THE SHOW "How to Make It in America"
WHEN | WHERE Sunday at 10 p.m. on HBO
LI CONNECTION One of the executive producers is Rob Weiss, who's also an executive producer of "Entourage." A Baldwin native, Weiss and "Entourage" creator Doug Ellin went to Woodmere Academy together. Weiss' directorial debut was the 1993 feature film "Amongst Friends."
Ben seems to have a keenly undeveloped sense of self-knowledge, and it's left to others to piece together his psyche. "I always thought you had talent," says a former professor. "Your follow-through wasn't there."
His good pal Cam (Victor Rasuk) has lousy follow-through, too, but lots of ideas - mostly petty schemes to make a quick buck. One idea has special merit: They buy a roll of high-quality denim, with plans to launch a jeans line. Hey, everyone buys expensive jeans (or at least in Ben's circle), but now comes the hard part - finding a designer, a cutter and, most of all, money.
Cam's cousin, former inmate-borderline thug Rene (Luis Guzmán), is one source. So is Ben's old schoolmate David (Eddie Kaye Thomas), a socially inept hedge-fund guy. Of course, they both want something in return.
Manhattan or the Bronx, and even rarer is the one that uses these spectacular locales as central characters. "How to Make It in America" does. You can almost smell the streets, and feel the thrum of their energy. In part, you root for these genial, hapless would-be garmentos, Cam and Ben, because they move so effortlessly up and down the spine of the great metropolis. They'll make it - you hope they do - because millions of others who came before them did as well.
BOTTOM LINE Pleasurable, amusing, well conceived and written, though perhaps just a little shy on character development (New York excepted). Give this one time - these guys feel like they're worth getting to know, and the show as well.