Stream On: ‘Seinfeld’ writers branch out: ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’ and ‘Dilbert’

By on September 23, 2021

Larry David, co-creator of ‘Seinfeld,’ is fixing to get into a fight with someone, on ‘Curb Your Enthuaism.’ (HBO)

What does one do after Seinfeld? Co-creator Larry David made his own version of the show, in which he plays a fictionalized version of himself, but set in Los Angeles, where he remained after Seinfeld, while Jerry Seinfeld moved back to New York City. Jerry and Larry’s second-in-command on the show, Larry Charles, went on to co-create Dilbert with cartoonist Scott Adams, an animated series based on Adams’ comic strip of the same name.


[Official site] [trailer]
[Amazon.com; Prime Video; streaming] 2000- [TVMA]

It’s been widely reported that the character of George Costanza on Seinfeld was based on co-creator Larry David, who had been a stand-up comedian and Saturday Night Live writer. David wrote 62 Seinfeld episodes, also appearing in cameos as Frank Costanza’s lawyer and a newsstand operator, while providing the voice of “George Steinbrenner” on the show.

In one episode, when Elaine is mistakenly served a kosher meal on an airplane, David’s voice is heard: “Hey! That’s my kosher meal!”

After he left the show, and returned to write “The Finale,” David created his own version of the show. In Seinfeld Jerry Seinfeld played a fictional version of himself, a comedian in Manhattan. In Curb Your Enthusiasm David plays a fictional version of himself, now a writer and producer in Los Angeles. It’s the same, but different: There’s no laugh track; no jokes, since much of the dialogue is improvised, but the situations are hysterically funny; and, being on HBO, there’s no censorship.

David has said that his character in the show, a fictionalized version of himself, like George Costanza, is what he would be like in real life if he lacked social awareness and sensitivity. He fights with everyone and makes impromptu, insensitive and unfunny contextual jokes that earn him the ire of others. On Seinfeld, George’s moderating influence was Jerry; on Curb, Larry’s moderating influence is his wife Cheryl (Cheryl Hines, Suburgatory), who has her hands full. Jeff Garlin plays Larry’s manager Jeff, and comedian Richard Lewis plays a fictional version of himself, which rounds out the “gang.”

Many Seinfeld themes and tropes are touched on—unwritten protocols, such as how long you should wait before breaking up with someone you have slept with, how late you can call someone at home, etc. On Curb, a situation is created when Larry thinks the “cut-off time” for calling is 10:30 p.m., when his callee thinks it’s 10. David’s friends and contributors, like Ted Dansen, Mary Steenburgen, and Kathy Griffin, appear as themselves, and many Seinfeld character actors are used in small parts.

Curb Your Enthusiasm earned 47 Primetime Emmy nominations, winning twice, among many other awards. 92% score currently on Rotten Tomatoes.


[IMDb] [trailer]
[Amazon.com; streaming] 1999-2000 [TVPG]

Dilbert (at left) knows that whatever Wally is getting up to means trouble, on ‘Dilbert.’ (Columbia-TriStar)

Larry Charles, the head writer on Seinfeld who wasn’t Larry David or Jerry Seinfeld, went another way with his subsequent TV project: He teamed up with cartoonist and polymath Scott Adams to create an animated series based on Adams’ wildly successful newspaper comic strip Dilbert, about an archetypal software engineer. Starring Daniel Stern (The Wonder Years), with Chris Elliott (Schitt’s Creek) as Dilbert’s dog, Dogbert, Larry Miller (Seinfeld) as his pointy-haired boss, and Gordon Hunt (Yogi Bear and Scooby-Doo franchises) and Kathy Griffith (Seinfeld, Curb Your Enthusiasm) as Dilbert’s co-workers, the premiere episode received a 7.3 rating from the nation’s biggest 44 markets, the highest of the 1998–1999 season for UPN.

UPN, however, had problems of its own: it was the sixth-rated network at the time. Adams went with them as they promised 13 shows up front, but despite great writing from Adams, Charles and others, a fine cast, and many notable guest stars, it only lasted two seasons. Adams, in an interview, said, “It was on UPN, a network that few people watch. And because of some management screw-ups between the first and second seasons the time slot kept changing and we lost our viewers. We were also scheduled to follow the worst TV show ever made: Shasta McNasty. On TV, your viewership is 75% determined by how many people watched the show before yours. That killed us.”

