“Seinfeld” is often described as a sitcom about nothing, but that’s more of a joke than an accurate representation of what the show is. In fact, “Seinfeld” is a chronicling of the day-to-day life of a New York City-based stand-up comedian, Jerry Seinfeld, and his three friends. Early episodes explore how Jerry’s real life gives him inspiration for his standup routine. As the show evolved, it gradually became an examination of the unwritten rules that govern polite society. It’s thanks to “Seinfeld” that we know that “no gifts” is a lie, or know not to eat eclairs out of trash cans.Since so much of “Seinfeld” is inspired by Jerry Seinfeld and his co-creator Larry David’s lives, it’s no surprise that they turned the creation of “Seinfeld” itself into a storyline on the show. During Season 4, Jerry and George (Jason Alexander) conceive and pitch a fictional version of “Seinfeld” to NBC, which they call “Jerry.” The plot of “Jerry” is right out of a hacky 1980’s sitcom: Jerry gets into a car accident, and the other driver is sentenced to be his butler. The rest of “Jerry” closely resembles “Seinfeld,” since it follows the day-to-day lives of fictionalized versions of Jerry, George, Elaine, and Kramer.
Originally, “Jerry” is canceled after the pilot episode due to a change in leadership at NBC. However, in the “Seinfeld” series finale, Jerry and George learn that there’s been another shakeup in the NBC brass and NBC wants to order a full season of “Jerry.” Of course they get this news right before they’re sentenced to a year in jail for violating the Good Samaritan law, along with Elaine (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) and Kramer (Michael Richards).
What happened to “Jerry” after that? It’s one of the biggest unanswered questions about “Seinfeld,” Here’s what we know.
Jerry and George don’t get to make Jerry after all
Jerry and George on the set of JerryNBC
Obviously, the revival of “Jerry” is meant to be a joke-–Jerry and George are having their dream come true at the worst possible time. But “Seinfeld” never specifies what happens to “Jerry” once its two creators get sent to the slammer, and the show ends shortly after. Do Jerry and George get to make the show after they got out of jail, or does NBC cancel “Jerry” again?
Most likely it’s the latter, and we know thanks to Season 7 of Larry David’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” The main storyline of that season is a fictional “Seinfeld” reunion 11 years after the finale aired, and the fictional “Seinfeld” reunion updates the audience on what Jerry, George, Elaine, and Kramer have been up to in the meantime. They’ve all mostly resumed their lives in the Upper West Side of New York. Jerry’s still a comedian, and he has a daughter with Elaine after donating his sperm. George has been married and divorced, and also briefly became rich by inventing the iToilet, a smartphone app that can find the nearest decent public toilet. Of course, he then lost his money in Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme, with the divorce settlement taking the rest.
Given the fact that the “Seinfeld” reunion never mentions “Jerry,” we can assume that the show never got made. From a creative standpoint, it makes the most sense that Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David opted not to have their fictional counterparts make it big. Characters who are happy and successful are seldom funny.