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I think too many people are looking to this show as a Seinfeld spin-off. The truth is, it's not, and you have to take the show for what it truly is. Larry David, in his great comedic brilliance, is not trying to glorify himself with this show, you can tell that just from watching one episode. Instead, he is really utilizing a caricature of a rich, whipped, neurotic yuppie to skewer the image of life at the top. His character (even though he is essentially playing himself), bumbles, complains, talks himself into painful situations, and is ultimately served devilishly funny comeuppance from episode to episode. This self-deprecating humor wouldn't work for anybody else, but for a guy like Larry David, this material works perfectly, because he seems so easy to laugh at (and I have a feeling this is hardly accidental, which is why his comedy is truly brilliant.) I really have to marvel at the idea of anyone NOT being able to laugh at this show. It's the greatest comedic take on life and the human condition that has ever been captured on film. All other television comedies of this era pale in comparison. "Curb Your Enthusiasm" is possibly the salvation of true comedy TV, in an age when good television comedies are few and far between.
So what does Larry David do for an encore after the incredibly successful sitcom that detailed his experiences as a stand up in NY, he creates a new sitcom about his experiences as a very succesful creator of said show, post cancellation, living the good life with a ton of dough out in Malibu. Sounds pretty boring, and even snotty right? Its not at all. Like the rest of us, I loved Seinfeld, and still love the reruns. But I gotta say, this show is better. It's the same basic premise, which I guess is to turn a standup monologue into a situation comedy. In other words, instead of having a guy on stage telling jokes about the amusing and annoying happenstances of every day life, you create a format comedy, and use these anecdotes to weave together a plot. What made Seinfeld memorable was the clever way in which everything all in the end tied up in a nice little package. If you notice, that's a common laugh getter for stand-ups, to inject a joke they made earlier in their set and put it into practical anecdotal demonstration. You are right if you are thinking this is complete hogwash and hyper-analyzation of something not meant to be studied as such, but there it is. Having said all of that, I think CYE is the logical next step for fans of the Seinfeld show. It's the advanced course if you will of the more remedial network show. The freedom of HBO allows for obviously more adult material and language, but also for pure artistic expression. A lot of what goes on is definitely not palatable to the mainstream, and I could honestly see people hating it. Not me. I think its a rare chance to see genius, unfettered and uncensored. Yes Larry David was George Costanza or vice versa, but through this series, you also see he was Kramer, Elaine and Jerry. For some reason I totally relate to his inability to relate to everyone else, including his wife. Its often way too contrived, but I love it. If you were a fan of Seinfeld for the reasons I've mentioned, and not just for the run of the mill laugh track jokes, you will be missing something special if you don't give these a shot.
Larry David, king of awkward moments and co-creator of the hit
television series Seinfeld, has come back to television at full force.
His hit series, Curb Your Enthusiasm, is a further extension of his
life. Seinfeld has ended, his co-creator name has earned him about $200
million and growing, and his life is just getting excited. On these
thirty minute trips, we follow Larry through moments with his wife
Cheryl and manager Jeff. Circumstance continues to happen and Larry
somehow always happens to be in the middle.
To say this is exactly like Seinfeld would be like saying chocolate tastes exactly like vanilla. These two shows are night and day, while others will compare the actions of Larry to that of Jerry, there one crucial element that divides them. Larry's show, Curb Your Enthusiasm, seems a bit more realistic. Seinfeld was a great show, don't get me wrong possibly one of the best live-action series ever, but there was always that question of reality with Seinfeld. Where did Kramer get his money? How was George never put in jail? And so forth. With Larry's new show, he explores those possibilities. We know he is wealthy, he is playing himself and that is why he is able to not work. I would go so far as to say this first season is a dark representation of Seinfeld. Imagine if Seinfeld was released on HBO, how different of a show it would have been. Well, now Larry has that platform to really explore all opportunities and he does with his hilarious show.
