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"The Understudy"
Seinfeld episode
Episode no. Season 6
Episode 110
Written by Marjorie Gross & Carol Leifer
Directed by Andy Ackerman
Original airdate May 18, 1995
Guest stars

Bette Midler, Amy Hill & Michael McDonald

Season 6 episodes
Seinfeld – Season 6
September 1994 – May 1995
  1. "The Chaperone"
  2. "The Big Salad"
  3. "The Pledge Drive"
  4. "The Chinese Woman"
  5. "The Couch"
  6. "The Gymnast"
  7. "The Soup"
  8. "The Mom & Pop Store"
  9. "The Secretary"
  10. "The Race"
  11. "The Switch"
  12. "The Label Maker"
  13. "The Scofflaw"
  14. "The Highlights of 100, Part 1"
  15. "The Highlights of 100, Part 2"
  16. "The Beard"
  17. "The Kiss Hello"
  18. "The Doorman"
  19. "The Jimmy"
  20. "The Doodle"
  21. "The Fusilli Jerry"
  22. "The Diplomat's Club"
  23. "The Face Painter"
  24. "The Understudy"
List of Seinfeld episodes

"The Understudy" is the 110th episode of the NBC sitcom Seinfeld. This was the 24th and final episode for the 6th season. It aired on May 18, 1995.


Jerry is dating Gennice, the understudy of stage performer Bette Midler, and a crybaby, who, apparently cries for foolish reasons (for instance, crying when she drops her hotdog). In a parody of the 1994 Tonya Harding-Nancy Kerrigan scandal,[1][2] George accidentally injures Midler in a softball game and the understudy has to take over Midler's part in the musical Rochelle Rochelle. Enraged New Yorkers turn against George, Jerry and Gennice, while Midler is nursed back to health by Kramer. Meanwhile, Elaine brings Frank Costanza to her favorite beauty shop to translate the jokes being made at her expense by her Korean manicurists. Frank runs into an old flame but Elaine is thrown out of the shop and banned for spying. Despondent, she wanders the streets of New York, where she meets J. Peterman, and finds herself a new job. When Gennice finally takes the stage, she has a problem with the laces on her boot and, in an act reminiscent of Harding's bootlace incident, tearfully asks that she be allowed to start over.

Episode notes

  • The off-camera voice crying out, "Oh my God, Bette's hurt" is that of Larry David.[3]
  • This is the first episode not to have Jerry's stand-up routine even in original version.
  • Michael McDonald, formerly a cast member on MADtv, had a brief role in this episode as one of the Rochelle, Rochelle softball players. McDonald would later be in next season's "The Wig Master" as the guy who tries to ask the wig master out.
  • This is the first episode in which J. Peterman makes an appearance.


  1. ^ David Lavery and Sara Lewis Dunne (2006). "Seinfeld, master of its domain". Continuum International Publishing Group. Retrieved 2009-04-09.  
  2. ^
  3. ^


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