Curb Your Enthusiasm: Season 7, Episode 6 “The Bare Midriff” (B+)
If I had looked up the title of this episode before watching this, I might not have been so shocked by the almost-over-the-line ending shot of Larry hanging on to his secretary’s extra flesh for dear life while about to fall off a roof. This episode really tries to go very far and push the limits as much as possible, and all in all it works, but it’s still significantly tasteless. Larry’s eye-level pee problem resulting in the seeming teardrop falling from Jesus’ eye in the painting was pretty outrageous, and its discovery by the secretary and her daughter was portrayed as an ultra-serious revelation in an obvious mockery of religious zealotry. The rooftop near-suicide was a similarly severe moment clearly meant to be a send-up of considerably more dramatic movies based on fervent religious people. Larry’s presence in flashbacks when the secretary’s mother pegs him as a dead ringer for her dead husband was a bit unnecessary, though it was somewhat helpful in driving home the scene where Richard angrily whips out his present of a bat for Larry after they get into a road-rage-inspired fighting match. Richard Lewis continues to occupy the role of the world’s most unappreciated friend, as Larry refuses to move over to make room for him or call him back after their call gets dropped. The appearance of Jerry Seinfeld was fun, and he’s a perfect companion for Larry who’s able to go back and forth with him and also act as an accomplice in all of his complaining and bad ideas.