Seinfeld: 10 Episodes That’ll Turn Your Friends Into Fans

Watching any of these episodes is bound to make devoted fans out of people who have (somehow) never watched Seinfeld before.

Although Seinfeld’s finale aired in 1998, the series continues to have a notable presence in the 21st century. It won dozens of awards and has become an eternal landmark in the comedy genre—Seinfeld arguably did more to reconfigure the modern structure of the sitcom than any other ’90s program.

The show’s writers were so innovative in their conceptualizations that it is nearly impossible to identify a terrible, or even mediocre, episode. On the other hand, the greatest Seinfeld episodes lend themselves to enduring quotability and pop-cultural impact; in fact, watching any of these episodes is bound to make devoted fans out of people who have (somehow) never watched Seinfeld before.

10 The Subway — A Satirical Homage To New York City

New York is the invisible fifth character in Seinfeld, and few episodes pay homage to the city as much as “The Subway.” Jerry, Elaine, George, and Kramer all take the subway with different destinations in mind, but none of them actually manage to finish what they set out to do.

It doesn’t matter in the slightest, though, because their one-day journeys are filled with more adventure than most real-life people experience in a year. “The Subway” ends as arbitrarily as it begins, giving audiences a truly delightful and equally unexpected form of closure.

9 The Bizarro Jerry — Jerry, Kramer, & George Meet Their Mirror Selves

Elaine is at the center of “The Bizarro Jerry”—although extremely pleased that her ex-boyfriend Kevin and she can stay in touch after their break-up, she quickly discovers that he and his friends are the exact opposite of George, Kramer, and Jerry.

Unfortunately, Elaine proves herself to be a tad too annoying for Kevin, Gene, and Feldman, and is eventually forced out of the group, much to her disappointment. “The Bizarro Jerry” is a reference to Superman, an element that reappears in Seinfeld on multiple occasions.

8 The Pez Dispenser — Elaine’s Laughter Causes Problems In George’s Relationship

George is over the moon to be dating a talented pianist, but his joy turns to shock when Elaine ruins Noel’s recital by guffawing loudly and obnoxiously. Although her inappropriate reaction is triggered by Jerry placing a Tweety Bird Pez dispenser on her thigh, Noel claims that the grating sound of laughter has been carved forever on her brain.

As a result, George is terrified that his new girlfriend will dump him, but he manages to secure the upper hand by dumping her first. Unfortunately, situations rarely play out smoothly for him, and “The Pez Dispenser” is an excellent example as to why.

7 The Opposite — George’s Life Takes A 180-Degree Turn For The Better

“The Opposite” becomes a turning point for George Costanza as he decides to go against his overpowering gut intuition for the first time in his life, only to achieve unprecedented success as a consequence.

Every action he performs ends up having an incredibly positive effect, even landing him a dream job with the New York Yankees. Elaine’s luck diminishes in exact proportion with George’s prosperity, prompting Jerry to note that their equations are simply rebalancing themselves.

6 The Little Kicks — Elaine’s Memorable Dance Moves Take Center Stage

One of Elaine’s most memorable moments occurs in “The Little Kicks,” showcasing her incredibly inept dancing skills in front of the entire office.

She is desperate to restore her colleagues’ respect, but her dance is accidentally recorded at the end of a bootleg movie, allowing for more people to observe (and consequently mock) what George refers to as a “full-body dry heave set to music.” In the end, Jerry’s hilarious bootlegging plotline converges with Elaine’s with pitch-perfect Seinfeld harmony.

5 The Contest — Widely Acknowledged As One Of The Best Seinfeld Episodes

“The Contest” is especially remarkable for handling a relatively risqué topic without referring to the subject directly whatsoever. The fab four agree to place a bet on their respective self-control (or lack thereof), promising each other that whoever remains “master of [their] domain” would win the pool of money.

Unsurprisingly, Kramer is the first one to lose, but the other three hold on to their dignity with great difficulty. “The Contest” is widely acknowledged as among the greatest episodes of Seinfeld to date, earning critical praise as well as a number of TV awards.

4 The Barber — The Power Struggle Between Two Barbers Is Resolved By Edward Scissorhands

The relationship between a man and his barber is stretched to exaggeratedly comic proportions when Jerry tries to secretly shift allegiances from his usual hairdresser Enzo to the latter’s far more talented nephew, Gino.

The two barbers are locked in a power struggle over their customer, one that is finally resolved when they both watch Edward Scissorhands together. Jerry’s childish hair, Newman’s oily subterfuge, Kramer’s bachelor auction, and George’s workplace silliness all come together to make “The Barber” a spectacular episode.

3 The Chinese Restaurant — The Entire Episode Takes Place In Real-Time

“The Chinese Restaurant” takes place entirely outside the physical limits of Jerry’s iconic apartment, the first Seinfeld episode to do so. In fact, Kramer is conspicuously absent as his character had been designed as a shut-in (a feature later altered to expand the narrative possibilities available).

Jerry, George, and Elaine are trapped in the waiting room of a local Chinese restaurant, where they are slowly devoured by hunger because the maître d’ inexplicably refuses to seat them. “The Chinese Restaurant” originally garnered negative responses from NBC, but Seinfeld‘s sitcom power was too strong to fail at this point.

2 The Library — Jerry Is Embroiled In A Conflict With An Overeager Library Officer

“The Library” is packed with wacky unbelievable characters—Lieutenant Bookman, a library investigations officer, harangues Jerry over an unreturned Tropic of Cancer from 1971, delivering lines of dialogue reminiscent of hardboiled detective novels (each with an absurd twist).

Interestingly, this is the only episode to flashback on Jerry and George’s high school life, deriving its comedy from having the adult actors play their adolescent selves. The fate of Jerry’s Tropic of Cancer is eventually revealed, and absolutely nobody sees it coming.

1 The Marine Biologist — George & Kramer’s Plotlines Intersect With Devastating Brilliance

Jerry waxes eloquent about “Golden Boy,” a t-shirt that has been with him long enough to achieve special status, while Elaine’s faux pas about Leo Tolstoy and constantly beeping organizer land her career in dire straits.

However, the bulk of the humor in “The Marine Biologist” comes from the seamless intersection between George’s attempt to impress an old college friend and Kramer whacking scores of Titleist golf balls into the ocean.

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