Only 15% Of People Really Know Seinfeld.. How Will You Do?


While it has been described by some (including its own characters) as “a show about nothing,” Seinfeld has also been described as “the greatest sitcom ever made” and “the number one reason the ‘90s ruled.” The Writers Guild of America have ranked it the second best written TV series of all time. Perhaps there’s a correlation between a brilliant, ground-breaking, and influential TV series and the subject matter of nothing, but it’s unlikely. Seinfeld was so great and so popular because it was really the first show that wasn’t about beautiful, good-hearted people who learn from their mistakes and fall in love with each other. In Seinfeld, nobody learns any lessons. Its distinct lack of sentimentality is thanks to a policy created by the show’s co-creator and main writer Larry David: “No hugging, no learning.” These four characters were going to do and say terrible things and get screwed over and shrug it off and then keep doing those kinds of things every week without ever learning that they’re wrong or immoral, until the show just ended. And, strangely, we saw a dark corner of ourselves in these people, and that’s why we all tuned in for nine years and still tune in for reruns to this day. It’s an incredible show with a huge fan base – but how well do you actually know it? See if you can answer these questions to find out!

Question 1

What did George find in the whale's blowhole?

"The Marine Biologist" is one of the most classic episodes of Seinfeld ever made. It is best remembered for its hilarious ending, in which George recounts in the coffee shop when he was called upon to save a beached whale. A huge wave swept him up right on top of the great fish (mammal, whatever), and he reached into the blowhole to pull out the obstruction. He then reveals what it was, revealing that Kramer put it there. What was it?

Question 2

What does Jerry always say to Newman?

One of the many quotable Seinfeld catchphrases was spoken by Jerry Seinfeld to his neighbor and arch nemesis, Newman, every time he opened his apartment door to see him. It might seem as though this line was spoken in every single episode of the show, or at least most of them. But in fact, that line was uttered just 16 times throughout the entire series. Only 16! That was all it took to become ingrained in the show's lexicon. But what was the line?

Question 3

Which character is based on Larry David?

When NBC asked Jerry Seinfeld to write a sitcom for them, he enlisted the help of his good friend Larry David. The pair are like honey and vinegar, and it’s that combination that helped to make the show truly great. They made a show that would reflect their lives. Obviously the character based on Jerry is the Jerry character, who he played. But Larry was only in the show in cameo appearances, and did not play the character who was based on him, nor was it named after him. Who was it?

Question 4

Who won "the contest"?

TV Guide lists "The Contest" as not just the best episode of Seinfeld, but the best episode of television of all time. That's some high honor for an episode about treating your body like it's an amusement park. Its Emmy winning story revolves around the gang making a bet to see who can go the longest without, well, you know. It isn't actually revealed who won the contest in the episode, but it is revealed in the controversial finale. The official winner lied about it, making the winner by default...who?

Question 5

What is the name of the coffee shop the gang hangs out at?

It seems that every popular sitcom of the 1990s had its own signature fictional coffee shop where the characters would hang out every single day of their lives. In Friends, it was Central Perk. In Frasier, it was Café Nervosa. In Buffy (okay, not a sitcom), it was Espresso Pump. Seinfeld had its own, and despite the exterior blatantly saying, “Tom’s Restaurant” on it for nine seasons, that’s not the name of the place. What is the name of the fictional coffee shop in which Jerry, George, Elaine, and Kramer would meet up almost every day?

Question 6

Which restaurant owner did the gang fear?

Apart from the white supremacist leader who George pretended to be in "The Limo," which 'Nazi' was the gang afraid of? He wasn't a real Nazi, he was simply a business proprietor who would refuse business to customers who didn't abide by his strict rules. The episode is considered to be a Seinfeld classic, because it’s such a wonderfully absurdist and silly idea. It was based on the episode’s writer’s nickname for the guy who served him lunch in New York. Actor Larry Thomas based his portrayal of the character on Omar Sharif’s accent in Lawrence of Arabia. But what did the gang call him?

Question 7

What disaster did George's apartment rival survive?

In one of the funniest latter day Seinfeld episodes, George is trying to get himself an apartment and going up against a survivor of a terrible disaster. George doesn't think the disaster was so bad, and instead thinks he's been through worse. So, he goes before the apartment building's board of directors and tells them his stories of shrinkage and other misfortunes from past Seinfeld episodes. This has the board in tears. But of course, George still doesn't get the apartment. But what disaster did his rival survive?

