Jerry Seinfeld is a household name thanks to his TV show, Seinfeld, that ran from 1989-1998 on NBC. The show, if you haven’t seen it is about… nothing. Well, kind of. It’s based on a somewhat fictional version of Jerry and his friends, Elaine, George, and Kramer. There isn’t an overarching theme throughout the show, other than the gang finds themselves in some hilarious predicaments. It’s one of those things you just have to watch to understand.
Well, anyway, thanks to the huge success from that show, Jerry’s well-known. Oddly enough, he didn’t really do a lot of well-known work outside of his stand-up career and guest appearances on shows like Saturday Night Live and 30 Rock. And then came Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee in 2012.
The show was produced for the streaming service Crackle originally and has since been moved to Netflix, where every single episode is now available to watch and there is a new 24-episode season scheduled to release sometime in 2018.
If you’ve never watched a single episode of Comedians In Cars, it’s a pretty straight-forward concept: in each episode, Jerry (who is a major car enthusiast) picks up a comedian in a car – usually a fancy, expensive classic – and they drive through New York, Los Angeles, or wherever the comedian is from, and they get coffee while talking about anything and everything.
It doesn’t sound like much, I know, but there’s a level of “realness” in the conversations Jerry has with his guests. I think that’s due to the fact that there isn’t this huge production going on like a traditional talk show. They are literally sitting in a car, talking. It’s simple but brilliant and allows the guests to be honest and communicate on a more personal level.
Since this is a show about comedians, an obvious topic to cover here is, “How funny is it?” To be honest, it’s genuinely funny the majority of the time. What’s great about it, though, is it’s not some scripted television show and no one has lines. It absolutely wouldn’t work that way. The humor is genuine, so like stand-up, there are going to be moments and guests that you’ll want to go back and rewatch, but there are some misses.
I think it would be extremely easy to say that I didn’t like some guests simply because I’m not a fan of their style of humor, but I really did try to be open with each new episode. Garry Shandling and Ricky Gervais aren’t comedians I would put on my Top 10 list if you were to ask me, but they happened to be great episodes because of their banter with Jerry. And there were times when guests you expected to be good just weren’t. (Sorry Jay Leno and Brian Regan!)
Also, one thing I noticed toward the end of the available episodes was how Jerry became more and more crotchety. He was a little more mean during that last collection and a half. Still, it made for a fun show.
As far as favorite episodes go, that’s really a tough one. There are currently 59 episodes on Netflix to watch and at 15-20 minutes on average, it’s easy to forget some that were absolutely stellar. But, if you were to stick me in a sweet classic car – oh man, those Volvos! – I’d have to say my top five were:
- Jimmy Fallon
- Stephen Colbert
- Carl Reiner & Mel Brooks
- Robert Klein
- Don Rickles
- David Letterman
I know that was 6, but come on! There are so many great people. Again, what was fascinating to me is that, yes, they were funny, but to learn more about what makes them tick? That’s the reason I love character so much. People are interesting, even if they are famous and slightly out of touch with the real world.
If you can’t tell by now, I have really enjoyed Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee. I’m looking forward to the next batch of 24 episodes, which are coming sometime this year. I’ve heard Dave Chappelle, Kate McKinnon, and Tracy Morgan are a few of the guest, but that’s all I know so far.
Please watch this show if you like comedy. It’s not “necessarily” a comedy show, but it is funny and it’s nice to peek behind the Hollywood sign and hear people talk about their Hollywood lives… I know, it’s weird.
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