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Jerry Seinfeld At Beacon Theater, Thursday, October 4th, 2012 Reviewed

If nothing else Jerry Seinfeld's stand-up routine at the Beacon Thursday night proved that "Star 69" jokes never go out of style. "Did nobody at AT&T go to Junior High?" he wondered allowed, in something like shock and amazement, while questioning the utility of the late 1980s feature. Very funny, and you can understand why he brought it out of mothballs. None of his cellphone jokes are remotely as funny.

Collin Quinn, the SNL alumni, performed a somewhat better 15 minute set. So topical, he riffed on Wednesday nights Presidential Debate, connecting Romney's livelier performance to Joseph Smith being from the area, a funnier concept than Al Gore's Obama was light headed. Equally good, was a suggestion that suicidal people be sent to the Middle East with parcels under their arms and that New Yorkers are still very rude: "That ice cream? Where did you get it?"  Collin asked, portraying an inquisitive native on the streets of New York. 

One of Jerry's best bits was an explanation of how "sucks" and great" are the same word. You have an ice cream cone and it drops on the floor. That sucks, but you say "oh great". But while the  King Of Observational Comedy had his moments, Jerry really wasn't;t really very sharp Thursday night. An opening riff about people getting to the theater and their seats was an extension of Richard Pryor's uproarious similar bit. And really pretty terrible.

Jerry went far far too long on marriage and he was surprisingly bland on the subject. Though calling  men highly educated dogs isn't bad, except for a bit where he compares marriage to a gameshow, Jerry  takes Movies for $200", his wife takes "8 minute conversations we had years ago at 3am in the morning in bed for the win." Much, much worse was his observations on children. Perhaps the single unfunniest thing he has ever done.

Oh, and that when you are "in" you want to go "out"? Surely everybody remembers a variant from Seinfeld's first season. Speaking of which, for the encore Jerry took questions and he was better at improv. He also told us his three fave Seinfeld episodes. Kramer hits a golf ball at a whale, George accidentally kills his fiancee with cheap envelopes and Jerry steals a a loaf of marble bread from an old woman.

Jerry himself, in a snazzy gray suit and a short cropped haircut, looks great. He never stops moving, back and forward, occasionally acting out schtick, using his vocal inflections, the high pitched exasperation, the "Neumann" snarl, as shorthand, and he has an easy, not very egotistical charm, though an "Everybody's life sucks… but mine sucks less than yours".

We have a lot of affection for Jerry, and he has been doing it for a long long time. I laughed out loud a number of times, and for 75 minutes… you know, that's a long time. Could be worse.

Grade: B

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