If you are a fan of awkward silences and coincidences with surprising results you will love this show. I am not sure if die-hard Seinfeld fans will love this program, but I sure did and I have seen every episode of Seinfeld at least twenty times. I will have to warn you, this is yet another show about nothing that just works. I just finished watching my favorite episode with the 'elevator courtesy' and his infamous fight with Richard Lewis (who plays his best friend).
Overall, this is a very funny show that I hope remains true to itself and consistent throughout the seasons. I love Larry David's humor, and while it may not be for everyone, I do find that it is very realistic. It will open your eyes to the strange, odd world in which we live.
Grade: ***** out of *****
After missing Larry David's much heralded HBO Special which was the pilot
for this masterpiece, on premiere night I was treated with a show that
to be a bit of Seinfield and Larry Sanders, or maybe even
While many won't get the premise, being much in-tune with inside Hollywood humor and personalities, Curb Your Enthusiasm takes us inside, past the backstage to the actual lifestyles of an "A-list" celebrity and shows exactly how they tick-Fear, paranoia, and maybe, just maybe the inner-workings of a creative genius like Larry David.
It's clearly evident who the mastermind of Seinfeld was after watching it. Everyone of those Seinfeld characters are parts of Larry David's personality and just like Seinfeld and The Larry Sanders Show, I can hardly wait to see each episode over and over and over.
This show shouldn't be labled a "10" it's much to brilliant for that. Try "A+" with a 210 I.Q.
having spent most of my life sitting in front of a television, i think
i've seen a lot of good and bad TV. curb your enthusiasm is, to date,
the smartest comedy series i've seen. i enjoy it more than seinfeld
because larry is such a dynamically static character. you always know
he'll do some sort of bonehead thing but, for some reason, you are
i think the format of the show is most impressive to me. there is no script; only a storyboard for each episode. thusly, the actors are forced to essentially improv characters and dialogue. every time i laugh at one of the jokes on this show, i laugh even harder when i realize that this is off-the-cuff hilarity.
bravo, larry David!
This is without a doubt the best show to come out of Amercia for years
and why does the UK struggle to show it? This is the front runner to
comedies like The Office and Extras and is made to a standard higher
than anything else that is currently shown.
Larry David is just a funny character. He has all the qualities of a perfect leading man and when he is placed into the mundane situations that happen around him he starts to question everything. There have been a few comedies in the past that have tried to do this (not including Seinfield) which he co-created but this is the best.
If you have never seen Larry David I would suggest that you buy the DVD box set now because this will change your life. An no I do not work for him!!!! Although given half a chance I would give up a career in medicine to follow him.
Definitely a 10/10. The best thing around for years.
There are few men working on television today that rival the wit, the
insight, or the genius of Larry David. To compare "Curb Your
Enthusiasm" to "Seinfeld" is preposterous. With "Curb Your Enthusiasm",
Larry David has created one of the greatest comedic series one have
ever seen on American television. Fortunately for us, we got hooked
right away from his first year and we sadly miss a new installment,
which we thought would be forthcoming in the 2004-2005 season.
Most of the episodes have been directed by Robert Weide, who seems to be attuned to Mr. David's kind of comedy. The episodes directed by the other guest directors are fine as well, but it seems that Mr. Weide gets the best out of all performers in the ones he is at the helm.
The cast is flawless. Larry David is always enjoyable playing himself, something that is no small accomplishment. He is just a natural. Cheryl Hinds plays Larry's wife with a lot of style. Jeff Garlin, as Larry's manager, is good. Many talented performers are seen in different episodes among them, Sisie Essman, Wanda Sykes, Richard Lewis, and Ted Danson.
"Curb Your Enthusiasm" has a quality that most other sitcoms don't have and it is the ability to amuse us even in reruns! This happens because of Larry David's tremendous intelligent approach to comedy.
