Update: Spoiler Alert – for those of you who haven't seen the final episode of the Sopranos, stop reading now.
Adotas reports that fans were so disappointed by the abrupt blank screen ending to the final episode of the Sopranos last night that their "hate traffic" brought the HBO web site down for an extended period of time.
I'm your classic die-hard Sopranos fan, having immersed myself in the story over the past 8 years (can it really be that long?) – I have all currently available episodes on DVD and have watched the entire 86 episode series multiple times. I too was quite shocked by the abrupt ending last night and felt a sense of bewilderment, frustration and loss. After all that hype and build-up, I was expecting more from David Chase … then I thought a little bit more …
So, what was this all about? Was this another example of overpromising and underdelivering? The blogosphere is full of commentary and opinions today. Seth Godin calls this the Expectation Paradox. Melanie McFarland of the Seattle Post believes that David Chase "left it up to viewers to spin their own denouement in a blank space before the end credits, if they weren't wondering whether the cable went out at the worst time possible." She invites people to write their own ending to the series and the Soprano site offers fans an opportunity to provide their feedback on the finale.
So what do you think? Is this a cop-out? Is this TV embracing the Web 2.0 user-generated content paradigm? Is this a great example of how TV is morphing away from being a passive "let it wash over me" experience? Letting us all be co-creators of our own personal ending to the Soprano saga? … or is Series 7 going to hit our screens in 2008?