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COMEDIANS IN CARS GETTING COFFEE
July 14, 2013 3:58 PM   Subscribe

It has been mentioned before around these parts, but COMEDIANS IN CARS GETTING COFFEE is now into Season Two, and it's just wonderful. Concept: Each episode, Seinfeld picks up a friend in one of his many, many cars, they go get coffee, and along the way they talk. And that's it. My favorite episode: Alec Baldwin.
posted by JPowers (92 comments total) 68 users marked this as a favorite

 
The Carl Reiner/Mel Brooks episode is the greatest thing the world has ever known.
posted by elizardbits at 4:01 PM on July 14, 2013 [7 favorites]


The Reiner/Brooks episode was indeed delicious. In general though, I've been disappointed in the series. Fake spontaneity/Too contrived.
posted by falsedmitri at 4:08 PM on July 14, 2013


The David Letterman one is my favourite, if only because one rarely gets a glimpse of him outside his own studio.

The only beef I have with the series (other than that it's clearly a ripoff of Robert Llewellyn's Carpool) is that each instalment is too short.
posted by Sys Rq at 4:20 PM on July 14, 2013 [5 favorites]


Some of these have been pretty, pretty, pretty good. I especially enjoyed the Joel Hodgson installment from the first season.
posted by Atom Eyes at 4:25 PM on July 14, 2013 [3 favorites]


Was not aware of this show until now. Thanks much for posting!

I could listen to Alec Baldwin tell stories about Burt Lancaster ( in Burt's voice) all day.

"I suppose you're looking for thissss."
posted by ShutterBun at 4:32 PM on July 14, 2013 [12 favorites]


These are a lot of fun. I had heard of this, but never watched any. I've now watched two and will likely watch the rest. Sarah Silverman is entirely charming. Thanks so much for posting!
posted by hippybear at 4:33 PM on July 14, 2013


The only beef I have with the series (other than that it's clearly a ripoff of Robert Llewellyn's Carpool) is that each instalment is too short.

Really? I think it's about right for a web series. 10-20 minutes, gives you enough flavor of the conversation and interaction that you get a lot of funny and some actual insights into character, but it never drags.

Would I like to see Seinfeld doing Charlie Rose length interviews with comedians? Sure thing. But these are little slices of entertainment, not deep studies of craft and such. For something available online, I think they're just about perfect.
posted by hippybear at 4:40 PM on July 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


I will say this. The funny lines these guys just pass off in conversation...are...."GOLD, Jerry! GOLD!"....

If I could think this funny just a few times a year...I would be very happy. The fact that this funny sh t just.... flows out of them.....just... just...

I should mow the lawn or something...
posted by shockingbluamp at 4:40 PM on July 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


I'm a little disturbed at how much I find myself liking Alec Baldwin.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 4:43 PM on July 14, 2013 [7 favorites]


We need a spin-off series now - Alec Baldwin Wandering Around Demanding Bowls Of Pickles
posted by mannequito at 4:46 PM on July 14, 2013 [13 favorites]


The best lines in the Seth Myers episode came from Don Rickles.
posted by stltony at 5:05 PM on July 14, 2013 [5 favorites]


Apparently people using Linux don't appreciate comedy as we can't see the videos.
posted by COD at 5:09 PM on July 14, 2013


Is that an Arrested Development nod, 1:55 into the Alec Baldwin episode?
posted by eugenen at 5:13 PM on July 14, 2013


For those of you jonesing for more Alec Baldwin, he does a bi-weekly show on WYNC, Here's the Thing.
posted by Mick at 5:14 PM on July 14, 2013 [3 favorites]


He also unapologetically spews homophobic garbage and apparently gets a pass for it.
posted by to sir with millipedes at 5:23 PM on July 14, 2013 [3 favorites]


The fact that Robert Llewellyn turns up in a modest hybrid and Seinfeld gets a little showoffy over his extremely large collection of cars amuses me quite deeply.
posted by jaduncan at 5:34 PM on July 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


