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Tuesday, September 9, 2008

I love Vince Chase! Entourage is back!

I was hurt that I missed the season premiere of Entourage. I mean not only did the delayed season mess up my whole summer, since I had to wait, I thought for sure I would be glued to the television screen. Nevertheless, I missed the show, but Tim Livingston of does a great job recapping the first episode.

The Other Entourage Review: Season 5, Episode 1 - Fantasy Island

Posted by Tim Livingston on 09.08.2008

This is the type of show that always seems to come through with a good season premiere. Yeah, this one delivers on many cylinders.

The show begins with Roeper at the Movies, where he absolutely blasts the movie as a disaster. Not surprisingly, it’s getting around that the movie wasn’t good, and after the now infamous “Hindenberg” showing at Caanes, it has been relegated to straight-to-DVD release. Ouch. Of course, Eric is watching this and taking it all in stride, beer in hand. Meanwhile, here comes Johnny, MacBook in hand (hooray product placement) and he’s talking via webcam with Jacqueline, the French woman he met at Caanes who absolutely loved Viking Quest. For a great visual, go back to the end of Season 4 when she asks him to do scenes from the show. Classic Johnny Drama stuff. Anyways, Drama tries to cheer E up, but E isn’t hearing it. He’ll just sit and drink his beer, hoping that Vince is okay at his hideaway in Mexico.

Of course, since this is Entourage, it goes straight to Vince, of course, having sex with a beautiful woman on a secluded Mexican beach. Meanwhile, a second woman comes in, much to the chagrin of Turtle, who’s along for the ride, of course, as he and his girl have to go to the hammock instead. Well, you can only do so much.

Meanwhile, Ari returns to the office on Monday morning after the Roeper ripping. Of course, suck-ups galore try to cheer him up, but this is ARI GOLD, for crying out loud. It leads to the first of what will be many Ari tirades. He’s already in midseason form. Meanwhile, Carl Ertz calls with an idea about casting Vince in a new movie called “Beach Danger.” As it would be repeated throughout the episode, “It’s a working title.” Intrigued that Vince would receive an offer upon a meeting, Ari gets in motion to get Vince back to LA before Ertz leaves for Greece on Wednesday.

Now, we go to E’s office, where he has someone resembling your normal great aunt answering calls, and E is in talks with Charlie, played by Bow Wow, about getting him some roles in a couple of start-ups. After E finally lets Ari on the line, they talk to each other as only they can, finally agreeing that they need to get Vince back for this role.

At a photo shoot for Drama’s TV show, he’s on a roll until he gets asked to shoot from his right side, which, in his words, makes him look like a monster. This causes a stir-up with the photographer and the director, who then threatens to call the producer. Of course, Drama thinks he’s bigger than he is. That’s one bluff that will get called.

E then talks to Vince about coming back, but Vince ain’t having any of it. You know, because it’s a beach, there’s food, and there’s threesomes. Seriously, would YOU want to leave that? After that pow wow, E and Ari talk and realize that they need to take matters into his own hands. Meanwhile, Charlie can’t find a thing in the town yet, as another interview goes badly. The one hand that E does have under control at the moment isn’t getting him anywhere.

In his trailer, Johnny still doesn’t like his right side and complains to his girlfriend. Ben Silverman is on his way, powerwalking his way towards the trailer when he gets a call from E asking exactly where Vince is. When he finds out that it’s an emergency, he ditches on Silverman, the CHAIRMAN OF THE NETWORK. Well, if that isn’t a foreshadow…by the way. I would be in remiss if I didn’t mention how Drama and his girlfriend say good-bye to each other by using bird sounds. Adorable.

Winner for best part of the episode: The crew flies in to Vince‘s hideaway to “Return of the Mack.” A party is going on, with like, three guys and 20 girls. I’m going to the wrong parties. Complete with Turtle saying, “Boss! Theee plane! Theee plane!”, the crew lands and they all talk. They say that people kind of forgot about Vince. Drama: “Don’t take it personally, bro. The whole country’s on meth.” Vince comes back saying he doesn‘t want to go. “Even Turtle is getting laid.” Turtle: “A lot!” Vince puts his foot down, so E has to give his “pep talk.” Vince’s beard is lovely for someone who’s been on a beach for six months. Just sayin’. Vince agrees to go back, but not before Turtle gets one last lay in before they leave.

Cleanly shaven, Vince gets back after reading the script and enjoys what he read, title aside. Turtle thinks the movie should be called “High Tide.” The guys like it. Ari shows up to give Vince his report, and, as he sometimes does with Turtle, has a great little back and forth, complete with Turtle telling him what he does all the time when he’s waiting for these meetings to be done. That would be watching porn in the Escalade. With the windows down and the volume up. Classic Turtle. Guy gets laid more in a six month period than he ever has, and as soon as he hits LA, it’s right back to his horn dog ways.

As Vince walks in, Adam Davies spots him sitting down with Ertz. He goes over as Vince chats up the script and Turtle’s title idea, which Ertz likes. After saying hi to Ertz, Davies reveals to Ari that Vince was set up in return for a low ball offer on Emile Hirsch. So there goes that plan. By the way, saw him in Alpha Dog. Much better in The Girl Next Door. Ari chews up the script, Davies has the last word on Ari, and the guys reconvene to talk about getting Vince back in the game. So, of course, Turtle and Drama head to Ertz’s house, golf bag in hand. Drama then takes a six iron to the windshield of one of Ertz‘s cars, but not the Maserati. To top it off, Drama leaves a fish, “Godfather“ style and exclaims “Aquaman will be back!” to end the episode.

As a whole, it’s a great opener, because it basically sets things up for what makes Entourage great in the first place: the chase for glory. After an initial bump in the road, the crew will have their initiative tested right away and they will need to bounce back big-time. Be sure to watch for how Ari and E go this season. If E is trying to get Charlie’s career going, would he look at Ari as a competitor or mentor? How will this affect his standing with Vince? What will happen with Drama’s job? Will Turtle stop being funny? (probably not) Looking forward, there’s many different things that can happen, including Vince’s next shot at returning to glory, which seems to be the way they’re going at least in the near future.

The 411: Entourage has always been a show that started off strong. This one is no exception. For many, the question now stands as to whether or not the show can keep itself going strong. Take a shot on this season of Entourage. It was hurt by the Writer's Strike, and it looks like it wants to return itself to the glory it saw when it hit its peak in Season 3, Part 1. This is definitely a good start, but the only question remains whether or not this will keep on going.
Final Score: 8.5

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