Dilbert won a Primetime Emmy and currently has a rating of 7.3/10 on IMDb.com.

Next time, two unique Netflix western series, from Scott Frank (The Wonder Years), and the Coen brothers.

(Pete Hummers is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to earn fees by linking Amazon.com and affiliate sites. This adds nothing to Amazon’s prices.)

Click here for more Stream On: What to watch on TV columns by Pete Hummers


Barnhill Building Group has been selected as the Construction Manager @ Risk by the College of the Albemarle and is seeking to pre-qualify construction trade contractors to submit bids for the furnishing labor, materials, equipment, and tools for the new College of The Albemarle – Allied Health Sciences Simulation Lab (COA Health Sciences) located in Elizabeth City, NC. Please note: Only subcontractors who have been prequalified by Barnhill will be able to submit a Bid.

The project consists of the new construction of a 38,000-sf, 2-story expansion to the existing Owens Health Sciences Center and will house classrooms, labs, and a simulation lab. The site is just over just over 4.5 acres and is located on an active campus. This new construction will be a steel structure with a brick and metal panel veneer, curtainwall, and storefront glazing with a PVC roof membrane.

Principal trade and specialty contractors are solicited for the following Bid Packages:

BP0100: General Trades

BP0105: Final Cleaning

BP0390: Turnkey Concrete

BP0400: Turnkey Masonry

BP0500: Structural Steel & Misc. Steel

BP0740: Roong

BP0750: Metal Panels

BP0790: Caulking / Caulking

BP0800: Turnkey Doors/Frames/Hardware

BP0840: Glass & Glazing

BP0925: Drywall

BP0960: Resilient Flooring

BP0980: Acoustical Ceilings

BP0990: Painting & Wallcovering

BP1005: Toilet Specialties / Accessories / Division 10

BP1010: Signage

BP1098: Demountable Partitions

BP1230: Finish Carpentry and Casework

BP1250: Window Treatment

BP1400: Elevators

BP2100: Fire Protection

BP2200: Plumbing

BP2300: HVAC

BP2600: Turnkey Electrical

BP3100: Turnkey Sitework

BP3290: Landscaping

Packages may be added and/or deleted at the discretion of the Construction Manager. Historically underutilized business firms are encouraged to complete participation submittals.

HUB/MWBE OUTREACH MEETING: Barnhill Building Group will be conducting a HUB/MWBE Informational Session. You are encouraged to attend the following session to learn more about project participation opportunities available to you. These seminars will help to: Learn about project and scope; Inform and train Minority/HUB contractors in preparation for bidding this project; Assist in registration on the State of North Carolina Vendor link; Stimulate opportunities for Networking with other firms. Location and time TBD. Please visit our planroom at https://app.buildingconnected.com/public/54da832ce3edb5050017438b for more information.

Interested contractors should submit their completed prequalification submittals, by July 22, 2024, to Meredith Terrell at mterrell@barnhillcontracting.com or hardcopies can be mailed to Barnhill Contracting Company PO Box 31765 Raleigh, NC 27622 (4325 Pleasant Valley Road, NC 27612).


Sussex Development is soliciting bids to turnkey supply and install FF&E for the new Tulls Creek Elementary School, 125 Campus Drive, Moyock, NC27929. This project is a new ground-up 2-story, Pre-K thru 5th grade school, approximately 118,000 square feet. Bid documents may be obtained through Christopher West Interiors LLC. Request bid documents via email to interiors@cwiusa.com. Pre-Bid RFIs will be accepted via email until Wednesday, July 31, 2024 at 5:00PM EST. Pricing proposals are due Wednesday, August 14, 2024 by 5:00PM EST. All bids and inquires to be sent to interiors@cwiusa.com. Certified NC Hub, MBE, WBE, DBE, SBE are highly encouraged to participate. Sussex Development is an EOE and maintains a drug-free workplace.


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