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Thursday, June 22, 2017

Gomorrah Season 2 Finale: The Brutal Analysis

Hey, I haven't been reviewing Gomorrah - the justly lionized Italian mafia series that takes place in Naples, and in Italian (with English subtitles) - but there's no time like the present, with the finale of the second season just on Sundance.

I'm not going to recap everything that came before - except to say it's an excellent series. If you haven't seen it, don't read anything further, because this discussion of the Season 2 finale will obviously have spoilers.

That finale features a good twist at the very end, as Ciro, with Genny's help, kills Pietro (Genny's father).  This season was aired in the UK last year, and the ending evoked a lot of criticism.  Why would Genny enable the killing of his own father, rather than kill Ciro, the man who had killed Genny's mother and humiliated him when he was younger?

This is a complex story, but the answer is straightforward.  To the very end, Pietro continued to belittle Genny and treat him like a child.  This was clearly warranted in the first season, but clearly not in the second: it was clear to everyone except Pietro that Genny was his own man.

Gomorrah has been compared to The Sopranos, but unlike The Sopranos, there's barely the scent of a hero in Gomorrah.   Genny, I suppose, is the closest to it - but what kind of hero sets up the killing of his own father?   I certainly preferred Ciro over Pietro, but, jeez, Ciro murdered his own wife. And though Pietro had a steely appeal, killing Ciro's daughter is flagrantly unacceptable.

Yet within this brutal story, there's somehow room for a little tenderness.  We see this in Genny's son, whom he names Pietro, and in the woman (Patrizia) Pietro was going to marry - indeed, she is also one of the most appealing characters in the story.

I hope we see her next season, which will no doubt be Genny's story.  Pietro would have won, had it not been for Genny.   But I can't see any alliance between Genny and Ciro lasting too long.

Meanwhile, strong acting by Marco D'Amore (Ciro), Salvatore Esposito (Genny), Fortunato Cerlino (Pietro), and Cristiana Dell'Anna ( Patrizia).

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