Category Archives: Episode

208: Full Leather Jacket, with Karl Hess



Hey, everyone, it’s time for your favorite Sopranos podcast ever, Pod Yourself A Gun. The world’s ONLY Sopranos podcast (that’s not hosted by a former cast member nor by people who respect prestige TV). This week Vince and Matt are joined by comedian, podcaster, Cooking Channel TV show host and huge Sopranos fan Karl Hess as they discuss Sopranos season 2 episode 8 (208) “Full Leather Jacket.” AKA the most Seinfeld-ass episode of the Sopranos of all time. It’s mostly about how Richie Aprile gives Tony a jacket as a gift and Tony insults him by not wearing the jacket. Seriously, that’s like the biggest storyline in the episode. It’s bizarre and forgettable and a pleasure to talk about with Karl. Here is a bit more info on the episode.

SYNOPSIS:

“Although Richie is miffed at Tony for forcing him to build a ramp for the pizza-parlor owner he paralyzed, he decides to make a peace offering. Unhappy with their lowly status as Christopher’s lackeys, Sean and Matt decide to pledge their allegiance to Richie–through a violent, unexpected act.”

BADA B STORIES

-Richie wants to give Tony a jacket
-Meadow wants to go to Berkeley
-Carm wants a letter of rec to Georgetown for Meadow
-Matt and Shawn want respect
-Chris wants to marry Adrianna
-Tony wants Richie to build a ramp for Beansy

We hope you enjoy it! And please remember to give us a review and 5 stars on the Apple podcast app.


207: D-Girl, with Brandie Posey



Hey everyone! Another week into the Coronavirus quarantine and your boys Matt and Vince have nothing but time to Zoom chat about The Sopranos with all of their friends. Lucky you! This week our guest is comedian Brandie Posey of the podcast Lady 2 Lady. This is the first time she has ever watched an episode of the Sopranos to completion and boy did Matt and Vince pick a perfect one. From season 2, episode 7, “D-Girl,” which originally premiered February 27th, 2000.

This episode isn’t just one of the funniest episodes of The Sopranos so far, it’s incredibly relevant to both Brandie and Matt’s life mired in the drab realities of Hollywood and the entertainment industry. Whom amongst us hasn’t had the fate of our careers decided by a 20-something executive with no creative bone in their body and who name drops constantly? Very relatable.

SYNOPSIS
With Anthony Jr.’s confirmation approaching, Tony and Carmela find their son’s growing apathy a cause for concern. Meanwhile, Christopher’s interest in show biz is reignited when he meets a well-known filmmaker through his cousin’s girlfriend.

BADA B STORIES
-Chris meets Amy Safir, his cousin Gregory’s fiancee
-AJ’s existential buffoonery
-Chris meets Jon Favraeu and llearns what it means to be used by Hollywood
-Big Pussy is forced to wear a wire to AJ’s confirmation

Hope this makes your quarantine a little bit more tolerable. Enjoy! Don’t forget to leave us a review on Apple Podcasts and subscribe to bonus content at Patreon.


206: The Happy Wanderer, with Sean Keane



Hey everyone, hope you are having a great time locked in quarantine for the foreseeable future. Luckily for you, this means you get to enjoy some more of your favorite Sopranos podcast. This week, we invited Sean Keane (Roundball Rock podcast) to watch season 2, episode 6 “The Happy Wanderer” – which is Tony’s succinct little pet name describing all the obliviously joyful people he wants to murder.

This episode introduces us to David Scatino, the father of Meadow’s friend Eric and a local sporting good store proprietor who went to high school with Tony Soprano. David uses his high school connections with Tony in order to get a seat at the “executive game” where he ends up 45 boxes of ziti in the hole. Meanwhile, Meadow and Eric are rehearsing for cabaret night at their school and Meadow desperately wants to sing a solo rather than a duet.

Other Bada B-stories include:

-Tony is taking JRs executive card game

-Tony learns he had a retarded uncle name Hercules

-Chris cheats the fish market

-Richie gets put in his place by Tony

-Janice is pulling a Livia w Richie

 

It’s a fantastic episode of the Sopranos and an even more fantastic episode of Pod Yourself A Gun.


205: Big Girls Don’t Cry, With Rafael Shimunov



Hot off “Commendatori” last week, in which the gang traveled to Italy, the show introduced Furio, and we were treated to arguably the best Paulie Walnuts episode of the show, this week brings us an incredible Christopher episode.

In “Big Girls Don’t Cry,” originally aired February 13, 2000, Chris Moltisante has been signed up (by his girlfriend, Adriana) for a class called “acting for writers,” in which the teacher immediately informs the class that “the actor is an instrument for conveying ideas.”

