Seinfeld (1989–1998)
5 user 2 critic

The Phone Message 

George leaves several awkward messages on a girlfriend's answering machine, then decides to steal the tape.


Tom Cherones


Larry David (created by), Jerry Seinfeld (created by) | 4 more credits »

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Episode complete credited cast:
Jerry Seinfeld ... Jerry Seinfeld
Julia Louis-Dreyfus ... Elaine Benes
Michael Richards ... Kramer
Jason Alexander ... George Costanza
Tory Polone Tory Polone ... Carol
Gretchen German ... Donna


After a pleasant first date with with Carol, she invites him up for coffee but George says no thanks - and only laster realizes what she may have meant. He reluctantly decides to call her the next day but embarrasses himself even further by leaving a foolish message. He decides he has to get to her machine and retrieve the messages before she does. Jerry meanwhile goes on a date with Donna but they get into an argument when she says she likes a particular TV commercial that Jerry just hates. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




PG | See all certifications »






Release Date:

13 February 1991 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The plot is based on a real-life experience of Larry David's. See more »


Donna pours wine into a glass and sets it down next to an empty glass. Even though nobody touches the glasses after that, they go from both being empty, to one being full, to both being full, and ultimately both being empty again. Also, both glasses and the bottle move around on the counter between shots. See more »


Donna: Is there anything else I should know about you?
Jerry Seinfeld: Yes, I'm lactose intolerant. I have no patience for lactose. And I won't stand for it.
See more »


References I Love Lucy (1951) See more »


Seinfeld Theme Song
Written by Jonathan Wolff
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User Reviews

"Take it easy"
11 October 2016 | by juanmaffeoSee all my reviews

Another great episode from the early days. It simultaneously has everything prevalent in the first 2 to 3 seasons: relatable social situations, relationship insights, inconsistent tone and some pretentious writing. I personally like better the early seasons over the latter ones. I am willing to see past its amateur faults because there's a sense of creativity, of doing something unique.

The main plot line isn't all that incredible: the episode revolves around George trying to get some messages out of his girlfriend's phone machine and I believe that's partially the weakness of this episode. The main idea isn't very strong and there is nothing else to complement it. There's a minor storyline involving Jerry's neurosis but Kramer and Elaine don't get to do anything. That being said, the episode has its moments. Jerry's insights on the Cotton Dokers commercial is really funny and the whole third act is amazing.

So yeah, just like the majority of the early episodes, it has good intentions and nice ideas, but they are still finding their tone and style.

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