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Curb Your Enthusiasm Season 11 Episode 5 Review: The Season’s First Miss

As latest seasons of Curb Your Enthusiasm have develop into about telling a bigger overarching story, there’s one thing particular a few good standalone episode. Each episode this season has indirectly associated to the creation of Larry David’s new present Younger Larry, however this week’s “IRASSHAIMASE!” fully disregards the bigger story to be able to inform a less complicated episode that – as of proper now – doesn’t tie into the larger image. Whereas it’s good to see a stand-alone episode of Curb each infrequently, “IRASSHAIMASE!” is the weakest episode thus far in Season 11.

“IRASSHAIMASE!” really begins fairly promising, with a extra easy focus than the present is used to having. Larry will get Jeff (Jeff Garlin) to set him up on a date together with his buddy Gabby McAfee (Julie Bowen), and from there, the episode begins to fan out. Larry finds out that Jeff set Gabby up with Hal Berman (Rob Morrow), a person recognized for having intercourse together with his mother-in-law, and Gabby and Hal didn’t work out for some unknown motive. On the way in which to the date, Larry borrows a shirt from Freddy Funkhouser (Vince Vaughn), which Larry will later get soy sauce on and fully destroy in making an attempt to eliminate the stain. On the date itself, Larry makes enemies with the restaurant employees for greeting Gabby with the employees’s greeting of “Irasshaimase!”

David and Bowen’s scene at dinner works effectively, as David reveals off his charms, whereas Bowen is nice at taking part in towards David’s humorousness. It’s really type of disappointing that your complete episode doesn’t attempt one thing new and allow us to spend time with these two on this date. A complete half-hour of David and Bowen on a date, as an alternative of specializing in different storylines, might’ve been an fascinating approach to experiment with the present’s type.

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RELATED: ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’ Season 11 Episode 4: Story Takes a Backseat to Nice Absurd Moments

In final week’s “The Watermelon,” I stated that the episode works so effectively not as a result of the episode bothered to attach all of its storylines like in “Angel Muffin,” however as a result of every storyline had its personal hilarious second. Sadly, “IRASSHAIMASE!” doesn’t repay fairly as effectively. I point out that “IRASSHAIMASE!” might’ve been an effective way to experiment with the format of the present as a result of this does really feel like variations we’ve seen earlier than. After getting talked to on the restaurant, Larry reveals to Gabby that he has been reprimanded at eating places earlier than. Whereas Curb Your Enthusiasm at all times finds a brand new approach to deal with Larry’s varied problematic restaurant visits, right here, it does kind of look like returning to the identical effectively as soon as extra.

“IRASSHAIMASE!” does have some respectable payoffs to its storylines, comparable to Hal sabotaging Larry and Gabby’s second date, and Freddy getting revenge on Larry for destroying his favourite shirt by promoting him out at a funeral, there’s a number of too many storylines right here that don’t go anyplace or go precisely the place we’d anticipate.

For instance, Larry having to choose up a costume for Susie (Susie Essman) has surprisingly little substance for a Curb subplot, though it does enable for Larry to check out his Sherlock Holmes impression on an aggravated Susie. Much more disappointing is Larry’s confrontation with the restaurant’s host (Sonny Saito) after Larry tries to retrieve his umbrella that he left behind on his date. Seeing that Larry’s umbrella was taken from a lodge, the host decides he’ll return the umbrella for Larry, but anybody who has ever seen an episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm is aware of that the follow-up to this might be somebody aside from Larry utilizing and preserving that umbrella. Once more, it’s not a foul storyline, however it doesn’t add a lot to the episode, and performs like one other tried-and-true concept that we’ve seen earlier than with slight variations.

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Picture through HBO

“IRASSHAIMASE!” can be the primary episode of this season not directed by somebody aside from Jeff Schaffer, with very long time Curb director Robert B. Weide leaping in on this one, whereas somebody aside from Schaffer and David labored on the story right here, as Carol Leifer will get a narrative by credit score. Leifer has solely beforehand written one different episode, Season 10’s “Synthetic Fruit.” The standalone nature of “IRASSHAIMASE!” looks as if it might’ve been made for another season, and possibly Leifer’s involvement means this episode was initially crafted in thoughts for final season. This isn’t inherently a foul factor, however its irrelevance to any of the tales we’ve seen thus far this season does make this really feel look like it might simply be a good little bit of filler for Season 11.

“IRASSHAIMASE!” isn’t unhealthy by any stretch of the creativeness, however it’s actually a step again from the remainder of the season. With eleven seasons over the course of now three many years, after all, Curb Your Enthusiasm goes to hit among the similar notes sooner or later, however “IRASSHAIMASE!” begins off sturdy, then goes in pretty predictable instructions, or follows threads that don’t go a lot of anyplace in any respect. “IRASSHAIMASE!” is much less Curb at its peak, and extra like a shortcut to the valley.

Ranking: B-


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