Entourage:2039 Chapter five

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The Stranger.

Nothing was open. Vincent Chase, hungry, tramped north through the devastation that had once been Vine Street. There were no lights in the buildings, no cars, no streetlights. Not another soul stirred. Maybe it was Sundance week?

He turned right on Franklin, heading east. There had to be something open down here. From the 101 above him, he heard what sounded like heavy trucks rolling past like thunder. And high above that, where the dull red illuminating the Valley leeched into a starless black sky, the sound of helicopters.

But on the ground, nothing. Vincent Chase felt alone. It actually stopped him in his tracks. He hadn’t left his apartment in twenty years, but until this moment, standing at Argyle and Franklin, staring at the bombed-out shell of a bad Thai restaurant, he had never known what it meant to feel alone. In his olds life, when he wanted a body to fuck, or a friend to fly off to Vegas or the Caribbean on the G3, he barely even had to ask. Even all those years in the condo, he’d never really wanted for anything. Was this how regular people felt? Jesus Christ.

After a lost minute staring down at the burnt corpse of what might have been a possum, Vince snapped back to himself. He remembered this feeling now. He had felt it once, a long long time ago. And he knew now to get rid of it.

Drugs. He would buy some drugs. Full of renewed purpose, he continued east on Franklin.

A few minutes later, Vince found the place. Or at least, it looked like the place to him. Half-burnt, knocked down, and propped against the building, what was left of the sign just read, “PIG.” There were no lights, and the windows were long-ago smashed, but still, it felt like the right place. He walked towards the black hole where the door had been- and suddenly came up short. He wished he had Turtle backing him up. Or Dom and some of the boys from the old neighborhood. Hell, he would have even settled for E.

“Don’t puss out now,” he told himself under his breath, trying to turn himself into Aquaman, or his “Smoke Jumpers” firefighter, or really just about anyone less pants-pissingly scared, anyone whose heart was pounding less frighteningly hard than the heart of Vincent Chase standing here on what used to be Franklin Avenue.

“You guys open?” he managed to croak out. Something moved inside the coffee shop, and there was a loud, harsh clank of metal of metal. Vincent jumped, and before he knew it he was three blocks away, running for his life, the blood pounding in his ears. And now- fuck. There was someone in the street up ahead.

A black silhouette, surrounded by steam or smoke hissing up from some unknowable underground catastrophe. It was like one of his old movies, except now Vince was the camera, or maybe the background talent, and he was the one looking on in awe at the troubled yet dashing streetwise anti-hero.

The guy was coming right at him. A spotlight shone down from somewhere and- it couldn’t be, but it was…

Vincent Chase, old, fat, afraid, lost here in 2039, was staring straight into his own past- it was impossible, but still: The stranger coming down this desolate, ruined street was exactly, completely, unmistakably,, the boyish, beautiful, world-bestriding star of  “Queens Boulevard,” Vinnie Chase.

New feature starting next Thurs.

[EDIT: While I still like this idea, this is on hold until I get some time.]

I’m just about done filling up this thing with old comedy sketches.

I was thinking today and I realized I took my first screenwriting class in 2001. My teacher told me it took “an average of 10 years” to “make it” and apparently he was right. Since then my focus has shifted a bit, away from writing and trying to sell specs, and towards writing, directing and producing my own movies.

I would never pretend to give an “insider scoop” or tell anyone how to “make it.” However I think I’ve accumulated some interesting stories in the last eight years and I might as well start telling them. This will be a limited time thing, maybe six months or so.  I think everything on a blog should have an expiration date. Frankly I’m hoping this is something I can do without a lot of revising and agonizing over every word, because I just don’t have the time or energy at this point. This will also be something to read for my non “industry” friends who don’t watch Entourage and probably don’t get why I have to use swear words and talk about sex and stuff.

Anyway, for now the schedule will be:

Monday: Entourage:2039
Thursday: Memoirs or whatever
Random times: Archival content (sketches, scripts, etc)

Entourage:2039 Chapter 4

Vincent Chase in Hollywood

Vincent Chase was hungry. He had eaten the last steak three days ago, cleaned the freezer of Sea Bass (possibly Chilean), and emptied the cupboard of canned Everything. He checked one more time, grunting with exertion as he stood on his tiptoes to finger the dark reaches of the top cabinet.

