It’s pretty surprising that Entourage has lasted so long and been consistently humorous from the start. A lot of its longevity can be attributed to its placement on HBO since there’s no holds barred in terms of content. With the premiere of Season 5 on Sunday, after a shortened season four the boys return for new escapades although you couldn’t really tell from the first episode.
The first episode of Entourage entitled Fantasy Island followed the disasterous showing of Vince’s (Adrian Grenier) labor of love, Medellin. Vince and Turtle (Jerry Ferrara) are holed up on an isolated Mexican island committing all sorts of debauchery to temper the sting of the movie bombing. Back on the mainland Vince’s manager Eric (Kevin Connelly) is still attempting to start his own managing firm with his first new client and Vince’s agent Ari (Jeremy Piven) attempts to get Vince into a new movie. Bringing up the rear is Vince’s older brother Johnny (Kevin Dillon) who butts heads with the photographer on his hit show about which side to shoot him on.
Let me start out by saying I love Entourage. It’s easily one of my favorite shows and waiting for the season five premiere was torture for me. This episode definitely delivers on everything you’d expect for the show. There are beautiful women, the boys getting up to their usual hijinks and a ton of that Hollywood power system you love to watch. The actors still seem to be having fun with their roles and the premiere does a great job of showing how the tables of turned with Vince and his brother. Whereas the show has been about Vince rising to fame this season sets up a conflict where Johnny is now the rising star as his little brother’s starts to fade. You also have the setup of Eric gathering more notoriety as a manager.
Unfortunately this first shot out the gate left quite a bit to be desired. I’ve said it before but Entourage is way too short. At half an hour the time whizzes by and there never seems to be enough episodes in the season. This premiere really shows the need for longer episodes since I felt like it passed by and I didn’t catch anything. The humor seemed a bit lighter than normal and everyone just seemed to be going through the motions. By this point the actors have their roles down pat and it’s starting to show as everything just seems to be recycled shtick, especially seen in Jeremy Piven’s character. I don’t believe this first episode is an indictator of the season but it definitely did not meet up to my expectations. I also hope the creators won’t spend too much time developing Eric’s new client played by rapper/actor Bow Wow. He’s so forgettable I don’t even know his character’s name, it doesn’t help that IMDB doesn’t even list him.
Overall I was a bit disappointed in the first episode of Entourage. I definitely think there’s room for improvement and that the show will deliver as the season picks up but I did expect a hilarious season premiere. I give the episode a 3/5. Entourage is on HBO every Sunday.