The lovable yet dysfunctional characters of Seinfeld are still widely celebrated to this day. The record-breaking sitcom was created by Larry David, who has openly acknowledged that many of the characters and scenarios shown in the show were taken from his own life experiences.
It’s unclear whether all of the life decisions Seinfeld characters make reflect David or other writers’ pasts. Surely, some of the characters’ choices are for entertainment’s sake and must be entirely fictional. Nonetheless, there are several questionable life choices made by Jerry, George, Elaine, and Kramer that are worth revisiting.
George Marrying Susan
Although George appears to like Susan (an NBC executive) from the point they first meet back in season 4, most fans would agree they aren’t right for each other. After a brief period of dating, Susan didn’t reappear on the show until season 7, when George runs into her in a video store and finds out she’s in a lesbian relationship.
Enticed by this new side he sees in Susan, George proposes to her on a whim in “The Engagement.” Susan is involved frequently during season 7 until dying in “The Invitations” from licking cheap, poisonous glue on the envelopes of her and George’s wedding invitations. George is rather indifferent after her death and has to serve on the board of the charity Susan’s family starts in Susan’s memory, which is the last way George wants to spend his time.
Elaine Not Taking A Medical Emergency Seriously
After Elaine gets news that her literary author boyfriend Jake Jarmel has been in a car accident, she decides to grab some candy at the movie theater counter before heading over. The quick-decision she makes is undoubtedly selfish, but fairly harmless and subsequently humorous.
Nevertheless, Jake catches sight of the Jujyfruit when Elaine arrives at his hospital room, and a split-second decision leads to a life-altering consequence as he breaks up with her. Although Elaine could probably do better anyway, Jake could be considered one of the better options she comes across in the show.
Jerry Buying His Dad A Cadillac
Jerry’s career as a comedian is starting to become more profitable, so he decides to buy his father a Cadillac. When Jerry surprises his parents in Florida with the luxury vehicle, they are reluctant to accept at first but, eventually, give in and thank their son for the gesture.
Jerry’s father decides to show his neighbor Jack Klompus (one of the funniest characters in the Seinfeld universe) the new car. Jack doesn’t believe Jerry could afford such a vehicle, so he accuses Morty of embezzlement, which leads to Morty being impeached as president of their community.
Kramer Not Locking Doors In NYC
Kramer may be naive regarding the limits of a thief in New York City when he leaves Jerry’s door wide-open in season 1, and all of the comedian’s belongings are stolen. Although this might not be a major life decision for Kramer, it is incredibly questionable and risks his friendship with Jerry.
Luckily for Kramer, Jerry seems to give Kramer the benefit-of-the-doubt, realizing Kramer left the door unlocked out of forgetfulness, rather than spite. If Jerry were a bit more paranoid, then he’d be skeptical of an inside job. Who leaves their doors unlocked in NYC?
Elaine Sending Out Holiday Cards Without Checking Them First
In “The Pick” from season 4, Elaine is extremely embarrassed after sending out her Christmas cards without noticing a major wardrobe malfunction.
It’s hilarious when Jerry initially uncovers the mistake as he goes through his mail, but not so funny considering all of Elaine’s family is getting flashed. Elaine is humiliated in this instance, and the episode stresses the importance of proofing before you send.
George Leaving Property With Kramer
When George learns a new mantra, “Serenity Now,” he uses it to rein in his temper. Kramer decides to try the method — after the audience finds out that the mantra is proven to be ineffective from George’s side plot — and smashes all of the computers George had stored in his apartment.
Kramer doesn’t appear to be the most trustworthy when it comes to handling other people’s property. His constant disregard for other people’s belongings is a questionable characteristic of his otherwise lovable personality. His bright personality and unparalleled energy may be what makes the other characters see past his incompetence.
Jerry’s Refusal To Find A ‘Serious’ Relationship
Jerry may be the most spoiled character in the history of television in terms of women, but it’s frustrating how he never tries to find anything serious with any of them.
The women that Jerry dates span from lawyers and professors to actresses and artists, so why can’t he just pick one to settle down with? Jerry’s insatiable nature is frustrating for viewers to watch, as he moves on from countless ‘keepers.’
Jerry’s Proposal To Elaine
Also in the episode “Serenity Now,” Jerry has somewhat of a mental crisis as he gets more in touch with his emotional side. Consequently, he decides that Elaine is the woman he wants to spend the rest of his life with and proposes to her in his apartment. Initially, Elaine is caught off guard and almost hides from Jerry as she decides whether she’ll marry him or not.
When Elaine decides ‘why not,’ she finds Jerry has returned to his old ways and is no longer interested in marriage. The events of this season 9 episode hinted at what many Seinfeld fans had hoped for. Nonetheless, Jerry and Elaine getting married was never in the cards for the unconventional approach the writers were taking with the sitcom.
Kramer Smoking So Many Cigars
Kramer is always smoking cigars in Seinfeld. You aren’t going to die from smoking the occasional cigar, but Kramer’s constant use surely raises concerns for his health. Cigars also run Jerry into trouble when he buys a box of counterfeit Cubans in “The English Patient” from season 8.
Nevertheless, the consequences of smoking seemed to be at their worst when Kramer sets his hair on fire with a cigar in season 7’s “The Wallet.”
Jerry Making Career Decisions Without The Full Story
The notorious “Puffy Jacket” is a staple of the 10 season series. Kramer’s girlfriend, a ‘low-talker’ and fashion designer, asks Jerry if he will wear her newest men’s top on national television. However, Jerry didn’t fully understand the arrangement he made because of how quiet Wendel talks.
Too unconfrontational to go back on the agreement, Jerry goes on a talk show wearing the puffy jacket, and it certainly doesn’t do any favors for his career or his love life.