Seinfeld (season 3)
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of episodes||23|
|Original release||September 18, 1991 –|
May 6, 1992
Season three of Seinfeld, an American television series created by Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David, began airing on September 18, 1991 on NBC, a U.S. broadcast television network. It comprises 23 episodes and concluded its initial airing on May 6, 1992. "The Tape", "The Pen", and "The Letter" are some of the season's episodes that were inspired by the writers' own experiences. Co-creator Larry David admits that season three was a big turning point for the series in terms of how the show was made; it's where the writers started doing non linear storylines with episodes containing multiple stories. George was becoming a bigger liar, Elaine was becoming more quirky, and Kramer was becoming surer of himself throughout his crazy antics. This season received eight Emmy nominations and one Directors Guild of America Award.
The DVD boxset for season three was released by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment in Region 1 on November 23, 2004, twelve years after it had completed broadcast on television. It was also released in Region 2 on November 1, 2004 and on October 18, 2004 in Region 4. As well as every episode from the season (minus "The Stranded" which was produced for the second season), the DVD release features bonus material including deleted scenes, exclusive stand-up material, and commentaries.
Seinfeld was produced by Castle Rock Entertainment and distributed by Columbia Pictures Television and Columbia TriStar Television and was aired on NBC in the U.S. The executive producers were Larry David, George Shapiro, and Howard West with Tom Gammill and Max Pross as supervising producers. Bruce Kirschbaum was the executive consultant. Tom Cherones was the main director for this season; however, some of the episodes were directed by David Steinberg, Joshua White, and Jason Alexander. This season was written by Larry David, Jerry Seinfeld, Larry Charles, Peter Mehlman, Elaine Pope, Tom Leopold, Bob Shaw, Don McEnery, Bill Masters, and Greg Daniels.
The series was set predominantly in an apartment block on New York City's Upper West Side; however, the third season was shot and mostly in filmed CBS Studio Center in Studio City, California. The show features Jerry Seinfeld as himself, Jason Alexander as George Costanza, Julia Louis-Dreyfus as Elaine Benes, and Michael Richards as Kramer. Due to Julia Louis-Dreyfus's off-screen pregnancy, her character had to spend the latter half of this season hiding her belly behind furniture and laundry baskets. Siobhan Fallon Hogan was originally asked to reprise her role as Tina later in this season, but was performing as a cast member on season 17 of Saturday Night Live and had to refuse. Harris Shore played the role of Mr. Lippman in "The Library"; however, Richard Fancy took over the role for the remainder of the series. The Babu Bhatt character was originally scripted under the name of Vong Sim, but was later changed.
A number of the season's episodes were inspired by the writers' own experiences. "The Pen" was partly inspired by a sofa bed owned by Jerry Seinfeld's mother Betty. During stays, Seinfeld would put the couch cushions on the floor and sleep on them there to avoid the uncomfortable mattress. The Chinese baldness cure that George tries in "The Tape" is based on something Larry David tried while living in New York. Also, the shots Kramer takes of George's scalp in this episode are identical to those the real Kenny Kramer took of Larry David. Elaine's story in "The Letter" was inspired by Larry David's experience attending an Angels – Yankees game in Anaheim, California. While seated as a guest in Gene Autry's box, David was asked to remove the hat. David could be seen wearing the hat on the front page of the Los Angeles Times sports section the following day. Mr. West is also named after Howard West, one of the show's executive producers, who provided Larry David with a connection to the seats in the owners' box.
The season premiere, "The Note", is the only episode (other than the original pilot) with a different version of the theme song, which included female back-up singers harmonizing over the iconic slap-bass tune. The singers were added by composer Jonathan Wolff at the request of Jerry Seinfeld, who wanted to add "a little sparkle" to the music, suggesting the addition of some scat lyrics. Seinfeld and executive producer Larry David both liked Wolff's additions, and three episodes were produced with the new style music. However, they had neglected to inform NBC and Castle Rock of the change, and when the season premiere aired, they were surprised and unimpressed, and requested that they return to the original style. The subsequent two episodes were redone, leaving "The Note" as the only episode with the additional music elements.
The review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes reported a 100% approval rating with an average rating of 8.9/10, based on 14 critic reviews. The website's critics consensus reads, "Seinfeld comes fully into its own as a divine comedy of petty grievances in a third season that mines wicked wit from the painfully awkward."
