I guess it is not related, although I am sure that there is imagery in the Paris trip that relate to the things back home, such as the neon pig that Carmela photographs. Overall, I am not sure why the Paris trip is so important to the plotline that it should take up so much time in the episode. However, I feel it was nice to see Carmela out of New Jersey and I can't help but feel that her character will be changing real soon in some way.
AJ being forced to work construction is a neat twist. The AJ character is now being forced to grow up, and we all know that he is a chip off the old block. I can see that his progression to become Tony will accellerate now.
As for the killings in this episode, finally all the blood-thirsty fans of Sopranos have something to celebrate. However, I am not one of those. I like to see some action in every episode, but I also enjoy the deep character development that occurs in The Sopranos.
It was good to see the Vito character finally get whacked. The alternative lifestyle storyline was too much for me and it had gone on too long. If I want a story of love between two men, then I will watch "Queer as Folk"... and of course I do not watch that show.
Vito's murder was brutal and it is a good thing they did not show the actual murder, as being reamed by a pool cue is not something that makes for good TV. Watching Vito's children read the newspaper headlines in the aftermath was heart-wrenching. This is what Sopranos is all about.... they will have a storyline about a homosexual mobster, and they will have him brutally killed and in the end they focus on his kids. If you were wondering what type of show this is, this says it all.
What does the next epiosde hold? Will there be more bloodshed? There is certainly going to be a threat of more bloodshed as the New Jersey and New York familes are setting up for a huge war.