It took me a second to recognize that the lazy shiftless brothers Alec is talking about are Billy and Stephen Baldwin, and that really just made the story that much better.
posted by codacorolla at 5:41 PM on July 14, 2013 [3 favorites]


I'm enjoying these, but I find it really difficult to see Seinfeld these days without getting distracted by how obscenely wealthy he is. Somehow the format here really puts that in sharp relief. The episode with Sarah Silverman, where they mockingly buy lotto tickets, is a good example.
posted by sevenyearlurk at 5:42 PM on July 14, 2013 [4 favorites]


Apparently people using Linux don't appreciate comedy as we can't see the videos.

Apparently, people using Linux haven't discovered torrents.
posted by mecran01 at 5:43 PM on July 14, 2013 [3 favorites]


The only beef I have with the series (other than that it's clearly a ripoff of Robert Llewellyn's Carpool)

They both are ripping off the Jeannie Tate Show.
posted by any major dude at 5:43 PM on July 14, 2013


Fake spontaneity/Too contrived.

I don't think so. Apparently, the only thing fake about each episode is the phone call (which Jerry cops to in the FAQs). Everything else is actual unplanned conversation.
posted by davebush at 5:49 PM on July 14, 2013


So, does Alec Baldwin just hang around in a suit and tie all day, or did he put on a suit and tie just to get coffee with Jerry?
posted by The Underpants Monster at 5:49 PM on July 14, 2013


does Alec Baldwin just hang around in a suit and tie all day

Of course. What is he, a farmer?
posted by mannequito at 5:56 PM on July 14, 2013 [69 favorites]


Linux user here - I'm normally first in line to complain about things not working on Our Glorious Platform As They Should; this site works as fine for me now as it did the first time I was pointed to it some while back.

I didn't think all those cars were actually Jerry's, but maybe they are. Maybe they are.

I still don't think they are all his.
posted by motty at 6:10 PM on July 14, 2013


Apparently people using Linux don't appreciate comedy as we can't see the videos.

Neither can those of us using Commodore 64s!
posted by ActingTheGoat at 6:14 PM on July 14, 2013 [4 favorites]


I still don't think they are all his.

He's driving Letterman's car in the Letterman episode.
posted by kenko at 6:16 PM on July 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


In the Seth Meyers episode he says the 911 is his, but in the credits they thank someone for it, so...?

Entertaining anyway.
posted by ODiV at 6:18 PM on July 14, 2013


Just watched the Alec Baldwin one and I have this to say: the license plate on the Mercedes was from Missoula, Montana.

Oh, and I did enjoy watching. I know little about Baldwin - any chance he's a homophobe for the attention it gets rather than out of conviction?

Oh and the credits said something about the car being provided by so and so. My guess is that it's the place that restores his cars.
posted by skyscraper at 6:19 PM on July 14, 2013


Jerry, put your seatbelt on!
posted by paper chromatographologist at 6:21 PM on July 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm pretty sure most of the cars are not Jerry's. He is borrowing them from various people/high end rental shop. It says so either in credits or on the site, IIRC.
posted by newtnik at 6:22 PM on July 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Well, there goes my evening...
posted by R. Schlock at 6:33 PM on July 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


He's driving Letterman's car in the Letterman episode.

Which happens to be one of a pair of 1995 Hondas that Paul Newman had souped up all to hell and which Newman called Letterman to ask "Would you like one?". Great story.
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI at 6:36 PM on July 14, 2013


Is there really no RSS feed or subscription mechanism? Do I have to check the website occasionally by hand to see if a new episode's been posted? Like a chump?
posted by secretseasons at 6:43 PM on July 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


These videos really confirm for me that I just don't like Jerry Seinfeld that much. Can't he just have his guests interview each other?
posted by kenko at 6:47 PM on July 14, 2013 [5 favorites]


For those of you who liked the Alec Baldwin episode, don't miss Garry Shandling interviewing and sparring with Alec Baldwin in a boxing ring. (And part 2.)
posted by Atom Eyes at 6:57 PM on July 14, 2013


I find this show pretty frustrating, to be honest. I'm a big comedy fan, and though I like Jerry and I like coffee and I like hearing comics talk and I even kinda like cars well enough I guess, the framing mechanism for thing gets in the way too much.

