American comedian Jerry Seinfeld is probably best known for the sitcom that shares his surname, but his latest venture takes the form of a free online web series. Titled Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee, the show involves Jerry Seinfeld driving famous comedians around in classic sports cars, before stopping for a cup of coffee.
The brilliance lies in the simplicity of the format which not only celebrates comedy, but classic cars and the ability to talk at length about virtually nothing at all. The show is now in its third season, with a total of 23 episodes online for your perusal. Here are a few of my favourites.
Larry needs little introduction to those of you already familiar with Jerry Seinfeld’s past successes. He was Jerry’s co-writer for the long-running Seinfeld, and gained notable success with Curb Your Enthusiasm – which both fans and HBO hope isn’t quite done yet. This was the first episode of Comedians in Cars, so it’s rather fitting that the guest who broke the ice happened to be Jerry’s longstanding co-writer.
This time round Jerry’s guest of the week takes on the form of radio personality, TV presenter and current face of America’s Got Talent, Howard Stern. In case you’re not massively familiar with American radio personalities, Stern became known as a “shock-jock” in the 1990s, managing to rack up millions of dollars in fines from the FCC for content deemed indecent – though the tone in this video is more philosophical than anything.
British stand-up comedian, star of The Office and no stranger to controversy Ricky Gervais, joins Jerry in a blue Austin Healey at high speed, described by Gervais as “a death trap”. Much of the episode involves Jerry terrifying Ricky with the accelerator pedal, though there’s also reference to Gervais’ infamous Golden Globe presentations, the death penalty and Adolf Hitler’s honeymoon.
Jerry Seinfeld has received complaints about the lack of non-white or female comedy personalities appearing on the show, to which he replied “You’re funny, I’m interested. You’re not funny, I’m not.” Much of the online world would probably agree that Tina Fey falls under the category of funny, making history by becoming the first female lead writer for Saturday Night Live – and hitting it big with her Sarah Palin impersonations.
Jerry visits Chris Rock at his “Tony Soprano house” for a drive around in a bright orange 1969 Lamborghini P400S Miura. This is probably one of the funniest episodes, purely for Chris Rock’s constant commentary on topics as varied as dropping his brother off for prison (and making sure he gets inside safely) to being asked on a regular and casual basis if he has a spare $5000 to hand out.
And now for something completely different! The “classic car” is a 1976 American Motors Pacer, a famously disastrous car, and the guest is a blast from the past: none other than George Costanza, a character from Seinfeld played by actor Jason Alexander. This is essentially a mini episode of Seinfeld, but before fans get too excited it only lasts six minutes. If this tickles your fancy, you might want to follow Seinfeld2000 on Twitter.
There’s a whole three seasons of comedians and comediennes to enjoy, all hand-picked by Jerry himself for their amusing qualities. A few highlights I didn’t slip into this article include Sarah Silverman (who can be found over at JASH with Tim and Eric among others), Louis C. K. and Alec Baldwin.
Did you enjoy Seinfeld? Let us know what you think of Jerry’s latest show in the comments, below.