has taken everything we know about talk shows and brought them out to the streets. His web show, which is coming soon to Netflix after previously being exclusive to Crackle, is designed to let viewers feel like a fly on the wall while Seinfeld and a variety of comedian guests have one on one conversations about life, comedy and whatever else pops into their head. Seinfeld picks a classic vehicle that he feels best fits the personality of the guest (it’s often a stretch, but a fun gimmick) and takes them to a nearby coffee shop to learn what makes them tick. In time he’s moved past inviting only comedians, but that’s still its foundation. It’s been nominated for an Emmy in the “Best Varity Talk Series” category, and the show has become a cult hit among the comedy community. With the show about to available to a wider audience than ever, it seemed like the perfect time to sit down and rank all 59 episodes that have aired throughout its nine seasons.
59. Ricky Gervais: “Mad Man In A Death Machine”
Gervais knows how to be funny, but it’s hard for him to put on a face that he cares being on this show. The awkward pacing of this episode could be attributed to the fact that it was one of the very first episodes, but it’s one to skip nonetheless.
58. Todd Barry: “So You’re Mellow and Tense?”
The introduction prepares us for the dry personality that is Mr. Todd Barry. Normally I like that, but his tastes might be a tad too dry for this type of show. Taking part in a conversation with a mellow guy is one thing, watching it is a drag.
57. Ali Wentworth: “I’m Going To Take A Percocet And Let That One Go”
Ali Wentworth seems like a delightful person, but too much of this episode is centered on her being “WASPY” (a term used to describe powerful, rich and preppy). This episode is less about her comedic process and more about how much money she has. They even veer off to buy her a silk scarf.
56. Miranda Sings: “Happy Thanksgiving Miranda”
I understand the purpose here. Find a guest who isn’t one of Jerry’s good pals and put them in a car with him to mix things up. I respect that in theory. But picking Miranda Sings (actual name Colleen Ballinger) ended up being a gigantic gamble that ultimately misfired. The lack of chemistry is palpable throughout the entire twenty-minute runtime.
55. Joel Hodgson: “A Taste Of Hell From A High”
A great one on one that forgets to be funny. Joel Hodgson, creator of Mystery Science Theater 3000, feels as though he’d make a better philosopher than he does a comic. Hodgson is no doubt a smart man, but the comedy in this is limited.
54. Christoph Waltz: “Champagne, Cigars, and Pancake Batter”
Like Miranda Sings, I understand the creative reasoning behind putting Waltz in the passenger seat. But even this classy, two-time Oscar winning actor can’t seem to act enthused about spending the morning inside an IHOP with Seinfeld.
53. Howard Stern “The Last Days Of Howard Stern”
Banter is one thing, bickering is another. Most of what this episode is comes off as Stern not having a good time. I know most of what comes out of Stern is complete sarcasm, but a large percentage of the time spent together is off putting.
52. Gad Elmaleh: “No Lipsticks For Nuns”
He’s apparently called “The Jerry Seinfeld of France.” Personally, I don’t see it, but it’s a nice title to have. The episode plays like a check list of all the French type things Jerry attempts to make his guest feel more at home, but most of them don’t end up landing.
51. George Costanza: “The Over-Cheer”
This one’s clearly for the Seinfeld fan in all of us. A short, but serviceable episode that aired during Super Bowl XLVIII where Jason Alexander, Wayne Knight and even Jerry get into their old Seinfeld characters. It’s a solid reunion, but that’s about it.
50. Barry Marder: “The Comedy Team Of Smug And Arrogant”
Here is an episode of no real substance. It has an incredibly short runtime (a little under 8 minutes), and the entire conversation is full of observational one-liners that fall flat.
49. Amy Schumer: “I’m Wondering What It’s Like To Date Me”
People seem to be rather hot or cold on Schumer lately. The episode is pleasant enough and the conversation heads in some spirited directions, but it never gets down to the nuts and bolts of what makes her tick as a comedian.
48. Kathleen Madigan & Chuck Martin: “Stroked Out On A Hot Machine”
The only episode that feels uneven when Jerry interviews two people at once. The meat of the episode seems to sit on the shoulders of Madigan, while Martin feels like an awkward third wheel hanging out in the background. I’d be interested to see how they work together in their act, because it doesn’t work here.
47. Bill Burr: “Smoking Past The Band”
There’s an art to observational humor that Jerry has mastered. When Burr does it, it comes off as complaining. While that’s fine in his stand-up, here it feels like a road trip with your annoying relative. Even still, there’s an attitude about him that attracts your attention.