There's too much b-roll of coffee preparation. The editing breaks the flow of conversation. The whole car thing -- and the somewhere between amusing and obnoxious product placement by the sponsor -- is just pointless. Yes, I know Jerry loves cars. Maybe this was the only way they could get him on-board. I dunno.

If it were like an hour long, and all the extraneous bits didn't eat up such a significant percentage of the airtime, and conversation was allowed to flow rather than being chopped up and filtered down, I'd like it a lot more.

To show you what I mean, I love Conan O'Brien's Serious Jibberjabber series, which is just one hour plus of talking, usually with nothing more than two chairs, a table and drinks. Or Paul F. Tompkins' Speakeasy, which is the same but slightly more edited and with booze b-roll rather than coffee, but around 20 minutes and better focused than Jerry's thing, I think.

All that said, I'm liking Series 2 a bit more than Series 1, and I'll keep watching this, even if I wish it could be a little less shallow.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 7:02 PM on July 14, 2013 [7 favorites]


does Alec Baldwin just hang around in a suit and tie all day

He wears grampa tracksuits to the gym but pulls it off pretty well.
posted by elizardbits at 7:08 PM on July 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


The Letterman one was shot mostly in my town. It's more than a little strange watching them have the very same expressway incredulousness and parallel parking anxieties that I do.
posted by gnomeloaf at 7:10 PM on July 14, 2013


I came away from these thinking (a) I'd totally watch a series of Jerry just driving and talking about the cars; and (b) I'm totally jonesing for an espresso now.
posted by Greg_Ace at 7:11 PM on July 14, 2013


I find most of the guests fantastic.

But Seinfeld himself? The man just seems insufferable. He's not just not funny, he's unfunny. He laughs way too hard at things that are amusing. He just seems so... disingenuous. He doesn't seem to have a sincere bone in his body.
posted by dobbs at 7:17 PM on July 14, 2013 [9 favorites]


This is great stuff. Could all of our in-car conversations be edited so nicely?
posted by cowlick at 7:29 PM on July 14, 2013


But Seinfeld himself? The man just seems insufferable. He's not just not funny, he's unfunny. He laughs way too hard at things that are amusing. He just seems so... disingenuous. He doesn't seem to have a sincere bone in his body.

I think the fact that people I respect respect him is enough to call "disingenuous" into question. But super rich show business people are all "fake" to one degree or another. It's their job.
posted by Celsius1414 at 7:37 PM on July 14, 2013


I don't 'like' Baldwin but goddamn he's so much funnier than Seinfeld. His story about Rip Torn just slaughters me.
In the Letterman one I just like the car.
But often yeah, crap man that's some rich guys. I think this every single time. Man, those are some rich guys. Envy, sure, but man rich.
posted by From Bklyn at 7:38 PM on July 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


I found it a bit jarring when Seinfeld told Letterman they didn't own the little café they had stopped in and Letterman responded "but we could change that", because, in fact, they almost certainly could, with ease.
posted by kenko at 7:42 PM on July 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


But Seinfeld himself? The man just seems insufferable. He's not just not funny, he's unfunny. He laughs way too hard at things that are amusing. He just seems so... disingenuous. He doesn't seem to have a sincere bone in his body.

