The Sopranos is often regarded as one of the best tv shows. The show has refused to age, and even after 15 years of its finale episode, the show remains popular among people. This is why today we’re looking back at The Sopranos and ranking the best Sopranos episodes.
There are not many shows as iconic as Sopranos. Almost all of its episodes are well-written. However, the main highlight of The Sopranos was, without a doubt, James Gandolfini’s performance as Tony Soprano.
So today, we are counting down the top 15 best Sopranos episodes. If you’re a fan of the show, then this list is great for you because you can rewatch all of the classic episodes mentioned here.
Before we get to our ranking, let us give you a little refresher on The Sopranos. The show was released on January 10, 1999, and lasted six seasons until June 10, 2007. It consists of 86 episodes in total.
The Sopranos revolves around Tony Soprano, the crime boss of New Jersey. He is dealing with personal and professional difficulties in his family and business life that are affecting his mental health, prompting him to seek professional psychiatric treatment.
All six seasons of The Sopranos are available on HBO Max. However, you need to use a VPN if you’re outside the US. We’ve covered this topic in addition to how to change your Netflix region.
Best Sopranos Episodes
We have handpicked the best Sopranos episodes for our readers. We have tried to include all the episodes which are liked by the audience.
So let’s jump right into it.
15. Season 5/ Episode 5 (Irregular Around The Margins)
We are kicking off our list of the best Sopranos episodes with Irregular Around the Margins. It is the 5th episode of season 5. This episode aired on April 4, 2004.
Irregular Around the Margins focuses on a car accident that puts Tony and Adriana in jeopardy. Meanwhile, Cousin Tony attempts to protect Chris from getting the incorrect impression and information.
This episode will keep you guessing till the very end. It progresses the storyline in a very convenient manner. It refines Tony’s character further. Moreover, Micheal Imperioli’s performance was top-notch in this episode. Overall, it’s a great episode.
14. Season 6/ Episode 1 (Members Only)
The Sopranos’ season 6 premiere aired on August 31, 2006. It was titled “Members Only.” In this episode, Gene Pontecorvo makes a final break from mob life, while Junior’s paranoid delusions could be the end of Tony.
Fans had to wait two years after season 5 ended. It is safe to say that they weren’t disappointed as “Members Only” was beyond their expectations. So much so that it is also regarded as one of the best Sopranos episodes.
This episode provides a realistic portrayal of how this violent, mafia-centered society is beginning to collapse in on itself. It has multiple important death scenes and is a reminder of the dedication this life requires. It also ends on a great note, leaving fans with a gut-wrenching cliffhanger.
13. Season 3/ Episode 5 (Another Toothpick)
Another Toothpick is the title of the 5th episode of season 5 of The Sopranos. The episode aired on March 25, 2001. In this episode, Tony and Carmela attempt counseling together, which results in an argument. Meanwhile, Artie attempts to confront Adriana.
Another Toothpick is a great episode that focuses solely on the characters. With numerous other recurrent characters that begin to antagonize Tony, the writers effectively lay the groundwork for future conflict.
Even though the episode may seem boring at first, it is an extremely important episode. You will definitely see the beauty of this episode when you rewatch the show. Overall, it is definitely one of the best Sopranos episodes.
12. Season 6/ Episode 21 (Made In America)
The series finale also ranks among the best Sopranos episodes. It aired on October 21, 2007. This episode was titled “Made in America.” Series finales can be a hit or miss; however, The Sopranos definitely delivered.
The story of this episode follows Tony and his family, who must remain in hiding until Phil Leotardo is arrested. His family is unhappy with the lifestyle they have been forced to live. Meadow and AJ take the next step in their lives. Tony confronts Junior for the final time.
The final episode of The Sopranos was emotionally packed, and it gave audiences all the bittersweet reasons why they fell in love with this show. Moreover, the show ends with an abrupt cut-to-black, putting Tony’s fate up for debate. This proved to be a great decision as fans of the show are still discussing Tony’s fate at the end of the series.
11. Season 3/ Episode 6 (University)
The 6th episode of season 3 of The Sopranos is titled University. This episode aired on November 15, 2001. University is often regarded as the most depressing episode of The Sopranos.
In this episode, Noah and Meadow’s relationship is damaged by her roommate, while Ralphie starts behaving harshly with one of the Bada Bing’s dancers, prompting Tony to interfere and perhaps infringing one of the mafia’s codes of conduct.
This is the most difficult episode of The Sopranos to sit through. It has purely raw emotions. Some fans have even gone as far as to call it a movie of its own. Overall, it is definitely one of the most unique and best Sopranos episodes.
10. Season 2/ Episode 6 (The Happy Wanderer)
Kicking off the top 10 best Sopranos episodes we have, The Happy Wanderer. It was the 6th episode of The Sopranos season 2. The episode aired on November 16, 2000.
In this episode, Tony’s old high school classmate, David Scatino, convinces him to participate in a high-stakes poker game. However, he gets himself into problems with his gambling while Tony’s family issues escalate.
Overall, it is a well-balanced episode. There are many humorous moments, even though the overall storyline of this episode is quite serious. These moments blend really well with the storyline. The choice of music is highly remarkable, especially in the final minutes.
9. Season 3/ Episode 12 (Amour Fou)
Amour Fou is the 12th episode of season 3. This episode aired on December 27, 2001. In this episode, Gloria becomes increasingly demanding until Tony discovers who she is, and Jackie Jr. gets himself into a lot of difficulties when Chris understands who he is.
There are a lot of episodes from season 3 on this list, and Amour Fou is also one of them. Gloria and Tony’s emotional collision was inevitable but nevertheless surprising and intriguing. Everything that was developed over the course of various episodes pays off in this episode.
