The Doll (Seinfeld)
|Directed by||Andy Ackerman|
|Written by||Tom Gammill & Max Pross|
|Original air date||February 22, 1996|
While performing in Memphis, Jerry meets Susan's old roommate, Sally Weaver (Kathy Griffin), who gives him a large package that she wants him to deliver to the soon-to-be-married George and Susan, telling him to be careful with it. While on the plane, Jerry, because he has to be careful with the package, is forced to put his own bag in the overhead compartment and, in the process, a bottle of barbecue sauce in his bag is broken. Upon his arrival in New York, Jerry reveals to his friends that the bottle was decorated with a picture of a man who looked like Charles Grodin, on whose television show he would be appearing, and that he had planned to present Grodin with the bottle on the show. He also gives George the "delicate" package, which turns out to be a welcome mat.
Meanwhile, Frank Costanza turns George's old bedroom into a billiard room — "The Place to Be" — and Kramer challenges him to a game of billiards, only to discover that the room is too small to play in (every shot has them bumping against the wall). Elaine has told Frank about a picture the Maestro has of a man in front of a store called "Costanzas" in Tuscany; Frank thinks this might be his long lost cousin Carlo and wants to get the picture from the Maestro. While visiting the Maestro in his office, the Maestro shows them an old conductor's trick: he takes off his pants when he sits down so he doesn't lose the crease in the pants before his performance. Later he goes to "The Place to Be" to play billiards with Kramer and Frank and shows Frank the picture. After he leaves for the bathroom, he leaves his conductor's baton which Kramer then uses as a pool stick to win the game. During the game, George's mother walks in to find all three men with their pants off, the Maestro conducting to recorded music, Kramer leaning over Frank's back guiding Frank's pool shot, and she exclaims "Oh my God!".
At the Costanza/Ross residence, Susan unpacks her doll collection, including one that looks exactly like George's mother. While Susan denies the resemblance, George struggles with the image of his mother and shows it to Jerry who denies seeing the resemblance, but later tells Elaine that he just wanted to get it out of his apartment. George eats at Monk's with the doll and begins to imagine it talking to him.
Sally is coming to New York to visit Susan, so Jerry asks her to bring him the barbecue sauce to replace the one that was broken; he asks her to bring a case in order to inconvenience her like he was when bringing the "delicate package" to George. However, when she arrives she brings him a case of a different barbecue sauce, claiming that this sauce is much better, leaving Jerry with nothing still to present on his appearance on Grodin's show.
Meanwhile, Elaine is trying to repair her relationship with the Maestro; while in Tuscany she spilled wine on his autographed picture of "the other guy", his favorite of the Three Tenors, and he hasn't called her since. She discovers that he will be appearing on "The Charles Grodin Show" with Jerry and decides to accompany Jerry to the show. She gets his autograph but must lug the poster and an Oro-Dent electric toothbrush (in a large box) given to her by Jerry across town. She gets battered and coffee spilled on her but she makes it with the poster undamaged and gives it to the Maestro. He loves it and wants to meet her after his performance, but after he leaves Elaine picks up the Oro-Dent box, knocking over a wine bottle and ruining the autograph yet again. Then at the Maestro's concert, his performance is ruined because his conductor's baton is severely bent after Kramer used it to play pool.
In the dressing room, with nothing to say on the show, Jerry has an idea: have George bring a picture of Estelle, along with the doll. Unfortunately, the only person at home when he calls is Sally. She agrees to bring the doll, but arrives shortly thereafter with the wrong doll, saying that the one she brought is much funnier. The Third Tenor meanwhile wipes off his mouth of spaghetti sauce with Jerry's pants after he took them off doing the trick he learned from Kramer. Jerry receives his cue to go on stage, with no material and no pants.
Later, Frank stops by George's place to show him the picture he got from the Maestro of the man in Tuscany he believes to be his cousin. When Frank sees the doll, he begins to hear his wife's voice and goes crazy, grabbing it out of Susan's hands and beheading it. George says "I told you it looked like her."
During the credits, Frank goes to Tuscany to meet his supposed cousin. However, the man reveals that his name is Giuseppe and that he's not Frank's cousin. Frank simply shrugs and leaves, carrying a present for Carlo in a large box much like Jerry and Elaine carried earlier.
The working title for this episode was "The Doormat." Originally, the doormat that George receives from Sally was to play a larger part in this episode's plot, but as the script was rewritten, the focus changed to Susan's doll collection, and the episode was renamed accordingly. Guest star Kathy Griffin later performed a stand-up comedy routine alleging that Jerry Seinfeld was rude to her during filming. Seinfeld was so amused by this he had it written into a later episode, The Cartoon, where Griffin would return as Sally Weaver.