Season three received eight Emmy nominations, two of which were won. Elaine Pope and Larry Charles won "Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series" for "The Fix-Up". Janet Ashikaga also won for "Outstanding Individual Achievement in Editing for a Series", for the episode "The Subway." Jerry Seinfeld was nominated for "Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series" for the special one-hour episode "The Boyfriend/New Friend," losing to Craig T. Nelson for his portrayal of Hayden Fox on the ABC sitcom Coach and Jason Alexander was nominated for "Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series", losing to Michael Jeter in the CBS comedy Evening Shade. The series was also nominated for "Outstanding Comedy Series" for this season, which was won by Murphy Brown, then in its fourth season. The series would be nominated in that category for the remaining six seasons, winning only once, in the next season. There were also two other Emmy nominations for the "Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series" category, with Larry David, Bob Shaw, and Don McEnery for "The Tape", and Larry David for "The Parking Garage". David Steinberg was nominated for a Directors Guild of America Award for "Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Comedy Series" for "The Tape".
|Title||Directed by||Written by||Original air date ||Prod.|
|18||1||"The Note"||Tom Cherones||Larry David||September 18, 1991||301||21.7|
|Jerry, George, and Elaine get free massage therapy by getting a note from Jerry's dentist, Roy (Ralph Bruneau). Jerry's therapist becomes paranoid and thinks Jerry is insane when Jerry makes some casual remarks about a small boy who was kidnapped in Pennsylvania. George becomes very uncomfortable when he finds out that his massage therapist is a man. He tells Jerry that he thinks 'it moved' during the massage and starts to have doubts about his sexual orientation. Roy gets into trouble for passing around fake notes. Jerry tries to see the physical therapist once more, but she is afraid that he will try to kidnap her son. The episode ends with the four eating in Monk's, and viewing Joe DiMaggio dunking his donuts.|
|19||2||"The Truth"||David Steinberg||Elaine Pope||September 25, 1991||302||16.7|
|George tells his girlfriend Patrice (Valerie Mahaffey) the truth about why he ended their relationship; as a result, she checks herself into the Woodhaven mental institution. Jerry is very upset at this because he is being audited by the IRS and George's girlfriend, an accountant, was supposed to help him out. To make things worse, she has all of his tax papers and Jerry needs them back desperately. It was Kramer who had gotten Jerry into trouble by forcing him to contribute to a fake volcano relief fund. Kramer is also dating Elaine's roommate, Tina (Siobhan Fallon), and Elaine complains about the loud tribal music and sexual noises in her apartment. Kramer also walks into Elaine's room and sees her naked.|
|20||3||"The Pen"||Tom Cherones||Larry David||October 2, 1991||305||15.1|
Jerry and Elaine go to Florida to visit Jerry's parents for the weekend and go scuba diving. Jack Klompus comes over to write Morty a check. Jerry notices Jack's pen. When he asks Jack about it, he tells Jerry that it can write upside down and that astronauts use it in space. Jack offers an interested Jerry the pen. Jerry refuses his offer several times, but Jack persists and Jerry finally gives in. At her own insistence, Elaine sleeps on a sofa bed with a bar that sticks up through the mattress and hurts her back. The next morning, Elaine's back is so hurt that she cannot go scuba diving with Jerry. Rumors begin to spread around the community that Jerry wanted Jack to give him the pen. Jack comes over again and Jerry returns the pen. The next day, a chiropractor looks at Elaine's back and tells her she should not go anywhere for at least five days.Absent: Michael Richards as Cosmo Kramer and Jason Alexander as George Costanza
|21||4||"The Dog"||Tom Cherones||Larry David||October 9, 1991||303||17.2|
|Jerry is on a plane back home when the drunken man next to him falls sick and asks Jerry to take care of his dog while he recovers. He promises to call him and take the dog back when he comes to New York. The dog "Farfel" turns out to be very disobedient and Jerry cannot go out anywhere. Jerry, George and Elaine were supposed to see the movie Prognosis Negative but Jerry informs them that he has to take care of the dog and asks them to go without him. George and Elaine realize they do not have a lot in common without Jerry around. They have a good conversation only when they are making fun of Jerry and his habits.|
|22||5||"The Library"||Joshua White||Larry Charles||October 16, 1991||304||16.4|
