Is Tony Soprano dead or not? My Sopranos Season Seven pitch
A couple years after The Sopranos cut to black, a comic book publisher had the idea to bring the series back in comic form, much like what’s been done with Buffy The Vampire Slayer and Firefly. They asked me to write a couple one-sheet pitches for a “Season Seven” and a “Season Zero.” The idea soon died a cold death in a publishing pine barren, but here’s what I came up with for What Happened After. (The Sopranos prequel is here.) Obviously, I don’t own any of these characters, et cetera, et cetera. Enjoy, ya mooks.
The Sopranos: Season Seven
Opening Arc: “A Warning Voice That Comes In The Night”
Pitch By Jay Busbee
Synopsis: Tony didn’t die. Not only didn’t he die, he beat the feds’ rap against him. But his Mafia family is in ruins, picked apart by the other families while Tony spent two long years in trial. Tony thus has the arduous task of rebuilding his family from the ground up, while trying to keep his home life afloat. And where’s Paulie?
Storyline: We begin with an image of Tony floating, weightless, in a full suit. Images flash before him, the deaths of his closest friends and family, significant lines from the moments of their deaths. We see Christopher, Ralphie, Big Pussy, Bobby, Livia, Adriana, and so many more who’ve died as a result of Tony’s actions. There’s a light above Tony, and he floats toward it…
…and surfaces in his pool, surrounded by friends and family. It’s a welcome-home party for Tony, as his case has been abruptly dismissed and he’s free to go. Everybody still alive after Season 6 is there and celebrating—everybody except Paulie, that is.
But the joyful mood soon gives way to hard-edged reality. Tony is just about bankrupt from the trial, and it’s only Carmela’s real estate that’s keeping them afloat now. The Soprano Family is scattered, with all the best soldiers swallowed up by other families. The Bing is a pathetic, ramshackle shadow of its former self. Most ominously, nobody quite knows how Tony got his case dismissed. Did he flip?
So the series will focus on two questions: first, how did Tony slip the feds’ grip? And second, how does he rebuild the Soprano Family with the eyes of the law constantly upon him?
The answer to the first is that Tony and his lawyer managed to make Paulie the scapegoat for all the Soprano Family activities, painting him as a rogue operative who went far beyond the bounds of legality. And while Tony was involved in plenty of illegal activity himself, the indictment specified only a few very specific counts—counts which Tony pinned on Paulie. We’ll see Paulie, sitting in a South Beach café, a Jersey expatriate, seething and vowing revenge.
The second is that Tony will try a different tack in building the new version of the Soprano Family. He’ll pave the way through some targeted “persuasion” of media and government officials to keep their hands off him as he tries to rebuild the family. But he soon realizes that he’s got a reporter on his trail—a young woman who’s interested in writing the history of New Jersey crime families, and wants desperately to nail down Tony for an in-depth discussion. She’s young, she’s beautiful…but is she naïve? And can she be trusted?
As Tony learns, freedom is far more difficult to survive than fear.