Sopranos Star Lorraine Bracco Gets Honest About Frustrations With Where The Show Took Her Character

Lorraine Bracco in The Sopranos screenshot
(Image credit: HBO)

Though HBO’s classic show The Sopranos had aired its series finale well over a decade ago, it’s still widely regarded as one of the best shows of all time. The series is full of characters that fans either love to hate or hate to love, but series regular Lorraine Bracco apparently had her frustrations with her own character. Bracco was a mainstay from the very first episode to the final season, and now she gets honest about what she didn’t like about where the show took her character. 

Lorraine Bracco played Tony Soprano’s therapist, Dr. Jennifer Melfi, who appeared on the show consistently throughout its six-season run. Melfi had a number of notable scenes, including one of the show’s most brutal in which she is sexually assaulted by a mugger. The character is last seen in the penultimate episode of the final season, in which she abruptly drops Tony as a client after learning about an article that states sociopaths take advantage of therapy. 

The Emmy-nominated actress just made an appearance on the Talking Sopranos podcast, which is hosted by series veterans Michael Imperioli and Steve Schirripa. Bracco open up on the podcast about her frustrations regarding how her character cut ties with Tony. Here it is in her own words:

I remember being upset [with] the direction that David [Chase] was bringing Melfi. I just felt like he wanted me to get rid of [Tony]. I felt that he did it in a very abrupt way. I don’t think that she should have done it that way. I would have liked for it to have been more meaningful. I think she cared for Tony. Even though he was a fuck-up and he was never going to really straighten out. But I think she really cared for him. You don’t spend seven years with someone and [then] discard them. I felt bad about that.

In addition to discussing her disagreement with how her character’s exit was handled, she offered up an alternative idea. In the same Talking Sopranos episode, the actress pitched an idea that may have smoothed out the abrupt ending she believes her character received:

Wouldn’t that have been great for him to have said that to her? ‘Fuck you. I am doing what I am doing. I don’t care what you say to me. I don’t care morally where you want to guide me.’ I think that would have been powerful.

Some fans may totally agree with her here, and with good reason. Tony Soprano is a hot head, that it’s very possible he would have been outraged that the end of his seven-year relationship with his therapist had come down to an end 

If anyone would be one to give some solid advice on scripts of gangster project, Lorraine Bracco would be a good contender. She’s worked on a number of gangster films and series. Aside from the iconic HBO series, she's starred in the iconic Goodfellas, and she was also a narrator on I Married a Mobster, which recounts the true stories of mob wives. 

Chances are, if you’re a diehard Sopranos fan, you’ve already binged the whole series before you also watched The Many Saints of Newark, which headed to theaters and streaming back in October. If not, you can still binge the OG series on HBO Max now. 

Carlie Hoke
Content Writer

Constantly thinking about books, coffee, and the existential dread I feel from Bo Burnham’s Inside.  While writing I’m also raising a chaotic toddler, who may or may not have picked up personality traits from watching one too many episodes of Trailer Park Boys.