Seinfeld: Season 7

Now that Michael Richards has finally found notoriety beyond "Kramer” — albeit as a reckless racist from a stand-up tantrum — it will be interesting to see how the lovable hipster dufus he played holds up in the eyes of such scrutiny. But if there was a season of Seinfeld to save his reputation it’s this one. Season seven won the series an Emmy for best comedy and the proof is in these 24 episodes. However, for many it was also the end of an era, as it led to a departure for executive producer/writer Larry David, and ended with the notorious finale entitled "The Invitations.” Solving George’s problem (aka his engagement), the writers engineered a cruel but hilarious exit for his fiancée Susan — death from an allergic reaction to invitation adhesive. This took the program into a darker, cavalier direction and unleashed more of a surreal, no-holds-barred approach to writing in the remaining years. Needless to say, it was the most watched episode of the series to that point. It’s a rock-solid two-four though, with most episodes so well-known that all it takes are a couple of words to illustrate them: dogknapping, "Bosco,” Ramon the pool guy, a marble rye and a horse named Rusty, creepy doll, calzone and of course, the Soup Nazi. As we’ve come to expect, Jerry has packed this volume with all the bonuses the vaults could offer. "Queen of the Castle” reflects on Elaine and how important it was to bring in a female character. Not in the original concept (a waitress was considered at first), Elaine was slowly worked into the fold but not without complications in launching the character. She brought a needed element of mixed company because of her sexuality but no doubt acted like one of the boys most of the time. It’s hard to deny that she was the key ingredient in the ensemble’s chemistry. "Larry David’s Farewell” examines the impact the man made leaving after 134 episodes (though he stayed on as George Steinbrenner). He talks of the steps he went through like he was attending AA: sorrow, regret, anger then acceptance. As well, his cameos are compiled in a neat montage — voicing Newman early on, acting as the crazy spaceman in silver yelling on late night TV and Frank Costanza’s friend with the cape, to name a few. Along with the always neat features "Sein-Imation” and "Yada, Yada, Yada,” among others, more of Jerry’s stand-up is included, sharing his amusing insight on milk expiration dates and male bathroom "germaphobia.” (Sony)