Letter from the i editor: Thank me on Monday


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You can tell autumn’s really kicked in because there’s good stuff on the telly. That’s what everyone is talking about at i, when we should be honing our views on the eurozone crisis, a November of discontent and whether to bring back hanging, caning, and dunking witches.

Charlotte is anticipating the return of Spooks for its last season, while Louis will be studying Downton Abbey keenly for historical inaccuracies. They are annoyingly scheduled against each other. Rhodri’s in my good books because he showed me how to Sky Plus from my desk. He’s an expert, see. If he watches Wales vs South Africa again enough times, James Hook’s penalty will go over!

The really big TV moment arrives Sunday night at 11.05pm on More 4, the season eight opener of the inimitable Curb Your Enthusiasm, the joint-funniest comedy in English language TV history (with Fawlty Towers). For the uninitiated, it’s based on the fictionalised life of its writer and star Larry David (creator of Seinfeld), a man with absolute (but subjectively pliable) views of the correct code regarding the minutiae of everyday conduct and an inability to keep quiet if anyone transgresses his code. Faux pas is Larry’s middle name; when in a hole he just can’t stop digging.

Famously, David writes each episode’s outline and sub-plots, but his outstanding support cast improvise dialogue, as Larry – and his death stare when he suspects someone is lying – stumbles from one disaster to the next. It can be genuinely outrageous: the chef with Tourette’s, Larry with a pubic hair stuck in his throat, Larry getting his best friend’s 12-year-old drunk.

The list is long. It’s the antithesis of PC: excruciating, laugh-out-loud viewing. As Larry would say: “prett-ay good; prett-ay, prett-ay good! ”Watch through your hands and thank me on Monday.