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‘Seinfeld’ Reveals Kramer’s First Name

January 6, 1995

NEW YORK (AP) _ Somehow, we always knew Kramer’s first name would be something exotic.

But ... Cosmo?

``Seinfeld,″ NBC’s top-rated sitcom, made the revelation Thursday about Jerry Seinfeld’s eccentric, shock-haired neighbor, previously known only as Kramer.

Although the character played by Michael Richards has made his grand entrances regularly since the series debuted in 1990, not only his name has been a mystery.

``We know almost nothing about him,″ said Beth Golub, author of the trivia book ``The Seinfeld Aptitude Test.″

``We don’t know what he does for a living,″ she said. ``We don’t know what the inside of his apartment looks like, and all we knew about his mother was that her name was Babs, she was `heavyset’ and guzzled Colt 45 malt liquor.″

In Thursday’s episode, titled ``The Switch,″ Seinfeld’s hapless pal George (Jason Alexander) accidentally learns Kramer’s first name when Babs (Sheree North) blurts it out at the restaurant where she’s a restroom attendant.

George, you see, suspects his current girlfriend might be bulimic, and wants Babs to _ well, you get the idea. George reveals the name to Jerry and Elaine (Julia Louis-Dreyfus), much to their amusement.

Enter _ whoosh _ Kramer, who quickly resolves to go by his given name.

``You know, all my life I’ve been running away from that name,″ Kramer says. ``That’s why I wouldn’t tell anybody. But I’ve been thinking about it.

``All this time I’m trying not to be me. I’m afraid to face who I was!″ Kramer says with rising intensity. ``But I’m Cosmo, Jerry! I’m Cosmo Kramer! And that’s who I’m going to be. From now on, I’m Cosmo!″

Indeed, Kramer was called Cosmo throughout the rest of the episode, which ended with an embarrassing confrontation with his mother and _ well, you had to be there.

``Seinfeld″ fans have insisted since the episode was filmed in early December that Kramer’s first name is Cosmo, but NBC refused to confirm or deny it.

``My phone has been ringing off the hook,″ said NBC spokesman Curtis King. ``I can’t remember receiving so many inquiries about a single subject since Johnny Carson went off the air.″

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