As funny as Paulie in Italy was, Christopher in acting class might be even funnier, whether it’s crushing at improv, expanding his range with James Dean, or getting offended by the mere sight of one of his classmates’ dumb faces (could you blame him? Mitch from Hartsdale is the worst). Is David Chase better at making fun of therapy or at making fun of the arts? Meanwhile, Furio has come to America, Big Pussy has been passed over, and Richie Aprile has moved into Tony’s mom’s house with his sister, Janice. Once again, this is one of my favorite episodes and it ends with an all-time great tracking shot scene of Furio unleashing strangely humorous ultra-violence.

To help us discuss it all, we have this week’s guest, Rafael Shimunov, from JFREJ (Jews for Racial and Economic Justice) and The Jewish Vote. I hope he loves our dumb theme song! As always, you can email us at Frotcast@Gmail.com, leave us a voicemail at (+1) 415 275 0030, and support the show by becoming a patron at Patreon.com/Frotcast.


204: Commendatori, With Drew Magary Formerly Of Deadspin



And we’re back! Pod Yourself A Gun: A Sopranos Podcast has returned from our self-imposed hiatus to discuss episode four of season two (204), “Commendatori.” Or, as it’s known in It’s Always Sunny naming convention, “The Gang Goes To Italy.”

Joining us for this episode is columnist/writer/author Drew Magary, formerly of Deadspin, currently of GenMag and Vice. Drew was a semi-regular guest on our other podcast, the FilmDrunk Frotcast, though this is the first time we’ve had him on since his brain exploded and he almost died, and since his company got bought by private equity ghouls and the entire staff quit in protest.

2019 was an eventful year for Drew! But mostly he’s just here to discuss “Commendatori,” one of my personal favorite episodes of Sopranos. Reportedly this episode was one of David Chase’s least favorite (even though he wrote it) and in fact it was the first (and only) episode Chase brought up in this 2019 interview when asked if there were any episodes he wishes he could do over. Apparently he thought Sofia Milos was too sexy as the mob boss.

Whatever the case, I love this episode (I made an entire dish based on it for this cooking challenge), partly because the episode is peak Pauly Walnuts. Here he’s been basing basically his entire life and persona on this idea of coming from Italy and being Italian and then he finally goes there and the food is weird and the people are kind of rude and everyone thinks he’s a dumb asshole.

When he sees the old man on the waterfront and says, “Commendatori, buongiorno!” and the old man asks “Are you with NATO? You cut our ski lift cable,” (in Italian, which Pauly can’t really understand) it’s one of the best moments in the entire series.

It’s also the first time we meet Furio, and it opens with a car jacking scene in which the actor who plays the annoying rich kid went on to write Pan and Wonder Woman.

As always, if you like the show, leave us a review, and maybe even throw us a few bucks on Patreon. If you don’t, well, va fongool.


Pod Yourself 16: Toodle-Fucking-Oo, With Shereen Younes (S2E3)



Pod Yourself A Gun, the world’s only Sopranos rewatch podcast, is back with another fresh and wholly original hour of thoughtful Sopranos critique/offensive impressions of Italian-Americans and jokes about dick sucking lips. This week Matt and Vince watched season 2, episode 3 “Toodle-Fucking-Oo” or as Vince titled it “Hey We’re Old School, Right?”

This episode introduces Richie Aprile and Beansy into Sopranos lore and we see three generations of Soprano women (Meadow, Janice and Livia) flex their manipulation muscle.
General themes include:
-Old school vs new age
-Dr. Melfi vs Jennifer Melfi
-Lips vs tits
-Can you beat a woman if she’s not your wife?
-You can’t even beat your kids anymore!
Matt and Vince welcome the hilarious Shereen Younes (of the Ethnically Ambiguous podcast) who offers a MIND BLOWING theory regarding the relationship between Beansy and Richie. It honestly will change the way you watch the rest of season 2. Enjoy this episode you worthless bookyaks. GABAGOOOOOL!

Pod Yourself 15: Do Not Resuscitate, With Alison Stevenson (S2E2)



Pod Yourself A Gun’s Sopranos rewatch continues with episode 15 (season 2, episode 2), “Do Not Resuscitate.” First aired January 23rd, 2000, this episode sees Tony deal with a race strike at one of his construction sites, Livia dealing with Janice, and Livia being caught in the web of one of her own manipulations (or is she??). Oh, and we also get the first appearance of Tony’s long-suffering punching bag, Bobby Baccalá, and find out that Big Pussy Bonpensiero actually is working with the Feds after all.

I watch all the episodes at least twice for this show, and this one probably gained the most so far from the second viewing. “Do Not Resuscitate” is easily the most subtle Sopranos episode up until this point and arguably one of the most subtle of any episode. As such, there’s lots to debate and discuss!

