Sunday, November 21, 2004

[TV] Curb your Enthusiasm

Some thoughts after watching a full episode for the first time: The show looks and presents itself as boring, cheap and mundane. And then Larry David gets a massage from a ... hooker? Who offers to finish him off ... and from there the episode (which I found laugh-free up until that point) is hilarious*.

Why? Because suddenly the story is filled with sub-text ... Larry's fear of being discovered, his desire to keep it from his wife. The pressure of the situation lets me learn about his character - a need to please, selfishness, his sychophancy, his belief that most things will turn out bad. In fact, he's George from Seinfeld.

And seeing as (I think) Larry based George on himself, maybe he finds his artistic inspiration from pouring his self-loathing into public critiques of his own life.

Curb Your Enthusiasm is bitter, depraved - Seinfeld with the gloves off. I found it a tough watch in that 'cringe for the hero' The Office/Fawlty Towers kind of way. I won't be going too far out of my way to watch it again but I suspect there's some interesting stuff going on here.

* Hopefully I didn't find the early parts of the episode funny because I was missing the 'invisible laughs' - of character relationships that I don't know about yet.

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