“I got my limits, too…”
Robert Baccalieri, Jr., AKA Bobby Bacala, is a stalwart soldier in the Soprano organization. “Bacala” is salted cod, and at first glance, Bobby can appear to be a fish out of water. He’s quiet and sweet tempered, and even among a bunch of guys sporting pasta bellies, his stands out. Bobby’s obesity often brings him scorn from the other wise guys; Tony himself has warned Bobby “get off my car before you flip it over,” and that he should “seriously consider salads.” But Bobby is loyal to his deeply buried core, and doesn’t shirk the physical requirements of his job. When Tony needed muscle to crack down on a demonstration at a construction site, Bobby was in the thick of the fray, wielding a crowbar with the best of ’em. When Tony needed someone to help him find Christopher and Paulie, who were lost in the pine barrens, Bobby’s experience as a deer hunter was just what he needed.
Bobby had reported directly to Junior. Initially, he replaced the late Mikey Palmice as Junior’s personal assistant, and was promoted to run Junior’s loan shark business. Despite Junior’s cantankerousness, father figures are important to Bobby, and he had grown to love and respect the old capo. With the shooting of Tony, however, Bobby has been very careful with his visits to Junior.
Bobby was very close to his own father, famed DiMeo button man Robert Baccalieri, Senior. When his father died in a car crash after doing a hit for Gigi Cestone, Bobby was inconsolable. Tragedy, in the form of yet another fatal automobile accident, came to Bobby again recently. This time the victim was his wife, Karen, the mother of his two children. Utterly devoted to Karen – he was known to be the only made man who didn’t have a goomara – Bobby nearly suffered a breakdown at her wake.
He was pulled from his grief by an unlikely savior in the form of Janice Soprano, who seemed determined to forge a relationship. Bobby eventually came around and married Janice, who quickly embraced her new role as step-mom to his kids, showing up at their soccer games. But when her temper got out of hand — she attacked the mother of a peewee soccer player and got arrested for assault — Bobby gave her an ultimatum: go see an anger management specialist, or “this with us ain’t gonna work out.” Janice agreed to get help.