His uncle's in jail. His mother's in the hospital. His best friend's still missing. His sister's moving home. His panic attacks are back. And his shrink refuses to see him. Tony Soprano has recently been elevated to the status of mob boss following a federal bust and as the second season picks up, Tony is under more stress than ever as he deals with the demands of his new position. Making matters worse, his long-lost sister Janice has arrived to take care of their ailing mother.
Tony begins to establish himself as the acting Don of the Jersey crew, but his world is turned upside down by the return of Big Pussy and his sister Janice. Melfi consults her own therapist, feeling guilty over her refusal to treat Tony. Christopher expands into the world of white-collar crime, but his associates cause trouble when they bring violence into the workplace.
Tony plays both ends against the middle in a construction dispute, while Pussy has a revealing meeting with an FBI agent. Livia becomes suspicious of Janice as she starts to get cozy. Junior is released from jail, but finds himself working on a tight leash under Tony's thumb.
Tony faces a new threat when Jackie's brother Richie Aprile gets out of jail and tries to muscle in on Tony's action. Carmela and Tony try desperately to punish Meadow when she trashes Livia's home during a party. Melfi's guilt over not treating Tony begins to invade her dreams.
Tony, Christopher and Paulie travel to Italy on a business trip. Meanwhile, Carmela ponders her own situation when Pussy's wife starts talking divorce. Pussy takes action against an old friend when he spots him having a conversation with the FBI.
Christopher and Pussy are resentful when Tony sets up a new pecking order in the crew. Christopher tries to relieve stress by taking an acting class for writers, while Pussy gets more talkative with the FBI. Tony shows his new man Furio the ropes by sending him on a collection job. Melfi finally breaks down and tells Tony she'll take him back as a patient.
Tony organizes and runs the executive poker game, but must put the strong-arm on his old high school buddy when he loses big. Richie puts himself at odds with Tony when he causes a disturbance at the game. Meanwhile, Janice starts putting ideas in Richie's head about a power play.
Christopher dabbles in the Hollywood movie world, while A.J. dabbles in existentialism after he wrecks his mother's car. Pussy wrestles with his conscience as he gets in deeper with the Feds.
Carmela pressures a friend to write a letter of recommendation for Meadow, while a good will gesture from Richie to Tony falls flat. Matt and Sean are bored with their positions in the Soprano organization. They decide to ambush Christopher as a favor to Richie.
Tony starts the hunt for Matt and calls on Pussy for a favor. Paulie gets nervous when Christopher brings him a message from beyond. Carmela asks Tony to get a vasectomy, and Melfi starts to regret allowing Tony back on her couch.
Tony begins gathering cash for a possible getaway when he learns of an eyewitness to the Bevilaqua hit. The Feds turn up the pressure on Pussy when they learn of his involvement in the murder. Richie tries to enlist Junior in a move against Tony. Carmela has a romantic encounter with her paperhanger.
Tony's lawyer advises him to act like a civilian for a while, but Tony grows bored by the lifestyle. Melfi uses alcohol to numb herself to Tony's visits. Junior seeks female companionship during his confinement, while Richie disobeys yet another order from Tony.
Richie finally pushes Tony to the limit and Tony begins to plan for his removal. Tony finds that breaking up with his Russian girlfriend is more complicated than he thought. Janice takes matters into her own hands after a quarrel with Richie.
Tony is stricken by a nasty bout of food poisoning and has a strange dream conversation with Pussy in his delirium. When Tony wakes up, his suspicions are aroused. The FBI catches Livia at the airport with incriminating evidence against her son. The Feds decide to move against Tony just before Meadow's graduation.