One of the most consistently hilarious supporting characters in the Seinfeld universe was David Puddy, played by Patrick Warburton. Puddy was introduced as Jerry’s mechanic, but his most prominent role in the series was being Elaine’s on-and-off love interest. Unlike Friends’ Ross and Rachel, or Cheers’ Sam and Diane, who fans wanted to see get together, Elaine and Puddy were clearly awful for each other, in keeping with Seinfeld’s nihilistic tone and no-hugging-or-learning policy.
Elaine and Puddy were a hilarious subversion of the tired sitcom trope or the will-they-or-won’t-they couple. Here are the couple’s best moments from throughout Seinfeld’s nine seasons.
10 Puddy Steals Jerry’s Move
We first met David Puddy in “The Fusilli Jerry.” While Kramer was busy making a pasta figurine of Jerry and gaining the nickname “Assman” based on his new vanity plates, Elaine started dating Puddy.
Jerry is dismayed to discover that Puddy has stolen his “move” and he’s using it on Elaine. He considers it to be plagiarism; it’s like another comedian stealing his jokes. Elaine begs him to let it go, because she enjoys the move, no matter who’s doing it.
9 Elaine Is Dismayed By Puddy’s Face Paint
In season 6’s “The Face Painter,” David Puddy shows off his love of the New Jersey Devils by painting his face like the actual Devil to attend one of their games. He ends up petrifying a priest, leaving him bedridden and haunted as he believes he saw an apparition of Satan.
When Elaine first sees Puddy with his face painted, it’s an immediate turn-off. She eventually tells him to stop doing it, and he starts painting his chest instead, which is, admittedly, better than painting his face.
8 Breaking Up And Getting Back Together On A Long Flight
The funniest thing about Elaine and Puddy’s relationship is its rejection of the will-they-or-won’t-they sitcom convention. In the words of It’s Always Sunny’s Dennis Reynolds describing his own failed attempt to create a will-they-or-won’t-they dynamic: “This isn’t ‘Will they or won’t they?’ This is ‘I know they won’t, and I know I don’t want them to!’”
In the season 9 premiere “The Butter Shave,” Elaine and Puddy return from a month-long vacation in Europe. During the long flight home, they break up, get back together, break up, get back together, and eventually break up. And then, as always, they get back together.
7 Elaine Finds Out Puddy Is A Religious Nut
One day, when Elaine borrows Puddy’s car, she finds that all of the preferred stations he has set on his radio are Christian rock stations. When she confronts him about it, she finds that he’s really serious about his faith.
He doesn’t mind too much that she isn’t particularly religious, but she’s the one who’s going to Hell, not him. Later, she finds “a Jesus fish” attached to his bumper and yanks it off.
6 Puddy Takes Elaine To A Germophobes Anonymous Meeting
In “The Apology,” Elaine realizes that she and her co-worker Peggy are the only two female employees on their floor, and therefore the only two people who use that floor’s women’s bathroom. So, Elaine is offended to discover that Peggy lays down toilet seat covers.
As the episode progresses, it comes out that Peggy is a germophobe, and so is Puddy. After Kramer prepares the three of them a salad in his shower, Elaine joins Puddy at a Germophobes Anonymous meeting.
5 Going To Arby’s For A Lunch Date
In season 9’s “The Dealership,” it’s revealed that Puddy has left behind his career as a mechanic and taken a job as a car salesman.
When Puddy arrives at the dealership with Elaine, they say they just got back from a lunch date. However, it turns out their date took place at Arby’s, the pinnacle of sophisticated dining.
4 Elaine Gets Back Together With Puddy So He’ll Move Some Furniture For Her
The more times Elaine got back together with Puddy, the less the writers made a big deal out of it. In one episode, when Elaine mentions being back in a relationship with Puddy and George asks, “How did Puddy get back in the picture?,” she simply replies, “I needed to move a bureau.”
After a while, it didn’t take a lot to get these two back together. Needing to move some furniture would do the trick.
3 “Puddy, Don’t Wait For Me.”
Although Seinfeld’s series finale was judged to be unsatisfying by some fans and critics, its premise was a good springboard for all the ancillary characters from the series’ nine-year history to make a reappearance. At the end of the episode, the four main characters are sent to prison for flouting the “Good Samaritan” law.
As she’s taken away to begin her year-long sentence in jail, Elaine calls out to her on-and-off boyfriend from across the court and says, “Puddy, don’t wait for me.” Puddy shrugs and nonchalantly replies, “All right.”
2 Elaine Tries To Get Rid Of Puddy’s Fur Coat
In “The Reverse Peephole,” Elaine is turned off by Puddy’s new fur coat. When they attend a party and Elaine is put in charge of the coats, she decides to sabotage Puddy’s coat by throwing it out the bedroom window into a tree.
However, as it turns out, this isn’t Puddy’s coat. It belongs to Joe Mayo, the host of the party, who happens to have a very similar fashion sense to Puddy.
1 Elaine Works Mechanical Questions Into Her Dirty Talk
After Jerry fires Puddy and takes his car to another mechanic, the other mechanic’s estimate is a lot higher than Puddy’s, so he suspects he’s getting screwed. He asks Elaine to casually bring up some of the mechanic’s charges with Puddy. So, she works a technical consultation into her dirty talk with Puddy when they’re in bed together that night.
While they’re making out under the covers, she asks, “What do you charge for blown shocks?,” and then, after a few more seconds of kissing, she asks, “What about a bad gasket?” As it turns out, based on Puddy’s estimates, the new mechanic is putting the screws on Jerry.
NEXT: Seinfeld: Morty & Helen Seinfeld’s 10 Best Moments, Ranked