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DVD Review: Curb Your Enthusiasm: The Complete Seventh Season

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In the fall of 2009, Larry David returned as Larry David in the seventh season of his HBO comedy series Curb Your Enthusiasm. No matter how long the series runs, it's hard to imagine a more notable season due to it featuring the medium's strangest sitcom reunion.

David is the co-creator of Seinfeld, and since the series concluded in 1998, he has probably been pestered by many fans and TV executives to revisit the show, especially since more than a few were disappointed in the finale, a sentiment David turns into a running joke that Larry continually defends. Instead of the typical reunion where the characters reunite for something like a wedding and viewers get an update of the characters, David takes it to another level by reuniting the actors to play varying variations of themselves attempting to create a reunion show.

Jerry Seinfeld as Jerry Seinfeld comes across as you would imagine he is in real life: affable and quick-witted. He and Larry have great chemistry together as they riff on things. At the other end of the spectrum, Jason Alexander plays Jason Alexander as a pompous actor. He writes a pamphlet-sized book entitled Acting Without Acting and constantly battles with Larry over things like improper uses of borrowed pens and the attention of Cheryl. Michael Richards has a scene that plays off his infamous rant at a comedy club and it works better than expected.

While it may seem hard to believe a curmudgeon like Larry, a man who demands a dollar back from children because their lemonade is terrible, would give in to the sentimentality of a reunion show, it all makes sense when the real motivation is revealed to be an opportunity to reunite with his ex-wife Cheryl (Cheryl Hines) by giving her a major part as George's ex-wife. Of course, nothing ever works out for Larry the way he plans.

The two-disc set comes with Bonus Features. "The Seinfeld Reunion: It Could Only Happen on Curb…" (8 min) and "A Seinfeld Moment on Curb" (8 min) feature the cast interviewed, alone and together respectively, as they discuss coming together in this way. The approach was very appealing and since Curb is improvised offered a different way to work together. "Rebuilding the Seinfeld Sets" (11 min) finds the Curb crew discussing the work involved in bringing the Seinfeld sets back. "Larry David as George Costanza" (3 min) an all-too-brief look at David being the basis for George.

While the Seinfeld storyline plays out over a few episodes, the remainder of the season finds Larry involved in typical uncomfortable shenanigans. Larry calls out Christian Slater for overindulging on caviar at a Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen's party, wants nothing to do with a female friend of Richard Lewis after hearing what they did in the car on the way over, and a writer's assistant wears a belly shirt that is inappropriate for work and less than flattering. While some incidents may not hold the same shock value as when series first began and some gags don't always pay off big, the show is entertaining more times than not.

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About Gordon S. Miller

Gordon S. Miller is the artist formerly known as El Bicho, the nom de plume he used when he first began reviewing movies online for The Masked Movie Snobs in 2003. Before the year was out, he became that site's publisher. Over the years, he has also contributed to a number of other sites as a writer and editor, such as FilmRadar, Film School Rejects, High Def Digest, and Blogcritics. He is the Publisher of Cinema Sentries. Some of his random thoughts can be found at twitter.com/ElBicho_CS
  • Greg Barbrick

    Nice review. Curb is one of the funniest shows on television, and the way they handled the Seinfeld thing was brilliant.