Nothing but dust and shadows. Vince slammed the cupboard door shut- hard. What a bunch of bullshit! For the first time in he couldn’t remember how long, he was angry. Really hot. Where the fuck was that girl? Vince didn’t know what day it was, but she should have been here by now. She always showed up just when he needed her.

Fuck it. He’d order in. He knew how to do that.

But where was the goddamn phone? He threw aside piles of ancient, yellowed magazines, throwing up fifteen years of neglect in a Dust Bowl-caliber cloud. Old scripts, some kind of award statue from some forgotten cable show, empty bottles, generations-old console gaming systems. Finally he found it, tucked in a corner behind a four-foot-high venom-green bong.

He blew off the dust, held it gingerly to his ear, and mashed down the “Talk” button with his thumb. It made some kind of noise he didn’t even recognize. What the fuck was this shit??

Before he even knew what he was doing he had thrown the phone to the ground and he was smashing it- first with his foot, then with his fist, with a vigor he hadn’t possessed in fifteen years. He was Vincent Chase. Vincent Chase couldn’t even get a simple fucking dial tone anymore??

When the rage cloud cleared from his mind, Vince became aware that 1) His fist was bloody and it  hurt, a lot, and 2) He was still very hungry. Well. He would just have to go out and get something, wouldn’t he?

In his closet, he found a collection of ever-so-carefully-hand-distressed jeans that failed to come within ten sizes of accommodating his current girth. Fuck it, he’d go out in the robe. The tabloids would have a field day, but it would blow over, like always.

Vince undid the locks and stood at the door for a long long time. His knees felt weak, he wanted to puke, but he made it out into the hall. Why the fuck was everything so dusty? And there were holes in the carpet, like animals had been chewing on it. He’d have to have somebody call the manager, but anyway he was making it, supporting himself against the wall, slowly down the long corridor.

When the elevator didn’t come, he took the stairs. In the lobby, a fallen chandelier blocked his way, but nothing was going to stop him now. He slouched up to the big heavy door, gold-handled and glass tinted against the prying eyes of the lesser people who might wander by, hoping for a glimpse of their idols.

Vince pushed hard, and he was outside.




Vince did a double-take, then a triple-take, then did them both again. Hollywood looked like it had been bombed. Great black dead hulks of buildings towered overhead. There were no lights on in any of them; no signs of life anywhere. The street was covered in broken glass. To the North, thick black smoke rose from the devastated but still familiar cylinder of the Capitol Records building. At Vince’s feet, the Walk of Fame had been plundered, every star smashed to gravel, or completely removed, leaving only a series of shallow five-pointed pits full of trash and urine.

A pane of broken glass fell from high on one of the desolate hulks, shattering fifty feet ahead, sending huge shards skating out across the desolate street. The night, if it was night, was lit only by a dull-red sky, as if something very large was burning just over the hill. The overall effect was of a painting of Hell by an artist Vincent Chase had almost certainly never heard of.

Vince shrugged inside his triple-XL bathrobe. So, the neighborhood had gone downhill a bit. Nobody was going to fuck with him. He had street cred. He was Queens Boulevard. Hoping he still looked a little like Billy Walsh’s erstwhile noir demigod, Vincent Chase walked north on Vine Street, alone, looking for someplace that was open late.

There’s been a lot of talk about hipsters lately…

A HIPSTER, the kind of guy who wears an askew trucker cap, stands centerstage, listening to headphones.

ADAM and TERESA enter.

Hey, dude, what’re you listening

You never heard of it.
OK, fine. It’s this group called…
(very slowly)
The Beatles.

The Beatles??

I don’t know why I even bother.
You’re so mainstream, I’m sure this
kind of thing just goes right over
your head. Maybe in 20 years, when
the Beatles faces are all over
everything, when they’re selling
out and performing at the Super
Bowl, then you two will finally get
hip to them.

