Seinfeld: Season 8, Episode 22

The Summer of George (15 May 1997)

TV Episode  -   -  Comedy
8.8
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With three months' severance pay from the Yankees, George decides that he's going to have a great summer. Things don't quite go as planned. Jerry meanwhile is dating someone new, Lanette, ... See full summary »

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Title: The Summer of George (15 May 1997)

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
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Herself
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Sam
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Lanette
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Doctor
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Lew
Tucker Smallwood ...
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Lyle
Adrian Sparks ...
Man
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Storyline

With three months' severance pay from the Yankees, George decides that he's going to have a great summer. Things don't quite go as planned. Jerry meanwhile is dating someone new, Lanette, who he invites to attend the Tony awards with him. When he picks her up, however, she seems to already have a live-in boyfriend. Kramer is also at the awards ceremony and gets dragged on stage with some of the winners. He basks in the glow of having 'won' a Tony and the producers decide to use him to get rid of their star, Raquel Welch. At her work, Elaine makes a comment about a co-worker and is accused of being catty. Written by garykmcd

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15 May 1997 (USA)  »

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User Reviews

Season 8: Still funny despite the turn from the neurotic and edgy into more wacky material
3 June 2012 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

When the BBC showed Seinfeld originally it must have used some sort of random schedule generation to pick the midnight weekday (but not every weekday) slots that it screened on because it meant that my experience of it was patchy. Back in the days of VCR's setting a tape every night was a pain and of course a late night on a school night was not always worth it and so, as a result I decided to watch the show from the very start over a good period of time. With the eighth season it is interesting to see it gradually head a certain direction and to see it develop from the slight turn it had taken in the seventh. Specifically I mean it had become a lot more wacky – although I should say still funny.

Where once the show had a real acerbic edge and had pushed the envelope in terms of some of the subjects it had come up with, this season goes further from that again, only by a few steps but further for sure. The social observational aspect is still the core of the show but it s much more cheerful and less routed in bitterness. George is the best example of this as his adventures are more extreme – still George but less concerned with the minutiae of life than he has been before, a factor helped by the freedom he has within his plots. This expansive approach makes the show much more accessible I suppose and it is still funny but I did miss the rather sharp edge that I had found in some of the early/middle seasons when the show was at its best.

There are still some classic episodes in here though along with plenty of clips that would make a "best of" reel and, like I said, it is still very funny for the most part. As I have always loved Kramer as a character, it isn't a massive problem for me that the plots now mostly resemble the exaggerated nonsense that he has always gotten into, but I did still miss the sharp edge that the material used to have. The cast don't seem to mind. In particular Seinfeld welcomes the wacky tone and does well with it, likewise Alexander and Louis-Dreyfus seem to enjoy more expression and nonsense than before. Richards of course benefits and the show uses him and his various supporting oddballs to good effect. This season also produces quite a few one-off appearances from people who have since gone on to become more familiar (eg the janitor from Scrubs is in it as a cop for about 1 minute).

Season 8 is a change from the best of the show but it is still an enjoyable and funny season. The wackiness does rather overwhelm but it is done with imagination and wit and it does work and does produce moments and episodes that stand among the best of the show as a whole. It is to the show's credit that even one of its less great seasons is still pretty darn strong.


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