How A Show About Nothing Changed Everything

Book - 2016 | First Simon & Schuster hardcover edition
Average Rating:
Rate this:
Baker & Taylor
An account of the creation of the hit television series describes how comedians Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld dreamed up the idea for an unconventional sitcom and how, despite network skepticism and minimal plotlines, it achieved mainstream success.

& Taylor

An uproarious behind-the-scenes account of the creation of the hit television series describes how comedians Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld dreamed up the idea for an unconventional sitcom over coffee and how in spite of network skepticism and minimal plotlines achieved mainstream success. TV tie-in.

Simon and Schuster
“Her book, as if she were a marine biologist, is a deep dive...Perhaps the highest praise I can give Seinfeldia is that it made me want to buy a loaf of marbled rye and start watching again, from the beginning.” —Dwight Garner, The New York Times Book Review

The hilarious behind-the-scenes story of two guys who went out for coffee and dreamed up Seinfeld—the cultural sensation that changed television and bled into the real world, altering the lives of everyone it touched.

Comedians Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld never thought anyone would watch their silly little sitcom about a New York comedian sitting around talking to his friends. NBC executives didn’t think anyone would watch either, but they bought it anyway, hiding it away in the TV dead zone of summer. But against all odds, viewers began to watch, first a few and then many, until nine years later nearly forty million Americans were tuning in weekly.

In Seinfeldia, acclaimed TV historian and entertainment writer Jennifer Keishin Armstrong celebrates the creators and fans of this American television phenomenon, bringing readers behind-the-scenes of the show while it was on the air and into the world of devotees for whom it never stopped being relevant, a world where the Soup Nazi still spends his days saying “No soup for you!”, Joe Davola gets questioned every day about his sanity, Kenny Kramer makes his living giving tours of New York sights from the show, and fans dress up in Jerry’s famous puffy shirt, dance like Elaine, and imagine plotlines for Seinfeld if it were still on TV.

Publisher: New York : Simon & Schuster, 2016
Edition: First Simon & Schuster hardcover edition
ISBN: 9781476756103
Branch Call Number: 791.4572 ARMSTRON
Characteristics: ix, 307 pages : illustrations (chiefly color) ; 24 cm


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Jan 02, 2019

Great "inside" look at how the show came to be--developed from a one-show pilot that NBC figured would bomb, to a 4-show trial, to 9 years and the most syndicated show of all time. Some interesting and hilarious tidbits that I had not known before (but I admit, I was never a Seinfeld fanatic until later...quite typical of its fans, actually). Larry David is the reluctant hero, and the show's writing and development mirrored his frantic personality. And the "Soup Nazi" (Larry Thomas) gets a prominent section, helping explain how the "Seinfeldia effect" continues to this day.

Jan 01, 2018

The book does not live up to its subtitle: How the show about nothing changed everything.
The author spends too long summarizing the history of the show. The chapters of this history (under bland titles such as "The Players", "The Production", and "The Network") take up most of the book. Throughout the history, there are details about the show that seem to set it apart from its predecessors. Yet she misses many of these opportunities to place the show in its contemporary context, to point out just what was so special about it. As a non-expert on Hollywood and network TV, I am left guessing about the significance and weight of the show's eccentricities and innovations.
Even when she finally gets around to describing the various products and events that have arisen from the show, the author still fails to cogently express how Seinfeld "changed everything". Moreover, the writing lacks flare and rhythm. The show and the ensuing public enthusiasm for it are simply described, in serial form, with very little explanation or even order. If you are accustomed to the articulate exposition and analysis of Malcolm Gladwell or Roman Mars, be prepared to lower your expectations.

Apr 05, 2017

Loved the TV shows did not read the book but find it hilarious-the show itself.

PimaLib_NormS Dec 16, 2016

Delicate genius Jennifer Keishin Armstrong did some research and, yada yada yada, produced a spongeworthy book entitled “Seinfeldia: How a Show About Nothing Changed Everything”. If gifts were exchanged on Festivus, this book is one that would not be re-gifted. I suppose if you have had a tough year, like maybe a bad breaker-upper gave you the “It’s not you, it’s me” routine, or maybe the dingo ate your baby, you could gift this fine book to yourself, not that there’s anything wrong with that. It might be fun to meet your friends at the coffee shop and read it aloud. I would suggest getting there early, or there will be no soup for you. Perhaps reading about one of the best shows in TV history would help you find serenity now. At least, it should help you to be master of your domain, or queen of the castle, whichever the case may be. It doesn’t matter if you are an anti-dentite, double dipping, hipster doofus afflicted by the jimmy leg, Seinfeldia will appeal to anyone who has watched the show. Don’t worry about shrinkage, the book will stay about the same size as a small marble rye. Seinfeldia does a pop-in behind the scenes of Seinfeld, and you can just imagine the author reaching up and pulling back the curtain with her big man hands. And then, Schmoopie, you get a good look at the process that produced a wildly popular show about nothing.

Nov 19, 2016

I'm a huge Seinfeld nerd, so I had to read this book. It was okay. I didn't learn much I didn't already know, but it was nice to add some more trivia to my vault.

Aug 29, 2016

Like a fleshed out version of the IMDB 'trivia' page for the show

Aug 29, 2016

as a fan of Seinfeld, I liked this book.


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number

Subject Headings


Find it at PACL

To Top