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Curb Your Enthusiasm Funniest Moments Ranked

Since its debut in 2000 as a series, "Curb Your Enthusiasm" — which actually began as an hour-long special in 1999 — has been one of the most consistently funniest series on television. There have been 10 seasons of hilarity, with an 11th scheduled to debut in late 2021.

The show is partially improvised and features Larry David, co-creator of "Seinfeld," playing a fictionalized version of himself. The show revolves around Larry and his foibles as he goes about his life, usually oblivious to the damage he is causing until it all comes crashing down on his frequently mocked bald head. Cheryl Hines stars as Larry's ex-wife, Cheryl David, with Jeff Garlin as his manager, Jeff Greene, and Susie Essman as Jeff's sublimely foul-mouthed wife, Susie. Some cast members, such as Ted Danson, also play fictionalized versions of themselves, while others, such as J.B. Smoove, play completely fictional characters.

It's hard to choose the funniest episodes for a show as ridiculously sidesplitting as "Curb Your Enthusiasm," let alone the funniest scenes, but we've taken on that Herculean task to present to you our ranking of the top 14 funniest moments in "Curb Your Enthusiasm" history. Because the episodes and seasons generally build to a farcical conclusion, several scenes are from the season finales and/or episodes' endings, while others crop up early on and set the tone for the tomfoolery to follow.

14. Cheryl's allergic reaction in bed

Long before Season 10 debuted with "Happy New Year," Larry and Cheryl had divorced, and Cheryl had begun dating Ted Danson, whose "Curb Your Enthusiasm" persona is also divorced. Yet, Cheryl keeps getting drawn back into Larry's orbit, and they have an affair.

One night, Cheryl shows up at Larry's unexpectedly in a frisky mood. Larry's sweaty and stinky from a workout, so to quickly freshen up, he borrows talcum powder from Leon. The problem, though? Cheryl is heavily allergic to talcum powder, and in the middle of a sex act, she has to be taken to the hospital because she goes into anaphylactic shock as she coughs up powder. One EMT asks Larry if Cheryl ingested anything else besides the powder. "That's kind of a personal question," he responds. All he can do as the EMTs wheel her into the emergency room is throw up his arms and say a tepid, "So sorry." 

The talcum joke is set up early in the episode when Larry is in the gym bathroom and another patron creates a cloud while powdering himself after a shower. Larry complains about it to Leon, who says he uses talc all the time. Like a lot of "Curb Your Enthusiasm" gags, it seems like a throwaway joke, but the payoff it sets up is very funny indeed. Also, Cheryl getting rashes goes back to the ninth episode of Season 1, "Affirmative Action," when she suffered from dermatitis.

13. Larry gets thrown out of Heaven

In the final episode of Season 5, "The End," Larry converts from Judaism to Christianity because he is told he is adopted and his birth parents were Christian. This news leads him to donate a kidney to his friend, Richard Lewis, a selfless act he'd been trying hard to avoid. He finds out right as he's being wheeled into surgery that he's actually not adopted and fights to get out of it, but it's too late.

Two months later, Richard's on a beach and Larry dies, saying his goodbyes in typical Larry fashion, complaining to Jeff that Jeff lowballed him on a car sale and telling Cheryl he knows she's the one who messed up his DVD storage system. Larry goes to heaven, where he has a lush head of hair and his two guides are played by Dustin Hoffman and Sacha Baron Cohen, and where his mom, played by Bea Arthur, berates him for giving a kidney to Richard and believing the adoption story. Even in heaven, Larry can't stop being Larry, fighting with his guardian angels over his pettiness about the missing DVD cover and his storage system. Eventually, the guides decide Larry's not ready for heaven, sending him back to his body just as he's meeting one of his biggest fans, Marilyn Monroe. Leave it to Larry to Larry his way out of heaven.

12. The crying Jesus picture

Larry's assistant in Season 7's "The Bare Midriff," Maureen, has lost 68 pounds and wears midriff tops because she's proud. Larry and Jerry Seinfeld are uncomfortable, though, because she still has belly fat, but refuses to wear longer shirts. Larry can't fire her, either, because she was recommended by Julia Louis-Dreyfus. Larry loses a contest to Jerry as to who will deal with the situation, and he hassles her about her shirt in his very Larry way until she quits in anger.

This leads to one of the funniest scenes in the series as Larry goes to Maureen's home to apologize and re-hire her after Julia reams both Jerry and him out for what they did. He uses her bathroom, which has a picture of Jesus on the wall. Larry has a "strong flow" from medication he's taking, splashing urine onto the picture, which makes Jesus appear to be crying and which he can't bring himself to clean. Maureen later discovers the "miracle," and she tells Larry she's quitting so she and her mother can buy an RV and tour the country with the picture.

