It was almost a quarter-of-a-century ago that Seinfeld aired its last episode, but it has proven to have an impressive staying power in pop culture. Between syndication and streaming deals, people have continuously been able to catch and enjoy reruns since the series finale, and it has remained an important touchstone in modern sitcoms. Thanks to smart and groundbreaking writing, it’s as funny as ever – and that makes it all the better when the former stars make fun reference to their work.
Take, for example, this great Twitter post today from Jason Alexander, who memorably starred as George Costanza in the Emmy Award-winning show. A non-Seinfeld fan would have absolutely no clue what this post is about – a photo of Alexander with a moving truck captioned “I finally found that dang file” – but those in the know will laugh at the callback to the beloved series:
If you don’t quite understand what’s happening here, I would recommend revisiting the eighth episode of Seinfeld‘s fifth season: “The Barber.” In the episode, George is going out for a job and impresses the interviewer with his ability to catch on quickly, but the conversation ends abruptly and the short, stocky, bald man is left not knowing if he’s been hired. Knowing his would-be boss is going on vacation, he makes the decision to just show up for work, and as his first assignment he is given “the Penske file.”
Because George is an idiot, he has no idea what to do with said file. When the boss comes back, he affirms that George did indeed get the job, but he’s baffled by the lack of progress, and the beloved character ends up quitting, thinking that he has a job waiting for him at Penske (spoiler: he doesn’t).
Season 5 of Seinfeld in general was a memorable run for George Costanza, with the character becoming a hand model in “The Puffy Shirt,” converting to Latvian Orthodox in “The Conversion,” pretending to be an aquatic scientist in “The Marine Biologist,” and committing to a new lifestyle in “The Opposite.” And yet his arc in “The Barber” stands out as memorable – which speaks to the brilliance of the show in general.
If you’re now in the mood to do a Seinfeld binge, the good news is that all you need is a Netflix subscription, as the entire run is available to stream (a fixture of Netflix’s TV library). Seasons and individual episodes can be digitally purchased at online outlets including Amazon Prime (opens in new tab) and Google Play, and the DVD box set (opens in new tab) is a must-have for any physical media collectors.
And if you’re now thinking about the Seinfeld fan in your life and want to get them a fun present they will love for the holiday season, check out our Seinfeld gift guide.