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Rob Cesternino and Akiva Wienerkur continue their journey to watch every Seinfeld episode as they discuss Season 5, Episode 15, “The Pie.”
Rob Cesternino didn’t need his mannequin look-alike to fill in on the podcast this week despite baby number two’s arrival. Akiva Wienerkur would never shake off an opportunity for pie, let alone an opportunity to breakdown Seinfeld’s “The Pie” with Rob this week. “The Pie” first aired February 17, 1994 as part of season five. The episode was written by Tom Gammill and Max Pross.
Akiva had some Seinfeld related news this week. In honor of Rob’s new arrival Anthony Joseph, Akiva went through and listed all Seinfeld characters and actors with either of those names. Some of the highlights included Crazy Joe Davola and Tony the mimbo.
The main storyline is about Jerry and his new girlfriend Audrey. In the opening scene, she puzzles Jerry by refusing to try a piece of his pie, merely shaking him off rather than coming up with an excuse as to why she doesn’t want it. Elaine thought Jerry should just dump her when she hears what happened. Later on, when he sees a lady at the diner decline pie from her friend, he finds out how she turned it down for some perspective.
Jerry decides to confront Audrey about denying the pie, but she wouldn’t explain herself. Their relationship further deteriorates later on at Audrey’s father Poppie’s restaurant. Poppie will turn up in several more episodes throughout the series. Jerry notices Poppie come out of the stall in the bathroom and head back to the kitchen without washing his hands. When Audrey tries to get Jerry to try the dinner, he shakes her off in the same manner she did with the pie.
Later on, Kramer notices Audrey at Monk’s eating the apple pie by herself, further flummoxing Jerry, so he confronts her later. As he’s there, the Board of Health comes in and inexplicably makes Poppie come with them. Akiva noted that Jerry was not the one to call the Board of Health. Both Rob and Akiva are confused as to why the health inspector essentially arrested Poppie.
The “B” story revolves around George needing to buy a new suit for a job interview. The price is way out of his range, but the saleswoman tells him about an unadvertised sale next week. He spends the next several days staking out the suit, making sure no one buys it. When a man of similar size also draws an interest, George does all he can to throw the man off the scent, from telling him the wrong dates of the sale, to hiding it on another rack to ultimately snake the suit out from under him.
Once George buys the suit, he quickly learns the fabric causes an annoying swishing sound when he walks. At a lunch interview for this job, desert is served, and George notices that the chef is the man he snaked the suit from, and he’s looking out evilly as pie is delivered to the table. George shakes off trying the pie, leading to him not getting hired, but the others who did eat it ended up violently ill. Akiva thought George didn’t eat the pie merely so he wouldn’t be one-upped by the chef. The guys agreed that George should have used some sort of dietary excuse for denying the pie, since he’s such a master liar.
Elaine was the focus of the “C” plot this week. Kramer first noticed a mannequin at the suit store that looked exactly like her. She tried to get to the bottom of who made this, though no one from the store could give her an answer. She later goes back to steal it, since the mannequin is now wearing revealing lingerie. A scene toward the end of the episode shows that Ricky, the strange man who made the flower bouquet out of the TV Guide in “The Cigar Store Indian” is responsible. He is working at a mannequin factory and was the one who designed it.
Kramer had the shortest storyline, having developed an itchy back from the worn fabric on his couch, and nothing helps relieve the itch. None of the gang will scratch his back for him, but he meets a woman with long fingernails at the diner and starts dating her because of her expert back scratching. The relationship comes to an end shortly after the itch has been sufficiently scratched. Rob pointed out that this was only a part of the show to get Kramer some airtime.
Rob and Akiva went on several tangents throughout the podcast. Rob gave Akiva a recommendation to watch the 1980s romantic comedy Mannequin. They promised not to spend too much time discussing the reboot, but Rob did want to make the mannequin a man this time. Akiva remarked later on that he’d certainly prefer to try this movie before he’d try a chocolate covered doughnut.
They also spent some time discussing how Kramer’s new girlfriend with the long nails is only working at Monk’s this one episode, and how the normal cashier wasn’t. Also, Rob took exception with the final scene, and he and Akiva debated how to better finish the episode. Lastly, Akiva told a story about a pizza place he went to that had been given a “C” by the board of health, then noticed it was subsequently shut down by the board of health sometime later.
In 2015, of course Google would allow Elaine to look up the mannequin manufacturer. A Yelp review would be a way to tell the world about Poppie not washing his hands. Akiva thought this was an unusual episode, considering the ending was so badly done, yet their was great jokes and strong storylines. He decided to rank it at 97, while Rob thought he might have it a bit higher.
There were a ton of emails this week, so much so there was little chance for the guys to cover them all. Real BG Lowe emailed in and compared Audrey to Jane, the non-square sparer in her mannerisms. Rob agreed, and also pointed out how George’s suit was comparable to the cashmere sweater with the red dot. Kale wrote in to comment how bad the Kramer having an itchy back storyline was. He also thought it wrong that George would pass up a job to avoid getting sick.
Elaine, the attractive woman correspondent wants to have her shot on the podcast like Chester. She pointed out that she was at an episode taping where the audience was told to stop with the ovations for Kramer entering the room, since it threw off the actors’ timing. Johnny De Silveira noted that “The Pie” storyline was based on a real life situation of Jerry’s. He also shared how the scene with Poppie not washing his hands was shown in his high school health class.
James emailed in with a “hot take” on Elaine’s storylines. He thought she is a stronger character when she plays off more zany types like Mr. Pitt or Puddy, to which the guys agreed. Garrett shared that he thought this was an average episode and asked to be in consideration for the millennial correspondent.
Edward congratulated Rob on the new baby, and wondered if he named him Anthony just so he could pop his collar like Jerry did when talking about the mimbo Tony. He also thanked them for recommending Nathan For You. Amir wanted to credit the show for the call back, with Jerry wearing “Baby Blue” to start this episode. He also wondered how Poppie’s could serve both pizza and duck.
Finally, Chester asked if it’s safe to assume Audrey is another germaphobe, since she didn’t want to share the pie, but wondered why she would do this, yet would fool around with Jerry. Lastly, he thought it implausible that Jerry would have his car at the store when it’s assumed he lived down the street. Akiva remarked how they seem to do this frequently on the show to make certain storylines work logistically.
Before signing off, Rob shared the results of his poll asking what was the better fake job, marine biologist or architect. Marine biologist won 62-48%.
Tune in next week as the guys will recap “The Stand-In” where they promise not to “heighten”. Send in your questions by emailing Seinfeld@
Thanks to Mike Moore for this week’s episode recap