Plot: What’s it about?
The seventh season of “Seinfeld” was the pen-ultimate in the series, with the next season being the last. And, seeing as how it’s taken television a decade to actually get good again, it makes us remember how funny the supposed show about nothing really was (and still is). For the uninitiated, “Seinfeld” follows the lives of four friends with no linear plot in place for each episode. Take, for example, an episode that took place entirely in a parking garage as the quartet was searching for their car. Another took place while they were waiting in line at a restaurant, only to leave and have their name called a second later. “Seinfeld” featured the comic talents of Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David (the seventh season was their last year as the creative team on the show, by the way) and just about every episode is quotable to some degree.
The seventh season featured a good variety of memorable episodes, including the finale in which George’s fiancée, Susan (Heidi Swedberg) is killed because George is too cheap to buy a higher grade of wedding envelopes. The toxic glue kills her and thus freeing him from marriage. How many Top 5 shows would have the courage to do that? Of course, this season is also famous for the introduction of The Soup Nazi, yet another of the famous characters that has become so ingrained in our pop-culture, it continues to amaze me. The phrase “No soup for you!” was his signature and it redefined how we view soup as a guilty pleasure. There are other memorable episodes as well; including “The Rye”, “The Hot Tub” and “The Secret Code” and each is memorable in their own way. While some of the other seasons had a little more memorable episodes than this one, the seventh season of “Seinfeld” isn’t to be forgotten in the least.
Video: How does it look?
Every season of “Seinfeld” is shown in its original 1.33:1 aspect ratio as it appeared on television. Only recently have shows, even comedies, begun to embrace the High Definition world and take advantage of the wider aspect ratio. Still, this wasn’t the case for the show and it looks great. Colors are warm, bright and vivid and I saw very little evidence of artifacting or edge enhancement. Quite simply, these look just as good or even a little better than when they aired more than a decade ago.
Audio: How does it sound?
There’s not a lot to say about the audio, “Seinfeld” wasn’t meant to test the limits of your home theater system, rather entertain your mind with the witty dialogue that the show is so known for. The Dolby Digital 2.0 surround track does just that. The center channel delivers up the dialogue in a rich, full stage while the matrixed surrounds are only used for an occasional audience laugh or the famous guitar transition from scene to scene. There’s not much more to say, it sounds as good as we’d expect – nothing more and nothing less.
Supplements: What are the extras?
The “Seinfeld” seasons have been done right the first time, with plenty of extras and commentary tracks out the wazoo. I’m pleased to say that this seventh season continues the tradition and your hard-earned money will garner you with plenty of supplements. We start off with no less than ten commentary tracks. They’re placed on select episodes (“The Postponement”, “The Soup Nazi”, “The Secret Code”, “The Pool Guy”, “The Sponge”, “The Gum”, “The Shower Head”, “The Doll”, “The Friar’s Club” and “The Calzone”). Surprisingly absent from these tracks are Larry David and Michael Richards, but the tracks are entertaining and provide an ample supplement to these given episodes. Most every episode also features some deleted scenes and “An Inside Look” as well. There’s also a good featurette on Elaine, entitled “Queen of the Castle: The Elaine Benes Story” which focuses on the character and what made her so integral to the cast. A farewell to Larry David is informative as well. “Master of his Domain” is a compilation of the opening tidbits from the show. And “Not That There’s Anything Wrong With That” focuses on the bloopers of the season. Additionally, a number of these episodes feature the “Pop Up Video” style of trivia that can be viewed with or without this feature intact. All in all, if you own the first six seasons – are you really going to stop now? I didn’t think so.