Question 8

Complete the quote: “These pretzels are making me...” what?

Seinfeld was a show that coined or popularized a lot of popular terms and phrases that made their way into the lexicon of popular culture and are still uttered in everyday life to this day. Things like “Yada, yada, yada,” and “No soup for you!” and “Not that there’s anything wrong with that!” (whenever you say anything that could be misconstrued as homophobic), “re-gifter,” “A Festivus for the rest of us,” “double-dipping” (which DID come from Seinfeld, contrary to what some people think), and “sponge-worthy.” This is referred to as Seinlanguage. So, complete this one: “These pretzels are making me...” what?

Question 9

What was wrong with Elaine's Christmas card?

In the episode "The Pick," Jerry is caught scratching his nose by his model girlfriend, who perceives it to be a pick, and it leads to the downfall of their relationship. But also in that episode, Kramer helps Elaine to make a Christmas card to send to everyone she knows, including her little nephew, and there's something wrong with it that gets her in a lot of trouble. So, what exactly was wrong with this card that it caused such a fuss?

Question 10

Which comedy duo is Jerry and George’s banter based on?

The dialogue style of Seinfeld may have influenced writers in all walks of comedy and changed the genre’s landscape forever, and even inspired Quentin Tarantino’s writing of the banter between Samuel L. Jackson and John Travolta in Pulp Fiction, but it’s not wholly original. It’s not a style that Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David invented from scratch. They themselves were influenced by a classic comedy duo of yesteryear who used to bicker in the same manner. But who were they?

Question 11

What name does the Chinese waiter call George?

In the bottle episode “The Chinese Restaurant,” George is anxiously waiting for a call from a girl. When she finally calls and asks for “Costanza,” the Chinese waiter shouts out a completely different name, to which George obviously doesn’t answer because it’s not his name, and then the waiter tells the woman he’s not there and hangs up. Needless to say, George is pretty irate (and albeit a little confused) when he finds out what happened. What name did the waiter shout out?

Question 12

Which serial killer did Elaine's boyfriend share a name with?

In one Seinfeld episode, Elaine is dating a guy who shares his name with an infamous and notorious serial killer who had been haunting the streets of New York City. So, to avoid confusion with this killer, Elaine asks him to change his name. He’s resistant at first, but then she starts making suggestions and he gets into it and makes his own suggestions (which she turns down, like Remy). But one of the names Elaine suggests is OJ, which would be the name of one of the most famous alleged killers of all time one year later. But which murderer did her boyfriend share his name with?

Question 13

What are Jerry’s parents’ names?

Jerry’s parents feature in the show quite a lot. Occasionally they’ll come to New York to stay with Jerry and occasionally he’ll go down to Florida to their retirement village to stay with them on their horribly uncomfortable sofa bed. On stage, he often jokes about their retired life in Florida, but he clearly loves them. He spent the biggest paycheck he ever got for a show on a Cadillac for his dad (although, in fairness, it did end up ruining his life). They’re played by Barney Martin and Liz Sheridan. What are their names?

Question 14

What occupation does George like pretending he has?

George doesn’t necessarily like doing things; he prefers to lie and pretend and receive praise for the things he doesn’t want to do. See, if he were a heart surgeon, the joy would not come from saving lives and having an amazing skill; it would come from people telling him how impressive it is that he’s a heart surgeon. He also acknowledges that he could never be a heart surgeon, or anything that requires considerable skill beyond lying. So, what is George’s fake dream job, the thing he “always wanted to pretend” to be?

Question 15

What soap opera does Jerry deny watching?

In the episode “The Beard,” Jerry begins dating a police officer – Sergeant Cathy – and she asks him if he’s seen a certain soap opera. He denies having seen it and she doesn’t believe him, so she makes him take a lie detector test. In actual fact, he has seen the show, he’s just embarrassed about it. By the way, this is why people call it “a show about nothing.” In the end, the whole gang are sitting around Jerry’s apartment, watching the show. What is it?

Question 16

Who is Jerry’s cousin that Uncle Leo is obsessed with?

Uncle Leo frequently speaks highly of Jerry’s cousin, who works for the parks department. He is referred to in an episode where George thinks he sees Jerry’s girlfriend cheating on him with this cousin. According to Uncle Leo, this cousin is very funny and Jerry could learn a thing or two from him for his comedy routine. He has never actually appeared only the show – only mentioned – but he is in some deleted scenes on the DVDs. But what is the cousin’s name?

