Jerry Seinfeld, a famous comedian, used to be the star of “Seinfeld,” a sitcom about a comedian named Jerry Seinfeld and his friends. Larry David, a less-famous comedian, was a writer and co-creator of “Seinfeld,” and now stars as Larry David in “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” a show about the daily life of Larry David, co-creator of “Seinfeld.” In the fourth season of “Seinfeld,” Jerry Seinfeld and his best friend George Costanza create a TV show called “Jerry,” a sitcom about a comedian, his friends, and a guy sentenced by a judge to be the comedian’s butler. In the seventh season of “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” Larry agrees to participate in a “Seinfeld” reunion in the hopes that doing so will lead to a reconciliation with his wife. Jerry Seinfeld guest-starred as “Jerry Seinfeld,” the actor who played “Jerry Seinfeld” on “Seinfeld.” He is meaner and nastier than the character — meaner and nastier even than Larry — though no one seems willing to acknowledge this, or in any way recognize that Jerry is not the same person as his character.
All of this subtext plays an important role in the first episode of comedian Jerry Seinfeld’s new web series, “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee.” It is among the most accurately titled shows in the history of shows — or is at least intended to be. Larry’s refusal to drink coffee is an important “plot point” in the episode, and, according to Larry, a key factor in the dissolution of his marriage. You would be forgiven for mistaking this banter for dialogue from “Seinfeld” or “Curb Your Enthusiasm.”
But the intent is to give you exactly what the title promises. In the pilot, Jerry Seinfeld drives a blue 1952 VW Bug, meets his friend Larry, and the two journey across town to drink coffee and eat pancakes. Later episodes only change the car, the comedian and the coffee shop. So long as we continue to make cars and continue to birth comedians, the formula is endlessly repeatable.