Adam and Teresa shake their heads. Hipster starts reading a book.

What are you reading?

Sigh! Something far beyond your
blinkered plastic-fantastic
everyday perspective. It’s called
“Hamlet” by a guy named William

You think we’ve never heard of

Of course you haven’t- he’s from
I’m sure one day you’ll get into
him- who knows maybe in 100 years,
they’ll be teaching Shakespeare in
high school- then maybe he’ll be
safe enough for you.

I love Shakespeare: “shall I
compare thee to a summer’s day..”

Oh, so you know a little
Shakespeare- the mainstream stuff.
I’m into the stuff nobody knows-
like this play “Hamlet” is his most
obscure work. I’m digging on this
totally undiscovered passage most
people don’t even notice, it’s
called the “to be or not to be”

They give him a “you’re crazy” look.

What you don’t know what a “speech”
is? That’s what us really cool
people say- I bet you guys probably
still call it a “soliloquy!” Man,
this is making me hungry.

He pulls out food and starts eating- they keep staring at him.

You guys probably don’t even get
what I’m doing, it really hasn’t
caught on yet. It’s called “eating”
– you consume food through the
mouth and then, this is the coolest
part, the body converts it to
energy to help you stay alive!

Hipster finishes eating. He just stands there with arms crossed, staring out at the audience.

Now what are you doing?

Pa-shaw! It’s called… Existing!
Through an unknown interaction of
chemicals and electrical impulses,
you achieve an undefinable state
known as “consciousness” wherein
you have awareness of your self and

But everybody exists!!

Of course they do, now that I
started the trend!

He looks out at the audience.

You’re all a bunch of sheep- out
there existing, just cause you saw
me doing it first!

A GHOSTLY HIPSTER, clad all in black,  stands up out of the audience.

Dude, existence is so last month!

Who are you?

Grimace! I’m no one, I’m not here,
I don’t even exist! Duh. Look at
that guy, he’s all like ” I think
therefore I am,” what a loser.

The hipster hides behind a chair.

(fake ghostly voice)
Wooo! I Don’t exist either!

Yes you do, you’re just behind a
chair. I must depart now but-
(to Teresa)
Perhaps you’d care to accompany me
to my non-existent penthouse on the
non-existent end of the Wilshire
Corridor. I have a Compact Disc of
music that is truly hip.
It is a by a man known as…
(very dramatic)

Teresa is enthralled and leaves with him.

(to hipster)
This ending is so not cool.

The hipster is still hiding behind the chair, nods his agreement.


Dedicated to the Murphman, wherever he may be.

Entourage:2039 Chapter three

turtle_crop2Turtle, Crawling Slowly Forward.

Turtle inched his way forward down the tunnel, one careful step at a time. If you didn’t know what you were doing you could find yourself neck deep in raw sewage real fast. Raw sewage if you were lucky. There were far worse things in the sinkholes, and some of them were alive. Another man might have been frightened, or at least grossed out. Not Turtle. He had been slogging through shit all his life, one way or another. He lived for this.

He froze. Something was out there. It was just a blip, a little orange flash way out there in his peripheral, but it was definitely there. The Big Boss didn’t shell out for these military-grade night vision goggles for nothing. Probably just a rat, but a careless soldier was a dead solider. He’d learned that a long time ago.

Turtle’s black-gloved left hand, acting independently, had shot up in the shape of a fist. Behind him, his squad was instantly on alert. They didn’t make a sound, but he knew they were there, locked and loaded. Turtle knew them because he was one of them- a solider since age 11 on Queens Boulevard. Every man who served under him would kill or die for him without a second thought.

Yeah. Just a rat. Before he could stop himself, Turtle had mentally clocked its weight: big boy, about a seven-pounder. That was from the dark years. He had sold rat meat when that was all there was, and yeah, he might have eaten it once or twice in his time. It didn’t taste any worse than some of the Gyro places back home. But those days were over now. He had his men, and he had the Big Boss, and most of all, he had The Group. The GPS told him they were close now. He took four deep breaths to calm himself, not that he really needed to. A few quick hand signals and his men fanned out behind him, ready for action. Turtle took the lead, like he always did. In 15 seconds flat, he was up the ladder and had the hatch open.


