Jerry Seinfeld Blames the ‘Extreme Left’ and ‘P.C. Crap’ for Diluting Modern Comedy

Jerry Seinfeld thinks that both film and TV are caput.

The “Seinfeld” co-creator, who also makes his directorial debut with Netflix’s “Unfrosted,” said during The New Yorker Radio Hour that the “extreme left” is to blame for the end of the golden era of comedy, particularly with sitcoms.

More from IndieWire

“People always need comedy,” Seinfeld said. “It used to be that you would go home at the end of the day…People would go, ‘Oh, ‘Cheers’ is on. ‘M*A*S*H’ is on. Oh, ‘Mary Tyler Moore’ is on. ‘All in the Family’ is on.’ Where is it? Where is it? This is the result of the extreme left and P.C. crap and people worrying so much about offending other people.”

Seinfeld pointed to the new process by “committee” to create comedy, particularly with writing jokes.

“When you write a script, and it goes into four or five different hands, committees, groups, ‘Here’s our thought about this joke,'” Seinfeld said. “Well, that’s the end of your comedy.”

Instead, Seinfeld is looking to the world of standup for being the last remaining beacon of true originality.

“With certain comedians now, people are having fun with them stepping over the line, and us all laughing about it,” Seinfeld said. “It’s the stand-ups that really have the freedom to do it because no one else gets the blame if it doesn’t go down well. He or she can take all the blame [themselves.]”

Seinfeld has spent much of his “Unfrosted” media tour lamenting the ways that legacy media formats no longer pack the same punch that they once did. He recently told GQ that “audiences are now flocking to stand-up because it’s something you can’t fake” unlike in Hollywood.

“Everyone I know in show business, every day, is going, ‘What’s going on? How do you do this? What are we supposed to do now?'” he said. “Film doesn’t occupy the pinnacle in the social, cultural hierarchy that it did for most of our lives. When a movie came out, if it was good, we all went to see it. We all discussed it. We quoted lines and scenes we liked. Now we’re walking through a fire hose of water, just trying to see.”

He added of directing his first feature, “I thought I had done some cool stuff, but it was nothing like the way these people work. They’re so dead serious! They don’t have any idea that the movie business is over. They have no idea.”

Best of IndieWire

Sign up for Indiewire's Newsletter. For the latest news, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.