11 Best Seinfeld episodes you can't miss: fan favourites

11 Best Seinfeld episodes you can't miss: fan favourites

Seinfeld is a famous American television sitcom created by Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld. The show initially aired on NBC in 1989 and had 180 episodes. Many people loved Seinfeld because of its unique and relatable humour and memorable characters. Here are the best Seinfeld episodes that showcase the show's brilliant humour and unforgettable moments.

Seinfeld cast members Cosmo Kramer, George Costanza, Elaine Benes, and Jerry Seinfeld (L-R)
Seinfeld cast members Cosmo Kramer, George Costanza, Elaine Benes, and Jerry Seinfeld (L-R). Photo: @seinfeld on Facebook (modified by author)
Source: UGC


We strive to provide our readers with valuable insights and information through our various rankings and lists. Our rankings are based on a combination of user ratings and data from sources like Screen Rant, Variety, and MovieWeb. However, this list can vary greatly depending on individual preferences and which aspects of the show resonate most with each viewer.

11 Best Seinfeld episodes

The brilliance of Seinfeld is found in its flawlessly coordinated elements, including Jerry Seinfeld's observational humour, Larry David's outlandish situations, and the distinctive irreverent comedy that distinguishes it from other sitcoms. Here are the best Seinfeld episodes ranked according to their popularity and critical acclaim.

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1. The Contest (Season 4, Episode 11)

The Contest is among the funniest Seinfeld episodes. The gang bets to see who can go the longest without masturbating, euphemistically referring to it as being "master of their domain." Hilarity ensues as they struggle to remain celibate.

This episode is often cited as one of the best Seinfeld episodes due to its daring and innovative handling of a taboo subject without ever explicitly mentioning it. The clever tension and humour stemming from their struggles highlight the show's ability to push boundaries while remaining hilarious.

2. The Chinese Restaurant (Season 2, Episode 11)

The Chinese Restaurant is among the greatest Seinfeld episodes. In this instalment, Jerry, George, and Elaine wait for a table at a Chinese restaurant, but they keep getting delayed. George becomes increasingly frustrated, Elaine gets hungry, and Jerry spots a woman he knows but is too afraid to approach.

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This episode marks a breakthrough for the show, proving that audiences can connect with a series without complex or emotional storylines. Moreover, it stands as one of Seinfeld's most iconic episodes, resonating with viewers through the relatable social scenarios the characters experience while waiting for a table.

3. The Opposite (Season 5, Episode 22)

The Opposite is among the greatest Seinfeld scenes. Here, George experiments with doing the opposite of his instincts to improve his luck. Ironically, his strategy succeeds, earning him a new girlfriend, an attractive job offer, and an apartment. Meanwhile, Elaine's instincts lead her down the wrong path.

George's decision to do the opposite is a brilliant twist on his character's usual self-destructive behaviour, which leads to a rare moment of triumph. The episode cleverly contrasts George's rise with Elaine's fall, showcasing the show's unique take on fate and character development.

4. The Comeback (Season 8, Episode 13)

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The Comeback is one of the funniest Seinfeld episodes. In it, George Costanza is humiliated during a work meeting when his colleague, Reilly, mocks him. Obsessed with delivering this retort, George plans to recreate the scenario using his comeback.

George's obsession with his comeback reaches its peak when he arranges to fly to Akron, Ohio, where Reilly has transferred to deliver his line. However, when he finally gets his chance, Reilly responds with another zinger, leaving George humiliated once more. This episode is a classic example of George's neurotic obsession with social slights and his desperate attempts to rectify them.

5. The Soup Nazi (Season 7, Episode 6)

The Soup Nazi is one of the most popular Seinfeld episodes in Season 7. In this instalment, there is a big fuss over a soup restaurant, and it is apparently so good that everyone complies with its owner's outlandish demands.

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Jerry, George, and Elaine become enamoured with the delicious soup made by the temperamental "Soup Nazi," who has strict ordering rules. Elaine eventually gets banned while George and Jerry navigate his peculiar system. The episode's blend of unique character traits, strict rules, and delicious soup create a memorable and hilarious scenario.

6. The Abstinence (Season 9, Episode 9)

In this episode, George's girlfriend is advised to abstain from making love for six weeks due to a medical condition, and George decides to join her in abstinence. Surprisingly, he finds that abstaining from making love makes him smarter. Conversely, Elaine's boyfriend abstains from making love with her and becomes dumber.

The episode humorously explores the idea that abstinence can lead to greater mental clarity, flipping the usual trope. George's intellectual transformation is hilarious, as is Elaine's frustration with her boyfriend's decline.

