off with Tony in charge and tips him off about Richie's plans. Silvio Dante advises Tony that there is nothing to gain from leaving Richie alive, so Tony instructs Silvio to have Richie killed. However, this would prove to be unnecessary.
After returning home one night, Richie gets into an argument with Janice over Richie's son's possible homosexuality. Richie is enraged at the thought of his son being gay, but Janice replies that it wouldn't matter. Furious, Richie punches her in the mouth before settling down for dinner. Janice leaves the room and returns with a gun pointed at him. Richie doesn't believe she'll act and claims "Get the fuck outta here. I'm in no mood for your..." when she shoots Richie twice, killing him. Distraught, she calls Tony, who has Chris and Furio Giunta meet him at Livia's (where Janice, Richie and Livia reside) to remove Richie's body. They bring him to Satriale's to dismember his corpse and sends Janice off to Seattle to lie low. Before Janice departs, she asks Tony "What did you do with him?" Tony responds sarcastically by saying "We buried him, on a hill,by a little stream...with pine cones all around."
In the season 3 episode "Mr. Ruggiero's Neighborhood" during an FBI conference, one of the agents tells Dwight Harris and Frank Cubitoso that he is positive the "garbage cartel" had Richie killed to take over his control of the bid rigging and extortion rackets involved with Dick Barone, Barone's Garbageman's Association and waste management contracts in Raritan, New Jersey and Fairfield, New Jersey.
In the season 5 episode "The Test Dream", Richie briefly appears in Tony's dream, riding in the backseat of a car driven by Artie Bucco. Sitting next to Richie is the deceased, former Aprile Crew capo Gigi Cestone.
- Appears in: "Toodle Fucking-Oo", "Big Girls Don't Cry", "The Happy Wanderer", "D-Girl", "Full Leather Jacket", "From Where to Eternity", "Bust Out", "House Arrest", "The Knight in White Satin Armor", "The Test Dream".