October 23, 2000 12:00 PM

HBO (Sundays; check listings)

Show of the week

If you’ve been feeling comedy-deprived since Seinfeld went out of production, you’ll be excited—in moderation, of course—about this new effort from Larry David, co-creator of the Show About Nothing. Like David’s 1999 HBO special, which bore the same inspired title, Curb Your Enthusiasm has an unhurried, improvisational style that may cause restlessness. And David, playing himself as a cranky pessimist, is a determinedly unlovable star. But stay with the 10-week series (premiering Oct. 15) and you’ll be ensnared by his sly humor.

Though this is far from an average sitcom, the situations are key to the comedy. Trouble begins with a small misunderstanding or a seemingly harmless deception, and gradually David maneuvers himself into an embarrassing corner. Along with his wife (played by Cheryl Hines) and manager (Jeff Garlin), guest celebrities such as Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen (see the priceless Oct. 22 episode) are drawn into the confusion of David’s world. It’s a peculiar place you won’t want to leave.

Bottom Line: Go ahead, enthuse

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