God, I'm relieved to know I'm not the only one who thinks that. He also seems desperate to try to prove (to us and to himself) that he's still "got it." Frankly, I don't think he does. In that great Talking Funny conversation with Seinfeld, Gervais, Rock, and CK, it's Seinfeld who doesn't seem to have a grasp of what makes things funny. He seems superficial.
posted by anothermug at 7:52 PM on July 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


Oh, and another thing, if you have ever had any illusion that Seinfeld is an adult explain to me his shoes.
posted by From Bklyn at 8:02 PM on July 14, 2013


When you're a stinkin' rich grownup, you can wear whatever the hell you want.
posted by Greg_Ace at 8:13 PM on July 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Apparently the mercurial Gods of Random and Arbitrary Decisions have decreed this is not to be enjoyed on your television while sitting on your couch. I created a YouTube playlist, but when I access it on my AppleTV, the playlist is empty.

So it is written, so it shall be done.
posted by sourwookie at 8:15 PM on July 14, 2013


I think it's amazing that even one of the richest and most respected men in comedy can't get more than one girl to go get coffee with him. What a chilling indictment of women, and definitely not a reflection of the hostile attitude the industry has towards female comedians.
posted by aedison at 8:31 PM on July 14, 2013 [5 favorites]


dobbs: But Seinfeld himself? The man just seems insufferable. He's not just not funny, he's unfunny. He laughs way too hard at things that are amusing. He just seems so... disingenuous. He doesn't seem to have a sincere bone in his body.
Quite possibly. Though to me he comes off more as an unpretentious but likable jerk, more in the Larry David vein. He seems quick to call people out on their pretensions and attitudes, e.g. telling Letterman that he doesn't own the coffee shop, or when he both knocks but rolls with the poor hipster service in his interview with Sarah Silverman (and still tips well).

Clearly he doesn't care what other people think about him, which can come off as callous or rude (again, like Larry David). I remember an interview where he knocked Jay Leno for never outgrowing his love of a good bargain. Apparently Leno called Seinfeld to see if he wanted in on some deal; he knew a guy who worked at a distant warehouse who could get them a good deal on a VCR or something. Jerry chastised him "what are you doing? You're making tens of millions of dollars a year; your time is worth far more than what you're saving. Buy the best version of whatever you need and don't sweat the cost; you'll never regret buying quality."

I suppose many would side with Leno for not letting the money change him, but I can also understand that when you're worth 100's of millions, you may see the main obstacles in life as time and health. So why waste your time for a few bucks, or spending time doing things you don't want to do, or with people you don't like, or pretending to be someone you aren't. That's part of what I like about these video shorts; Seinfeld could be doing anything in the world with his time and money, and he's decided to make these fun if imperfect video interviews with comedians. Great!

(Another example is when David Letterman is hand-wringing about making mistakes raising his kids. When Jerry says he's not that worried, Letterman knocks him for being too casual about it. Jerry explains his attitude by saying 'in 60 years we'll all be dead'. Letterman is thrown by the comment and then (jokingly) calls for the check. So is Jerry a callous jerk? Probably. But I also read it as also being somewhat practical, i.e. 'don't over-think things; enjoy the moment now, because life is short.')

Or maybe my problem is that I sometimes think of Jerry Seinfeld as an adult Ferris Beuller, but ever-so-slightly on the Aspergers spectrum.
posted by Davenhill at 8:33 PM on July 14, 2013 [11 favorites]


God, I'm relieved to know I'm not the only one who thinks that. He also seems desperate to try to prove (to us and to himself) that he's still "got it." Frankly, I don't think he does. In that great Talking Funny yt conversation with Seinfeld, Gervais, Rock, and CK, it's Seinfeld who doesn't seem to have a grasp of what makes things funny. He seems superficial.