|Jerry finds out that he is being fined for an unreturned library book from 1971: Tropic of Cancer. Jerry is convinced that he indeed did return the book, as he remembers he was with a high school sweetheart, Sherry Becker, that day and her orange dress is "burned into his memory". Jerry then finds his old high school girlfriend Sherry Becker, who tells Jerry that the book they read to each other was actually Tropic of Capricorn, not Cancer. Jerry then remembers that he actually loaned Cancer to George. Jerry then confronts George about the book, who has the flashback of Heyman's original wedgie in high school, where Jerry loaned him the book, and George left it there. Jerry reluctantly pays Mr. Bookman (Philip Baker Hall) for the book.|
|23||6||"The Parking Garage"||Tom Cherones||Larry David||October 30, 1991||306||17.0|
The cast is in search of Kramer's car in the multi-level parking garage of a shopping mall after Kramer purchases an air conditioner. Unfortunately, no one can remember where the car was parked. Jerry is eager to urinate and goes in a dark corner. After Jerry does so, he is spotted by an officer and is held in the officer's booth. Later, George is also caught in the act of urinating. Both Jerry and George are fined and released. Then by luck, the gang finds Kramer's car but unfortunately, Kramer, who has the car keys, is still lost somewhere in the garage. Hours later, Kramer shows up, having gone on his own hunt for the air conditioner. As they all enter the car, the engine fails to start.In 1997, TV Guide ranked this episode #33 on its list of the 100 Greatest Episodes.
|24||7||"The Café"||Tom Cherones||Tom Leopold||November 6, 1991||307||16.4|
|Jerry becomes fascinated by an unsuccessful restaurant and gives the owner some friendly advice. George's girlfriend wants him to take an IQ test for an education course she is doing; worried that he will score badly, he persuades Elaine to take it for him instead. Jerry suggests that she take the test at the deserted Dream Café because she "won't hear a peep" there – but they reckon without Kramer's distracting presence. Elaine retakes the test in Jerry's apartment, but another collision with Kramer prevents her from returning it on time. Meanwhile, the Dream Café remains empty.|
|25||8||"The Tape"||David Steinberg||Larry David and Bob Shaw & Don McEnery||November 13, 1991||308||15.8|
|George orders a baldness remedy from China. Elaine anonymously leaves an erotic message on Jerry's tape recorder which Jerry, George, and Kramer become obsessed with. She admits to George that she was the sexy voice in the tape. George is shocked to hear this and suddenly becomes attracted to her. She makes George promise not to tell her confession to Jerry or Kramer. George finds it hard to control his obsession with Elaine and finally blurts out to Elaine that he is attracted to her, in front of Jerry and Kramer. Elaine finds this news disturbing and then realizes that Jerry and Kramer have become attracted to her too. Freaked out, she immediately leaves Jerry's apartment.|
|26||9||"The Nose Job"||Tom Cherones||Peter Mehlman||November 20, 1991||309||16.3|
|George thinks his girlfriend (Susan Diol) is perfect, except for one flaw: she has a large nose, so Kramer encourages her to get rhinoplasty. Jerry is unsure about his relationship with an actress (Tawny Kitaen) whom he finds beautiful but with whom he has nothing in common. George's girlfriend gets the rhinoplasty, but it is botched and George breaks up with her. However once it is fixed she is beautiful, and she starts dating Kramer, leaving George to regret breaking up with her.|
|27||10||"The Stranded"||Tom Cherones||Larry David & Jerry Seinfeld and Matt Goldman||November 27, 1991||209||18.6|
|When a co-worker starts coming on to George, he strands Jerry and Elaine at a party, leaving them to wait for Kramer. As a sign of gratitude for allowing him and Elaine to wait at his home, Jerry suggests the hosts stop by his apartment if they are ever in New York City. Weeks later, the male host takes him up on his offer just as Jerry is heading out the door. Jerry allows him to wait in the apartment until his return. However, Kramer stops by and he and the host have some drinks and laughs. Eventually they hire a prostitute to come over to Jerry's apartment. Later, the host checks out of the apartment without paying just as Jerry returns. As Jerry tries to pay the girl so she will leave, police arrive and he is "busted" for fomenting prostitution.|
|28||11||"The Alternate Side"||Tom Cherones||Larry David and Bill Masters||December 4, 1991||310||18.0|
|Jerry's car is stolen and he has a conversation with the car-jacker on the car phone. George takes a job moving cars from one side of the street to the other, to comply with alternate side parking regulations, and does a very careless job by crashing cars and causing traffic jams. Elaine cares for her 66-year-old boyfriend who has had a stroke just before she was about to break up with him. Kramer gets a line in a Woody Allen film, popularizing the expression, "These pretzels are making me thirsty!" He accidentally injures Woody Allen during the shooting and gets fired from the set.|
