The Sopranos: Season 3, Episode 4

Employee of the Month (18 Mar. 2001)

TV Episode  -   -  Crime | Drama
8.8
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Ratings: 8.8/10 from 1,248 users  
Reviews: 7 user | 1 critic

Dr. Melfi is brutally attacked, and when the justice system lets her down, she must consider asking Tony for help.

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Title: Employee of the Month (18 Mar 2001)

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Junior Soprano (credit only)
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A.J. Soprano (credit only)
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Storyline

Things are not going well in the garbage wars and Tony decides to put one of his own men in charge Richie Aprile' old crew, ousting Ralphie Cifaretto who has been in charge temporarily. At least part of the reason he replaces him is that he let Jackie Aprile Jr. help him beat up a client when trying to collect a debt. Dr. Melfi meanwhile is brutally attacked and raped in the stairwell of her office building. When the police are forced to release the suspect due to procedural errors on their part, she is outraged and seriously considers asking Tony for his help. As Tony had warned her, Janice learns there is a price to pay for refusing to return Svetlana's stolen leg. Written by garykmcd

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Plot Keywords:

rapist | rape | gangster

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Crime | Drama

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Release Date:

18 March 2001 (USA)  »

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Did You Know?

Goofs

When Tony Soprano is talking to Ralph Cifaretto outside the pizzeria, the positioning of Ralph's coffee cup and spoon continually alternates in-between shots See more »

Quotes

Ralph Cifaretto: I oughta stick a shiskabbab up your ass!
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Connections

References Gladiator (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

Americano
(uncredited)
Music from "Tu vuò fà l'Americano"
Written by Renato Carosone and Nicola Salerno
English lyrics by Mike Himelstein and Brian Setzer
Performed by The Brian Setzer Orchestra
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User Reviews

 
"She's so fat..."
23 April 2008 | by (Italy) – See all my reviews

Employee of the Month is one of those wonderful Sopranos episodes: so rich of events, character and a truly dark streak. Most movies would have trouble jamming all this stuff into a two-hour running time; this series manages to beautifully in 50 minutes.

Firstly, the show deals with the two new characters introduced in previous episodes: Ralph Cifaretto and Jackie Aprile Jr. (Jason Cerbone), son of the deceased boss from Season One and nephew of the crazy Richie Aprile who rampaged in Series 2. Whereas Tony insists the kid should lead a normal life, Ralphie, who's currently sleeping with Rosalie Aprile, tries to become Jackie's new best friend by letting him participate in a gloriously violent business settlement.

More importantly, though, this chapter belongs to Lorraine Bracco, who goes where no actress has ever gone before with her role: after being brutally raped, Dr. Melfi is confident justice will triumph. When that isn't the case (the creep is released thanks to a lot of bureaucratic crap), she seriously considers asking Tony for help.

Were this a mainstream drama show, that kind of idea wouldn't have made it past the synopsis stage. But this is HBO, and so such a decision represents a triumph of narrative boldness, not to mention actorial: Bracco approaches Emmy-baiting territory with her doubtful, effortlessly gripping performance and receives superb backing from Peter Bogdanovich (always reliable as Elliot Kupferberg) and James Gandolfini, who responds to the ambiguity with more ambiguity.

As for the program's trademark "comic relief" it comes in the form of the news that New York boss Johnny Sack (Vincent Curatola) is buying a house in Jersey, prompting gags about his wife's weight. Pick of the bunch? Silvio's "She's so fat her blood type is ragu" and Paulie's gleeful "She's so fat, she goes campin', the bears have to hide their food". Hilarious.


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