HBO should’ve titled the Entourage season eight premiere “Up in Smoke." After all, most of the characters’ lives are going up in flames. Turtle, I’m looking at you.
The episode finds the boys from Queens falling on some hard times, as Vince was released from court-ordered rehab to avoid hard time. So much for his image, Shauna.
Eric and Sloan are (gasp!) no longer engaged, after her failed attempt to get E to sign a pre-nup resulted in him packing his (tiny) stuff and moving out. Even though E is running his own management firm with Scott, he can’t seem to enjoy it without his uber-hot woman at his side... especially since she sent him back his engagement ring in a manila envelope. Unpadded, no less. The b*tch.
E may be single, but it doesn’t look like Sloan will be for long, not with half of Hollywood trying to, ahem, charm her in E’s absence. First in line? Johnny Galecki, who will be appearing as himself this season and trying to give new meaning to the words “Big Bang Theory."Another relationship on the rocks is Ari and Mrs. Ari. They are undergoing a trial separation, or, as Lloyd put, it “S-e-p-a-r-a-t-i-o-n.” But if Mrs. Ari has anything to say about it, it sounds like this may not be so temporary. It almost seemed like garden variety fighting between the Golds until she dropped the bomb that she’s seeing someone else. Whoa. Ari can be an ass, but you have to feel badly for him.
To make matters worse, Ari’s son, Jonah, has been faking illness and playing hooky from school just to spend some time with his dad. The best line of the episode comes from Ari, speaking to Lloyd: “Don’t ever spell in front of my son again. He’s s-m-a-r-t-e-r than you.”
So, Ari chooses to drown his sorrows in some drinks at Vince’s welcome home party. Too bad there aren’t any adult beverages around. Johnny Drama has made sure of that.
To prepare for Vince’s return, Drama and Turtle have performed a sweep of the whole house to remove any contraband that may derail Vince’s sobriety. Not having his coke-fiend porn star girlfriend around is a step in the right direction. Vince delivers the gag-worthy line to end all gag-worthy lines when he deflects rehab groupie’s "you’re sexy" compliment with, “no, sober is sexy.” Blech. Then he spends the rest of the episode babbling about some Romanian-miner-meets-Marley-and-Me movie he wants to make, and no one initially has the guts to tell him the idea sucks. So, let me get this straight:
Rehab made him cheesy and caused him to have bad taste in films? Boo! We want the old Vince back (minus the narcotics).
Good thing Billy and the crew eventually tell him the truth about his pitch, and Billy brings a bus full of substance-free hotties over to welcome Vince home. It’s only after watching Vince’s all-male entourage tip toe around him the whole episode like awkward yes-men robots that they finally confront the elephant in the room. Vince won’t fall off the wagon. He promises.
Actually, he says: “None of this is real and none of you are being real, because I’m fine,” but close enough. Hopefully, Vince can stay sober long enough to reclaim his role in Air Walkers, or at least long enough to find all of them a new place to live. Nice job, Turtle, burning the house down while hiding in the laundry room smoking a joint. See what having a substance free house will get you? Tsk, tsk.
At least Turtle’s tequila business is doing well, as is Drama’s new show, Johnny Bananas. With any luck, the rest of Team Chase will get their acts together soon. Because even though the plot line was interesting this time around, the dialogue wasn’t, and the acting was, at times, painful. Because this is the final season, Mark Wahlberg and the boys better step up their game with what few episodes they have left. Here’s hoping things turn around next week.