Seinfeld

Seinfeld: The Pothole | Episode 150 Recap Podcast

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Rob Cesternino and Akiva Wienerkur continue their journey to watch every Seinfeld episode as they discuss Season 8, Episode 16, “The Pothole.”

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Rob Cesternino and Akiva Wienerkur rented their jackhammers and are ready to bring you a new Seinfeld Post Show Recap. This time, they discussed “The Pothole”, which first aired February 20, 1997 as part of season eight. The episode was written by Steve O’Donnell and Dan O’Keefe.
Jerry’s Storyline – Jerry is dating a new woman named Jenna, and accidentally knocks her toothbrush in the toilet bowl.  He can’t stop her from using it before throwing it out, so he tries a number of techniques to fully clean her mouth so he can kiss her again.  When none of them work, he finally admits what he did, so Jenna in turn puts “something” of his in his toilet.  After Jerry throws nearly everything in his apartment out, Jenna reveals she put the toilet brush in the bowl.  Just when Jerry starts to get over it all, Jenna’s toilet explodes all over her from George bursting the water main, causing Jerry to tell her to have a nice life. Grade: Akiva – A-, Rob – B+

George’s Storyline – George gets a new keychain with a talking Phil Rizzuto on it that says his catch phrase “Holy Cow”.  He discovers soon after that he’s lost the keys jumping over a pothole out on the street.  The pothole has been paved over though.  Kramer ends up connecting George with some construction workers he met, but they won’t do the work for him, only lending him the jackhammer.  The episode ends with George accidentally hitting a waterline, sending water shooting up into the sky. Grade: Akiva – B+, Rob – B+

Elaine’s Storyline – Elaine is obsessed with this new flounder dish at a local Chinese Food place, but they don’t deliver to her area.  She tries giving the address across the street that is in the delivery zone, but the delivery man refuses to give her the meal.  Next, when trying to convince someone in that building to let her order from their apartment, she discovers a janitor’s closet she can use.  The idea works, but a tenant in the building thinks Elaine is the janitor, and forces her to remove a bunch of debris from the building’s basement. Grade: Akiva – B, Rob – B

Kramer’s storyline – Kramer accidentally runs over a sewing machine while driving down the highway, prompting him to adopt the stretch so he can personally tend to it.  He takes the job seriously, even cleaning the traffic signs in Jerry’s apartment.  While out sprucing up the area, Kramer gets the idea to remove two of the lanes for a wider more luxurious drive.  When this fails miserably, Kramer must then use paint thinner to get it back to four lanes.  The paint thinner ends up spilling all over the road, and Newman catches his truck on fire when the sparks from a sewing machine he’s dragging hits the puddle.  Grade: Akiva – A-, Rob – B

Episode Ranking – 62

Emails – Johnny De Silveira noted that the director won the Emmy for this episode.  Colin the pizza delivery guy shared a story about a student trying something similar to Elaine for a delivery, but he figured it out and stopped it.  Craig wondered why Jerry would sleep in his car, noting it would be difficult to put bedding or pillows in the toilet.  Lindsay asked how they would feel about someone using their toothbrush.
Evan asked what they would stick in a toilet if they were Jenna.  Matt asked if they would go to Elaine’s lengths to get delivery.  Travis thought Newman’s singing was an homage to the closed down Kenny Rogers Roasters.  Amir wondered why the delivery guy would even care if Elaine lived in the building or not, and wondered how the sewing machine ended up back at the same spot on the highway.  Lastly, Chester chimed in with an array of hot takes.

  • susan appleby

    Congrats on getting to episode 150! I don’t know how you do it Rob and Akiva!

  • Hornacek

    Rob says it’s out of character for Jerry to grab Kristen’s toothbrush out of the toilet. If it was his toothbrush then I would agree. But because it’s hers it makes sense. He’s both embarrassed and horrified about knocking it in the toilet, and as much as he doesn’t want to reach in and get it, he wants to undo this situation as soon as possible without her knowing anything happened.

    I think Mrs. Allister (the woman who yells at Elaine in the building) is the super and not just a tenant. She speaks with authority as if she could fire Elaine. If she was just a tenant then she would likely tell Elaine to do her job or she would go tell the super.

    Regarding Rob saying that traffic on the radio is being replaced by apps in 2017, that might be true if you have someone else in the car who can use the app to give you that info. But a lot of people drive alone and can’t use an app while driving so the radio traffic report is still useful.

    Regarding how George and Kramer knew that Elaine was in the janitor closet, Jerry probably told them. George says he was downstairs working with the jackhammer so Jerry probably passed right by him and told him where he was going. And Jerry probably told Kramer too, who would be nosy about why Jerry was going to a strange building to see Elaine.

    Why does Kramer need paint thinner? Why doesn’t he just repaint the lines using white paint? It would be exactly what he did before but with a different color paint. Easier than trying to remove his back paint. And wouldn’t the paint thinner also remove the original white lane lines? Unlike the rest of Kramer’s schemes, this idea makes no sense.

    Rob and Akiva are right – Elaine’s story doesn’t have a resolution. Maybe for the tag she gets back to the building and Mrs. Allister tells her that all the toilets in the building have exploded and she has to clean them all up, and Elaine says “I quit. No flounder is worth this!” This would tie Elaine’s story in with George’s.

    A few nice shots in this episode – the shot of Jerry from inside the toilet (under the water) and the overhead shot of the keychain flying into the air.

    Regarding the two sewing machines, it would make more sense if Kramer had dumped it there. We see him collecting garbage after he adopts the highway, and it seems in his character that he would bring all the trash home and then try to get rid of it (or maybe go through it and see if there is anything he wants). It’s probably too much for him to throw it out in his own building so when he hears that Elaine has a room in another building he brings some of that trash with him when he goes to see her and drops it in the basement.