I’m re-watching Curb Your Enthusiasm because, lets be honest, I re-watch the same shows every couple of years. But also because this show is basically a MasterClass on storytelling and dialogue.
If Seinfeld was a show about nothing, then Curb Your Enthusiasm is a show that makes something out of nothing. The pants tent. The typo in the obituary. The matching jackets. Things blow up in Larry David’s world – or maybe just in his mind, before he speaks it and makes it so. Either way, it’s a great show to watch and realize that anything can turn into a story, and maybe there’s no reason to have writer’s block. Larry can turn anything into a story, roll it into a bigger deal with lies, and make it a huge drama. That’s storytelling.
I just finished Judy Blume’s MasterClass lesson on dialogue, ad as I started Curb Your Enthusiasm, I realized – talk about realistic dialogue examples! Interrupting, honesty, getting caught in a lie and having to flounder around in the moment. There might not be a big divide between Larry’s inner voice and what comes out of his mouth (as Blume tells you to consider with your characters), but that goes back to storytelling. The more he talks without a filter, the more he develops the story by digging himself into holes, burning bridges, and so on.
It’s always great to learn from media around you – it’s just one of the reasons everyone says you can’t be a writer unless you’re a reader. But getting writing encouragement from an unlikely source, something you just expected to watch to relax and revel in someone else’s drama, is a major perk.