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Ukrainian on The Sopranos

April 26th, 2008 No comments

This aired on the second last episode of The Sopranos, titled “The Blue Comet“:

Paulie Walnuts and Patsy Parisi heed Tony’s plan for a hit on Phil. Corky Caporale arranges the hit but it fails when the “cousins from Italy” hired to do the job kill Phil’s goomah (Yaryna) and her father, mistaking him for Phil. When Corky is told of the hit on the phone, while he’s in an adult video store, he thinks little of the fact that the murdered man spoke Ukrainian, simply responding “Whatever,” and he calls Patsy Parisi to tell him that the job is done and wonders about Phil speaking Ukrainian. Patsy puts it off and just transmits “It’s done.”

Yaryna (played by Matilda Downey who is Polish-American) and her Father were the first people on The Sopranos who actually spoke Ukrainian. She appeared in the second last episode and the last.

Another actress Oksana Lada (who also appeared in CSI Miami & 30 Rock under stage name Oksana Babiy) played Irina Peltsin from Kazahkstan, Svetlana’s cousin and Tony’s love interest at one point. She is actually from Ivano-Frankivsk oblast in Ukraine who studied Economics before emigrating to the US and started modelling and acting.

It’s interesting why producer David Chase chose to use Ukrainian in the show, his show is full of symbolism and political observances. While in the same episode he references the decline of the American Century to the Asian Century, is he also commenting on the rise of Orange Ukraine?

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