Obama's Entourage Habit Suggests Now Might Be a Good Time to Panic

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Sometimes the Audacity of Hope takes a back seat to the Stupidity of Drama: White House spokesman Robert Gibbs recently admitted that the Commander-in-Chief is so addicted to Entourage, his Sunday night campaign calls were literally scheduled around it.

On the one hand, it seems a natural pairing: His chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, is the brother of Ari Emanuel, who as everyone knows by now was the blueprint for the series' oily antihero, Ari Gold. And one of the show's central themes, if you want call it that, is its exploration of the relative fragility of a mass-marketed persona in the digital era -- something the President would understandably find of interest.

On the other, there's that troubling image of Barry shooing away top advisers as their droning security briefings impede his enjoyment of watching Turtle sex a former Soprano. And this is more irksome. Because, let's face it, Entourage is at its core the story of an empty-headed puppet with too much money and power, and the various megalomaniacs and sycophantic hangers-on who help sustain the illusion that he deserves it. Haven't we just had to endure eight years of that sort of thing in the White House?

And what if you love Entourage? Does the knowledge that your sitcom tastes mesh with those of the telegenic leader of the free world bring you a sense of satisfaction?

Well, consider this: Obama has the power to affect change not just upon the real world, but upon the imagined worlds you hold so dear. And it's not always change for the better. For example, his recent appointment of Kal Penn to Asst. Undersecretary of Grumpy-But-Brilliant-Surgeon-General Second-Guessing Affairs led directly to Penn's House character's suicide. (Touching Facebook memorial page here.)

Further Washywood border-blurrings are sure to follow. But at what cost? Yes, we'll gain the country's first gaysian press secretary, capable of deflecting pointed questions about AIG bailouts as effectively as he does flying iPhones. But we'll also have lost a Lloyd to a freak callrolling mishap. And that's just wrong.

· Obama's favorite TV programs [Variety]



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