Nearly two decades after Seinfeld bowed out with an infamously divisive finale, Jerry Seinfeld still isn’t sure they made the right choice. “I sometimes think we really shouldn’t have even done it,” he told the audience during a New Yorker Festival interview on Friday night. “There was a lot of pressure on us at that time to do one big last show, but big is always bad in comedy.”
Comedy should be “small and cheap and quick,” he told New Yorker editor David Remnick, describing the finale as an “impossible” episode. “That’s why TV is always funnier than movies, because you don’t have that much time and that much money.”
In Seinfeld’s opinion, the funniest moment in the sitcom’s famed, nine-year run came at the end of season five’s “The Marine Biologist,” when George discovers Kramer’s lost golf ball in a whale’s blowhole. “The hardest thing in comedy is to have the biggest laugh at the end, and it’s the most satisfying thing,” he explained.
“We got very lucky,” Seinfeld said of writing the joke. “Larry [David] and I came up with it the night before we were shooting. We wrote it late at night, and Jason memorized the whole speech in one day.”