Barry: Larry David Thought The Show Should End With Season 3 Because It Was 'Done'

The long-awaited series finale of HBO's "Barry" is finally here, bringing the bloody saga of hitman-turned-actor Barry Berkman (played by series creator Bill Hader) to a dramatic conclusion. Although the fourth and final season of "Barry" has received rave reviews for its dark humor and exceptional drama, it is certainly remarkable that Bill Hader and company were able to squeeze another eight episodes out of "Barry" following the Season 3 finale, which saw the titular character arrested and sent to prison for the murder of Janice Moss (Paula Newsome).

In fact, "Seinfeld" co-creator Larry David actually told Bill Hader that he assumed the show was over with Season 3, and was shocked to learn that there was an entire extra season in the works. "I saw Larry [David] and he was like, 'I watched Barry. That's it right?'" Hader explained during an appearance on "Conan O'Brien Needs a Friend." "I said, 'No. We have a whole new season,' and he went, 'Why?!' I go, 'Well, I think there's more story to tell,' and he's like, 'But you ... it's done!'" 

Hader and Conan O'Brien went on to joke that Larry David was being completely genuine, having famously ended "Seinfeld" when all of his characters ended up in prison — they figure in David's mind "Jail means it's over" — just like in Monopoly.

Barry was never going to end with Season 3

As Larry David suggests, it is hard to believe that there could be more to "Barry" after the show's central character received life imprisonment for murder — though in that very same interview, Bill Hader actually revealed that Season 3 and Season 4 were essentially written as one enormous season, due in large part to production delays during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"We were two weeks away from doing ... starting to shoot Season 3. The pandemic happened and I went to HBO and said 'Is it okay if we just write Season 4 to have something to do?'" Hader shared. "And then as we were writing Season 4 we started to go back to Season 3, and so I see 3 and 4 as kind of one big season ... it kind of all rolls into each other." Hader's comments make it clear that they never had any intention of ending the show with Season 3, and that the story was always set to continue after Barry's imprisonment. More than that, Hader seems to imply that the writing for Season 4 all started with that imprisonment, and the rest of the season sprouted organically from this unique starting point behind bars.

In any case, it's obvious that the story of "Barry" was never going to end with the Season 3 finale, regardless of how much Larry David would have appreciated that quick, clean ending.