When the cable guy was late, I did the only thing a person can do. I negotiated my way into free HBO. Well, at least three months of free HBO. Through various channels (aka my boyfriend’s parents Xfinity account), I had already caught up on Girls, Doll & Em, and even Enlightened. I wanted to watch something different. So, I committed to watching all 96 episodes of Entourage.
The show’s eight seasons span from 2004 to 2011, making the earliest episodes a decade old. With the much anticipated Entourage movie set for release in June 2015, it’s a good time to look back.
I’m currently more than halfway through season three and want to draw your attention to 10 things that made me think oh gawd.
1. Hot Girls Wear Flare Jeans (& Boys Wear Baggy Pants)
At first, I was in denial. That can’t be Mandy Moore in flare jeans. But, then it occurred to me. In the early aughts, skinny jeans weren’t yet a thing.
The first time I bought designer jeans I was on a trip to LA in 2006. They were Lucky Brand Denim and bootcut, which represents a transitional stage from full-out flares to tapered ankles.
The loose-fitting pants worn across the male cast, from superstar Vince Chase to his clean-cut buddy Eric Murphy, almost made me gasp. There are no men in tight pants. Even fashion-forward Lloyd Lee wore modestly cut suits. More on Lloyd later.
2. Kids Live & Die By Their AIM Buddy Lists
When Sarah Gold, the adolescent daughter of hotshot agent Ari Gold, falls in love with a 13-year-old movie star, Ari makes multiple attempts to cease communication between Sarah and the Justin Bieber precursor, Max Ballard. My favorite is when he takes away her Mac laptop after closely monitoring her AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) buddy lists. That’s right. Buddy Lists. Can you hear those invisible doors creaking open and shut?
3. Hummer Owners Can Be Proud
It’s big. It’s loud. It’s yellow. The Entourage crew shows no shame roaring around LA in a vehicle designed for military missions.
They’re quick to replace it with a Maserati, Escalade, or a set of matching Aston Martins, but I’m pretty sure that if Turtle encountered a Fisker in season one, he’d find a way to blow it out of the water.
4. Celebrity Guest Stars = Mandy Moore & Bob Saget
As a movie star, Vince Case needs a celebrity love interest. Enter Mandy Moore. Other than some David O. Russell ensemble appearances and Tangled, Mandy seems to have fallen off the pop culture charts. (Remember that “Candy” video with all those VW Beetles? It’s pretty much impossible to top that.)
On the other hand, Bob Saget’s career has kind of taken an ironic turn for the better. When he appears in Entourage, he’s a has-been curmudgeon trying to shake his Danny Tanner reputation. With his new memoir out, Dirty Daddy, I can’t help but think he might be on the upswing. (Not to mention his voice-over work on How I Met Your Mother.)
5. Everyone Has a Cordless Landline
Seriously. Everyone. It’s insane.
6. No One Cares About Health Care
Other than an insurance-related physical, doctor appointments are rarely mentioned on Entourage. I mean, who would worry about having health insurance when you have a millionaire best friend (or brother) to come to your rescue? It’s 2004.
Today, paying for a medical emergency out of pocket could financially bury a budding movie star. (Thank goodness for Obamacare.)
7. Fancy People Drink Classic [Shitty] Beer
Craft beer and microbreweries had yet to blow up. Characters order a Budweiser, Miller, or whatever. There’s no pressure. If they want to be fancy, they order an Amstel.
8. Paparazzi Can be Sweet-Talked
When the group’s old friend Dom shows up out of the blue, newly released from prison, he requires a few showbiz etiquette lessons. Basically: Don’t punch paparazzi in the face.
But when Dom inevitably punches a photographer at Vince’s big Aquaman rollercoaster unveiling, Vince manages to smooth things over quickly. In fact, pretty much every time Vince encounters the paparazzi he can reason with them to get what he wants. Britney Spears would be so jealous.
(And, there’s no worry that fans will invade his privacy by snapping photos. They just want his autograph!)
9. When House Shopping, Go Big or Go Home
Sure, Vince’s financial manager is irked when he goes over budget on an epic mansion. But this is before the burst of the housing bubble. What could possibly go wrong?
10. Homophobia-Wielding Agents are OK
Lastly, I’m struck by the homophobic remarks agent Ari Gold makes to his assistant-cum-colleague, Lloyd Lee. The mild-mannered and loyal Lloyd is the show’s only openly gay character. In 2014, I’d like to think that a man who spends thousands of dollars on a suit might think twice before spewing homophobic remarks in public.
Lloyd: Are you hiding something from me Ari?
Ari: Only my cock and my asshole Lloyd.
Now, that’s just plain not nice.
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