Amour Fou is definitely one of the best Sopranos episodes. Annabella Sciorra gave the best performance of her life as Gloria.
8. Season 1/ Episode 5 (College)
We’re back at season 1 on this list of the best Sopranos episodes. The 5th episode of season 1 aired on August 12, 1999. This episode was titled “College.” It is safe to say that this episode established The Sopranos as a masterpiece in the making.
In this episode, Tony is touring colleges with Meadow. However, he discovers a snitch who testified against some fellow mobsters 12 years ago. He decides to do something about him. Meanwhile, Carmela learns something new about Dr. Melfi.
Prior to this episode, the show will seem a little slow to you. However, you’ll be completely hooked after watching this episode. ‘College’ establishes how complex Tony actually is. He can be ruthless, or he can be generous.
7. Season 4/ Episode 13 (Whitecaps)
Whitecaps aired on December 8, 2002. It was the finale of season 4. It revolved around Junior’s trial coming to a conclusion, but Tony’s is only getting started. In addition, the Sopranos are on the verge of purchasing a beachfront home.
The entire episode centers around all the family drama within The Sopranos. James Gandolfini’s performance peaked in this episode. Edie Falco’s performance can’t be dismissed as well. The episode is full of emotional tension.
This is actually the longest episode of the entire series. However, despite its long runtime, fans were pleased with it. It provided a satisfying conclusion of four years of plot.
6. Season 2/ Episode 13 (Funhouse)
Episode 13 of season 2 of The Sopranos is titled “Funhouse.” This episode aired on January 4, 2001. This episode continues the trend of amazing season finales throughout the history of The Sopranos.
In this episode, Tony becomes ill due to food poisoning and accuses Artie’s restaurant.
Meanwhile, Pussy has reached the end of the line. Eventually, Tony confronts David Scatino, the guy whose gambling debts to Tony and Richie Aprile led to his downfall.
This entire episode is an excellent character study. Tony is at the center of it all. The brilliant dream sequences make it possibly the finest psychological episode of the season. Funhouse is definitely among the most unique and best Sopranos episodes.
5. Season 4/ Episode 9 (Whoever Did This)
We have finally reached the top 5 of our best Sopranos episodes ranking. The 9th episode of season 4 takes this spot. It is titled “Whoever Did This,” and it aired on November 10, 2002. This whole episode is basically Tony Soprano as John Wick.
In this episode, Ralph’s cruel behavior eventually crosses the line, while Chris’s heroin addiction worsens and Uncle Junior’s mental state is put into consideration.
This episode can be uncomfortable to watch, mainly due to the depiction of violence. While violence isn’t new to the show, this episode just takes it up a notch. It feels quite raw and surreal. When you sit down to watch this episode, you might feel a bit uneasy, but that’s the beauty of it.
4. Season 2/ Episode 12 (The Knight In White Satin Armor)
The Knight in White Satin Armor is the 12th episode of season 12 of The Sopranos. This episode aired on December 28, 2000. It is often regarded as one of the most influential episodes in TV history.
The story of this episode revolves around Richie and Janice, who get married. However, Richie’s violent temper gets the best of him. Meanwhile, Tony ends his relationship with Irina, much to her sorrow.
The Knight in White Satin Armor is definitely one of the best Sopranos episodes. It shocked viewers with its unexpected twist. It’s difficult to explain anything about what happens without spoilers. However, prepare yourselves for a plot twist that will shock you.
3. Season 6/ Episode 20 (The Blue Comet)
Episode 20 of season 6 of The Sopranos aired on June 3, 2007. This episode is titled “The Blue Comet.” This was a very important episode of the show.
In this episode, Phil ultimately strikes the Sopranos, and Tony puts a hit on Phil, resulting in mistaken identification, making everyone believe they are safe, and resulting in death and coma. Following this, Tony separates from his family to go into hiding while also sending Carmela, Janice, and the children into hiding.
This episode really sets up the season finale. However, in many ways, it serves as a finale for multiple characters that we’ve seen in the series. There’s something mellow about this whole episode because it is basically the beginning of the end.
2. Season 3/ Episode 11 (Pine Barrens)
Pine Barrens is the 11th episode of season 3 of The Sopranos. This episode aired on December 20, 2001. This episode stands on its own as a distinct, separate story.
Pine Barrens revolves around Silvio, who gets sick and Chris and Paulie run his collections for him, which leads to the duo becoming lost in the woods and nearly freezing to death. Meanwhile, Tony’s affair with Gloria and Meadow’s friendship with Jackie Jr. also begins to fall apart.
This episode is pure fun. Even though it stands on its own, it serves the purpose of character development. In addition, this episode is quite hilarious. It can be a great episode if you want to introduce this show to a friend.
1. Season 5/ Episode 12 (Long Term Parking)
Long Term Parking takes the number 1 spot on our list of the best Sopranos episodes. It is the 12th episode of season 5. It aired on May 23, 2004. In this episode, Tony approaches Johnny Sack on behalf of his cousin, and Adriana approaches the FBI, followed by Chris.
The Sopranos finally won the award for the best Outstanding Drama Series at the Emmys after season 5. A huge reason behind that victory is probably this episode. This episode brought The Sopranos to a new level.
It evolved from well-produced and high-quality entertainment to a dramatic and emotional show. There’s a lot of suspense and action throughout this episode. It is definitely the best Soprano episode, in my opinion.
So this was our list of the best Sopranos episodes. We have ranked the 15 best episodes of this beloved show. As always, take this list with a grain of salt as it is a mix of our personal opinions and popular public opinion.