|29||12||"The Red Dot"||Tom Cherones||Larry David||December 11, 1991||311||17.9|
|Elaine gets George a job at a publishing company; to repay her, he buys her an ostensibly expensive cashmere sweater, that has a minor flaw, a red dot, for which it was marked down considerably. Elaine spots it and becomes furious at George. Elaine immediately returns the cashmere sweater to George. Later, While George was working at his new job, he becomes sexually attracted to a cleaning lady and has sex with her after they both drink Hennigan's Scotch. The next day, the cleaning lady gets upset over what happened the previous night and threatens to report what happened to the boss of the company. George tries to compensate with her by offering the flawed cashmere sweater. The cleaning lady identifies the red spot and George is fired after she reports their affair.|
|30||13||"The Subway"||Tom Cherones||Larry Charles||January 8, 1992||313||18.7|
|Each of the four principal characters has a unique experience during a subway ride. Jerry befriends an overweight nudist (Ernie Sabella) on his ride to Coney Island. George meets an enchanting woman (Barbara Stock), who seduces him, then robs him and handcuffs him to her bed, so he misses his job interview in the process. Kramer gets a horse racing tip and wins big, helping to pay for his car fines. But on his way back, Kramer is about to be menaced by another bidder, only to be saved by a cop posing as a blind violinist. Elaine misses a lesbian wedding, where she was to attend due to train delays, which make her very nervous along with her apparent claustrophobia.|
|31||14||"The Pez Dispenser"||Tom Cherones||Larry David||January 15, 1992||314||19.2|
|Jerry's dispenser of Pez candy causes Elaine to laugh loudly at a piano recital given by George's girlfriend. Kramer creates a cologne that smells of the beach. Jerry hosts an intervention for an old friend with a drug problem. George's girlfriend hears Elaine laughing, realizes that it was Elaine who ruined her concert, and walks out on George. Jerry's friend kicks his drug habit, but becomes addicted to Pez.|
|32||15||"The Suicide"||Tom Cherones||Tom Leopold||January 29, 1992||312||16.9|
|Elaine needs to fast before an x-ray, so she tries stuffing herself three days before the test. After his neighbor Martin tries to commit suicide, Jerry is hit on by his girlfriend, Gina, while at the hospital. A psychic warns George to cancel his vacation to the Cayman Islands. However, Elaine offends her, and the psychic kicks them out before she can tell George why he should cancel his vacation. In fear, George sells his ticket to Kramer. Jerry becomes worried when Martin's friend, Newman sees him with Gina. Elaine starts hallucinating from hunger. Newman tells everything to the just-waking Martin. Then, in a fit of jealousy Martin tries to strangle Jerry.|
|33||16||"The Fix-Up"||Tom Cherones||Elaine Pope & Larry Charles||February 5, 1992||317||18.5|
|George says that he would never sink to fix-ups, saying that a fix-up is one step away from prostitution or personal ads (However, in The Race he replies to a personal ad in the Daily Worker). Jerry and Elaine set George up with Elaine's friend Cynthia. They hit it off but George is horrified to discover that Kramer has given him a defective condom. Cynthia tells Elaine she missed her period.|
"The New Friend"
|Tom Cherones||Larry David and Larry Levin||February 12, 1992||315|
Jerry meets Keith Hernandez and wants to make a good impression. Meanwhile, George is out of time on his unemployment and he works harder than ever on his scheme to get a 13-week extension. He tells the unemployment office he was close to a job with Vandelay Industries, a company that makes latex products and whose main office is Jerry's apartment. Kramer and Newman take Hernandez back to a time when they were allegedly spit on by him; however, Jerry supports the "second-spitter theory" that Hernandez was not involved. Keith asks Jerry about Elaine's status. Keith makes a date with her and breaks a date with Jerry. George tries two more approaches with the unemployment officer. Kramer gets Jerry to accompany him to see a former neighbor's new baby, "you got to see the baby." Though he's gone out with Keith once, does that mean he must help him move? Elaine and Keith are hitting it off until he pulls out a cigarette. George wants to sleep with a really tall woman. Keith supports the "second spitter theory." Jerry and Elaine both break up with Keith and George might get his wish.In 1997, TV Guide ranked this episode #4 on its list of the 100 Greatest Episodes.
