Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

The 12 Best Kramer Episodes Of Seinfeld Ranked

One of the most popular sitcoms of the '90s, and perhaps of all time, "Seinfeld" is a show about nothing. Well, maybe next to nothing. The show does follow the intertwined storylines of four central characters: Jerry, George, Elaine, and last but not least, the wild, goofy, crazy Kramer. Every "Seinfeld" fan has their favorite member of the gang, and while every character has their own funny moments and sticky situations, Kramer is definitely the most chaotic and a source of pure entertainment.

Perhaps Kramer's character comes off so rich and genuine because he's actually loosely based on a real person — Kenny Kramer, an old neighbor of "Seinfeld" writer and executive producer Larry David. In a similar fashion to the character, Kenny Kramer seemingly also had a few screws loose, frequently barging into David's apartment and mooching off his food. While this nuisance was annoying for David to deal with in real life, it ended up being a blessing in disguise because it inspired such a loveable character whose antics are at the core of some of the best episodes of "Seinfeld." For those who can't get enough of the K-man, many of these stories will be familiar. Here are the top 12 best Kramer episodes of "Seinfeld."

12. The Abstinence

In "The Abstinence," Kramer becomes upset after he's told he cannot smoke inside the coffee shop and must go and stand outside with all the other smokers. However, as any true Kramer fan knows, he isn't one to just sit and take orders from the man. He's a rebel and a revolutionary, so he rallies all the other smokers who have been shunned and rejected from the comfort of the indoors and leads them back to his apartment where he starts a smoker's lounge. Unfortunately, as Kramer fans also know, he isn't one to always think things through, and this ends up causing some problems for him, as per usual. 

After a while, Kramer begins to look grey and ghastly, his teeth yellowing and his face aging decades by the day. What a devastating turn of events! Who knew being surrounded by smoke 24 hours a day could actually have negative effects on one's health and appearance? That's exactly what Kramer argues when he calls up his fast-talking straight-to-point lawyer, Jackie Chiles. 

Jackie is good at what he does, and after making a solid case for Kramer, he actually has Big Tobacco on their heels, ready to make a deal. However, rather than go for the cash settlement, Kramer opts for a somewhat untraditional form of payment. Kramer is now the Times Square Marlboro Man, watching over the city of New York in a cowboy getup that suits him strangely well. Finally, his person is as big as his personality!

11. The Wizard

"The Wizard" is one of the few episodes that does not take place in New York, but in Florida at the retirement community where Jerry's parents live. It's at the start of this episode that Kramer confesses he is tired of the hustle of the city and making plans to retire from his non-existent job to settle down in the Sunshine State. Surprisingly, this decision does not devolve into chaos but actually carves out a nice little life for him. Self-care is so important, and no one does self-care quite like Kramer! He gets to play golf, tan by the beach, and unwind. Unwind from what exactly? Who knows! What matters is that he's enjoying himself. 

Kramer even quickly becomes a neighborhood favorite, his friendliness and youthful vigor a nice change of scenery for the more elderly folks in the community. He's well-liked enough that he runs for condo President and comes extremely close to winning the election but loses support last-minute when it's exposed that he went without shoes in the clubhouse (apparently, that's a big no-no). Having lost the favor of his peers and neighbors, he moves back to the city, where he returns to the typical, crazy hijinx "Seinfeld" fans know and love him for. It was nice to see him outside his natural environment, though — if only for a little while!

10. The Chaperone

In "The Chaperone," Kramer volunteers to be the chaperone for Jerry's date with a Miss America pageant contestant, Miss Rhode Island. While it seems like funny business is the only kind of business Kramer would ever be involved in, this time there would be nothing of that sort. He takes this role seriously, perhaps too seriously, something you might not expect from his character. However, it's revealed that Kramer is an avid follower of this annual pageant, and has watched every single one since he was a kid. He's pretty much an expert in this field and is soon promoted from Miss Rhode Island's chaperone to her coach. 

He trains Miss Rhode Island in everything from posture and walking to speaking and performing. Kramer's never been this disciplined with anything in his entire life, so to see him in this role is truly an amazing sight. Unfortunately, Miss Rhode Island bombs the talent portion and therefore does not win the contest. However, that's because her magic act was compromised because Jerry accidentally killed her doves and has nothing to do with Kramer's actions as a coach. He's a pro, and that trophy should've been his!

9. The Letter

In "The Letter," Jerry's girlfriend is a painter and she has Kramer come to her studio to pose for a portrait. As confident as he is, Kramer has no problem sitting for her. He knows he's a work of art that must be shared with the world. He's not the only one, however, who recognizes this quality in him, as the portrait attracts some very interested buyers, who interpret the strange man in the frame through their own personal lenses. "I sense great vulnerability. A man-child crying out for love. An innocent orphan in the post-modern world," says one. "I see a parasite. A sexually depraved miscreant who is seeking only to gratify his basest and most immediate urges," says another. 

