Jerry Seinfeld Sparks Debate After Saying ‘Extreme Left and PC Crap’ Have Hurt Comedy

It’s a place we’ve been before. A beloved, established comedian — this time, Jerry Seinfeld — said that comedy is dying because of the pressure of becoming politically correct.

During a recent episode of the New Yorker’s Radio Hour, Seinfeld lamented a supposed lack of comedies on TV.

“It used to be, you would go home at the end of the day, most people would go, ‘Oh, ‘Cheers’ is on. Oh, ‘MASH’ is on. Oh, ‘Mary Tyler Moore’ is on. ‘All in the Family’ is on,'” Seinfeld said. “You just expected, ‘There’ll be some funny stuff we can watch on TV tonight.’ Well, guess what — where is it?”

The comedian went on to conclude that “This is the result of the extreme left and PC crap and people worrying so much about offending other people.”

It should be noted that there are several pure comedies on television, which is now far more expansive with the rise of streaming. ABC’s “Abbott Elementary” remains one of the most-watched shows on broadcast. Even if you exclude more dramatic comedies like “Mr. and Mrs. Smith” or “The Bear,” TV is still producing pure comedies like “Girls5Eva” on Netflix, “The Righteous Gemstones” on HBO, “Loot” on Apple TV+, “Rick and Morty” on Adult Swim and “South Park” on Comedy Central.

One of those “pure comedies” comes from Seinfeld’s longtime co-creator, Larry David, who just finished the 12th and final season of “Curb Your Enthusiasm” earlier this year. When David Remnick pointed this out to the comedian, Seinfeld said, “Larry was grandfathered in. He’s old enough so that — ‘I don’t have to observe those rules, because I started before you made those rules.'”

People who agree with Seinfeld have called his interview “powerful.” Professional X user Elon Musk even posted the interview, writing “Make comedy funny again!”

Others haven’t been as supportive of the comedian’s comments. Andy Kindler, best known for playing Mort on “Bob’s Burgers,” said that the comedian has been making “the same garbage argument about the death of comedy for ten years.” One user called Seinfeld’s comments a “tedious, off-the-shelf rant about kids these days.” Another disagreed with Seinfeld’s claims that the show bearing his name couldn’t be made today, arguing that “Seinfeld” “isn’t that f–king edgy.”

Multiple users pointed to the ending of “Curb Your Enthusiasm” as proof in their counterargument. One person said that Seinfeld’s poor timing is “the funniest thing he’s done in decades – funnier even than Bee Movie, perhaps.” “Imagine how embarrassing this take would be if the other creator of Seinfeld had made one of the funniest shows of all-time that had no worry about offending people and ended this literal month,” comedian Kyle Ayers wrote.

There is one other show that has consistently popped up in the midst of this kerfuffle: “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.” Certain users who disagree with Seinfeld have taken to posting some of the most obscene scenes from the currently-running comedy’s 16-season run. These include the show’s use of the f-slur on multiple occasions, a clip that shows two of the main characters addicted to crack and Mac’s (Rob McElhenney) dildo bike.

McElhenney, the show’s creator and star, even weighed in on the take. In response to Seinfeld asking if he could get away with an episode about Kramer starting a business using homeless people today, McElhenney wrote “Probably.” He also included an image of Rickety Cricket (David Hornsby) in his response, a frequent “Always Sunny” character who started as a priest and has since become a homeless drug-addicted prostitute the gang often exploits.

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