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Review: Curb Your Enthusiasm - Denise Handicap

by Jonathan Toomey, posted Oct 19th 2009 8:40AM
Larry David and Rosie O'Donnell
(S07E05) "Have you noticed if she has any proclivity for chopsticks?" - Larry

It's amazing to me that the main topic of last night's Curb Your Enthusiasm, people in wheelchairs, has never been tackled by Larry before. I'm sure there have been a few wheelchair jokes in the past that I'm forgetting, but this? This was a full-blown, inappropriate mess of incorrectness and every second of it was brilliant. Save for "The Reunion," this was easily the strongest episode of the season. Wheelchairs, wrestling Rosie O'Donnell, and the return of Leon! How can you go wrong?

Right from the moment Denise Handicap asked Larry if he was some sort of creepy creep-o, it was like a roller coaster slowly inching to the top and it took all episode before we finally edged over the hump. You were on the edge of your seat the whole time. Larry David is horrible person and he's going on a date with a woman in a wheelchair! How could this not end badly?

So many moments were played to perfection - carrying Denise up the stairs when there was no ramp and her lifeless legs during sex both come to mind - but it was Larry's realization of the perks that come with dating a handicapped person that really made it unforgettable. The parking, the preferential treatment at the restaurant, the smiles of admiration he received, getting the Fowlers to re-invite him to the violinist's recital. It very quickly became all about Larry and what he could get out of this. Not that there's any surprise there...

Highlights from "Denise Handicap" --

  • At first I didn't understand the point of Larry getting in the fight with Rosie O'Donnell. It seemed forced and their first scene together wasn't all the funny, especially since it reminded me way too much of Larry's recent fight with Jason Alexander about tipping. But the fight paid off very well at the end when Rosie took on the plight of Denise and Wendy by chasing Larry up the stairs.
  • Speaking of Wendy, leave it to Larry David to assume that women in wheelchairs are as replaceable as, I dunno, toothbrushes. All the same, right?
  • Larry's phone IDs were funny (Denise Handicap, Wendy Wheelchair), but Leon's (Nasty Big Tits, Janelle Sweet Ass) were funnier.
  • After Leon doubted whether Larry "brought it" (aka "put your dizzle on it" or "bring the ruckus to her ass"), I was really hoping that we'd see Leon take a stab at pleasing Denise in bed.

Overall, a very solid episode. Lots of hilarious moments that made some of the lesser scenes (like Larry's fight with Ted Danson about the pie) better than they should have been. In closing, my favorite exchange of the ep:

Larry: Are you challenged?
Denise: Right now I am, yeah.

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How could you put a picture of the lord Jesus in a washroom and make a joke out of it ?, I'm ashamed of even mentioning it, you will never be forgiven for this neither will anyone who enjoys it or was a part of it.

October 25 2009 at 9:32 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Gizelle's comment

I'm glad you're speaking on behalf of God.

October 28 2009 at 2:25 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Buck Naked

This is almost similar to a Frasier episode, when Frasier invited a new friend out not realizing he's a wheelee. Awwwkward!

October 22 2009 at 6:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Sorry, I'm doing it again, double posting on the same article (although this time it's intentional). I have to disagree with the statement that Larry is a "horrible person", I don't think that's true at all... he's no saint, but a horrible person seems a bit much. He took two "wheelies" to see their favourite musician.

October 22 2009 at 10:35 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

A fantastic episode, they just get better and better. My favourite part was Larry's response to Denise suggest he use hair plugs: "Plugs? Plugs? You mention plugs to me?! You sit at this table and you mention plugs?"

October 22 2009 at 10:30 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Harold Love

LD & Leon Rule!

October 20 2009 at 8:35 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Don't agree that "save for "The Reunion," this was easily the strongest episode of the season." But it was a return to form after last week's not-so-great episode.

For me, the sign of a good CYE episode is if I laugh even more on the re-airing of the show at 10 PM. This was easily the most cringe-worthy show in a long time, with the wheelchair women and all.

The make-out scene was particularly funny, as was L.D. carrying Denise up the stairs at the W Hotel. Last time L.D. was at the W, he stole utensils and was forced to wear the shame sign.

October 19 2009 at 12:06 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

OMG.. the BEST part was Larry trying to make out with her in the chair and all his different positions. Then instead of wanting to pick her up, just running her down the hall and catapulting her onto the bed.

Classic Curb moment! Great show last night.

October 19 2009 at 11:49 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

He also dealt with wheelchairs in the episode "Trick or Treat".

In that episode he wouldn't tell his friend in a wheelchair that he was going golfing the next day because Larry didn't want him to feel bad that he couldn't golf.

October 19 2009 at 11:42 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

LD sort of dealt with wheelchairs before, on Seinfeld...

There was an episode of Seinfeld where George parks in a handicap spot, a woman in a wheelchair breaks her wheelchair due to it, so Kramer and George buy her a new one (used, of course), and it's brakes fail while she's rolling down a street. Classic.

October 19 2009 at 9:52 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to nosidam's comment

Speaking of Seinfeld, the part with Denise Handicap commenting on how she didn't know Larry was bald was also reminiscent of when George was wearing a toupee and found out the girl he was dating was bald in "The Beard".

October 19 2009 at 11:07 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Also the episode where Larry uses the handicap stall in the bathroom, and he gets in a fight with a guy in a wheelchair. And Cliff Cobb was in a wheelchair.

October 19 2009 at 11:47 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

It's "Nancy Big Tits," not nasty.

October 19 2009 at 8:58 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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