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''Entourage'': Deals and no deals

On ”Entourage,” Ari blows the Ramones-biopic deal, and Vince overspends for some hot shoes for Turtle, but Johnny pulls off his big scene

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Jeremy Piven, Entourage
Jeremy Piven: Claudette Barius


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”Entourage”: Deals and no deals

The third season of Entourage is coming to an end, and Vince still can’t close his post-Aquaman deal. Medellín, gone. Aquaman 2, finito. Queens Boulevard, fate unknown. And now, his Ramones biopic, I Wanna Be Sedated, is about to be yanked away from him. It’s enough to make you wanna sniff some glue, or beat on a brat with a baseball bat.

At least after tonight’s episode, we can’t blame the oh-so-principled and moral thespian himself. It was all Ari’s fault. After a meeting with ”Brad” of Paramount (a very unsubtle reference to Brad Grey) was hijacked by Sanka-swilling codger Bob Ryan (Martin Landau), Ari tricked the old coot by sending him to the wrong studio (Disney). Then the superagent and Eric closed the deal with Universal. Proving that you’re never too old to stab someone in the back, Ryan went and sold the suddenly hot script to his old friend — and Vince’s main nemesis — Alan Grey of Warner Bros. This set up Ari for a big fall, as hinted by the scenes from next week’s finale. I for one, felt that the Machiavellian maneuvering was great, though this pitch-heavy episode was missing one thing: an actual movie pitch! If Mr. Gold is as good as, say, Bob ”Mr. Pitch” Kosberg, then why didn’t we get to see him spinning out the multitude of reasons why a studio should shell out $10 million for the latest Vinnie Chase picture?

At the same time, Turtle and Vince’s headlong dive into the world of sneaker freaks was a fun but frivolous diversion. Readers should know that the line outside the La Brea branch of the legendary Los Angeles sneaker store Undftd was no fictionalization. The lengths that shoe junkies will go to for Limited Edition Nike Dunks or a rare pair of Bathing Ape kicks is insane. And the secretive, rap-loving graffiti artist Fukijama was just a insider reference to Nigo, who designs similarly sought-after shoes, hoodies, and T-shirts. As for those $20,000 sneakers? Vince sure likes to spoil his boys.

And isn’t it ironic? While Vince is wasting away the day shoe shopping, Johnny Drama is actually working. At least, he’s trying to, until a panic attack sends him to his trailer repeating a hilarious machismo mantra and pumping himself up with a war cry — ”Aaoooohhh-gahh!” — that sounds a bit like the intro to ”Hooked on a Feeling.” Drama finally nails the scene — and the look of embarrassment — thanks to a Maxim magazine and some personal, ahem, maintenance. Drama said it best: ”When anxiety rears its ugly head, I’m just gonna beat it back down.” And…scene. I can’t top that line, so I won’t even try.

Questions: Is Vince going to fire Ari? Will Bob Ryan back down and take his script to Universal? Is Drama finally going to have a career? Is Turtle still going to be sad? And does DJ AM really have a license plate that reads ”I AM AM”?