I was a bit skeptical when I started watching Curb Your Enthusiasm. I
love Larry David (I think he's a mastermind for creating 'Seinfeld) but
I didn't know how it would turn out. 'Seinfeld' was such an amazing
show, and this could only be worse. By about the eighth episode of
season 1 entitled "Beloved Aunt", I knew that 'Curb Your Enthusiasm'
was ever better then 'Seinfeld'. This is the funniest half-hour to
ever, ever enter the world of television. Larry David plays himself,
and it is pretty much about him in every day life getting into crappy
situations. The entire show is improvised (there is no script) so the
very talented performers on the show ab-lib through the scenes. It's
hysterical the things the actors say, but the situations they are put
into are absolutely to die for. The bottom line is 'Curb Your
Enthusiasm' will have you laughing so hard you'll have a hard time
breathing. The show is going on it's fifth season starting in June. I
for one, can't wait! Grade: A+
Season 1: 'The Pants Tent' <8.5>, 'Ted and Mary' <8>, 'Porno Gil' <9>, 'The Bracelet' <8.5>, 'Interior Decorator' <8>, 'The Wire' <7.5>, 'Aamco' <9.5>, 'Beloved Aunt' <10>, 'Affirmative Action' <9>, 'The Group' <10!> ; Season 2: The Car Salesman <8>, Thor <8.5>, Trick or Treat <10>, The Shrimp Incident <9>, The Thong <8>, The Acupuncturist <8.5>, The Doll <10!>, Shaq <9.5>, The Baptism <9.5>, The Massage <9>; Season 3: Chet's Shirt <8>, The Benadryl Brownie <9>, Club Soda and Salt <8.5>, The Nanny From Hell <10>, The Terrorist Attack <7>, The Special Section <8.5>, The Corpse Sniffing Dog <8.5>, Krazy-Eyezz Killah <9.5>, Mary, Joseph and Larry <8>, The Grand Opening <10!!!>; Season 4: Mel's Offer <8>, Ben's Birthday Party <9>, The Blind Date <9.5>, The Weatherman <8.5>, The 5 Wood <9>, The Car Pool Lane <9.5>, The Surrogate <10!>, Wandering Bear <8>, The Survivor <9>, Opening Night <9>; Season 5 (so far): The Larry David Sandwich <8>, The Bow-tie <9>, The Christ Nail <8.5>, Kamikazee Bingo <9.5>, Lewis Needs a Kidney <9>, The Smoking Jacket <8>, The Seder <8.5>,...
I am writing this because I think that this is the most hilarious and
entertaining show on television. Unfortunately, my children do not
share my opinion and I had to search awhile to find someone with the
same enthusiasm for Larry David's humor. I always find, at least one
thing in each of his episodes to send me laughing for all of the good
reasons, loud and long! This humor is so therapeutic for me and makes
my day. I so 'get' this type of humor and it is wonderful.
I particularly enjoyed the episode, when Larry invited the child molester to his home for a dinner for a religious holiday. This was a mix of his neighbors, who were aware of this young man's problem. Larry David is a master of underplaying and was superb!
"Curb Your Enthusiasm" is my new litmus test for how I respond to
people. Occasionally, I'll meet those " I-just-don't-get-it" people, or
someone of the "I-don't-think-it's-very-funny" persuasion. This is a
real time-saver, because I know right away that these are people whom I
needn't bother with.
More often, I'm inclined to meet people who tell me that CYE is the only comedy on TV that makes them laugh out-loud... or that they make plans to either be home on Sunday night or to tape it. These are "my people" -- kindred spirits.
To those of you who don't get it, Go back to your sitcoms with the enhanced laugh track that tells you what's supposed to be funny. (Or better yet, you can rent "Dude, Where's My Car?" again.) Those of us who think this is the most innovative sitcom to come down the pike in recent memory are happy to have this show all to ourselves.
Thank you Larry and cast and crew for giving me an excuse to fire up the old Trinitron once a week.
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