Nov 28, 2022·edited Nov 28, 2022Liked by Rob Henderson, Richard Hanania

Great discussion, I will look up your Sopranos chat. I watched the series this afternoon and am writing this before the release tonight of ep. 5.

I like Rob's prediction that some of the bodies will belong to the gaggle of gay Brits—their motive is still unclear. But I keep thinking about how, at Don Ciccio's villa, the director framed Portia next to the car with Appolonia in the driver's seat. And she keeps clamoring for an adventure, alarmed that life might be boring...

I liked the contrast between the Godfather villa's explicit shlock and the villa Daphne and Harper visit. Maybe the director is trying to show how the latter is often considered more authentic—the indoor frescos, the grotto—even though it caters to the whims of tourists the same as the Godfather's villa. As primarily a destination for shopping—all the gifts Daphne buys—it is just as commercial as the reconstructed movie set. Yet to most casually woke viewers, one would be considered passe and a pilgrim site for those subscribing to what Albie considers outmoded notions of masculinity (with Albie as the stand-in for average viewer's sentiment), while the other would be viewed as offering a "real" Italian experience. They're both fake, yet one is socially approved as legitimate.

Also noticed:

Lucia, the non-singing prostitute, mentions that she is from Catania. This is the town Albie's grandmother hails from—his response is "I think we're going there," referencing the ostensible reason for his family's trip. But I don't think he connects the dots, otherwise he would have mentioned his grandmother. Or he could be such a stumbling ninny he failed to recognize a conversational opening.

Also the hypocrisy of sexual harassment of the Valentina character, which I believe is intentional—she constantly harps on Rocco and asks Isabella if he's bothering her...only to then buy Isabella an inappropriate gift and to engage her in creepy way, presumably what she assumed Rocco was doing.

The camera's repeated focus on the statues, Daphne's Dateline comment about husbands killing their wives on vacation, the Brit's story about "powerful local investors" tossing the widow island to the rocks...some sort of spousal homicide is being telegraphed.

Again, enjoyed the conversation—thanks for sharing this.

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I'm only a few min is and this is insufferable- why are you spending like 5 min arguing about whether or not the show takes place in summer? (for the record, it definitely does- the grandson just graduated from Stanford, and they mention at least one other time that it 'Italy is so hot in the summer' or something). But anyway, this is a totally pointless argument that has nothing to do with the bigger picture. The podcast would be a lot more interesting if you edited out this kind of thing.

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I like listening to natural conversation, and so do a lot of other people.

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It would also tighten things up if y’all would edit out the time spent trying to recall the characters’ names.

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