Channel Guide: ‘Entourage’ Surprises With A Strong Ending

I remember back in 2008 I had only heard of Entourage in passing. While growing up in Long Island, some of my High School classmates were obsessed with it, and when I got to college my roommate wouldn’t stop talking about it. So in December of 2008 I finally watched the series…

I went through the first five seasons in one week, the third season in one day…

I was almost immediately (minus that awful pilot) consumed by the show. Vinny’s strive to always provide, Johnny’s constant need for fame without understanding how good he has it compared to most actors in the business, Turtle’s drive to be his own man, E’s desire for a normal life and of course Ari’s need for total control. All these things, despite what some may snark at, served to make something that was more than the glamour-filled exterior that the show sat within.

Entourage used being set in the heart of Hollywood to draw people into a story of friendship and the lengths to which it can be tested. This season wasn’t so much a conclusion, as it was a progression. A progression of its characters and the world they live in.

In the penultimate episode, the majority of the show’s story lines are resolved to allow for what we saw in the finale. Turtle learns that because of his constant pushing, he achieved his goal of finally having a life of his own lived out of his own pocket. Johnny achieved the fame he always strives for and learned the true cost of testing the powers that be at their own game.

So in the finale, instead of wrapping things up in a nice neat bow for Vinny, E and Ari, we’re instead treated to an ending of uncertainty.

We’re left with questions about where Vinny’s relationship with his new fiance will lead, whether or not E can get passed his own issues to be the man Sloan needs him to be and if Ari can indeed leave work behind to be the father and husband he always thought he was.

But you know what? We don’t need a movie to answer these questions. The answers don’t matter. By ending the series on a note of uncertainty, it says that the boys from Queens will continue on their never ending journey to make their dreams come true while keeping their world together.

Entourage detractors have always complained that every season plays out the same way. Vince might be getting a movie – Vince struggles to get the movie – Vince gets the movie and everyone goes home happy. And that’s probably why this season started out by Ari telling Vince his new movie begins production in a few months. By getting that out of the way early, it left this season open to take the spotlight off Vince and make everyone else come into focus as their own men.

With this ending, no one can say the show ended on the happy note that the rest of the seasons have. We’ve been nothing but flies on the wall for the last eight years in the boys’ lives, and we finally decided to head for a new wall.

Their journey will continue forever, and whether or not we get to see the next phase, this is the exact ending that the show needed.

Want to read more Channel Guide? Of course you do.

To listen to the latest episode of Merrill’s TV Podcast, The Idiot Boxers with Kevin Carr, head over to Fat Guys at the Movies.

From a young age, TV guru Merrill Barr has been obsessed with the small screen. And one day he decided to put that obsession to good use.

Read More from Merrill Barr
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