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If there was a genuine feel-good moment among all the hype surrounding Super Bowl LVI it had to be the brilliantly produced Chevrolet commercial featuring The Sopranos siblings.
While Super Bowl commercials rarely live up to all the build up these days, the ad featuring actors Jamie-Lynn Sigler, 40, and Robert Iler, 36, who reprised their roles on the show as Meadow and A.J. Soprano, was a hit from the very beginning.
The 60-second spot begins with the familiar song “Woke Up This Morning” playing in the background. The song by Alabama 3 played before every episode of The Sopranos, which aired for 8 seasons from Jan. 1999 to June 2007. The footage shows the familiar scenes from within a vehicle as it follows the same route from Manhattan to New Jersey taken during each show opening.
For fans of the show, it’s impossible not to think of the late actor James Gandolfini at this moment — Gandolfini, who died of a heart attack in June 2013 while on vacation in Rome, played the beloved role of New Jersey mobster Tony Soprano. The difference being that Sigler’s character Meadow is behind the wheel in Sunday’s ad.
By this point, the commercial has got your full attention as your mind begins to race. Is there a Sopranos sequel on the way, viewers must surely be thinking.
Instead of driving a Chevy Suburban like her TV dad, Meadow is behind the wheel of a brand new Chevrolet Silverado-EV — as in electric. As the truck takes on more prominence in the spot, it becomes clear that this is a Chevrolet ad. At the same time, Meadow has a somewhat stern look on her face and viewers are left to wonder has she possibly taken up her dad’s trade.
She parks the truck — and in a buzzkill moment, plugs it in. The angle of the shot recalls the original show’s final episode that included Meadow struggling to parallel park outside a diner before meeting her TV family inside.
Younger brother A.J., played by Iler, suddenly appears on the screen as a cool Meadow exits the vehicle and the TV siblings share an emotional embrace before walking off together.
The final episode ended with the Soprano family sitting in a booth at a restaurant and the screen suddenly going black — at the time, the ending was highly controversial. There was lots of speculation about what happened, including some suggesting that the entire family had been killed. In the eyes of the show’s fans, the Chevrolet ad proves that the siblings were not killed off.
In an interview with People, Sigler said that Gandolfini was fresh on her mind while filming the ad.
“His presence was very much felt throughout it all, of course, because anything we ever do having to do with ‘The Sopranos’ he is there,” she said. “And just the thought of that opening sequence with him, it’s so iconic. He always drove that Chevy Suburban everywhere. It’s how we close our eyes and picture Tony Soprano.”
The actress said she is still close friends with Iler, and she enjoyed working with David Chase again — the Sopranos creator directed the Chevrolet ad.
“Even getting direction from David Chase and seeing our old camera operators that we had worked with throughout the seasons… It was this eerie thing where Robert and I both said, ‘We could hop back into playing these characters in a heartbeat,’” Sigler said. “It was really cool to get a moment to experience that.”
As for best Super Bowl commercials, there was also this consideration:
A commercial featuring Larry David, who created the television series “Seinfeld,” along with Jerry Seinfeld, was also well received:
Social media was quick to respond to the Sopranos ad… here’s a quick sampling of the responses from Twitter:
Sopranos reunion commercial spares Meadow having to parallel park and confirms her and AJ survived the final restaurant scene.
— Zach Haberman (@ZHaberman) February 14, 2022
And that is why we’re Chevy Silverado guys. Awesome Sopranos commercial.
— Big Cat (@BarstoolBigCat) February 14, 2022
my son took his first steps today, the day of the meadow soprano chevy silverado commercial 🥲
— sonia (@soniasaraiya) February 14, 2022
When the Sopranos music came on: pic.twitter.com/YvdcnVqDxF
— lsutigerzfan (@lsutigerzfan) February 14, 2022
LOVE the Chevy Silverado commercial with the Sopranos. James Gandolfini would be proud. ❤️ pic.twitter.com/U4SSyOCTXt
— Michael Ashley (@mashtastic84) February 14, 2022
The electric Chevy Silverado commercial = top notch pic.twitter.com/ZXUyvsJJN6
— Dan Lampariello (@DanWGME) February 14, 2022
— Dave Barabas (@barabas_dave) February 14, 2022
They’re called electric cars, T. Your kids are gonna drive them in the future when we’re both dead. pic.twitter.com/dFAJjhumXK
— socialist sopranos memes (@gabagoolmarx) February 14, 2022
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