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TV Review: Entourage Returns With “Aquamom”

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I've missed Entourage during hiatus and now embrace its reture with more joy than I can possibly express in writing. HBO has certainly struck gold with this series. They bring us interesting characters, compelling stories, and let's face it, lots of luscious beefcake. Really, the writing is top-notch, the actors are perfectly cast, and the stories are more fun than any roller coaster at any Six Flags park (but without the long lines or anyone throwing up on you).

Things have changed since the end of season two.

Smarmy agent Ari, fired from the big time talent agency last season, has pulled himself up by his bootstraps and is back in the game. He's set up in his own office (complete with broken elevator, much to the chagrin of his clients), preparing for Vince's big movie premiere, and juggling enough clients to make him feel like a big shot again. He's not, but at least he thinks he's on his way.

Vince went on to make Aquaman with James Cameron and now needs to find a "premiere worthy" date for that walk across the red carpet. Turtle and Drama are handing out tickets to the event to every hot chick they see (we're talking 50 tickets, folks), exhausting their supply a little too early. Remember that point. Trust me. For all the pimping Turtle and Drama are doing, nothing's working for Vince. He quickly comes to the conclusion there's only one woman who should walk the carpet with him: his mother.

There's a problem with this choice, though. You see, Mrs. Chase has never been to either of her sons' (that would be Vince and Johnny "Drama" Chase, for those of you with quizzical looks, and that includes the very pregnant publicist Shauna) premieres. Granted, Aquaman is THE CAREER-MAKING movie premiere for Vince, but still… When cornered by a DJ on live radio, though, Mrs. Chase gives in and agrees to make the trip despite her loathing of travel. This sets Vince off on the search for the perfect gown and jewelry for his mom.

Before the dress search, while everyone's still at the radio station, as E, Turtle, and Drama are watching Vince's interview, two fine looking "sure thing" babes appear. They promise to put out if Turtle and Drama take them to the premiere. After much begging, Ari comes up with a pair of tickets, which he's taken from James Woods (because he never uses all of them anyway). When Woods demands all his tickets, Ari pretends he accidentally gave them to Vince. Woods knows how this works and heads over to boys' house.

Now, the inherent comedy of established actor James Woods chasing down a pair of tickets might seem a little surreal, but it sets up one of the funniest scenes of the show. Picture Woods banging on the door of the almost-famous Chase boys. Woods hears Drama and Turtle and starts yelling at them through the door. Insults fly, threats are made, and finally, an envelope appears in the mail slot. Turtle rags on Drama for "pussin' out", but Drama laughs, saying all Woods got was an envelope. He still has the tickets because there's no way he's giving up a chance at a "sure thing".

Since things rarely go right for the guys, you just know something's bound go wrong. And, of course, it does.

Ari finds out a check (a donation) to his kids' school bounced. Mrs. Ari (seriously, this is how she's listed in the credits) has to dip into her trust fund to cover the loss and to cover all Ari's expenses as he tries to establish himself as an independent agent. Ari begs his wife to believe in him, to believe in Vince, and to just get him the damn money.
Mrs. Chase calls from the limo Vince had hired to take her to the airport, saying she's not coming. As best friend and manager to Vince, Eric ("E") takes matters into his own hands and delivers the reluctant Mrs. Chase to California, accompanied by his and Turtle's mothers. This ruins any chance the gang had of getting laid.

This week's episode actually ended on a high note. As the episode ends, Vince is schmoozing on the red carpet, James Cameron's talking up the movie, Mrs. Ari tells her husband she believes in him, and the rest of the cast happily struts their stuff.

One of the aspects I enjoy most about this show is the way one season ends and the next begins. Time doesn't stand still for the characters while the show's on hiatus. Instead, the writers carefully advance the story so viewers aren't stuck in some unrealistic time warp. Not every show can pull this off so well, and I have to give the writers kudos for making it work.

The problem with Entourage isn't with the actors or the story lines or even with the production values. No, the problem is I always feel so cheated at the end of every episode, thinking I deserve another 30 minutes. I realize I probably shouldn't bother watching until further in the season, when they run two episodes back-to-back, but I don't have that sort of willpower. I'm all about immediacy, my friends. And when it comes to quality entertainment like Entourage, I want what I want when I want it and, damn if that isn't right now.

With exceptional writing and perfect casting, it's time for you to get HBO and start watching one of the best shows on cable. Sure, it's video crack, but it's nowhere near as bad for you as the real stuff.

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About Joan Hunt

  • Mary K. Williams

    Great write up Joan!

    I was thinking of writing a post on the show yesterday, but didn’t. (Maybe I still will?)

    Anyway, fun times!

  • Joan Hunt

    Definitely write it up, MKW!

    And to quote Ari, “Let’s hug it out, bitch”

    So much love for this show! Glad to find another fan. (I always feel so alone until someone else shows up)

  • chantal stone

    Great review! Entourage is easily the BEST show on television.