Season 9 Episode 10

The Strike

Aired Thursday 9:00 PM Dec 18, 1997 on NBC
out of 10
User Rating
178 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

The Strike
An increase in the minimum wage is enough to finally meet the demands of the striking employees of H&H Bagels, and as such, Kramer announces that after 12 years, he's going back to work. Jerry meets an attractive woman at a party, but when he later tries to date her, she doesn't look nearly as good. Elaine's use of a fake phone number backfires when she loses a card that will entitle her to a free sandwich. George tries to get away with giving away fake donation cards as Christmas gifts at work, and much to his chagrin, his father decides to revive Festivus, a unique holiday he'd invented years earlier.moreless

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  • "A Festivus for the rest of us!" And for me!

    Out of all the Seinfeld episodes I've seen, this one is hands-down the best (I haven't seen every episode yet, but it's highly unlikely the few that I haven't seen yet could be better). Jerry trying to handle having a girlfriend who becomes ugly in the wrong lighting, Elaine trying to contact a man she gave her fake phone number to, because she wrote the number on the back of a card that could get her a free sub and a captain's hat, Kramer going back to work after a 12-year strike (he wanted $5.35 an hour, and they only complied with that because the minimum wage was raised to precisely that), and best of all, George and his family's annual celebration of Festivus. I was somewhat annoyed at George's dislike for Festivus, for to me, it seemed like a great holiday. Soon, I found George's dislike for the holiday more comedic than annoying. I found it very funny when George used the holiday as an excuse to Kruger for handing out fake donation cards as Christmas gifts. Though throughout the episode, I couldn't help but wonder what the Feats of Strength was! Both times that the Feats of Strength was mentioned, George raced out of the coffee shop in a mad panic, and no classification on what it is was given, other than Frank seemed to enjoy it. Then at the end, when Frank said "As Festivus rolls on, we come to the Feats of Strength", I listened more closely than I had been. I liked the idea of the Feats of Strength being a wrestling match. The only point of the episode I have a Greivance to Air about is the very end, where Kramer gets fired. But given the rest of the episode, especially the Festivus dinner, I found that Kramer getting fired didn't negatively affect my opinion of this at all. Happy Festivus!moreless
  • The alternate reality of George's family. The Festivus for the rest of us.

    Welcome to the alternate reality of George's family. This is definitely one of my favorite episodes, and one of the reasons this show was on as long as it was. Another Seinfeld episode that kept everyone talking for a long time. Even now almost 8 years later we still talk about the festivus fo the rest of us. Some of the best episodes in the series had to do with George's family. Seinfeld was a classic show and this was another episode that will be talked about over and over again.moreless
  • Festivus!

    Hoe often is it that a sitcom was able to create a Holiday, talk about it briefly for about 3-5 minutes and get millions around the world to actually celebrate it? Not too often. Seinfeld was one of the few shows with the power to do that. Festivus is such a relatable concept to so many individuals. We all want to air our grievances with our family members, we do not want to pretend to care about them.

    Great, great episode of Seinfeld that will definitely go down as one of the best in series history. A must watch for any fan of comedy.moreless
  • 'Another Festivus miracle!'

    I just love that phrase, because Kramer screws it up by telling Gwen she's not Jerry's real girlfriend because of all the bad and good light.

    What cracks me up is Mr. Costanza. He steals the show. His whole speech at the dinner was hilarious. Elaine has her own problems and all created by her, like always. I just couldn't stop laughing when she asks the guy about the horse and he just says 'He had to be shot' in a very cruel way!

    George... poor man, he's all traumatized by his parents that there's no way someone can help him... For our fun of course.moreless
  • Good stuff.

    I thought this was a funny episode. Not great, barely good, but funny. It had some good comedy, okay plots, and average writing. I think everyone was equal in terms of comedy. I don't think I could pick a standout because there wasn't one. Jerry had problems with a woman, George was being cheap, Elaine was being stubborn, and Kramer was being a moron. My favorite parts of the show had to be where the group heads over to George's house for Festavus. The interaction was quite hilarious and I wanted to see them all fight. Overall, a funny episode. Thank you.moreless
Daniel Von Bargen

Daniel Von Bargen


Guest Star

Karen Fineman

Karen Fineman


Guest Star

Kevin McDonald

Kevin McDonald

Denim Vest

Guest Star

Jerry Stiller

Jerry Stiller

Frank Costanza

Recurring Role

Estelle Harris

Estelle Harris

Estelle Costanza

Recurring Role

Bryan Cranston

Bryan Cranston

Tim Whatley

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (8)

    • (introducing himself to Gwen)
      Jerry: Hi. I'm Jerry. You might not know it to look at me, but I can run really...really fast.

      This most likely is a reference to Season 6 episode "The Race".

    • "Festivus: The Holiday for the Rest of Us" is the name of a book by Allen Salkin about the celebration of Festivus in the real world.

    • Jerry says that Gwen always looks good when sitting in the back booth at the coffee shop, and that he'll try to always sit there with her. However, the two subsequent times that they eat there, they sit in the booth directly behind the cash register.

