Greetings, ‘Seinfeld’ is an American sitcom that ran from 1989 to 1998 and is the product of a creative collaboration from comedians Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David. The programme went on for 9 seasons, which were comprised of 180 episodes in total, and became an entertainment sensation during its run with its impact still lingering on in pop culture today. The show stars the aforementioned Jerry Seinfeld, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Jason Alexander and Michael Richards as its four central leads who are mostly known for their ties to this franchise. Interestingly, the actors’ perceived lack of success in launching other programmes following on from Seinfeld gave rise to the notion of ‘The Seinfeld Curse’ in which the careers of those associate with the series were doomed to stagnate. Other actors involved in ‘Seinfeld’ include Wayne Knight, Barney Martin, Liz Sheridan, Estelle Harris and Jerry Stiller to name a few of the many who came to work on the series. The music was conducted by Jonathan Wolff who often interspersed Jazz and Blues into the sitcom.
The show begins with best friends Jerry Seinfeld, a stand-up comedian, and George Costanza, a real estate broker, in a New York City luncheonette as they discuss mundane topics. That particular morning they are having a much more in depth conversation about the placement of George’s shirt buttons than is warranted, highlighting early on the show’s intention to be humorous about workaday things and the minutia of daily life. The topic then switches over to a woman called Laura who Jerry had met during one of his stand up acts in Michigan. She is coming to visit New York and would like to see Jerry again when she arrives which causes him to wonder if her intentions are romantic in nature. Jerry and George put their heads together and try to analyse Laura’s previous behaviour to determine whether it is a platonic meeting or if something more could be gleamed from it. The following evening Jerry also tries to get a viewpoint on the situation from his eccentric neighbour Kramer whose opinions don’t clarify it much further.
Rather, it seems Kramer is more interested in lounging about in the neighbouring apartment and raiding Jerry’s fridge than of being any potential use. Jerry receives a phone call from Laura. She asks if she can stay at his place over the weekend when she lands in the city to which he, becoming increasingly convinced she is sending signals, agrees. Laura meets Jerry at the airport and he brings her back to his place where she gets herself comfortable by removing her shoes, discards excess clothing and partakes in his offering of wine. While she dims the lights Jerry makes up his mind that she is interested in him and he prepares to make his move. As he does, Laura receives a phone call from an unidentified person that she answers. Laura advises Jerry to never get engaged once the phone call is over and inadvertently solves his dilemma. With no possibility of pursuing romance, an annoyed Jerry realises he is stuck hosting a woman he has no other interest in for the rest of the weekend.
The pilot episode is a bit strange as it includes three of the main characters including Kramer, who became the breakout character thanks to his crazed shenanigans and slapstick routine, but it is missing the fourth member. Julia’s Elaine Benes was not present as the ‘woman character’ in the group as this was originally going to be played by another actress named Lee Garlington who appeared in the pilot as a waitress but was written out of the programme from then on. While I liked the series and can see the mass appeal of it, ‘Seinfeld’ declined in quality in my opinion after Larry David left with the characters steadily becoming caricatures of themselves. The much anticipated finale is also a divisive aspect among fans as while it had good calls backs to previous seasons, which I appreciated, it is effectively a glorified clip show in which the main characters oddly have little to do and are arguably not the main focus of the plot. Nonetheless, I’m glad I gave the series a watch but would certainly note that it wouldn’t be to everyone’s tastes.
Quote of the Day
I am God of the new world!
Light Yagami / Kira