Best of the Small Screen, Comedies No. 6

Over the next 16 weeks I'll be taking a look at some of my favorite TV series, broken down into three groups (Limited Run Series, Comedies, and Dramas). In my post on March 1 I laid out the ground rules for these categories and this exploration, the biggest of which is no series that are currently airing. To read the whole thing, check out the post "Best of the Small Screen" from March 1.

Today we look at one of the highest rated comedies of all time.

Seinfeld (1989-1998)
Number of Seasons/Episodes: 9/173
Network: NBC
Starring: Jerry Seinfeld, Michael Richards, Jason Alexander, and Julia Louis-Dreyfuss
Creator: Larry David
Favorite Season/Episodes: Season eight, 5.18 "The Raincoats," 5.21 "The Opposite," 7.06 "The Soup Nazi," 8.16 "The Pothole"
About: There are so many things to talk about when you consider "Seinfeld." First is the fact that if the show were introduced today, it probably wouldn't have gotten more than a season, and certainly wouldn't have become an iconic classic. It was a show few understood, and was incredibly low-rated at first. The first season was just five episodes, and the second was just 12. But NBC believed in the show and kept it on the air. And the rest, as they say, is history. "Seinfeld" became one of the most successful and highly rated shows in NBC's history, running for nine seasons and getting a huge farewell second off in May 1998. That brings us to the second thing to talk about, that finale. "Seinfeld" was one of the first comedies I remember following. I was in middle school when I started watching it as part of Must-See TV, and in high school when it ended. Like so many, I was curious about the finale. And, like so many, I was disappointed in the final episode. But, if like me you wish it had ended differently, please go watch season seven of "Curb Your Enthusiasm," the HBO comedy created by Larry David. The seventh season is about a "Seinfeld" reunion, and the finale includes a show within a show that is pretty great, and feels like a fitting cap to "Seinfeld." And, the good news is if you miss the show you can watch episodes pretty much daily in syndication, and they still hold up. I referenced some of my favorites here. "The Raincoats" always stood out to me because of the "Schindler's List" sequence. "The Opposite" is a fun episode because George finally comes out on top. "The Pothole" features one of my favorite Newman story lines, as his truck ends up on fire. And "The Soup Nazi," well, that's probably one of the most iconic episodes of television of all time. The eighth season, as a whole, is probably the strongest overall season with plenty of memorable episodes. But, let's be honest, there isn't a bad season of "Seinfeld," which is just another reason it's one of the greatest of all time.


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