7. The Tape (Season 3, Episode 8)

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Elaine leaves a risqué message on Jerry's tape recorder as a prank. Jerry, George, and Kramer become obsessed with the voice, not knowing it's Elaine. After George finds out the woman is Elaine, his perception of her changes ultimately.

The episode is an excellent example of Seinfeld's humour, which is rooted in misunderstandings and secrets. Elaine's prank and the subsequent reactions from the men add layers of comedic tension.

8. The Chicken Roaster (Season 8, Episode 8)

Kenny Rogers Roasters opens a restaurant across from Kramer's apartment, and its bright red neon sign disrupts his sleep. Kramer switches apartments with Jerry to escape the light, leading Jerry to discover Kramer's bizarre living habits.

The visual gag of the red neon sign and the role reversal between Jerry and Kramer are comedic gold. Michael Richards, who plays Kramer, won his third Emmy for his performance in the episode. The episode also highlights Kramer's eccentricity and Jerry's reaction to living in Kramer's chaotic world.

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9. The Little Kicks (Season 8, Episode 4)

In this episode, Elaine kicks off an office party with some ridiculous dance moves described by George as a "full body dry heave set to music." George decides to take advantage of Elaine's unpopularity by pretending to be a bad boy, which makes him more attractive to women.

Elaine's dance, often referred to as "The Elaine Dance," is one of the most memorable moments in the series. It demonstrates her lack of self-awareness and physical comedy.

10. The Jimmy (Season 6, Episode 19)

In this episode, Jerry, George, and Kramer encounter a variety of misunderstandings and comedic situations centred around a man named Jimmy, who refers to himself in the third person. The main characters meet Jimmy at the health club, where he sells special training shoes that help people jump higher.

George buys a pair of Jimmy’s shoes, hoping to improve his basketball game, but he is inadvertently accused of stealing them. The episode culminates with various humorous misunderstandings and mishaps, including Jerry's confusion about Jimmy's intentions and George's embarrassment over the shoe theft accusation.

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11. The Boyfriend/The New Boyfriend (Season 3, Episodes 17 and 18)

The Boyfriend is among the funniest Seinfeld episodes in Season 17. Jerry befriends Keith Hernandez, a former baseball player, while George tries to extend his unemployment benefits by pretending to be close to landing a job. Meanwhile, Kramer and Newman accuse Hernandez of spitting on them after a Mets game, leading to a "second spitter" theory. Elaine dates Hernandez, causing Jerry to feel neglected.

This two-part episode is notable for featuring guest star Keith Hernandez and a mock-documentary style subplot that humorously parallels the Kennedy assassination conspiracy theories. George's schemes to stay unemployed and Jerry's jealousy contribute to the classic "Seinfeld" humour.

Why are the first two seasons of Seinfeld so short?

The first two seasons of Seinfeld are short because the show struggled to find its footing and secure a stable audience. For instance, the first episode in Season 1, The Seinfeld Chronicles, did not perform well in terms of ratings. However, the network saw potential in the show’s unique format and humour.

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Despite the limited initial episodes, the show gradually built a loyal audience. By the time the third season was in production, Seinfeld had gained enough popularity to justify a full-season order, which led to its eventual success as one of the most iconic sitcoms in television history.

What is the funniest episode of Seinfeld?

Some of the funniest Seinfeld episodes include The Contest, The Chinese Restaurant, The Opposite, and The Comeback.

What's the best season of Seinfeld?

According to Screen Rant and ResetEra.com, Season 4 is the best, having captivated fans with its engaging episodes.

What is the highest-rated Seinfeld episode?

Some of the highest-rated Seinfeld episodes include The Chicken Roaster, The Contest, The Soup Nazi, The Opposite and The Chinese Restaurant.

Above are the best Seinfeld episodes, which showcase the series' brilliance and enduring legacy in comedy television. These episodes showcase the talent of the cast and the show's ability to connect random storylines in unexpected but hilarious ways.

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READ ALSO: Top 10 best series on Netflix from South Africa to watch

Briefly.co.za published a post about the best series on Netflix in South Africa. The growth of South African television is attributed to the country's cultural richness and political history, which provide fertile ground for innovative storytelling.

South Africa boasts a fast-rising television industry that is gaining attention for its unique storytelling and diverse talent. From hard-hitting dramas to lighthearted comedies, South African television has something for everyone. Read on to discover what to watch on Netflix SA.

Source: Briefly News

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Rodah Mogeni (Lifestyle writer) She is a content creator with more than 4 years of experience. She graduated from Chuka University with a BA degree in Journalism and Mass Communication (2023). She joined Briefly in 2019. Rodah has been working as a health/fitness writer at BetterMe (since 2020), London Brokers, The Hoth, and Ardor Content. In 2023, Rodah finished the AFP course on Digital Investigation Techniques. Her email is rodahmugeni998@gmail.com

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