46. Larry David: “Larry Eats A Pancake”
I’ll cut it some slack for being the very first episode, where the show was still searching for an identity. We all know these two are hysterical individuals and make anything sound funny, but all the episode does is meander.
45. Cedric The Entertainer: “Dictators, Comics, And Preachers”
It’s impossible for Cedric not to entertain. Even before he was a comedian, he worked at State Farm where comedy fell into his lap after a friend entered him into a comedy competition. He really gets into the details of comedic methods he’s learned over the years.
44. Norm MacDonald: “A Rusty Car In The Rain”
The two shoot the breeze about struggles from past shows they’ve performed and the superiority of clean comedy vs. dirty comedy. You get the sense that Norm is a man of many stories, and for better or worse, could talk your ear off about anything.
43. Aziz Ansari: “It’s Like Pushing A Building Off A Cliff”
Switching things up as bit, Jerry takes a giant tour bus out to Boston just to meet with Aziz during one of his tours. Most of the first half is Jerry trying to get from point A to Point B without crashing. But along the way, Ansari talks about his upbringing.
42. JB Smoove: “Everybody Respects A Bloody Nose”
Nobody shows off confidence like JB Smoove. He even admits to being a fan of himself saying “you gotta be a fan!” He’s proven himself to be a great supporting actor in comedies, but in this show, you get to see more and more of his charm.
41. Lewis Black: “At What Point Am I Out From Under?”
Coffee is probably the last thing Lewis Black needs. Just give him a newspaper and he’ll get hyped up on the crazy happenings of the world. His angry trademark works in big settings while performing, but in a closed off car, he’s able to calm down a bit and relax.
40. Colin Quinn & Mario Joyner: “I Hear Downton Abbey Is Pretty Good”
This is episode is at it’s best when everybody involved is in the same room. Once Mario Joyner joins in about halfway through, the conversation kicks into high gear with these guys bouncing off each other like old friends. It just takes a little while to get there.
39. Jay Leno: “Comedy Is A Concealed Weapon”
Being a sports car enthusiast himself, as well as a comedian, Leno has a ton to say. This is a particularly good episode to watch for any new comic wondering what it was like to perform on The Tonight Show, or any of the late night shows, for the very first time.
38. Jim Gaffigan: “Stick Around For The Pope”
Stage fright was something that almost kept Jim Gaffigan from doing comedy. But chasing that buzz of changing stranger’s moods got him up there. Spending even a little bit of time with him shows how normal of a guy he is, which is inspiring for those wanting to pursue it.
37. Kevin Hart: “You Look Amazing In The Wind”
Hart is a force of nature—which is why Jerry chose a racecar to drive him around in. Driving in a car this loud makes for some hilarious back-and-forth between the two, but it’s over coffee where Hart gets into the real mechanics of his act.
36. Seth Meyers: “Really?!”
The people that have been on Saturday Night Live as long as Meyers was always have the best stories to share. He dishes to Jerry about what it’s like to tell somebody they got a job on the show and the two reminisce about the doing a Weekend Update segment together.
35. Don Rickles: “You’ll Never Play The Copa”
If there were a Mount Rushmore of comedy, there’s no way that the late Don Rickles wouldn’t have his face on it. Rickles is full of comedic history and expresses that on this episode. With everything coming out of his mouth being a bit, it can be difficult to keep up.
34. Alec Baldwin: “Just A Lazy Shiftless Bastard”
has the ability to take control of the situation, no matter what it is. He just has that type of big personality. While these aren’t traditional interviews, he undoubtedly takes over with his Burt Lancaster story and his tuna sandwich drama.
33. Sarah Silverman: “I’m Going To Change Your Life Forever”
Parents seem to be a big part of Silverman’s life, which is why she spends so much of this episode talking about them. She also opens up about depression, which not many guests on this show do. Being an open book is what makes her as good as she is.
32. Stephen Colbert: “Cut Up And Blood But Looking Good”
In between his run on The Colbert Report and his new gig hosting The Late Show, Stephen Colbert had a big ol’ grey beard known as “The Colbeard.” Colbert looks back on the time well spent at his old show, and his days auditioning in Chicago.
31. Brian Regan- “A Monkey And A Lava Lamp”
Regan and Seinfeld are two very similar comedians in terms of what they are interested in talking about. So much so, that they even discuss a similar bit they had with the same idea, but slightly different lines. They seem to get each other, and the result is great.
30. Carl Reiner & Mel Brooks: “I Want Sandwiches, I Want Chicken”
Calling these two comedy legends would be one of the biggest understatements of the century. An afternoon with these gentlemen ends up comparing to a solid time with your grandparents, with ld stories about “the good ol’ days” complete with chuckles.