Larry David’s rise to full on stardom was a long an interesting road. He started off as a standup but got his first big break as a writer and performer on ABC’s answer to SNL, “Fridays.” After “Fridays,” Larry made it to SNL as a writer for the 84-85 season. He only ever got one sketch on the show, and it aired in the show’s last spot. Right around the time “Seinfeld” got going in 1989, Larry had a bit part in Woody Allen’s “New York Stories.” As”Seinfeld” grew in popularity, Larry could be seen and heard in bit roles throughout the show’s run, all in relative complete anonymity. “Seinfeld” gave Larry massive showbiz and financial clout, but he was still not a star by any means. When he launched his hugely successful HBO show “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” Larry the performer really took off. As “Curb” enters its eighth groundbreaking season, Larry has also officially taken his place as a pop culture icon; an anti-hero waging a war against awkward social moments, instances of perceived unfairness, and sleights against himself. With Larry being such a big star now, it’s fun to look back at his more forgotten moments when he was still finding his comedic voice, and when he had much much crazier hair. Below I’ve assembled some clips from “Fridays” and from his appearance in the Woody Allen movie for all you Larry fans out there. Enjoy.
Clip #1 showcases Larry’s recurring character, Saully Mullens, from “Fridays” where he plays a hapless temp worker sent in for assignments way outside his realm of expertise. In this clip, Larry fills in for the US Secretary of State.
Clip #2 again finds Larry in a temp role, this time filling in for Gloria Steinham at an E.R.A. rally. I don’t know about you, but to me, Larry seems to be a cross between Woody Allen and Harold Ramis, all with a tough guy NY accent.
Clip#3 features Larry and Michael Richards in a sketch where a group of friends remember how much they tormented and teased each other. In the early days, its clear to see Larry’s natural nervousness and unease with performing, but also the enthusiasm and joy he was experiencing doing it.
Clip #4 is Larry’s small role in “New York Stories.” I’ve never seen this movie, and have no idea what is going on, but it’s clear that this scene probably inspired the “Seinfeld” episode where Kramer scores a line in a Woody Allen movie. “These Pretzels are Making me Thirsty!”