Review: Curb Your Enthusiasm - The Bare Midriff
(S07E06) "Larry?! You sprayed on Jesus??" - Maureen
For as good an episode as "The Bare Midriff" was, it still had one huge problem that has plagued many past episodes of Curb Your Enthusiasm as well. The central conflict -- Maureen's exposed stomach -- was just too much of a stretch (no pun intended). Why's that? The beauty of Curb is how well it sheds light on awkward situations we all relate to. Not so much on this one, because honestly, who in their right mind would think a short shirt like that was work appropriate attire? It wasn't believable, that Maureen thought her shirt was OK for the office. Fortunately, if you were willing to look past the absurdity of the issue, it paid off with arguably one of Curb's top five endings ever.As Larry tried to stop Maureen's mother from jumping off the roof at the studio, he slipped and grabbed on to Maureen's stomach to save himself. He grabbed her pudgy, stomach flab and didn't fall off the roof -- the bare midriff saves the day! Had she been wearing a normal t-shirt, he would have grabbed that and the cotton surely would have ripped. Makes me feel bad for Jillian Bell, the actress who played Maureen, because lets face it -- while it was in the service of good comedy, she was cast in this role for only one reason.
The rest of the episode featured some really great moments, but the highlight was the Mad Men-esque flashback to 1962, when Maureen's mother, Madeline, recounted the story of her murdered husband Tom, who looked just like Larry. It was great, how in her re-telling of his last minutes on Earth, Tom seemed to act just like Larry. The pay off at the end, as she re-lived the same moment and thought Richard Lewis was going to attack Larry with the baseball bat was even better. The car was the same, the song on the radio was the same -- no blood on the windshield this time, though.
- I watched this one live and didn't DVR it, so I'm not sure I heard it clearly, but did the irate driver call Jerry a c*nt face?
- What's Larry taking? Avodart? That's the weak pee stream pill, right? Or is it Flomax? Whatever it is, I wonder how they feel about their pill being used as a set-up for Jesus' likeness being splashed on?
- Add in the pizza shop owner sending the cops after Larry because he took too many napkins to the unrealistic pile. This was set up simply to serve the plot and there were plenty of other ways Larry could have been held up that were legit.
- I was also hoping that Meg Ryan would create a bit more tension with Cheryl, but that got dumped pretty quickly since her schedule is busy.
- Larry called Maureen's stomach a "protuberance." Hilarious.
- "All bald people do not look alike!" Apparently they do, black or white.
Seeing as how Larry is using all his experiences from the past for the Seinfeld reunion special (the doll, the TiVo guy), I wonder if this experience, the girl with the bare midriff, will make the cut?