This week, E struggles to be independent and make a name for himself as Vincent Chase’s manager. The problem is that no one will really believe him because no one has heard of him. E shows the boys his new office, which isn’t in the best part of town. Drama makes fun of E for his meager digs, but E is ready for the fight. E lets Vince know he’s going to set up a meeting with Peter Jackson (Lord of the Kings director) for some gaming venture. Later, Ari calls E to put him in his place because Peter Jackson’s “people” have called asking who E is. Ari attempts to tell him like it is, but E is still determined and says he can make his own meetings without permission. Unfortunately, Ari, E’s rival in this episode (like most episodes), is the representative of record. E then tries to take out an ad in Variety, but the woman taking down the order explains that E has to show proof from Ari of being Vince’s manager before using Vince’s name.
Vince, Drama and Turtle then set out to get E an office-warming gift. They stumble across this beautiful old desk with a ton of history, with Mickey Rooney having used it in Breakfast at Tiffany’s and Robert DeNiro having previously owned it. The problem is that Gary Busey already bought it, which the naughty sales woman broke confidentiality to tell them. By the way, the furniture store scene had, yet another excellent cameo, this time, by the priest on Six Feet Under. (I love the spot-the-walk-on guest game; it’s like playing Where’s Waldo?)
Vince, Drama and Turtle head off to Gary Busey’s house to bid for the desk. Gary says he will give up the purchase if Drama will be Gary’s portrait subject. The only thing is that Gary wants to paint on Drama, not paint a portrait of him. Gary calls it “enlightened photography; the unseen faces of the familiar,” which will bring out Drama’s beauty and truth. That’ll be the day. A bunch of blue paint later, Drama, Turtle and Vince bring the desk to E’s office where the movers explain the desk just won’t fit through the front door. Never mind the logistics, Vince just gets E a new office, with office space for the whole crew. What a friend…and client. Warm fuzzies abound, except that E now really feels worthless.
Meanwhile, at Ari’s office, everyone is preparing for a meeting to pitch new ideas to Mary J. Blige. Unfortunately, the twin talent agents, Jeff and Jim are fighting, sending bad vibes everywhere. Ari finally gets it out of them that Jeff slept with his brother, Jim’s wife. Ari is appalled by Jeff’s behavior and annoyed that he can’t figure out which twin is which and just fires Jim because Jim’s earnings are consistently less than Jeff’s. Ari thinks he has made a rational decision and onward he goes to the Mary J. Blige meeting. Mary shows up, and the first thing she asks is where Jim is. As it turns out, despite Jim’s failure to earn the company money, he’s the one who keeps the clients happy. Jim shows up at the elevator when Ari is seeing Mary out, and Jim explains what really went down. What’s great is that Mary calls Ari an animal, but I don’t really get the sense she’s returning to her old agent at ICM. Being an animal in Hollywood is a good thing, right?
Later on, Shauna, Vince’s publicist, reprimands E for trying to take out the ad and hooks him up with a reporter at Variety to get him the appropriate press he deserves. The reporter, however, likes E’s story a little too much – the part about E living with (and off of) Vince and trying to set up shop with Vince as his one client. She writes a piece called, “The New Nepotism in Hollywood.” Just when we think that E has his work cut out for him, though, Peter Jackson calls E back and they set up a meeting. Jackson reassures E that he should shrug off the bad press and tells E he’s glad to have a legitimate manager to work with.
The greatest parts of this episode are Gary Busey’s lines. He calls Turtle, Vince and Drama, “The tortoise, the hare and the millionaire.” He also says some truly relevant things to Drama, like “Only denial will suffocate you” and “Therapy will let you down.” Drama seems to take it to heart (as well he should). It’s interesting how they jump from E’s office to Ari’s office throughout the episode, so you get this sense of the ladder E needs to climb to get to this high-powered place. Even though it seems like E is “surfing the celebrity wave,” I think E will make a place for himself, and everyone will still be friends. It’s a nice moral to the story. Of course, we still love Ari because he picks the creep over the good guy and still fires them both in the end.