Jerry Seinfeld’s name might have been on the marquee, but the antics of Jerry’s neighbor, Cosmo Kramer, attracted a fair number of viewers over the course of Seinfeld’s nine seasons.
Like the other main characters on the show, the cultural impact of the cigar-chomping eccentric played by Michael Richards has far outlasted the mega-hit sitcom’s run, but our collective fascination with Kramer is somewhat curious. Unlike the others, there’s nothing relatable about Kramer, but he’s just too bizarre to ignore.
In honor of the man who brought a dash of the absurd to the “show about nothing,” we’ve compiled Kramer’s 10 best quotes.
“It’s like a sauna in here.”
Richards’ completely straight-faced delivery of perhaps the dumbest line in show history is absolute gold. It’s gold!
“You’re just as pretty as any of them. You just need a nose job.”
Everyone on Seinfeld was a terrible person, which was largely the point of the show. But Kramer allowed the writers to get just a bit more crass and shallow, and it shows in the carefree way he tosses out this loaded compliment.
“Moles… freckles ugly cousin”
“Boy, I’d like to get it on video. Watch it in slow motion and freeze frame it!”
The gang eventually went to prison for being heartless in the still divisive series finale. But Kramer telegraphed his own lack of regard for the feelings of others all the way back in the third season.
“You know how there’s some people you worry about whether or not you’re gonna hurt their feelings? With her, I’m looking forward to it,” Kramer says about an impending breakup before revealing his desire to save the breakup for posterity.
This led to the classic scene above.
“These pretzels are making me thirsty!”
One of Kramer’s shots at stardom came when it briefly looked like he would have a line in a Woody Allen film. Of course, things didn’t work out, but at least we got this line to say every single time we eat a pretzel.
“If I had a kid, I would name him Isosceles. Isosceles Kramer.”
When you think about this classic line and remember that it came from a man named “Cosmo,” it starts to make sense.
“I’m out there, Jerry. And I’m loving every minute of it!”
Kramer, a man whose life seems like one long crazy weekend, would of course choose to be unfettered by society’s conventions and the tight grasp of underwear, allowing only a thin layer of gabardine to stand between Kramer’s boys and the world at large.
“Who turns down a Junior Mint?”
Kramer’s reasoning for setting in motion one of the shows iconic moments is sound.
Jerry: Ah, you’re crazy!
Kramer: Am I? Or am I so sane that you just blew your mind?
Jerry: It’s impossible!
Kramer: Is it?! Or is it so possible your head is spinning like a top?
Jerry: It can’t be!
Kramer: Can’t it?! Or is your entire world just crashing down all around you?
Jerry: Alright, that’s enough!
Kramer’s instincts prove accurate as he recognizes Jerry’s latest girlfriend from her side job as a phone sex operator.
“You think these hands… they’ve been soaking in Ivory Liquid?”
Kramer was both a lover and a fighter. And he dropped this bombshell of a response to a street punk in the episode “The Trip.”