    • At the Festivus meal, Mr Kruger recognizes Kramer as Dr Van Nostren. This is a clever reference to "The Slicer," when Kramer, in his butcher coat, poses as a dermatologist doing a cancer screening, to help George get a picture of Kruger with his shirt off.

    • Frank said that for Festivus, everyone tells how the people at the table have disappointed them. However, at the end, Frank is the only one who does this, and they go on to the feats of strength.

      NOTE: Actually, he says that you gather your family around you and tell them all the ways they have disappointed you -- in other words, it is only the head of the family that has this privilege.

    • When Elaine is at the betting place where she has her standard fake phone number, a sign on the glass window says "No Spoken Bets Allowed." However, once she gives the guys Kramer's number, she places a verbal bet at Belmont, without any paperwork!

      The sign says "No Verbal Bets Allowed." but any one who's ever been to the track or an OTB knows that the only way to bet is to verbally say what horse you want to bet on unless you use an automated machine which wasn't available at that OTB.

    • When Elaine looks at Kramer's original H&H bagel business card that he claimed was from 10 years ago when he worked there, the card says "Cosmo Kramer" bagel technician. If the card was printed 10 years earlier, why would it have his first name on it, which he never used and kept secret from everyone until two years earlier.

    • At the end when Kruger calls Kramer "van Nostrand". Kramer agrees quietly, but when Frank announces the feets of strength, he says the one wrestling him is "Mister Kramer," but why didn't Kruger seem suspicious.

  • QUOTES (17)

    • Jerry (surprised): Gwen, what are you doing here?
      Gwen: Kramer told me you were here.
      Kramer (excited): Another Festivus miracle!

    • Frank: At the Festivus dinner, you gather your family around and tell them all the ways they have disappointed you over the past year.
      Kramer: And is there a tree?
      Frank: No. Instead, there's a pole. Requires no decoration. I find tinsel distracting.
      Kramer: Frank, this new holiday of yours is scratching me right where I itch.

    • Jerry: Why didn't you ever mention this?
      Kramer: Jerry, I didn't want you to know I was out of work. It's embarrassing.

    • Kramer: H&H wouldn't let us use their bathroom while we were picketing. It put a cramp in our solidarity.

    • Jerry: When George was growing up, his father hated all the commercial and religious aspects of Christmas, so he made up his own holiday.
      Elaine: Oh... and another piece of the puzzle falls into place.

    • Jerry: You might not know it to look at me, but I can run really really fast.

    • (Back on strike, trying to keep people from getting bagels)
      Kramer: Heeey, no-bagel-no-bagel-no-bagel-no-bagel-no-bagel, heey!

    • Jerry: You don't need the card. High-end hoagie outfit like that, it's all computerized! (Snaps) They're cloning sheep now.
      Kramer: (Correcting) No, they're not cloning sheep. It's the same sheep! I saw Harry Blackstone do that trick with two goats and a handkerchief on the old Dean Martin show!

    • George: (on Gwen) She's a two-face.
      Jerry: Like the Batman villain?
      George: (condescending) If that helps you.
      Jerry: So if I ask her out again, I don't know who's showing up -- the good, the bad, or the ugly.

    • George: I got him Yankees tickets! He got me a piece of paper saying, "I've given your gift to someone else!"

    • Jerry: Nice cuff links, by the way.
      George: Office Christmas gift. I tell you, this Human Fund is a gold mine!
      Jerry: That's not a French cuff shirt, you know.
      George: I know. I cut the button off and poked a hole with a letter opener.
      Jerry: Classy.

    • George: I don't really celebrate Christmas. I celebrate Festivus.

    • Frank: George, you're forgetting how much Festivus has meant to us all. I brought one of the cassette tapes. (Franks pushes play, George as a child celebrating Festivus is heard.)
      Frank: Read that poem.
      George: (Complaining) I can't read it. I need my glasses!
      Frank: You don't need glasses, you're just weak! You're weak!
      Estelle: Leave him alone!
      Frank: Alright, George. It's time for the feats of strength.
      (George has a break down)
      George: No! No! Turn it off! No feats of strength! (Gets up and starts running out of the coffee shop) I hate Festivus!
      Frank: We had some good times.

    • George: I'm embracing my roots.
      Jerry: They got you on the 20G's?
      George: Busted cold.

    • Kramer: (shocked by Elaine's face) Yama hama. It's fright night.

    • Frank: Many Christmases ago, I went to buy a doll for my son. I reached for the last one they had, but so did another man. And as I rained blows upon him I realized there had to be another way.
      Kramer: What happened to the doll.
      Frank: It was destroyed, but out of this came a new holiday, 'a Festivus for the rest-of-us.'
      Kramer: That must of been some doll.
      Frank: SHE was!

    • Frank: It's Festivus… for the rest of us!

  • NOTES (6)


    • Jerry: Two the "Batman" Villain?
      Jerry mentions that his girlfriend goes through strange changes, Her face gets very dim in certain light, and he parallels this to the Two Face. Two Face is a Batman villain, and this makes sense that he would mention this, being that Seinfeld is a very big Comic Book buff, and Batman is a comic book character.