Seinfeld's always seemed to me to be a traditionalist first and foremost, in an old-school professional showbizzy way, like he's always wanted to be the guys he grew up listening to rather than breaking new ground in comedy. Same thing that made Jeffrey Ross the fresh young face of the farty old Friar's Club. And that's not to disparage Jerry, he's excellent working in that mode. But he's an old model Showbiz Professional first, he empathizes with the audience, and he'll do a bit that he knows the biggest audience can relate to, where someone like Louis CK will write from something personal and the audience has to empathize with him, meet him at least halfway, and I think working like that is unsure footing for Seinfeld. Not that he even needs to grasp it, he did really well without it. But it makes him seem more superficial because he aims for such broad appeal. I get the impression that Larry David had to convince Jerry how well a bit would go over a lot more than Jerry had to convince Larry.
posted by jason_steakums at 8:33 PM on July 14, 2013 [4 favorites]


Oh, and another thing, if you have ever had any illusion that Seinfeld is an adult explain to me his shoes.

If you are an adult then explain to me why you give a shit about someone else's shoes.
posted by Sys Rq at 8:35 PM on July 14, 2013 [11 favorites]


I shouldn't! You're right! But wow does it get under my skin! Beautiful car, very nice, tailored jacket and... sneakers.
It just. It. I just can't. I can't ...
Time to go outside.
posted by From Bklyn at 8:44 PM on July 14, 2013


From Bklyn: Oh, and another thing, if you have ever had any illusion that Seinfeld is an adult explain to me his shoes.
I heard him explain it once. Very simply, he just wears what's comfortable and doesn't care what people think. If he finds a pair of shoes that feel good he buys several dozen pairs and then doesn't have to think about footwear again for several years.

I do something similar with socks. I buy several weeks worth of one type of sock for everyday casual use. That way I can always pull out a matching pair without even looking. Why waste my time matching socks when that time can be better wasted on, say, Metafilter? :)
posted by Davenhill at 8:46 PM on July 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Somewhere in Manila the family has bought a new television and a washing machine with the money sent home by their daughter who went to America and now picks up the coffee cups of old men named Mel, Carl and sometimes Buck, who each night like to sit around watching videos from the Blockbuster closeout sale, farting and talking about Jews.
posted by TimTypeZed at 9:08 PM on July 14, 2013 [4 favorites]


Apparently the mercurial Gods of Random and Arbitrary Decisions have decreed this is not to be enjoyed on your television while sitting on your couch. I created a YouTube playlist, but when I access it on my AppleTV, the playlist is empty.

So it is written, so it shall be done.
--sourwookie

I watched it on the Crackle channel on my Roku box (Crackle is also online, which solves the Linux problem).
posted by eye of newt at 9:59 PM on July 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm pretty sure most of the cars are not Jerry's.

If it's a VW or Porsche, it's likely his. The others are borrowed.
posted by hwyengr at 10:23 PM on July 14, 2013


definitely the best thing Jerry's done in awhile. saw the Sarah Silverman one, and my favorite moment was when they walked by the Acura - who sponsors the series - and straight up called it out as product placement. that really does, for me, make it all okay. someone has to pay the bills - Jerry's not reaching in to his pocket. but funny he couldn't get Porsche to pay for it.
posted by TMezz at 10:45 PM on July 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Kinda surprising (and maybe a little disappointing) that more of the cars aren't Jerry's own. That being said, the car choices seem to be spot-on. (I called the Caddy for Don Rickles easily)

A cute line from the Seth Myers episode (with Jerry's own Porsche)

Seth: "How many cars do you have?"

Jerry: "An amount that, if you looked at it, you wouldn't say "well that makes sense.""
posted by ShutterBun at 10:53 PM on July 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


I like ancient widowers Brooks and Reiner watching movies and eating together.
posted by pracowity at 12:02 AM on July 15, 2013 [6 favorites]


I buy several weeks worth of one type of sock for everyday casual use. That way I can always pull out a matching pair without even looking.

Living the dream. Unfortunately, they fade and shrink unevenly, so you still have to look at them to get a good pair.
posted by thelonius at 1:48 AM on July 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


I love this series too. Especially when Jerry makes the usually mostly unflappable Ricky Gervais absolutely crazy.
posted by gjc at 2:43 AM on July 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


"Which happens to be one of a pair of 1995 Hondas that Paul Newman had souped up all to hell..."