The viewers stare and squint at the portrait, struggling to find the right words to describe this versatile man of many layers, but at the end of the day, there really is no way to sum up just who Kramer is at his core. He's indescribable — a force beyond words. The only thing one can do is regard him and appreciate him for the gift that he is. No other episode honors and captures the K-man quite like "The Letter."

8. The Chicken Roaster

"The Chicken Roaster" is an incredibly unique episode that sees Kramer behaving in a way the audience has never seen and would never expect. In this episode, a Kenny Rogers' Roasters restaurant opens up right outside Kramer's apartment. This becomes a problem when the restaurant's bright red neon sign prevents Kramer from getting any sleep, causing him to act even more erratic than he usually does. However, he also doesn't want the restaurant to close down because, as he cries out in one of the most quotable moments from "Seinfeld" – he's "Gotta have that chicken!" 

Out of concern, Jerry suggests a solution to this quandary, offering to switch apartments so that Kramer doesn't go totally insane. This is where something magical happens — after they switch apartments, they also switch personalities. As Kramer adjusts to his new home environment, he starts to behave almost like a normal person for once: calm, cool, and collected. Jerry, on the other hand, starts to take on the more chaotic behaviors and mannerisms that would normally be associated with Kramer: barging into rooms, talking fast, and generally acting somewhat disconnected from reality. It's a "Freaky Friday" swap situation that turns Kramer's entire personality on its head. 

Eventually, the two switch back, and everything goes back to normal, but for a second there, we almost lost Kramer forever. That was a close one! 

7. The Alternate Side

In "The Alternate Side," Kramer is walking outside his apartment building when he finds himself near the set of a movie being directed by none other than Woody Allen. He's given a part in the film as an extra walking down the block in the background, carrying a bag of groceries. It's a small part, but Kramer, being the clumsy, uncoordinated doofus that he is, somehow manages to mess up even this simplest of tasks. As he's walking, he slips, and the bag of groceries goes flying. It's over. He screwed up. Or at least that would be the case for literally any other person on the planet — but not Kramer. 

Rather than be angered by this slip-up, Woody bursts out laughing, apparently as amused by Kramer's crazy antics as the show's audience is. Kramer is then given an even bigger part in the movie, sitting next to Woody at a bar. He even has an actual line, one which true "Seinfeld" fans know by heart — "These pretzels are making me thirsty." It's a short line, one which may be easily overlooked, but Kramer works hard to deliver it with all the nuance and force of a real actor. 

Unfortunately, he may have been too forceful with it because as he films the scene, he slams his beer glass down on the table, shattering it. One of the shards ends up cutting Woody, and the director runs off crying. Needless to say, Kramer was no longer welcome on set. Classic!

6. The Merv Griffin Show

This episode contains a show within a show, as Kramer comes upon the discarded remains of "The Merv Griffin Show" set and decides to take it back to his apartment to rebuild it. The set actually comes together really nicely and does start to resemble an actual talk show. Kramer takes on the role of host and has the rest of the gang come by for guest interviews, where they share the latest updates in their life. He even has a co-host in Newman, an animal segment, and orchestrates dramatic confrontations between guests. 

The only thing missing from the show are the lights, cameras, crew, and audience, but how important are those really? What matters is the performance, and Kramer gives a great one. In fact, he's seemingly inseparable from his talk-show host persona, perhaps taking the method acting a bit too far. He's not even really Kramer anymore, he becomes part of something bigger. He's Kramer, but like we've never seen before. How could we not watch?

5. The Big Salad

This episode is meant to parody the O.J. Simpson fiasco, specifically in the police chase with his white Bronco. In this episode, Kramer gets into an argument during a round of golf with his friend and former baseball player, Steve Gendason. Kramer claimed that Gendason broke the rules by picking up his ball and cleaning it while the game was still in play, therefore earning Gendason an unwelcome and disputed penalty stroke.

Later, the gang is watching the news when a story breaks that a local dry cleaner has been murdered and the accused murderer is Gendason. Kramer isn't totally sure whether it was his argument with Gendason that angered him enough to commit this atrocity, but all doubts are settled when a golf tee is found inside the dry cleaner's body. It was his argument with Kramer that led to the murder, and apparently, judging from the events that followed, Kramer was really feeling the burden of that guilt. 

Towards the end of the episode, another news story comes on which shows Gendason fleeing from the police in a white Bronco, driven, of course, by Kramer. Leave it to him to spur a wild police chase with a suspected murderer. It may not be the most moral of actions, but he was just trying to help his friend. Kramer may be a lot of things: disorganized, clumsy, impulsive, and so on, but don't forget to leave out loyal!

