I’m sure some people will look at the title of tonight’s episode and crack a joke about how “Entourage” isn’t as good as it used to be, but not every episode can be as good as the one from last week. There are bound to be shows of the filler variety every once and a while (it’s the nature of the series), just like Eric isn’t always going to be as busy as he’d like. Unfortunately, with Vince’s Ferrari movie pushed back 12 weeks due to pre-production troubles, not to mention Eric’s decision to pull out of producing duties on Charlie’s sitcom, the Murphy Group has become a dead zone. Vince suggests Eric join him on a trip to Paris, but he’d rather just hang around the office with Ashley, leaving Vince to sex up waitresses and surf the web (“How come you’re not on this Facebook thing?”) to keep busy. In the end, however, Eric decides to shut down the Murphy Group for good, and I must say that I’m a little disappointed. I hope that doesn’t mean Eric will stop managing altogether, because he’s easily the show’s most interesting character.
The other two guys didn’t have much to do this week, either. Turtle was stuck shopping for back-to-school clothes with Jamie-Lynn, while Drama spent the day auditioning girls (read: making out with hot models) for his character’s new love interest on “Five Towns.” What could have been a great subplot for Kevin Dillon, though, quickly turned into typical Drama shenanigans. Upset over the lack of talent in the pool of candidates, Drama demands they audition real actresses for the role, and even visits Ed Burns with the suggestion that they go after Natalie Portman or Rachel McAdams. I find it hard to believe that Drama is so stupid that he would expect the network to chase down A-list talent for a brief kissing scene, but he gets his wish nonetheless when he begs Turtle to convince Jamie-Lynn to do the role. Granted, Meadow Soprano is certainly no Natalie Portman or Rachel McAdams, but she’s definitely a step up in quality.
It’s not exactly the kind of stuff that will affect the overall arc of the season, though, so it’s a good thing that Jeremy Piven is still around to save the day. It may be the writers who are responsible for giving the actor such great material, but I’ll be damned if he doesn’t knock it out of the park every time. Ari has grown so much as a character over the last two seasons, and now that he’s trying to run a successful business and be a good husband, father and friend, the stress is really starting to show. I don’t know how much longer Ari is going to be able to play babysitter to Andrew, and quite frankly, the subplot is beginning to show signs of wear.
For the time being, it seems like the affair really is over, but now that Andrew’s officially left his wife, will he just go running back to junior agent Lizzie? And just who exactly ended the affair in the first place? From the way Lizzie “manned up” to Ari and apologized to him in person, I have a strange feeling she was the one who pulled the plug. That would certainly make more sense, because Andrew nearly flipped out when David Schwimmer started flirting with her in the business meeting. Now, Ari has a big decision to make: side with his wife and get rid of Andrew before he makes an even bigger mess of his life, or keep his latest Employee of the Month around long enough to reel in one of television’s most admired creative forces. With Vince cruising along in his career again, he certainly has the time to make up his mind.