Honda? It's a 1995 Volvo 950 station wagon with an custom 380hp supercharged V8 and manual transmission. Apparently, Letterman drives it a lot.

I like ancient widowers Brooks and Reiner watching movies and eating together.

and

Somewhere in Manila the family has bought a new television and a washing machine with the money sent home by their daughter who went to America and now picks up the coffee cups of old men named Mel, Carl and sometimes Buck, who each night like to sit around watching videos from the Blockbuster closeout sale, farting and talking about Jews.

That episode was wonderful and also a little bit uncomfortably intimate for me. Also, I think that Reiner and the editing allowed Brooks to be the the focus of that segment, but even so I think that it shows some of the nature of their interaction. Brooks is pretty gabby and hyper and Reiner is more contemplative.

I really love those guys, and Buck Henry (I wish we could have seen him!), and I found it surprisingly affecting to watch that episode.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 5:46 AM on July 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


Watching this show reminds how boring I would be as one of Seinfeld's guests, and really by extension, as anybody's date in general.
posted by dgaicun at 7:18 AM on July 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


"I love this series too. Especially when Jerry makes the usually mostly unflappable Ricky Gervais absolutely crazy."

Anytime I've seen Gervais not playing a role or performing, he seems constantly primed to squeal in delight.
posted by history_denier at 7:54 AM on July 15, 2013 [3 favorites]


Love. The weirdest thing for me was realizing afterward that I actually kinda liked Jerry Seinfeld now, a personal first. The Brooks/Reiner episode was just sugar on my tongue.
posted by Andrew Galarneau at 8:18 AM on July 15, 2013


I have no idea why I'm posting this, but here goes. These are my rough notes to go along with an essay I want to write about online discussions. Apologies in advance for completely flattening the nuance of what each post said.

--


I like one episode, but overall no.
I like it, but it's a ripoff. Should be longer.
I like it.
New to me, thanks!
New to me, thanks!
@Longer: Really? I think it's good.
I like this. Though it makes me feel inferior.
[Alec Baldwin joke]
[Alec Baldwin joke]
[Seth Meyers insult]
Complaint that it's not viewable on Linux.
Question about Arrested Development allusion.
[Alec Baldwin link]
[Alec Baldwin complaint]
Detail that amused the writer.
[Alec Baldwin comment]
I like it, but Seinfeld is too rich. It's distracting.
@Linux: Bittorrent snark.
@Ripoff: Actually they're both a ripoff of this third thing.
@Contrived: No it's not.
[Alec Baldwin remark about his clothes]
@Alec's Clothes: 30 Rock retort
@Linux user: Works for me!
@Linux: Commodore 64 joke
@Are the cars his? Not in the Letterman episode
[Question about if the Porsche belongs to Seth Meyers]
Jerry, put your seatbelt on.
@Whose cars: Jerry is borrowing them.
I like this so much I will watch all evening.
[Kudos for Paul Newman story]
Why no RSS?
I don't like Seinfeld but his guest are good.
[Link to more Alec Baldwin]
I don't like this for the following set of reasons.
@Alec's clothing: different at the gym
Hey that's my town.
I like this.
I don't like Seinfeld but I like his guests.
I like this.
@Don't like Seinfeld: Eh.
@Rich: Yeah, they're all so rich.
@Rich: Yeah.
@Rich: Yeah. And I don't like Seinfeld.
@Don't like Seinfeld: Yeah, and his shoes.
@Shoes: He's rich, whatever.
Trouble with AppleTV and YouTube playlist.
No women!
@Don't like Seinfeld: Analysis of Seinfeld.
@Don't like Seinfeld: Analysis of Seinfeld.
@Shoes: You suck.
@You suck: Maybe, I just ... his shoes!
@Shoes: Analysis of how Seinfeld doesn't care.
[Comment about classes]
@AppleTV/Linux Roku worked for me.
@Whose cars: Some are, some aren't.
I like this. Comment on product placement.
@Whose cars: I wish they were Jerry's
I like Brooks and Reiner.
@Shoes/socks: Maintenence insights.
I love this series.
@Brooks and Reiner. Yeah.
I am boring.
Ricky Gervais squeals a lot.
Love.
posted by jragon at 9:13 AM on July 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


