Talk about curbing your enthusiasm. Larry David has been one of the more entertaining entertainers during the pandemic, partly because it’s incredibly funny to imagine him — or at least his long-running small screen alter ego — grouchily and stubbornly navigating things like masks and social distancing. He even gave a great New York Times profile about that very thing! But if you were hoping for him to mine that for an entire season of Curb episodes, you’re out of luck: According to producer and writer Jeff Schaffer, Season 11 will skip to a post-COVID world.
To be fair, it actually makes perfect sense. Schaeffer broke the news in an op-ed he wrote for The Hollywood Reporter (in a bit teased out by The A.V. Club), saying they had to consider where America would be when the episodes, which has been shooting since early November, finally dropped.
“We had to make the decision about what era we were writing — before, during or after COVID — and the real factor was when we would be premiering,” Schaeffer said. “We figured we would be coming out in the fall of 2021 and we didn’t want what we were writing in March of 2020 to be so timely that it would feel dated more than a year later.”
That said, it’s not like the pandemic won’t play a sizable role in how the onscreen Larry David navigates the world. “COVID definitely happened and we definitely talk about it…And Larry [the character] has opinions on all of it.” Schaffer adds, “I can’t tell you which characters got COVID, but I can definitely tell you that we do examine peoples’ behavior during the COVID era.”
Schaffer also says they started writing before the pandemic hit, which inevitably caused them to “change some things.” It’s not clear how much they changed — how large the pandemic will loom over the season’s antics. And it’s not even that optimistic to assume things will be (mostly) normal by next fall, what with multiple vaccines en route, and considering that there’s going to a portion of the country who refuses to take it. But even if stuff is still weird and bad, at least we can escape our problems by watching a show where even Larry David seems chiller than we are.
(Via THR and The A.V. Club)