Do we believe, for instance, as Matt Zoller-Seitz speculates, that it was Livia who told Junior that the director of the Green Grove Retirement Community was spreading Sopranos secrets? And that when Junior told Tony and got the guy whacked, which became an excuse for Livia not to go back there, did she become the victim of her own plans, and thus the choking sequence when she found out about it? This is by far the most complex “fan theory” I will ever engage with but in this case I think it actually might be true.

Our guest this week is Alison Stevenson, wonderful comedian and long-time friend of the pod who also has her own podcast about relationships and a Wednesday night gig on Adult Swim. As always, please enjoy this episode, and if you don’t, va fongool.


Pod Yourself A Gun 14: Guy Walks Into A Psychiatrist’s Office



In episode 14, season one of The Sopranos is over and season 2 begins!

“Season Two opens with the aftermath of the federal crackdown: Junior’s in jail, Melfi refuses to see Tony, Christopher’s expanding into new business ventures, Pussy is still missing…and Tony’s adjusting to life as the new boss. To complicate matters even more, Tony’s free-spirited sister Janice arrives to take care of Livia.”

In “Guy Walks Into A Psychiatrist’s Office,” which originally premiered January 16th, 2000, sees Tony making nice with Big Pussy, Christopher running a pump and dump scheme while getting deeper into heroin, and the first appearance of Aida Turturro as Tony’s sister Janice, one of the all-time great TV characters and very triggering according to Matt. I think we all know at least one Janice.

It’s also the first time we meet Matt Bevilaqua, played by Lillo Brancato Jr., previously of A Bronx Tale, who would go on to do eight years in prison for his part in a botched burglary during which an off-duty police officer was killed. That’s pretty dark, but the important thing to remember is that this episode is full of important trivia, some of which we remember. Give it a listen or va fongool.


Pod Yourself A Gun 13: I Dream Of Jeannie Cusamano, With Laremy Legel



This week on Pod Yourself A Gun, we’re discussing episode 13, “I Dream Of Jeannie Cusamano,” the season one finale of the Sopranos and thus the season one finale of Pod Yourself A Gun. In this episode, all of the Sopranos biggest season one storylines come to a head, and many to a resolution. Tony finds out his mother and uncle conspired to try to have him whacked. Carmela realizes Father Phil is a fuckboi. Dr. Melfi puts her cards on the table and tells Tony what she suspects about his mother. Tony becomes a physical threat to Dr. Melfi. Tony removes a suspected snitch from his crew and comes clean to his remaining guys about seeing a shrink.

In one of season one’s best episodes and arguably one of the best season finales of any show, we get a culmination of the themes introduced with a few intriguing questions left to explore. It seems to come from a time when prestige TV seemed to think it owed us more in terms of catharsis and closure. It ranges from dramatic and thrilling (Jimmy Altieri’s death, Tony flipping the table on Dr. Melfi) to introspective and psychological (Carmela calling out Father Phil, Livia’s psychosomatic dementia) to the kind of comedy that really only the Sopranos could do and maybe hasn’t been done the same since (Mikey Palmice’s death scene, one of the greatest in TV history, and one of the best lines in the show, “cunnilingus and psychiatry brought us to this!”).

To discuss this week’s episode, our guest is Laremy Legel, former critic at Film.com, author of Film Critic, long time friend of the pod and Matt and Vince’s co-star in Whoop Dreams, a documentary about the Gathering Of The Juggalos. He joins your regular hosts, Matt Lieb from Good Mythical Morning, The Star Wars Show, and Newsbroke on AJ+ and Vince Mancini, Senior Film And Culture writer at Uproxx. Please enjoy, but if you don’t, as always, va fongool.


Pod Yourself A Gun 12: Isabella



This week on Pod Yourself A Gun, we discuss episode 12 from season 1 of the Sopranos, “Isabella” – where Tony is deep in depression about the disappearance of his friend (and possible snitch) Big Pussy. As we near the end of the first season of the Sopranos, and the first season of Pod Yourself A Gun, Matt and Vince have decided that all of you listeners out there deserve an episode of this show with NO GUEST and just the pure, unadulterated analysis of your loyal PYAG hosts. Just the raw shit, no filler. And what better episode to do this than Isabella, which has zero nudity. That’s right, ZERO.

Bada B-stories:

-Tony is depressed

-JR puts a hit out on Tony

-Livia is losing her mind

-Tony meets Isabella, who may or may not be Tyler Durden

Enjoy, please review and comment, email us at frotcast@gmail.com, voicemail 415 275 0030, and donate at Patreon.com/frotcast. We love you, and don’t stop believin.