I spelled "Who's" every single time I should have written "whose". Huh. [edit: hey wait, I can edit now! Neat!]
posted by jragon at 9:15 AM on July 15, 2013


I like ancient widowers Brooks and Reiner watching movies and eating together.

This was, I think, the focus of my total adoration for that episode. It gave me such a visceral gutpunch of nostalgia for my family, now all deceased, that watching it again is like going home.
posted by elizardbits at 9:19 AM on July 15, 2013 [4 favorites]


I love everything about this, my day has been made, thank you. Where can I find more 'famous friends hanging out' interviews??
posted by Callicvol at 9:51 AM on July 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


Boy, I bet this must really must chap Maron's ass.
posted by wensink at 11:14 AM on July 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


Boy, I bet this must really must chap Maron's ass.

Why? Maron's show is completely different and vastly superior.
posted by dobbs at 11:50 AM on July 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


Why? Maron's show is completely different and vastly superior.
posted by dobbs


That said, since everything on the planet does seem to get under Maron's skin, this probably does, too.
posted by COBRA! at 11:53 AM on July 15, 2013 [3 favorites]


callicvol, are you familiar with "fishing with john"? it's an amc show from the 90s featuring musician john lurie going on extravagant fishing excursions with his famous friends (incl. tom waits, willem dafoe, matt dillon, dennis hopper, jim jarmush). in researching this, i was surprised to find that only six episodes were made. there is some very good and funny ad-hoc dialog.
posted by rude.boy at 12:42 PM on July 15, 2013 [4 favorites]


Am I the only one who watched that and came away thinking that I really wouldn't want to wait on Alec Baldwin?
posted by jnnla at 1:06 PM on July 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


Fishing with John is one of my most favoritest things ever.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 1:14 PM on July 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


Fishing with John's streaming on Netflix for anyone interested. The Willem Dafoe ice fishing episode is a thing of beauty, as is the bit of narration in, I think, the Jim Jarmusch episode, "Both fishermen are covered with sores and boners." which will never stop making me crack up like a twelve year old.
posted by jason_steakums at 1:46 PM on July 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


Hippybear: You can see a somewhat Charlie Rose-type discussion with Jerry Seinfeld, Chris Rock, Louis CK and Ricky Gervais here.
posted by TexArcane at 2:14 PM on July 15, 2013


Am I the only one who watched that and came away thinking that I really wouldn't want to wait on Alec Baldwin?

Heck - in that clip at least, he wasn't half as bad as many of the (everyday, non-celebrity) people I've waited on in years past...most of whom didn't tip worth a damn, either.
posted by Greg_Ace at 2:31 PM on July 15, 2013


Am I the only one who watched that and came away thinking that I really wouldn't want to wait on Alec Baldwin?

The part where the waitress is like "that's the only bread we have for that sandwich" set off my Five Easy Pieces alarm too. Baldwin was a lot more pleasant than I would've been at that point.

Hmm... I am kind of an asshole, so maybe I wouldn't be as boring as I thought. I mean still a terrible date with no humorous anecdotes or witty banter, but not boring!
posted by dgaicun at 2:35 PM on July 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


At 5:25, Alec and Jerry give us rape jokes we can all laugh at!
posted by thinkpiece at 2:35 PM on July 15, 2013


The Michael Richards one is my favorite so far. Comedy genius, that guy. The Sugar Ray detour was quality performance art. The wig and glasses doppelganger was funny and almost implausibly unscripted (Richards appears to have a supernatural power for creating absurdity). And the chess guy anecdote was funny and profound.

