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Just as like the music industry still wishes for the days when it controlled its own production and distribution, the media and marketing world still yearns for the silver bullet of the thirty-second spot on 'Seinfeld,' even as it knows those days are over.
I personally have dealt with any adversity in my life with humor. That's why I told America to 'Read my hips!' on 'Dancing With the Stars' or was happy to play along with Jason Alexander and Jerry Seinfeld in the great restaurant scene on 'Seinfeld.'
With the stand-up comic on TV, whether it's Seinfeld or Cosby or Roseanne, more important than their knowledge of how to tell a joke is their knowledge of themselves, or the persona they've created as themselves. So that when you're in a room with writers, you can say, 'Guys, that's a funny line, but I wouldn't say it.'
If you take 'Cheers' and 'Seinfeld' and watch the early shows, they're kind of awkward. It took a while for the writers and everything to gel.
And Seinfeld is so quick: we crank out one show a week, and the hours are very reasonable.
The Seinfeld motto: No learning, no hugging.
I always felt that it was easier to take a funny person and teach them to write television than to take somebody who was a television writer and make them funny. And I discovered a lot of great writers that went on to do a lot of great shows like 'Seinfeld,' 'Friends,' you know, 'Three and a Half Men.'
We sold 'Seinfeld' all over the world but it was a very specific kind of show. In some countries it went down really well, in others they hated it.
I can watch an episode of Jerry Seinfeld, and by the end, I'm just walking around my house, you know, talking like Jerry Seinfeld. 'What is that? What are you doing? Who is it? What's going' - you know, I just had that thing, when I grew up, I'd just start talking like people. You know, I always had that.
I've never seen 'Seinfeld', never seen 'The Cosby Show'; I just don't watch it. I saw half of 'Oprah' one time. I'd rather read.
I think if you look back at all those great comedies on television in the past, it's all lovable losers that gathered together - 'Taxi' and 'Cheers,' 'Seinfeld' and 'Friends.'
In terms of 'Seinfeld', I think there's lot of reality in a show that's supposed to be about nothing.
Many people don't know our famous 'soup kitchen' episode on Seinfeld was inspired by an actual soup restaurant off 8th Avenue in New York.
There is no community service in 'Seinfeld.' But rather than lauding that, I think it shows the insane banality of it.
Things that make me laugh range from a wonderful stand-up like Jerry Seinfeld, Louis C.K. and Chris Rock to my son Gabe, who does great improv work. I also look backwards to the great comedic actors like Jackie Gleason, Paul Lynde and Phil Silvers.
Like most athletes, I like to go home and relax. I try not to bring the game home with me. I might play some video games that are, let's just say, for mature audiences only. And I might get some flak for this, but I like to watch 'Seinfeld.' Sometimes, laughter is the best medicine.
To me, in retrospect, it was amazing that 'Seinfeld' was a show that had such mass appeal. At first it was a disaster in the ratings, but then it became a cultural phenomenon. I don't know if that's possible anymore, but I don't try for that.
I remember watching 'Colombo' a lot with my dad. That was one of the first detective shows I remember watching. And I remember my dad turning to me - my dad loves to turn to me and explain why things are funny. He used to do that with 'Seinfeld' all the time. He did it with 'Colombo', too, set the scene.
I remember when I got a part on 'Seinfeld' it was like an out of body experience, I was so excited.
Back when Jerry Seinfeld was just another comedian hanging around the clubs, I'd imitate him to amuse myself and the other comics. The club owners would say, 'What are you doing that for? Nobody knows him.'
When it comes to English stand-up comedy, Indians have only seen the best - Jerry Seinfeld, Bill Cosby and the like. So, when someone claims to be an English stand-up comedian in India, he'd better be very good if he's going to make a life of it.
Jerry Seinfeld is amazing in many ways, not the least of them his ability to find humor, and convincing us to find it, too, in the million-and-two details about modern life that under different circumstances might send us into paroxysms of rage.
You could go to Estonia and there's probably an episode of 'Seinfeld' playing there. Television is a very powerful thing.
I was young enough to certainly realize the excitement of how popular 'Seinfeld' was.
When the 'Seinfeld' show said it was going to be a show about nothing, everybody said it couldn't - wouldn't work. It did. 'Thor' is about something, about that character finding his destiny, but it's not doing what was expected... and yet it's doing very well.
J. Michael Straczynski
C. S. Lewis
Martin Luther King, Jr.
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