Sadly, she discovers the truth later on when she and her mother catch Larry urinating outside their apartment complex while he was waiting for them. The ridiculous splashing in both instances is funny, but the scene where it splashes on Jesus is sublime.

11. Tabasco's other use

Season 1's "Porno Gil" episode shows how Larry's penchant for getting into situations he'd rather not be in leads to hilariously filthy results. In this case, he accidentally calls Gil Thelander (Bob Odenkirk), an actor he knows from his country club, instead of his friend, John. Gil winds up inviting Larry and Cheryl to a dinner party. 

At the party, Gil is asked to regale his guests with a story from his acting days as Gil Bang, porn star. Larry and Cheryl are already uncomfortable because they thought it was just a regular party, but it's a dinner party, and being an hour late means they have missed the meal and angered Gil's wife. Larry declines an offer of food and reaches for some mango chutney, which Gil made himself. The secret ingredient is tabasco sauce, which prompts knowing laughs from Gil's friends and the revelation of how tabasco sauce was used to keep Gil ready to perform.

What makes it extra funny is Larry and Cheryl's obvious growing discomfort while everyone else is laughing uproariously at Gil's story, as well as Gil's playful tone in retelling it. At the end of the scene, Gil and his other guests adjourn to a different room for dessert and Cheryl demands Larry take them home, to which he says, "Maybe we can stop and pick up some tabasco."

10. Larry gets a rash

In Season 7's "The Table Read," Larry is introduced to Emma, a nine-year-old fan and daughter of one of the "Seinfeld" reunion's producers, who tells Larry she may be late coming back from lunch because she has to take Emma to the doctor. When Larry inquires what's wrong, the woman matter-of-factly tells him Emma has a rash on her private parts — only she uses a slang term for the area, leaving Larry speechless.

Larry being Larry, of course, repeats the line about the little girl's medical issue to several people, who are all mortified. Emma also begins texting Larry as if they're friends, and Larry inadvertently hurts her feelings by using all caps in a response. When Emma's mom begs Larry to make it up to her, he takes them to lunch and he and Emma hug.

The funniest scene, though, is when Larry himself gets a rash and explains to his doctor that he probably got it from a nine-year-old he's "been seeing" with a rash on her ... you know. The doctor, played by Randall Park, looks on in increasing horror as Larry explains the whole story of how they were mad at each other, then they hugged and made up, and how cute she is when they text. The doctor tells Larry he'll be right back, then goes to his receptionist and says quietly, "Call the police." It's too bad the episode ends because Larry repeating the story to the police would be transcendent.

9. Larry gifts Ted a coffee table book of circus performers

Season 6's "The Freak Book" is wall-to-wall laughs, but one scene is freakin' hysterical: when Larry attends Ted Danson's birthday party. At this point in the series, Ted and Mary Steenburgen are still married, as are Larry and Cheryl. Larry tells inappropriate jokes as Ted opens his gifts and is generally obnoxious, to Cheryl's chagrin. He gets excited when Ted opens his gift, a book called "Mondo Freaks" which has pictures of circus performers. Both Ted and Mary are underwhelmed and not a little puzzled by it. 

Larry immediately asks if he can borrow the book briefly to show to Jeff. Jeff and Larry then proceed to leaf through the book, laughing uproariously and distracting Ted as he continues opening his presents. To make it worse, Larry's limo driver, who he invited into the party because he felt bad about the guy having to sit outside waiting, stumbles out drunk and tells Ted, "Happy birthday, Becker!" Larry is thrown out.

The picture that makes Larry and Jeff laugh the loudest, by the way, is one with a guy with three penises, as Larry loudly exclaims when looking at it. The book makes another inappropriate appearance later in the episode when Larry drives John McEnroe to a party. They too look through the book laughing hysterically and get thrown out.

8. The chef with Tourette syndrome

Season 3's "The Grand Opening" has several laugh-out-loud moments, including Cheryl getting stuck outside the car in a car wash, but the funniest scene comes courtesy of a chef who has Tourette syndrome.

Larry has accidentally injured an important restaurant critic's hands. The investors Larry and Jeff have started a restaurant with implore Larry to apologize to the critic, who refers him to a chef, as Larry has fired the chef they already had. Larry is pleased with the hire, especially as he sees a number he assumes is a tattoo on the chef's arm, mistaking him for a Holocaust survivor. It doesn't take long for Larry, Jeff, and the other investors to realize the guy has Tourette, the cinematic kind that involves outbursts of extremely vulgar swearing. Worse, the restaurant has an open kitchen, which means the patrons will see and hear the chef.

