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The Twilight of Seinfeld: A Postscript

Folks, there's no easy way to say this. It appears we've been snookered.

The other day, our own Ben Boychuk breathlessly revealed some news that we thought was of vital import to you, our readers -- the last scene for the last episode of Seinfeld airing this Thursday. Given the monumental nature of Boychuk's reportage, we decided to go ahead and print his article, foregoing our usual rigorous fact-checking. The people's need to know, we decided, was more important.

But, after fielding calls all day from angry readers, NBC attorneys and opera scholars, we've discovered -- much to our considerable chagrin -- that what we printed was not actually the last episode of Seinfeld, but, in fact, the last act of "Götterdämmerung" by Richard Wagner.

Which, come to think it, explains why the scene didn't seem as sharp as most Seinfeld episodes.

After about the fiftieth call pointing out the similarities between the Seinfeld article and the fourth part of Wagner's "Ring" cycle, we angrily confronted Boychuk. At first, he denied the allegations, making several hurtful comments about all of our shortcomings in the process. But then, after we discovered Boychuk's copy of "Götterdämmerung" with the names Siegfried and Brunnhilde crossed out and the names Jerry and Elaine crudely penciled in, our suspicions were confirmed.

After we managed to beat a confession out of Boychuk using oranges stuffed into knee-socks, he tried to explain that he was hoping to satirize the tremendous hype surrounding the final Seinfeld with a wry-if-subtle commentary about the hysteria over the show's content. And what better way to do that, he explained, then by parodying the most popular sitcom on TV today with a 19th century German opera few of our readers have probably ever seen?

So we beat him with the oranges some more.

We'd like to apologize to you folks for wasting your valuable time. We'd like to apologize to NBC and Seinfeld for spreading vicious lies and rumors about their fine, fine work. We'd like to apologize to Richard Wagner for any disrespect shown to his entire "Der Ring Des Nibelungen." And we would like to assure you all that Boychuk will be suitably punished -- first, with more beatings, and later, with repeated viewings of Profiler.

But most importantly, we'd like to promise, on a stack of Bibles, that we will never, ever resort to such shoddy tactics and questionable reporting again. We stake our reputations on that assurance.

Unless, of course, we have trouble coming up with filler. Then, all bets are off.


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