Jerry Seinfeld on Comedyby Jerry Seinfeld
Fans of Jerry Seinfeld's hit comedy series Seinfeld shouldn't hold their breath -- Jerry Seinfeld on Comedy is not the long-awaited sequel to 1998's I'm Telling You for the Last Time. It is, however, a helpful, educational tool for would-be stand-ups who yearn for a glimpse into the hot comedian's mind. Through a series of interviews with former comic/motivational speaker Larry Wilde that span the course of a decade, Seinfeld discusses the tricks of his trade, from the painstaking thought and self-discipline necessary to survive the club circuit to the dedication and perseverance necessary to succeed in the national spotlight. (Seinfeld practiced for his first gig on Johnny Carson's Tonight Show over 200 times, realizing it would make or break his fledgling career.) There aren't many laughs here -- Seinfeld plays it straight, providing thoughtful answers to every one of Wilde's ultra-technical questions. Even so, it's interesting to hear his definition of a joke ("proving something that is absolutely trivial, but with rigorous logic"), his conceptual approach of comedy ("really good comedy is a dialogue, not a monologue...because laughs contain thought"), and his disdain for dirty material ("profanity is the great shortcut to comedy"). By now, American audiences are well acquainted with Seinfeld's brand of wry, observational humor; Jerry Seinfeld on Comedy affords them a rare opportunity to pick his brain and learn to secrets of his success.
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