Sarah Silverman was also good. She's a genius too .... she jokes that a doughnut looks like her butthole.
posted by dgaicun at 2:49 PM on July 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


I forgot about the Michael Richards one. Excellent and very contemplative.
posted by gjc at 3:47 PM on July 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


I can't think of anyone who better personifies the word "smug" than Seinfeld. But it's strangely part of his charm. It's Bueller-like, as someone said upthread.
posted by Mid at 7:20 PM on July 15, 2013


Kind of a benign, laid-back smugness.
posted by Greg_Ace at 7:57 PM on July 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


This probably sounds apologetic, but there's something about Seinfeld's smugness, when combined with the little comments he makes about mortality and the absurdity of his life and art--it's like he's nursing a secret, not necessarily smugness about his vast wealth. That anecdote about Liberace's 51 shows, where Fred Armisen ushered, and Liberace would tell the same staged lie every night, and it didn't matter that it was a lie, because it made people happy . . .it makes me want to read some Camus and cheer myself up. What I take from these episodes is that many comedians are street philosophers, first and foremost.
posted by mecran01 at 9:31 PM on July 15, 2013


It's not just Jerry Seinfeld — I assume all his guests are fabulously wealthy too. That certainly applies to Larry David, Michael Richards, David Letterman, Alec Baldwin... So, yeah, it's a little contrived that they're acting like such regular people on this show. But that isn't exactly novel either — it's true of "Seinfeld" the sitcom, and it's true of countless other TV shows and movies.
posted by John Cohen at 9:49 PM on July 15, 2013


I do find it strange, though, how many times Seinfeld refers to his own wealth in these shows. I watched the Baldwin one and the Gervais one and both have a lot of discussion of just how rich and successful Jerry is. It must be a weird mindset to think that what people really enjoy hearing about is just how rich and comfortable you are - but, I guess, it's not totally wrong for him to think that. It does elude me though, why people aren't more put off by this.
posted by Mid at 8:43 AM on July 16, 2013


I do find it strange, though, how many times Seinfeld refers to his own wealth in these shows.--Mid

I liked it when he pointed to an ordinary big American car and said something like "See that? That's the ordinary people. And see that?" pointing to the classic Jag they were driving, "That's"
"a rich douchebag?" Sarah Silverman quickly chimes in.
posted by eye of newt at 10:29 PM on July 16, 2013 [1 favorite]


Well, Seinfeld's staggering wealth is kind of the elephant in the room, isn't it? Wouldn't it be off-putting if he tried to pretend he lived some kind of typical life like any average Joe off the street? I know I get all pissed off when some one-percenter tries to insist he's not rich because he can only afford two vacation homes when all his friends have three or four.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 7:05 AM on July 17, 2013 [1 favorite]


Looks like Seinfeld's net worth is in the many hundreds of millions range, maybe as high as $800m. That ... is pretty high.

I've known quite well someone who'd be in today's dollars around 200m. And I have lifelong familial acquaintance with some siblings who are in the mid hundreds of millions. And my ex-wife, when we were married, was good friends with a billionaire heiress when her father was the second-wealthiest man in the US.

Which is to say, well, fabulously wealthy people are pretty varied and a lot of them, and perhaps almost all of them at some times, live lives that are not that extraordinary. Not in the sense that's being queried here — like, going out with a friend driving in a car and eating in a diner and walking into the hardware store. In other senses, yeah, they are in a different universe. But it's not like they're aliens. I don't find these episodes "unrealistic" in this sense.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 8:45 AM on July 17, 2013


I think Seinfeld's wealth dwarfs all these guys, as rich as some of them might be. That's why it's dealt with. He's like the Bill Gates of comedy. That's what he's known for now.
posted by mrgrimm at 2:12 PM on July 18, 2013


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