|36||19||"The Limo"||Tom Cherones||Story by : Marc Jaffe|
Teleplay by : Larry Charles
|February 26, 1992||318||19.5|
|Jerry and George board a limousine intended for a passenger named O'Brien. George pretends to be O'Brien. They invite Kramer and Elaine to join them. George learns that O'Brien is making a speech that night, and as he reads the speech, the group learns that the intended riders were neo-Nazis, for whom they have been mistaken. The car pulls up to the Paramount and the protesters begin rocking it. George is ushered onto a podium for his speech, and the protesters horde around him as he frantically denies being O'Brian and shouts for Jerry.|
|37||20||"The Good Samaritan"||Jason Alexander||Peter Mehlman||March 4, 1992||319||16.1|
|Jerry witnesses a hit-and-run driver hitting another car. He goes after the driver, but when the driver steps out he realizes that she is a beautiful woman and decides to date her. After dating Angela, the hit-and-run driver, Jerry finds out she also hit Becky, another woman he has always wanted to date. He tells Becky that he will do something about the damage. Meanwhile, Kramer has convulsions from Mary Hart's voice. Jerry goes to Becky's house to write out a check for her damage and then ask her out, but Becky falsely accuses him of hitting her car. Kramer uses the accident as an excuse to talk to Becky and ends up getting a date with her. But when he rings the bell at her apartment and she opens the door, Mary Hart is on the TV and Kramer has another convulsion.|
|38||21||"The Letter"||Tom Cherones||Larry David||March 25, 1992||320||22.3|
|Kramer poses for a portrait by Jerry's girlfriend Nina (Catherine Keener), which an elderly couple admires. George feels obligated to buy something when he accompanies Jerry to his new girlfriend's art studio, and purchases a $500 painting, which he tries to sell to Jerry for $10 shortly thereafter. Elaine wears a Baltimore Orioles baseball cap in the owner's box at Yankee Stadium, and refuses to remove it. Jerry finds out his new girlfriend is a plagiarist after he hears the words she wrote in a letter on television (specifically, the film Chapter Two). The elderly couple buy "The Kramer" for $5000 and invite Kramer himself over to their house for dinner.|
|39||22||"The Parking Space"||Tom Cherones||Larry David and Greg Daniels||April 22, 1992||322||17.8|
|George drives with Elaine to Jerry's to watch a big televised fight with him. He finds a parking space, and decides to back into it. He spends a good deal of time positioning himself perfectly. When he starts backing into the space, Mike, also there for the fight at Jerry's, enters the same space, front first. The two argue over who is entitled to the space, all the while blocking traffic. Mike argues that he entered the space first, while George argues that he saw it first and was simply positioning himself, entitling him to the space. Jerry and Kramer also come down to try to settle the problem. Near the end of the episode, two police officers finally arrive to supposedly resolve the situation. However, when one tells Mike to move his car, the other argues against him, and by now, it is night time.|
|40||23||"The Keys"||Tom Cherones||Larry Charles||May 6, 1992||321||16.4|
|Kramer invades Jerry's life too much, so Jerry revokes his spare key privileges. Realizing that he has broken the "covenant of the keys" gives Kramer the realization he is now free to come out of the shadows. Kramer takes off for California to follow his dream of becoming an actor. Jerry gave his spare keys to Elaine, then when he needs them, he goes to Elaine's home with George, who has spare keys to her place, to search for his spare set. They end up finding Elaine's writing project for an episode of Murphy Brown. Kramer finds adventure as he journeys across the country to Los Angeles where he gets a famous bit part on Murphy Brown.|
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Dissatisfied with "The Stranded," Larry David had the episode shelved until mid-way through season three.
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