closed the deal

The Deal (Seinfeld)

"The Deal" is the fourteenth episode of Seinfeld. The episode was the ninth episode for the show's second season. It aired on May 2, 1991.


Elaine and Jerry renew their sexual relationship after coming across a soft-core pornographic film, but, to protect their friendship (which Jerry refers to as the "this" between himself and Elaine), they set ground rules for their future escapades (the "that"). They pride themselves on having finally come up with the perfect template as friends with benefits (which include "no phone calls the day after", "spending the night is optional" and no kissing), though George doubts that their deal can work. On Elaine's birthday, Jerry inadvertently offends Elaine by giving her $182 in cash as a gift and a card that reads "To a wonderful girl, a great pal, and more". Kramer, on the other hand, gets Elaine a bench which she had wanted and gives her a card with a touching poem by William Butler Yeats. Jerry wants to end the agreement, but Elaine admits that she wants a full-fledged relationship (the "other") and can no longer conform to the established rules. Realizing that he and Elaine can't simply go back to being friends that easily, Jerry re-instigates their romantic relationship, providing Elaine with "this, that, and the other".


  • Although aired earlier, this episode was actually the season 2 finale. (It's listed as the last episode in the season 1-2 DVD set, and it was also stated as being the season finale in the special features of the DVD.)
  • Jerry and Elaine are once again a couple at the end of this episode, though in all subsequent episodes, they have returned to just being friends. It is established in the Season 3 episode "The Pen" that the two broke up again off-screen sometime between the events of Season 2 and Season 3.
  • There is a continuity error in one scene, when the door of Jerry's apartment is showed opened and closed behind Kramer.
  • There is a continuity error in one scene, when Elaine takes paper towels down from a rack. At first she takes down several. Camera flips to Jerry talking and when it flips back, she has fewer paper towels than before.

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