George Costanza, also known as Buck Naked, is a character in the American television sitcom Seinfeld (1989–1998), played by Jason Alexander. He has variously been described as a “short, stocky, slow-witted, bald man” and “Lord of the Idiots”. George and Jerry were junior high school friends and remained friends afterwards. He is friends with Jerry Seinfeld, Cosmo Kramer, and Elaine Benes. George Costanza appears in every episode except “The Pen”.
George Costanza is neurotic, self-loathing and dominated by his parents, yet also prone to occasional periods of overconfidence that invariably arise at the worst possible time. Throughout Seinfeld’s first season, George is depicted as moderately intelligent – at one point, he mentions an intellectual interest in the Civil War and, in some early episodes, appears almost as a mentor to Jerry – but becomes less sophisticated, to the point of being too lazy even to read a ninety-page book, preferring to watch the movie adaptation at a stranger’s house instead. However, one Chicago Tribune reviewer noted that, despite all his shortcomings, George is “pretty content with himself”.
George’s professional life is unstable. He is unable to remain in any job for any great length of time before making an embarrassing blunder and getting fired, and he is unemployed for a large amount of time throughout the series. Very often, the blunder is lying and trying to cover it up, only to have it all fall apart. Most of the many short-lived jobs George Costanza holds throughout the series are in sales.