Season 1 Episode 1

The Seinfeld Chronicles

Aired Thursday 9:00 PM Jul 05, 1989 on NBC

Episode Fan Reviews (31)

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  • Seinfeld had to start at the pilot but sadly this isn't a faithful introduction of the classic series. Mediocre is an overstatement but the show's overall genius excuses a lousy beginning.

    Meet Jerry Seinfeld (Jerry Seinfeld): club and occasional TV comic enjoying a modest success. Boyishly handsome, obsessively neat; a frequent consumer of whole grain cereal, basketball games, bad movies, and young women who keep ditching him on the flimsiest of pretexts when he's not disposing of them on equally slim grounds. Once came close to engagement to a woman who resembled him so uncannily he couldn't stand her. George Costanza (Jason Alexander)is his best friend but completely the opposite; always between pedestrian jobs, relationships never working, being unattractive with no self - esteem or ego to compensate it and relies on tall stories and lies to impress girls and bosses. He too came close to marriage until........Check out the Season 7 finale, "The Invitations." Cosmo Kramer (Michael Richards) is the enigma of the group whose background and source of income is never fully revealed and even his apartment isn't seen until Season 3. He appears to be living every man's dreams; casual relationships, lots of money without having to work, lots of food (his neighbours) and generally no responsibilities or worries. Sadly none of these traits for any of the 3 characters are revealed in the pilot; all we learn about Jerry is that he's a comedian and likes baseball, George bought a purple shirt and thinks we should do the opposite when it comes to girls and Kramer has a dog and ruins the outcome of a baseball game Jerry taped. The plot is so one - sided it's almost see - through. Jerry is having a woman stay at his bachelor pad while him and George thoroughly interpret the "signals" behind what she said on the phone. When she finally comes over there's a twist that she's actually married and is using Jerry as a b - plan. The plot itself could've been done in about 5 minutes but there's all sorts of diversionary scenes and cutaways like Jerry's stand - up, him and George's conversations on "nothing" and Kramer raiding his fridge and couch but even those weren't really that interesting and did almsot nothing to save this sorry pilot. There's no "Elaine" character in the first episode, the only woman is the blunt waitress who gives George reguler coffee and offers some womanly advice but contributes nothing other than that and only appears in the opening scene, so God knows why she was given top billing. The first of Jerry's many female associates it attractive enough and knows there's nothing for her to work with so she gets through it with her dignity intact. The sets and locations are so sound - stagey it's suprising they made the effort of hiding the cameras and studio audience when their presence would justify the use of it. While Jerry' monologues are funny in essence, it's not enough the constitute the humour of an entire episode. Sure this show was famous for making "nothing" funny but the "nothing" on show here like doing the laundry and talking about buttoning a shirt and cleaning a bathroom is not exactly Emmy - material. The Seinfeld Chronicles is just not that good a pilot. Yes, it opens one of the most influential TV series' of all time but it's entire structure is just weak and clearly they were touched by an angel when it was decided to give them 5 more episodes to do and it evolved from there.