Cut to the opening of the restaurant. Everything is going well until two things happen: the chef rubs the numbers off his arm because they were his lottery numbers and he kept losing, and the inevitable unleashing of a loud string of obscenities. The patrons go dead silent until Larry unleashes his own string of profanity, then Jeff, then Michael York — one of the investors — and so on until the patrons also do it and everyone breaks out laughing. It's a symphony of crassness that the patrons assume is part of the restaurant's ambiance — and it's a riot.

7. Joey doesn't know his own, um, strength

In the Season 10 finale, "The Spite Store," Chaz Bono stars as Joey, Marty Funkhouser's recently-transitioned son. Joey wants a new job and asks Larry if he can work at Latte Larry's, the spite store Larry opened to take down his rival, Mocha Joe. 

One day at the country club, Larry discovers that Joey has a rather large and impressive penis. What follows is a series of jokes about Joey not realizing just how large his member is, and he keeps knocking things over with it, including Larry's watch, which Joey does not notice. But the funniest of the Joey jokes is when Joey offers to close up Latte Larry's so Leon can leave. As Joey changes in the back room, he knocks over a self-heating mug that was first shown in episode 6 of the season, "The Surprise Party." Per usual, Joey doesn't even notice what he's done. Unfortunately, the mug is on and falls into a box of papers, which later ignite from the heat and burn down both Latte Larry's and Mocha Joe's coffee shops. It's a ridiculous joke, but it has extreme consequences which amplify the laughs produced.

6. Greg loves swastikas

Frequently, the funniest scenes in any given "Curb Your Enthusiasm" episode are at the end, when every thread in the episode comes together in one explosive joke. One of those is in Season 8's finale, "Larry Vs. Michael J. Fox," and involves a young boy, Greg, the son of Larry's current girlfriend. Larry gives Greg a sewing machine because he realizes Greg is gay and knows he loves fashion. Greg also likes Susie, and uses the machine to make her a pillow sham ... with a swastika on it. 

However, the funniest scene in the episode — and possibly in the series — is the setup to getting Greg that sewing machine. Larry mindlessly doodles in a magazine while waiting for his girlfriend to get ready for their date. Greg introduces himself to Larry and takes an interest in Larry's doodle, which involves turning some guy in an ad into Hitler.

Greg is curious, so Larry explains Hitler in kid's terms, which prompts Greg to declare, "I would kick his butt!" The swastika also catches Greg's eye because of the "lines." He asks Larry for a swastika for his birthday and believes they should be sold "in every gift store in New York." Larry says, "I don't think Jews would like that," to which Greg guilelessly responds, "Get a life, Jews!" The sweet-faced boy, played adorably by Eddie Schweighardt, clearly doesn't understand, and Larry's bemused reaction deepens the humor of the scene.

5. Cheryl doesn't respect wood

One of the funniest scenes in "Curb Your Enthusiasm" actually bridges two seasons. In the final episode of Season 7, "Seinfeld," Larry is annoyed because it seems like Cheryl and Jason Alexander are starting to grow close beyond their acting relationship in the "Seinfeld" reunion. But what gets him really riled up is being accused by Julia Louis-Dreyfus of leaving a water ring on her table, which has been in her family "for generations." Larry denies the accusation because he respects wood. He then goes on a quest to discover who left the ring. He's also on a quest to repair his relationship with Cheryl.

Cheryl quits her role and visits Larry, who is watching the reunion special and saw that Cheryl was replaced. Cheryl wants to get back together and leans in for a kiss when Larry notices her iced drink from Mocha Joe's leaving a ring on his table. He accuses her of leaving the ring on Julia's table and wants her to call Julia to confess, but she refuses. Larry calls Julia as Cheryl shakes her head. In the Season 8 premiere, "The Divorce," the scene repeats from the moment Cheryl leans in to kiss Larry and he sees the iced drink on the table. As he calls Julia, Cheryl angrily says she doesn't know why she came there, leaving in a huff. Larry's inability to let anything go results in divorce — and laughter.

4. Larry's petty Halloween rules

Once again, Larry's pettiness results in funny consequences, and as usual, at his own expense. It's Halloween as Season 2's "Trick or Treat" begins, and Larry has a bee in his bonnet about teenage trick-or-treaters, especially ones who don't bother to put on a costume.

