Ending an excruciatingly painful six-year drought, “Curb Your Enthusiasm” finally returns to HBO in October and one thing hasn’t changed: Larry David is as cranky and caustically hilarious as ever.
Before David and fellow cast members took the stage for a panel session Wednesday at the Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour, HBO uncorked a highlight reel that had the generally jaded critics howling with laughter.
It appears top be a triumphant return for a show that last aired in 2011. But after all that time off, why come back now?
“Why not?” David replied, shrugging. “… I got tired of people asking me: ‘Is the show coming back?’”
“I don’t miss things or people that much, but I was missing it … and I missed these idiots,” he said, referring to fellow panelists Susie Essman, Jeff Garlin, J.B. Smoove and executive producer Jeff Schaffer.
Throughout the session, David was in fine form, firing off one-liners and sparring with reporters. At one point, a critic referenced the “Seinfeld” finale while framing a question about where “Curb” might be headed. David stared him down and calmly replied:
“What are you doing? I braved traffic to get here. Shame on you.”
As for the show, it returns on Oct. 1 for a 10-episode ninth season. During the long layoff, David and his collaborators obviously had plenty time to collect ideas and chart out more sticky situations for poor Larry.
“The shows are chock-full. They’re dense. … We’re sitting in the Fort Knox of awkward,” said Shaffer, who declined to reveal plot details. The clips did reveal, however, that at one point during the season, Larry will find himself appearing Judge Judy, accused of stealing a ficus plant.
There was another intriguing revelation made during the session that had nothing to do with “Curb.” David recently shot an episode of the PBS series “Finding Your Roots” and learned that he has a connection to Bernie Sanders — the politician he mercifully mocked on “Saturday Night Live.”
“I thought there must be some connection. I love Bernie,” David said, while joking that he also might have Nazis and slave-owners in his past.
In addition to the cast members who appeared here, the new season brings back favorites such as Cheryl Hines, Richard Lewis, Bob Einstein, Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen. Also coming to “Curb” are Elizabeth Banks, Ed Begley, Jr., Carrie Brownstein, Bryan Cranston, Lauren Graham, Jimmy Kimmel, Nick Offerman, Nasim Pedrad and Elizabeth Perkins.