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Running Gags in Seinfeld

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This is a list of the many running gags in Seinfeld.

ElaineEdit

  • Elaine exclaims "Get OUT!" and pushes someone down when excited, surprised, or trying to express thanks.
  • Elaine is a terrible dancer, and her public efforts at this lead to derision and merriment.
  • Elaine is very liberal, and is against fur, and pro-choice on the abortion issue. In "The Stranded" Elaine identifies as a vegetarian, though she does eat fish occasionally.
  • Elaine, though considered more intelligent than the other three characters, is also known to misuse words. Among them is "vomitorium."

GeorgeEdit

  • George refers to himself as "the idiot," and in The Apartment, "Constanza: Lord of the Idiots!"
  • Jerry continually refers to George's similarities to Biff Loman from the famous Arthur Miller play Death of a Salesman, especially in the third season.
  • George is obsessive about minor details, especially the possibility of someone not liking him.
  • George will go to any length to prove a point, no matter how minor.
  • George is a prolific liar, often posing as an architect and referring to himself or a fictional friend as the importer/exporter Art Vandelay.
  • During the series' run, George began occasionally referring to himself in the third person when angry, adapting the habit from Jimmy in The Jimmy. ("George is getting upset!")
  • George has a fear of being diagnosed with lupus, which he expresses by asking people, "Lupus! Is it lupus?"
  • George exclaims "I'm busting, baby!" when happy or excited.
  • When denied service or help from people, George often screams "We're living in a society you know!" back at them.
  • George loves velvet, and often states that he would drape himself in it "if it were socially acceptable". This dream came true in Season 6's "The Doodle."
  • When talking about relationships, if it is not going well George will shout "I'm out!" If it is going well, he will shout "I'm In!"
  • George keeps accusing his father of something ridiculous to make a point, like "My father's gay" in “The Outing”, when Jerry says, "I have many gay friends."

JerryEdit

  • Jerry continually makes references to superheroes, especially Superman (his favorite). According to legend, every episode containes a visual, thematic, or audible Superman reference. This is actually only true of about 75% of the episodes.
  • Jerry frequently finds something unfavorable about his dates, much to the dismay of Elaine, who thinks Jerry is superficial.
  • Jerry responds to a crazy idea by sarcastically saying, "Oh, I like this idea."
  • Whenever someone suffers a calamity of some sort, major or minor, Jerry says dismissively, "That's a shame."
  • Jerry always greets Newman with the words "Hello...Newman" spoken as contemptuously as possible.
  • When George sometimes calls with an urgent request, Jerry replies, "Who is this?"
  • Jerry sometimes in a whiny voice says that he doesn't want to be something, for example:
    • "I don't wanna be a pirate!" (from The Puffy Shirt S5E2 - also, in a continuation of the gag, Kramer (wearing an eyepatch, after Jerry tells him he looks like a pirate) says "Oh, I wanna be a pirate!")
    • "I don't wanna be a Cowboy!" (from The Mom & Pop Store S6E8)
    • "I don't wanna be Switzerland!" (from The Label Maker S6E12)
    • "I don't want to be a 32!" (from The Sponge S7E9)
  • Jerry has cleanliness habits. He gets paranoid when he sees Poppie in the bathroom in The Pie, who doesn't wash his hands, and in The Pothole, when he dropped his girlfriend's toothbrush in the toilet. This habit has caused Jerry to be accused of being a nazi in The Limo and gay in The Outing.

KramerEdit

  • Kramer enters Jerry's apartment without knocking, and the door is almost always unlocked. Kramer has been seen entering Jerry's apartment over 380 times throughout the show's 180-episode run.
  • Kramer treats Jerry's apartment as his. As he put it, "Do you realize how much time I waste in this apartment?"
  • Kramer takes things such as food out of Jerry's apartment back to his apartment.
  • Kramer often invents huge schemes to make millions, which ultimately fall flat.
  • Kramer always says "Giddy Up!" when he likes an idea.
  • Kramer impersonates a fictitious doctor named Dr. Martin Van Nostrand. Van Nostrand was first "seen" in The Pilot, Part 1 in which Kramer uses a pseudonym to get into an audition.
  • Kramer tries to get his coffee table book published. (Season 5)
  • Kramer uses strange nicknames for George, which he comes up with on the spot.
  • Cosmo Kramer is the most mysterious of the four, to the point that his first name wasn't said in the first five seasons. He also has some strange friends outside of the main group, including Bob Sacamano, who is never seen.
  • Kramer enjoys many kinds of fruit, and is very particular about their selection. Kramer was banned from a produce store in The Mango and is particularly excited about the availability of Mackinaw peaches in The Doodle. Elaine lists Kramer's fondness for fruit as one of his positive qualities at a bachelor auction in The Barber.
  • Takes Jerry's sarcastic remarks seriously. "Now, where's that tool shed of yours?"
  • Kramer often exclaims "Oh Mama!" when something painful or unfortunate happens to him, such as when passing a kidney stone in The Gymnast.
  • Kramer is known for his random sound effects and gesticulations, persumably as a side effect from a kick in the head by Crazy Joe Davola.

Others Edit

  • "It's go time" - Originally said by the Mandelbaum family in The English Patient, this phrase is occasionally used later, first in The Blood when Izzy Mandelbaum returns, and again in The Yada Yada when Mickey charges Kramer during an argument.
  • David Puddy's "Yeah, that's right" responses.

See alsoEdit


Characters Culture of the Seinfeld Universe
Main Characters:
Jerry Seinfeld | George Costanza | Elaine Benes | Cosmo Kramer
Rochelle, Rochelle | Festivus | Master of Your Domain | Regifting | Prognosis Negative | Sack Lunch | Chunnel
Related to Jerry: Episodes
Helen Seinfeld | Morty Seinfeld | Uncle Leo | Kenny Bania | Sally Weaver | Tim Whatley List of Seinfeld episodes | The Seinfeld Chronicles
Related to George: Other
Estelle Costanza | Frank Costanza | Susan Ross | Mr. Wilhelm | Mr. Kruger | Lloyd Braun List of Seinfeld references to actual people | Running gags in Seinfeld
Related to Elaine:
J. Peterman | David Puddy | Mr. Lippman | Justin Pitt | Sue Ellen Mischke
Related to Kramer:
Newman | Mickey Abbott | Jackie Chiles | Bob Sacamano | Babs Kramer
Other:
Soup Nazi | "Crazy" Joe Davola | Little Jerry Seinfeld | Minor characters in Seinfeld

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