They emerged from the sewer into a sub-basement storeroom. Every available surface was piled six inches deep with- Turtle could barely believe the irony, but there they were, unmistakable – ancient movie scripts. Insides the once-glossy covers, each one held one hundred and ten pages, give or take a few, now yellowed and slowly disintegrating, never to be rewritten into their better or more profitable selves. Here they crumbled, their wonder and adventure imprisoned forever in the flat black and white of the Cole and Haag format. “To what base uses we may return,” quipped Turtle’s internal Voice-Over.

He picked one off the top of the pile, and almost smiled at the title: “Benji: Arctic Dog.”

Alas poor Vincent..

No. No time for that shit now. He tossed the script aside and led his men out into the hall. The first guard’s body was halfway to the floor before he knew what had hit him. These guys talked a big game, put on a lot of glitz, but at the end of the day they were dilettantes: War just wasn’t their thing.

Exactly seven minutes later, Turtle and his men returned the way they came, a razor-thin 20 terabyte jet-black hard disc nestled securely in Turtle’s pack. All 12 people who had laid eyes on them were now dead.

Between the stiffening fingers of the biggest one, Turtle had left his calling card, as he always did: All black, with a white Death’s Head leering out at the world. And below it, in unmissable block letters:


Entourage:2039: Chapter two

A new chapter is posted every Monday morning. If you want to start at the beginning, check out chapter one.

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Chapter two: Vince’s Houseguest

“Won’t you come in?” said Vince, still doing his best to sound like his long-ago turn as Nick Caraway in Scorcese’s “Gatsby.” The girl came in, she always did. Vince watched her from behind as she put the bags down in the kitchen. Nice ass, he thought. Once upon a time he had thought it chivalrous to help them with carry the stuff in, but his back had been acting up, and the last thing he wanted to do was throw it out again. Not today. Besides, it was cooler this way. “Lay back and let her do the work, bro” – this was how Johnny would have wanted it.

The girl was almost done now – pulling cans and packages from the bags until Vince’s nearly bare freezer and cupboards were again stocked in neat rows with all his favorites. A strip steak, flown in overnight from his beloved New York, materialized from one of the bags. “Later,” he told it with his eyes. “Just you and me.”

She finished putting the stuff away, and turned to face him. They both knew what was coming now. Vince looked at her face – the hair, dark, short but not too short, framing an unblemished face that hadn’t aged a day since high school. She was perfect. They were always perfect.

Was it the same girl? Vince realized with a start that he didn’t know. She certainly seemed to know what he liked, but then Vince supposed that was still common knowledge out there in the 310 and 323, just as it had always been. The better parts of the 818, too. And he’d had a 562 once. Didn’t know where 562 was then, still didn’t now, but he’d wanted to add it to his list. Turtle hooked him up at some sneaker thing. Anyway, she looked like the girl from last week. She was dressed the same, in a little skirt that showed just enough leg, and a polo shirt with two buttons open and some kind of logo Vince didn’t recognize over her left tit. She needed some real clothes – maybe he could hook it up, take her to Sunset Plaza and drop the Black card, like old times. They would still know him. Wouldn’t they?

It didn’t matter now because the clothes were in a pile on the floor and she was stark naked on the bed, waiting for him. Shaved: nice.

Once Vince had been the master of a thousand exotic positions- there had even been some talk of putting him in a remake of “Kama Sutra,” until an ill-timed racial slur from Ari sent the New Delhi investors straight into Toby McGuire’s waiting arms. He didn’t remember quite when the change had come, but he preferred Missionary now. Nice, simple, clean, no twisting his body into positions it no longer snapped back from. And no memories, just sweet escape.

Seven minutes later, it was over. The girl tucked him into the big bed, gave him a tiny peck on the cheek. When she let herself out, Vincent Chase had already slipped into the blessed forgetfulness of a dreamless sleep, free for a few hours from the ghosts of his sun-dappled past and his long-lost brother, Johnny “Drama” Chase.