Curb Your Enthusiasm: 2000 – Ongoing
Created by: Larry David
Cast: Larry David
I’m adamantly certain that everyone knows who Larry David is. If you don’t know him from Curb Your Enthusiasm then you most certainly know him as the creator of Seinfeld (1989 – 1998). You may not watch television, so you may know him from Whatever Works (2009). If you don’t know Larry David then tune into Curb Your Enthusiasm and you’ll see why you should.
The premise of the show is actually rather simple. Larry David lives out his regular life, but finds himself getting into comical mishaps. Misunderstandings trouble Larry at every turn, and they lead onto bigger and worse problems for him and his family. Over the course of eight seasons Larry struggles with the most basic tasks in his life. Larry David plays himself and over the course of the eight series, struggles to manage anything at all.
Hilarious antics aren’t frequent, there’s much more focus on the dialogue, of which, there isn’t any. Every scene in the film is given a rough premise and the actors have to do a couple of takes to nail their improvisations. Considering this is a TV show I’m very surprised that they’re able to take so many different shots of the same scene. TV is a quick thing to be made, so five or six takes per scene will be evidently difficult.
But it’s not just Larry David. Although there are guest stars throughout, with the likes of Michael J. Fox, Steve Coogan and Mel Brooks, the supporting cast is great. Jeff Garlin and Cheryl Hines also star as Larry’s manager and wife respectively. The chemistry between Garlin, Hines and David is fantastic to watch. Comedy only works if there is something between the actors, and luckily here David just exudes charisma and charm.
He exudes charisma and charm in all of the wrong ways though, which leads to the hilarious antics he finds himself in on a daily basis. The best part about this comedy is that it’s not unimaginable. Whatever happens to Larry could easily happen to us. I like to call shows like this “believable comedy”, because what we’re seeing can easily happen. Some episodes are much more tamer than others.
Take the episode The Wire (SE01/06), a very tame episode where Larry tries to bury a cable in his back yard. Compare that with The Group (SE01/10), where Larry goes to an incest survivors group with his ex girlfriend and manages to make up a completely fabricated story. Two very different episodes, but you can probably tell which one leads to the bigger laughs.
Season one and season eight are the only two seasons to not have an over-arching storyline. Each episode in these two seasons contains a plot all of its own and isn’t connected to any of the other seasons. However seasons two through seven and presumably season nine all have a new and unique story arc. For me, my favourite season has to be season two. Mainly because it includes the infamous scene where Larry David is deafened by a toilet. I wish I was making that up, but it’s brilliant. I suggest googling that scene and if you enjoy that then give it a watch.
Where to buy
Much like yesterday with Veep (2012 – Ongoing), this show is literally everywhere. I’ve been marathon watching a season per day, ten episodes a season at half an hour each. If that’s not to your fancy then you can buy the entire collection on Amazon. Now I’m not saying don’t do that, but keep in mind that another season has been commissioned. Basically buying that boxset will mean it’s not as complete when the new release comes.
So, Amazon and Sky are your best bets. I’m presuming you can catch re-runs on HBO if you have access to it. Of course all the episodes are online, and most of the clips are available on YouTube. There’s no reason to not be watching.