Will John Mulaney join the greats like Bill Cosby, Roseanne Barr and Louis CK?
Next gallery »11 scariest TV shows of all-time
« Previous gallery11 Great TV Shows from the '90s That No One Talks About Anymore
Jerry Seinfeld, "Seinfeld"
Their Standup: Did you ever notice that there are certain tiny aspects of everyday life that seem a little odd to you? Did you ever wonder, "What's the deal with trick-or-treating?" Then Jerry Seinfeld, master of the observational comedy domain, is your man.
Why Their Show Worked: It took a couple of years for Seinfeld and his partner Larry David to figure out exactly how to translate their misanthropic, minutiae-obsessed worldviews into the half-hour network format, but once they did, "Seinfeld" became one of the great sitcoms of all time. It claimed to be "a show about nothing," but it was incredibly specific and clever in how it dealt with topics like low-flow showers, call screening and, yes, masturbation. And though Seinfeld, who never fancied himself much of an actor, was content to give the biggest laughs to his co-stars, the show was always very clearly filtered through his sensibility, in both the segments where we got to hear bits of his stand-up act that paralleled that week's stories, and when he was simply observing the latest trainwreck George or Elaine or Kramer had gotten into and muttering, "That's a shame."
- Alan Sepinwall