30 January 2018 | Horror-yo
The best comedy show of all-time, here's why
Regardless of the pop-culture historical context of the show, and whoever you are wherever you live and whatever era you belong to, as long as you understand English Seinfeld has a very strong probability of making you laugh at least in one scene with one detail. Which is quite a feat in and of itself considering how domestic the humor in fact is: it's New York Jewish humor at its most cynical, immoral and jaded with the contemporary urban life, and it's even self-consciously that and utterly typical of that universe. And yet, its humor reaches closer to universal than local in status as it's a series that's not only had lots of success within that East Coast, but all of North America as well as in other parts of the world.
The characters are written with depth and excellent consistency over nine full seasons, and while they're awfully realistic they're also utterly fictional: in a sense more realistic than actual reality as they're each given a distinct personality laden with all the detailed annoyances and pettiness of the real life individual, but made so extreme they're caricatures, like half-real half-cartoon characters.
Very few shows will achieve such an eerily close to reality connection while maintaining quality TV writing: excellent story telling (brilliant in fact, Larry David's ability to knit an episode together with elements of the plot at the beginning linking up with the later stages is completely outstanding, at times real gems of maze-like complex interconnections), great pacing, a rich variety of funny ideas throughout a same episode as well as from one episode to the next.
So at a macro level the episodes are brilliantly structured and conducted, but the show's got a whole panel of quality items at the micro level: whether it's the Jerry Seinfeld standup segments earlier in the series or the little bits of detailed content that fill up the gaps between the main scenes in the dialog and what not, or the hilarious secondary characters that'll tag along every once in a while to bring their own individual cringy flavor to the whole, there's never ever a dull moment to be had, not even if one's chaining up episodes in industrial quantities at a time - it's just constantly fresh, full of content, uniquely creative and perpetually hilarious.
Seinfeld is the "show about nothing": it's superbly orchestrated, and yet, it's filled often with the most ridiculous humor, and manages to get away with not being self-indulgently repetitive or stale. Whether you like them or not and for whatever specific reason, the genius of Seinfeld and David combined has produced a most potent combination in TV comedy history, and probably 'the' most potent. The humor is prolific, the show oozes with it, but it always kept it together and stayed true to the formula: never gave an inch in originality, never strayed from what the show was about (it never went relationship-y for example when it would've benefited greatly from it given its commanding favorable position), never changed the characters to fit a more profitable agenda and the great thing about it is while it's certainly a very liberal-leaning show it doesn't make a definitive political statement: both creators were about the humor, making people laugh - and that was the very motor that drove the whole show, it never set out to deliver a message, it was just humor for the sake of humor, and that is objectively in that field incredibly rare and by definition the very nature of humor. Gratuitous, uncompromising laughter. No king, no creed, no-thing. A show about nothing. It was real, and it was spec-tacular !
Finally: it made amends for being so extremely bleak and amoral in the finale by clearly confirming outright they were utterly aware of how nihilistic the show was, like a wink suggesting it went a bit far at times, but all just for the laughs.