Two entitled, un-costumed teenaged girls show up at Larry's on Halloween and give a half-hearted "Trick or treat" in expectation of a candy haul. Larry questions their ages and wants to know where their costumes are. They argue and the girls demand candy. They disparage Larry, calling him "grandpa," and when he says he's not giving them anything, they call him an a-hole and swear at him as he closes his door. Cut to the next morning with Cheryl screaming "Larry!" outside. His house has been toilet papered and egged. Cheryl is livid because of what Larry's pettiness has wrought. Worse, when they go back in the house, we see that the girls have spray-painted "BALD A**HOLE" in bright yellow capital letters on his door. Larry calls the police and claims he's the victim of a hate crime because they're picking on him for being bald. It's not the last time we'll see Larry claiming his baldness is a protected class — or him being called a bald a-hole, for that matter — but it's one of the funniest.

3. Larry's holiday card with Loretta's family

Throughout the sixth season of "Curb Your Enthusiasm," we get to know Loretta Black and her family, as Cheryl convinces Larry to help them after a hurricane. The family includes Leon, played by J.B. Smoove, and more importantly for Larry's romantic interests, Loretta, played by Vivica A. Fox. Larry's also shown dealing with racism — and because it's Larry David, it's generally outrageous.

Everything comes to a head in the season finale, "The Bat Mitzvah." At Sammi Greene's title event, Larry, separated from Cheryl, asks Loretta to dance, and they realize they are attracted to each other. A montage of Larry and Loretta's romance follows, including Loretta defending Larry to Susie so forcefully that Susie is flabbergasted. The last image of the episode is a photo greeting card that says, "Happy Holidays! Larry & The Blacks."

Why is that montage and image so funny? Not all of Larry's friends know Loretta, let alone her last name, and given everything that Larry's done and said regarding race in the season — especially in the eighth episode, "The N-Word," which involves Larry trying to relate a shocking incident he overheard and constantly repeating the actual N-word in front of Loretta's family — most everyone who receives the card is going to misunderstand the meaning of "The Blacks." We know how Larry's friends will react to the card, but as usual, Larry is oblivious to the implications. It's a perfect capper to a stellar season.

2. Who is the real Survivor?

In the Season 4 episode "The Survivor," Larry hosts a dinner party prior to his 10th anniversary vow renewal ceremony with Cheryl. Larry's rabbi asks if he can bring a guest who's a "survivor" and who really wants to meet Larry. Larry makes an assumption and asks Cheryl if he should invite his father's friend, Solly, a Holocaust survivor, so the two men can discuss their "shared experience."

Turns out the rabbi, who has a habit of misleading statements, brings Colby Donaldson from the reality show, "Survivor." At first, Larry is puzzled to meet Colby until the rabbi says he's from the television show. When Solly shows up, Larry has to explain who Colby is, which also puzzles the poor older man.

The funniest scene occurs during dinner, as Colby regales the guests with his adventures in Australia competing on the show. He talks about all the deadly snakes and how harrowing it was. Solly says that Colby's experience is nothing like his, and Colby retorts that he and his group had no snacks and he couldn't work out because they didn't have a gym. Everyone else is aghast. Colby says, "Have you even seen the show?" and Solly retorts, "Did you ever see our show? It was called the Holocaust!" The two men wind up yelling "I'm a survivor!" back and forth until Solly knocks a gravy boat onto Larry. It's the best kind of cringe humor the show excels at.

1. Larry's Sophie's Choice

The funniest scene in "Curb Your Enthusiasm" happens in "Palestinian Chicken," the third episode of the eighth season. Every time someone shares a GIF of Larry looking indecisive, it's almost guaranteed to be the one from this scene.

Throughout the episode, Larry cements his status as a "social assassin," but more disastrously, he starts an affair with a woman, Shara, at Al-Abbas Best Original Chicken, which he and Jeff refer to as "the Palestinian chicken place." The restaurant is so successful that Al-Abbas plans to open up another one next to Goldblatt's Deli, which does not sit right with Larry's friends, who plan to rally in protest.

Shara becomes interested in Larry after she sees him fighting with Marty Funkhouser, played by the late, great Bob Einstein, who Larry has convinced to try out Al-Abbas before he protests it. Larry wants Marty to take off his yarmulke before they go inside, which impresses Shara, though she misunderstands the scene. They start a hot affair that consists of her screaming out all sorts of anti-Semitic things in bed, which doesn't bother Larry because the sex is so good. Larry eventually winds up standing between the two groups of protestors, each beckoning him to join their side, with Marty and Susie appealing to Larry as a fellow Jew and Shara offering him a threesome with her sister. Larry stands in the middle, clearly weighing his options in his head. Cue the audience cackling and fade to black.