Actor and actor Jerry Stiller, known for his roles in “Seinfeld” and “The King of Queens”, died at 92. Her son Ben Stiller confirmed on Twitter.
Jerry Stiller, who died on Monday at the age of 92, gave us so many funny gifts for which we must be grateful, including his brilliant stand-up work with his wife Anne Meara; his stage flight work on “Seinfeld” and “The King of Queens”; and his son, Ben Stiller.
But the most memorable gift from the beloved artist – arguably his best – is a holiday, or perhaps anti-vacation: “Festivus, for the rest of us. “
Frank Costanza of Stiller explained and celebrated Festivus, which he created in response to the commercialization of Christmas, in “The Strike”, which aired on December 18, 1997, in the ninth and final season of the hit sitcom .
Many “Seinfeld” fans are now celebrating the holiday, inspired by “Seinfeld” writer Dan O’Keefe’s father, every December 23. The main decoration, the Festivus pole and the rituals, including “Feats of Strength” and the incomparable “Airing of Grievances”, have become icons of pop culture by themselves.
Comic legend: Jerry Stiller, actor from Seinfeld and father of Ben Stiller, dies at 92
No less a “Seinfeld” expert than Jerry Seinfeld marveled at the lasting appeal of Festivus in an interview with USA TODAY in 2019: “I think the biggest surprise for all of us has been the persistence of Festivus. I think that completely surprised us. I run into one of the other writers, we are all shocked by that. ”
Festivus is a great idea, but it would get less ink than St. Swithin’s Day if it weren’t for Stiller’s bravery – and high performance in decibels.
Tribute to all the stars: “We loved it”: Jerry Seinfeld, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Jason Alexander mourn the death of Jerry Stiller
Festivus was actually a sub-plot in “The Strike”, which featured a vacation cornucopia of “Seinfeld” – quirks: Kramer (Michael Richards) back to work after 12 years on strike; Elaine (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) explodes her face with her “fake phone number” dating from the gambit; and George (Jason Alexander) creating a bogus charity, The Human Fund.
But it’s Festivus that we will always remember.
Ben Stiller was just one of the comical gifts that Jerry Stiller gave the world. (Photo: Michael Loccisano, Getty Images)
The fun begins when Elaine asks questions about the vacation and Jerry explains with pleasure, despite George’s ceaseless cries, “No! “
“Instead of a tree, didn’t your father install an aluminum pole? Jerry asks about George’s eternal grief. “Was it not their exploits by force that always made you cry? “
Unsurprisingly, Kramer is fascinated by the holidays and questions Frank about his origins.
“Several Christmases ago, I went to buy a doll for my son. I’m reaching the last one they had, but so was another man, “said Frank, with a wave of Stiller’s hand which in itself is hilarious.
Then, the classic lines: “As I was raining blows on him, I realized that there had to be another way. … From there was born a new holiday, ”he says, increasing the volume while offering a wide wave of arms. “A Festivus, for all of us! “
Here is Frank’s description: “At Festivus dinner, you gather your family and tell them all of the ways they have disappointed you over the past year. “
Frank’s Festivus dinner brings together his wife, Estelle (Estelle Harris), George and his friends, and a diverse team of hangers, including Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Tracey Letts, as a skeezy OTB employee.
Frank Costanza (Jerry Stiller), with the Festivus pole, is trying to get his son George (Jason Alexander) into the holiday spirit. (Photo: Sony Pictures Television)
“Welcome, newcomers! The tradition of Festivus begins with the airing of grievances, “Frank warms up, before delivering a line for the ages in Stiller’s perfectly agitated cry:” I have a lot of problems with you people! Now you’re going to hear about it! ”
When Festivus goes on to do exploits by force, Frank calls on Kramer, who runs away. He then chooses George: “Until you pin me, George, Festivus is not over. “
As the chaos begins and the camera cuts out of the house, Frank can be heard in triumph: “This is the best Festivus ever!” “
He is and always will be for Stiller fans, a star among so many funny gifts that we can appreciate in his memory, whatever the date on the calendar.
Festivus adapts: Jerry Seinfeld on what makes a classic episode of “Seinfeld”: “Everyone has something crazy in him”
Read or share this story: https://www.usatoday.com/story/entertainment/tv/2020/05/11/jerry-stiller-gave-us-festivus-his-most-memorable-seinfeld-moment/3113102001/