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TV Review: HBO's 'Entourage'

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Three stars
9:30 p.m. Sunday, HBO

Over the last five seasons, fictional box-office heartthrob Vincent Chase has seen his career gain cred with the indie "Queens Boulevard," go blockbuster with James Cameron's "Aquaman," and flop with the self-indulgent "Medellin."

I've always suspected that it was an industry in-joke that the fates of this group of friends depend on the talent of a character played by Adrian Grenier - who is by far the worst actor in the ensemble. All he ever really has to do is hang out in his mansion, and even that he does awkwardly.

But with the start of this season, blue-eyed Vinnie is back on top as the star of Martin Scorsese's "Gatsby." If you can swallow that one - and I chose to shrug and believe - then you'll have plenty of fun with the boys.

In general, I find "Entourage" to be less enjoyable when things aren't going well. I don't want to see Ari get ostracized by Hollywood, or Johnny Drama humiliated, or Vinnie have to rough it in Colombia in a fat suit.

I reserve the show for pure escapism, and I want to see these immature slobs live the good life, even if they don't deserve it. Why? Because I like them. And because in this economy, [ital]someone[unital] needs to remind us that there's nothing more American than excess.

This season is a return to form. E (Kevin Connolly) is still flirting with ex-girlfriend Sloane (Emmanuelle Chriqui) and is considering moving out on his own. Vince is still mindlessly fielding the money and women who come his way.

And as usual, comedic genius Kevin Dillon gets all the good lines as Drama - or maybe it's his delivery. You tell me: Is the sentiment "Please, you know I don't like classically beautiful women. Give me a nice nose break or a lazy eye" funny on its own? Drama kills, every time. If nothing else, we learn this season that a career high point of his was "Young Guns 3D."

Jeremy Piven continues to chew the scenery and spit it back in the face of his assistant Lloyd, who is ready to move up to agent status. The homophobic jokes are awfully one-note, but I'd rather see Ari more edgy than more human.

"Entourage" serves an important purpose: To remind us that it's still possible that a guy known as Turtle who has no marketable talents or dress clothes could be getting high in a hot tub with Jamie Lynn Sigler.

We all have to dream.

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This page contains a single entry by Paige Wiser published on July 10, 2009 4:05 AM.

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