Temperamental, rude, self-absorbed, and self-hating, we should have despised George but despite his failings the character was and still is beloved because the writers were able to use him, more than any other character on the show, to confront their own (and our own) irritations with modern life and our fellow man.
The Jerk Store’s all-time bestseller, George rarely took on the outside world with style, grace, and wit. Instead, the constantly put upon Costanza howled with vigor at those who dared offend or annoy him. Don’t get me wrong, there were moments of joy for George Costanza and those were celebrated with a more positive kind of exuberance, but George was his most George like and the champion of the perturbed masses when he was blowing his top. So with that in mind, here are 10 of George Costanza’s best outbursts, presented in no particular order.
“You’re giving me the it’s not you it’s me routine?”
George had inexplicable luck with the opposite sex before he ultimately bungled those relationships or put a stop to them for some silly reason. Here, George is the one who is about to get broken-up with, but rather than feel a sense of rejection, his pride flares up when the woman uses his relationship exit routine.
“I’m gonna show you what it’s like!”
After finding success doing everything contrary to what his gut tells him to do, George throws himself into a possible physical confrontation with two guys that look like they walked off of a Jerky Boys album cover.
An idea that originally lived as one of Seinfeld co-creator Larry David’s many un-aired Saturday Night Live sketches finds George going to extremes to swap out an embarrassing answering machine message. This is sort of the opposite of the last outburst in that in this instance the immediacy of a cell phone would actually make this situation much worse.
“You know, we’re living in a society!”
In “The Chinese Restaurant,” George weeps for the dissolution of our once polite society while waiting for a pay phone to come available in one of the many Seinfeld moments that would be completely irrelevant now thanks to cell phones. Larry David almost quit the show because NBC brass didn’t want to air this episode that was seemingly about nothing. Thank goodness they changed their mind and David hung on for a few more seasons.
“I was in the pool! I was in the pool!”
I’m not going to judge George harshly for this outburst. He’s dealing with a betrayal from a trusted “friend” thanks to cold water and the term “shrinkage.”