Question 17

Which of the main actors DIDN’T win an Emmy?

The actors on Seinfeld are amazing. Their comedic timing and commitment to a scene is almost unparalleled, and it has influenced comedy for years to come. Tina Fey’s acting is entirely dependent on what Elaine would’ve done. However, of the four main actors on the show – Jerry Seinfeld (Jerry), Jason Alexander (George), Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Elaine), and Michael Richards (Kramer) – only three of them were awarded a Primetime Emmy Award for their work. But which one of them was never given the award?

Question 18

What is George’s title at the New York Yankees?

When George realizes that the opposite of all of his instincts are the right ones, he lands his dream job at the New York Yankees. “Ruth, Gehrig, DiMaggio, Mantle...Costanza?!” While he’s obviously not a player, he does have a great position within the team. As he enthusiastically tells Jerry when he gets the job, he gets to advise on trades! This opened the door to some brilliant scenes with Larry David’s George Steinbrenner for seasons to come. But what was George’s job title?

Question 19

Who played Elaine’s father?

Elaine’s father (and possible reason she’s in the publishing business) is a fictional famous author named Alton Benes. He was played by a well-known actor popular for his gangster roles. The character was based on Revolutionary Road author Richard Yates, whose daughter Larry David once dated. Alton was supposed to appear on the show more, but the intense actor actually did terrify and intimidate the cast and crew for real, so they never asked him to come back in the end. Who was the actor?

Question 20

Why did the audience stop applauding Kramer’s entrance?

Seinfeld was always filmed in front of a live studio audience, so the laughs were always real. The classic Kramer entrance, where he slides through Jerry’s apartment door, was never supposed to be a running gag. But when Michael Richards first did it and the audience laughed, he just kept doing it every time. However, at a certain point, the audience stopped applauding the entrance. Kramer was a very popular character and his entrance had always drawn applause, so why did it stop?

Question 21

What is the only episode that doesn’t start with ‘The?’

Most sitcoms have their own titling system for their episodes. Friends was always “The One with the...” or “The One Where...” or something or other. Two and a Half Men’s titles were all taken from a quote or line uttered within the episode. It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia’s episode titles always act as a punchline to the cold open, which sets up the story. But Seinfeld took a more simplistic style that many a show since then has stolen, simply calling its episodes “The Parking Garage” or “The Chinese Restaurant” or “The Bizarro Jerry.” But there’s only early episode that ditches the “The...” system in favor of a clever-sounding wordplay-based title. What is it?

Question 22

What baseball player was Jerry in love with?

The two part episode "The Boyfriend" was about Jerry meeting one of his favorite baseball players and hitting it off. The comedy of the episode comes from the tropes and cliches of a romantic relationship, like all the steps (going out together, inviting him up to the apartment for coffee, being asked to help him move, giving him a ride to the airport etc.) and what they mean, but through the lens of a friendship. But who was the player?

Question 23

Which pizza topping caused Kramer’s business venture to fall through?

Remember Kramer’s wacky business idea for a pizza place where you get to make your own pie? He kept coming back to that idea, and he got so close to making it a reality when restaurant entrepreneur (restaurentrepreneur?) Poppie, the chef who doesn’t like to wash his hands and does like to pee on couches, snatched up the idea. However, it fell through when Kramer and Poppie disagreed on one of the pizza toppings. Poppie didn’t think it could be a topping; Kramer did. What was it?

Question 24

What is Kramer's pseudonym?

The various antics and schemes of the Seinfeld gang often require them to impersonate someone they are not, so they’ll make up fake names and occupations for themselves in order to gain access to certain buildings or records, or get information out of somebody. George’s famous pseudonym is importer-exporter Art Vandelay, and Kramer had a brilliant one himself. The alias he used during his schemes when pretending to be someone else was described as "a wealthy industrialist." What's his name?

Question 25

What was the pulled episode “The Bet” about?

During the production of Seinfeld season 2, Larry Charles wrote an episode that was based around subject matter that was deemed too controversial to produce. Therefore, NBC pulled the episode from production and it was never made, instead replaced with “The Phone Message.” Charles, who would later go on to direct Borat and The Dictator, said that he wanted to write a “dark-themed” episode that you wouldn’t normally see in sitcoms. But alas, it was not meant to be. So, what was the plot of the episode based around a hot button issue?

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