'Entourage' recap: Come fly with me
It was the series finale that the fans have been dreaming about.
Carrie fell in love and jetted off to Paris. Charlotte finally got her baby. Samantha and Miranda, as has often been the case, were the loyal friends making sure their gal pals had happy endings. Mr. Big finally realized there's more to life than work and was ready to commit to a family.
Oh wait, this is a recap for "Entourage" not "Sex and the City." It's easy to understand the confusion, though a show that spent eight seasons dedicated to hedonism suddenly seemed to turn into a fantasy written by the readers of Cosmopolitan, not Details.
HBO's "Entourage" has never been the type of show that requires a lot of deep thought. This is good because otherwise the series finale might really annoy people with its sudden turn from sexy to sappy, complete with opera singers, two trips to Europe and even a cameo from Rachel Zoe, who actually looked tall standing next to Vince in a jewelry store.
Written for men, primarily by men, may explain why "Entourage" has a hard time with female characters. In the Sunday finale, three women completely go against everything they've been about in the course of 30 minutes.
We'll start with Sophia, the smart Vanity Fair reporter that Vince has become smitten with, primarily it seems, because she is not smitten with him. Not used to having anyone turn him down, Vince goes all out to woo her, and on the strength of testimonials from ex-girlfriends and Drama and Turtle and one hot date, she apparently is now ready to marry him.
Then there's Mrs. Ari. For years, she's complained about her workaholic husband who pays her no attention. Ari does not seem able to ever go more than a few minutes without thinking about work. Then he hears some opera group that his daughter discovered and suddenly decides there's more to life and literally just walks out on his agency. He comes home with the young opera singers and the missus is suddenly ready to forgive and forget, and they race off to Italy for a romantic getaway. They left in such a hurry that they seemed to have forgotten about their kids. On a side note, Mrs. Ari had some interesting wardrobe choices in the episode. She was dressed more like someone who works the bar at the Peninsula hotel than a middle-aged mother of two.
Finally, we have Eric's ex-girlfriend, Sloan. Pregnant with Eric's baby but determined not to be with him, she wants to move to New York and start a new life. Even if she still loves Eric, her father hates him and Eric did sort of sleep with her stepmother, Melinda Clarke. But hey, after a visit with Vince -- who as we learned from last week's episode -- can fix anything, Sloan is ready to throw on a red gown and fly off with E to start a new life. Of course, sooner or later she'll confirm that Eric did sleep with her stepmother on multiple occasions (one he might be able to get away with) and then what?
Series finales often disappoint, and this one was no exception. Often it's because creators suddenly try to make their shows bigger than they are when it comes to the last episode. That was the case here. "Entourage" worked best when it was light and breezy. Going serious and schmaltzy is out of character. The highlight was watching Ari's stubble change in length from scene to scene even though the whole episode took place over the course of one day. Eric was also sporting stubble. That's how we knew it was a very special episode. It certainly wasn't from the script.
-- Joe Flint
Photo: Ari tries to make peace with Mrs. Ari on the series finale of HBO's "Entourage." Credit: HBO.