Tony Soprano

Tony Soprano

    The Sopranos
Photo Credit: Everett Collection

Character Analysis

(Avoiding Spoilers)

Grew up… learning the value of hard work from his father, “Johnny Boy” Soprano. Tony knows that life is hard, that work is important, and that family is everything.

Living… his dream, in Northern New Jersey. Tony has everything he ever wanted for himself and for his two families—his biological family and his “business” family. At home he has a beautiful wife, his high school sweetheart Carmela, and two kids: daughter Meadow and son A.J. In business, he has attracted loyal associates like Silvio, Paulie and his nephew (sort of) Christopher. But even with all his success, Tony is as unhappy as he’s ever been. “I find I have to be the sad clown,” he says, “laughing on the outside, crying on the inside.”

Profession… Waste Management” according to his business card. But let’s get real. Tony is really the capo and later the boss of the DiMeo organized crime family. While Tony does well enough for himself in the business of trash, it’s his “side” business ventures that bring in the real cash.

Interests… tradition, family, and honor. Tony is an old-fashioned guy at heart. He has a tendency to romanticize his line of work and all of the honor codes and cultural associations that are a part of it. In short, Tony is interested in respect: “Those who want respect, give respect.”

Relationship Status… married to his high school sweetheart, Carmela. Tony has his wife when he needs her, but he’s always got a little something else on the side, too. His endless stream of “goomahs,” or mistresses, put a big strain on his marriage. Carmela often looks the other way, at some level perhaps accepting Tony’s infidelity as a trade-off for all the material luxury he provides, but she might be reaching her breaking point.

Challenge… getting in touch with what is making him profoundly unhappy. The old-fashioned Tony isn’t used to talking about his feelings with a psychiatrist, like he’s doing with Dr. Jennifer Melfi. He sees the whole thing as a sign of weakness. “Nowadays everybody’s gotta go to shrinks, and counselors, and go on Sally Jessy Raphael and talk about their problems,” he tells her. “What happened to Gary Cooper? The strong, silent type. That was an American.”

Personality… it depends; there are many conflicting sides to Tony Soprano. He can be a loving husband and father, or he can be a sadistic criminal. He can be charming, funny and charismatic, or intimidating, cruel and vicious. In the span of one day, Tony can go from the scene of a murder to a family dinner without showing any outward signs of remorse. If you’re close to Tony, he’s got your back, and should anything ever happen to you, he’ll be the first to seek street justice. Loyal to his family and associates and distrustful of anyone else, you can definitely trust him – as long as you’re on his side.


Fans of him also like:

Find out how you match to him and 5500+ other characters