Friday, October 9, 2009

What happened to Entourage?

It’s funny how I can constantly complain about this show, but wouldn’t miss an episode. I can’t help it though; this season of Entourage has really been a mixed bag. I think the biggest problem with this season is that the creators of the show have apparently fallen in love with their own characters so much that they don’t want to see anything bad happen to them. The result has been a season with very little at stake for our characters and very little payoff.

I think my main issue with Entourage this season has been Kevin Connolly as E. First of all, why the hell do they call him E? It’s not like his name is Emmanuel. His name is Eric. Two syllables, guys.

In the earlier seasons, E was always the heart of the show. As Vince’s best friend from Queens, E was given the power on a silver platter to manage Vince’s career. E was a character with integrity; always wanting the best for his friend and forced Vince to choose the best projects and not necessarily the best paychecks. Some of E’s choices have been good; some have been very bad.

In Season 6, E became the anchor pulling the show down. I cringed every time he was on screen. The season saw E folding his Murphy Group of one to become a manager for Bernie Brillstein’s, ahem, I mean Murray Berenson’s management company. There was a promising storyline with E having a potential rival at the office played with authentic Hollywood douchyness by Scott Caan. Unfortunately, this promising storyline was dropped after two episodes so we could focus on E’s relationship with an annoying woman-child named Ashley; a girl with “Fatal Attraction” tendencies. I have honestly seen more chemistry at a junior high school dance then I did watching E and Ashley trading witty banter.

For me, a true moment of disgust this past season was the scene where E’s ex-girlfriend, Sloan, invites him to a restaurant for drinks. E shows up and tells Sloan to her face he would rather be with Ashley and then literally walks out on her. Once E’s little girl actually does go all “Fatal Attraction” on him, E ultimately learns that he is truly in love with Sloan. In the season finale, E takes Sloan out for lunch, proposes to her, and now they are getting married. I’m sorry, but I just can’t see how a woman of Sloan’s caliber would put up with this loser, let alone agree to marry him.

The other characters of the “entourage” didn’t fare much better this season. Vince still smiles a lot and still has a lot of sex with random girls. Vince did have a stalker for a couple of episodes and there was hope for some tension. Turned out the whole stalker plot was all just a prank from a hot UCLA co-ed who stole Turtle’s underwear because she thought Turtle was cute. I know, I too had to really suspend my disbelief at this storyline.

Speaking of Turtle, I almost forgot he was still on the show. This season saw the conflicted Turtle having to fight his temptation of the really hot UCLA co-ed that wants him, and the beautiful actress, Jamie Lynn Siegler, that loves him. Eventually Jamie does leave Turtle when she gets a show that shoots in New Zealand. This leads Turtle to give in to his temptations and make out with the really hot UCLA girl. Watching Turtle make out with the co-ed was probably the most appallingly awkward thing that has been put on television since seeing Dennis Franz’s ass on NYPD Blue. And yes, I have also seen every episode of Oz.

Kevin Dillon’s authentic portrayal of Johnny Drama used to be one of the best things about the show. In the past couple of seasons, his character has turned into more of a caricature. This season finale saw Drama back to form when he finally started to question whether he still wanted to be an actor. Drama finally realizes that this is what he loves to do and gives a moving and sincere speech to the Melrose Place producers before his audition. Drama gives his all, and it’s a lovely moment of redemption for this character.

We eventually learn that Drama does not get the part. At this point, the storyline should have just ended, because just like watching Rocky lose the big fight, it’s the journey that equals the redemption. Instead, we get a tacked-on conclusion to the scene when the producer of Melrose Place tells Drama that the network wants to give Drama a holding deal because they feel that Drama is ready to star in his own show. Again, instead of the creators having balls and ending the storyline at Drama’s loss; everything turns out just fine for Drama.

Of course I have been saving the best for last; Ari Gold. The main reason I still watch this show is Jeremy Piven’s ferociously brilliant portrayal of super agent Ari Gold. This character gets better with every season; hell every episode.

As is the case with Entourage, art once again imitates life with the merger of the Terrence McQuiewick Agency and Ari’s Miller Gold Agency. Ari is now the king of Hollywood and in one of the best scenes in the show’s history, Ari walks into his old agency with a paint ball gun and shoots the people he plans on laying off. Of course, he has to shoot the agent that represents John and Kate Plus 8 on principle alone.

I don’t understand why the producers of this show continue with the “entourage.” The characters have really run their course. It just seems that there is now too much material to effectively cram into a half hour show. Ari is obviously the best thing about the show and there is enough material with his character alone and the world of working in an agency that would make a great spin-off show on its own. Lord knows, I have plenty of stories from the three years I worked at a talent agency. Either way, I’ll definitely be tuning into Entourage next season. . .God help me.

No comments:

Post a Comment