10 Hilarious TV Running Gags That Lasted An Insanely Long Time
5. Art Vandelay - Seinfeld
Whenever George Costanza gives someone a fake name, it is almost always the exact same one: Art Vandaly. It's the little things like that which make Seinfeld so damn memorable.
George first uses the name in the second episode of the series, The Stake Out. He and Jerry are trying to track down a woman Jerry met at a party, and when they need an excuse for why they're in her building, George says they're meeting their friend, Art Corvelay, although he soon changes it to Vandelay. What's there to know about Vandelay? Not too much except that he's an importer, to which people usually respond, "Just imports? No exports?" Okay, he's an importer and an exporter, George will concede. What company does he work for? George hasn't thought that far.
Later, when trying to extend his unemployment, George claims he's in talks for a job at Vandelay Industries. At a fancy party, when asked to name his favorite authors, George names Art Vandelay, an obscure writer from the village. Sometimes George even uses it as a fake name for himself. Basically, it seems that George lies so much that once he came up with a real sounding name, he just decided to keep using it forever. The gag receives the ultimate payoff in the final episode, when a judge at the gang's trial is actually named Arthur Vandelay. George is speechless.