Seinfeld (1989–1998)
8.2/10
1,299
3 user 2 critic

The Checks 

Jerry gets hundreds of royalty checks, worth 12 cents each, for appearing on a Japanese TV program and gets writer's cramp. George and Jerry pitch their pilot to Japanese TV executives.

Director:

Andy Ackerman

Writers:

Larry David (created by), Jerry Seinfeld (created by) | 5 more credits »
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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Jerry Seinfeld ... Jerry Seinfeld
Julia Louis-Dreyfus ... Elaine Benes
Michael Richards ... Cosmo Kramer
Jason Alexander ... George Costanza
James Patrick Stuart ... Brett
Richard Herd ... Wilhelm
Gedde Watanabe ... Mr. Oh
Sab Shimono ... Executive #1
John Bowman John Bowman ... Teddy
Jack Plotnick ... Crew Leader
George Wallace ... Doctor
Toshi Toda ... Mr. Tanaka
Goh Misawa Goh Misawa ... Mr. Yamaguchi
Tony V. ... Clicky
Akane Nelson Akane Nelson ... Executive #2
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Storyline

Elaine falls hard for her new boyfriend, who gets hypnotized every time he hears the song "Desperado". Jerry has to endorse hundreds of royalty checks from Japan because of his work on the "Super Terrific Happy Hour Show". The checks are worth 12 cents each. Jerry claims that he invented the umbrella twirl and then gets ousted by the umbrella salesmen he used to work with. Elaine's new boyfriend has a thing for a furniture designer named Carl Farbman. He buys Kramer a dresser made by Farbman. Kramer's Japanese friends run out of money and wind up staying in the drawers of the dresser. When the hot tub warps the drawers (Jerry can't open them because his hands are cramped from endorsing checks) he axes the Farbman dresser. Elaine's boyfriend tries to stop him but Jerry swings and hits him in the head. While at the hospital, the doctor loses his patient when he becomes hypnotized by Elaine's favorite song, "Witchy Woman". Written by Jim

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

7 November 1996 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

4:3
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The final line before the end credits was recorded twice - one for if the New York Yankees won the World Series (which they did one month earlier), and one for if they lost. See more »

Goofs

When Jerry (Jerry Seinfeld) leaves to cash the cheques he says "Konichiwa" to Kramer (Michael Richards). "Konichiwa" actually means "how are you?" in Japanese. See more »

Quotes

George Costanza: He's giving you furniture? Who is this guy?
Jerry Seinfeld: Who are any of her losers?
George Costanza: You're on that list.
See more »

Connections

Features Seinfeld: The Pilot (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

Seinfeld Theme Song
Written by Jonathan Wolff
See more »

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User Reviews

generous and sensitive..
1 July 2019 | by Arth_JoshiSee all my reviews

Seinfeld

Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld, the creators, of the dream sitcom for every stand up artist is the milestone set as an example on how to use your humor as a part of narrative. The series was clearly ahead of its time and fixated within that time limit when it was aired- or maybe not even then. This is how the series both remains timeless and also fails to test against time. The concept of the series- in fact there is an episode, where the series takes an almost meta turn, whispering the secretive meeting held within the confound of NBC walls about the pitch- is to just joke, just talk, analyse with a mockery tone, bombing brutally on a subject from the most privileged position under that circumstances. There is no storyline, no character development, no arc, no rhythm to follow. Usually, a film like such becomes more than a film with such an idea; take the Life Of Brian series. And similarly the series refuses to participate in the expected or not even expected aspects of the storytelling.

There is no end, no beginning, it captures a brief period with an agenda in mind that you will have the time of your life. But this is where this coherent plan backfires. First the runtime itself. Something so monotonous cannot withhold its audience for nine years. It is simply preposterous. For the style of the joke, the humor, the vocab of these characters, if as-planned is intended to be the same, will grow natural or normal to the viewers. This makes the relationship between the viewers and the characters, similar to what the viewers have in the outer world, maybe a friend or a family member.

Basically it would never be interesting, sure some cases would come up, just as chapters does in here, but that too will carry the momentum of just that brief period of screentime. Another major challenge it faces is, in order to stay far away from the textbook sitcom structure, the character has to and does deny on getting on or blending in with the society. Now that's fine. But in order to last longer they had to create an unfair world that takes uncalled detours just for the laughs, ignoring both emotional and ethical aspect of it, resulting into a physical distance that you, as an audience, carry for the rest of the series. By the end, it gets difficult to survive and something so beloved, something so smart, Seinfeld is left under a dry heap of jokes.

The Checks

Literally recreating a scene from their own chapters- almost!- the idea definitely had some legs in this episode. Unfortunately we never get to the bickerings and yes and nos between Anderson and Seinfeld something that makes what the series is now, something that they wanted to stay like it.


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