4. The Bris

"The Bris" opens in a hospital, where the gang has gathered to visit their friends. Kramer, however, has forgotten the room number, because he's Kramer, and of course he would. He wanders into one of the rooms, and what awaits him is an oddity that even those as strange as Kramer could not be prepared for. As he pulls the bed curtain back, what greets him is an awful sight, which is not revealed to the audience. However, we know from Kramer's reaction that it's not a pretty one and we hear a disturbing squelching noise. He runs from the room screaming, "Pig-man, it's a pig-man!" The conspiracist that he is, Kramer is forced to conclude that the hospital is conducting experiments on its patients, turning them into hybrid animal-human beings.

Later in the episode, the gang returns to the hospital, and Kramer takes this opportunity to pay another visit to the pig-man. As the episode concludes, we see Kramer running through the halls carrying what we can only presume is the pig-man. At some point, the pig-man gets away from Kramer and jumps from a window to his unfortunate death. As it turns out, the man was not in fact half-pig but was just a short, chubby mental patient of pink complexion whom Kramer helped escape. Now, this action was incredibly irresponsible and had devastating consequences, but in his defense, Kramer thought he was doing the right thing. It's a mistake anyone could make!

3. The Understudy

"The Understudy" plays out a storyline that mimics the real-life Tonya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan incident, whereby figure skater Harding and her boyfriend, Jeff Gillooly, are thought to be responsible for an attack on Kerrigan prior to the 1994 Winter Olympics. In the episode, Jerry and George are playing baseball with the beloved actress Bette Midler, who is set to star in "Rochelle, Rochelle: A young girl's strange, erotic journey from Milan to Minsk," a musical adaptation of a movie the gang watched in Season 4, Episode 14. Jerry happens to also be dating Midler's understudy for the play, and after Midler is injured during the game, he and George come under suspicion of plotting to have Midler taken out so that Jerry's girlfriend could take on the lead role. 

Well, as he so boastfully expresses, Kramer is a huge Bette Midler fan, and this does not sit well with him. He takes it upon himself to be Midler's personal security, revealing an intensely protective side to his character the fans had yet to see, and an entertaining one at that. He even goes so far as to take Midler back to his own apartment because that's the only place where he knows she'll be safe. At first, Midler is somewhat resistant and alarmed by this, but towards the episode's conclusion, as Jerry walks down his hallway, we hear Midler and Kramer enthusiastically singing a duet together from inside Kramer's apartment. Honestly, this shouldn't come as a surprise. After all, this is Kramer we're talking about!

2. The Conversion

In "The Conversion," George decides he wants to convert to Latvian Orthodox. He goes to consult a Father at the church and Kramer decides to tag along. While at the church, Kramer crosses paths with a nun, who is immediately taken with him. She is so attracted to him, in fact, that her faith is literally shaken, and she considers leaving the church just to be with him. 

Kramer, however, is not so much flattered but disturbed by this strange power of seduction he seems to possess, "I'm a dangerous, dangerous man!" he exclaims. Searching for answers, he returns to the church, where the Father tells him he has "the Kavorka," or in Latvian, "the lure of the animal." Upon Kramer's arrival at George's conversion ceremony, the crowd even starts repeatedly murmuring this name in shock and concern: "the Kavorka, the Kavorka." 

Per the advice of the Father, and out of desperation, Kramer even goes as far as wearing a necklace of garlic to quell his powers of attraction. This sheer, raw magnetism is both a blessing and a curse that borders on the supernatural. It may be hard to believe, but if there was anyone amongst the Seinfeld gang to have superpowers, wouldn't it be Kramer? Perhaps you should say a little prayer tonight that you may never fall prey to this undeniable force, just in case. Stranger things have happened!

1. The Trip: Part 2

"The Trip: Part 2" is the second of a two-part special which served as the introduction to Season 4. These episodes follow an arc whereby Kramer has moved to Los Angeles to pursue his dreams of being an actor and making it big. As it turns out, he did end up on people's screens — but not in the way he had hoped. Rather than film or TV, Kramer ends up on the news after being arrested for murder. The police believe he's LA's newest serial killer, dubbed by the media as the Smog Strangler.

Of course, he didn't do it. Kramer's chaotic, but he's not evil! He does try to hold his own during interrogation, but the detective grilling him is vicious. He's somehow able to zone in on and exploit Kramer's deepest fears and insecurities until he collapses into a pathetic, weeping mess. Kramer has never broken down like this, but considering the circumstances, it's understandable, though it does come as a somewhat shocking sight for the audience.

Miraculously, the real Smog Strangler murders someone else while Kramer is in police custody, so the charges against him are dropped and he's released. As he walks out of the station a free man, he's greeted by Jerry and George, and they all celebrate, dancing and singing, "The murderer struck again!" Leave it to the Seinfeld gang to rejoice in the face of deplorable acts.