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Health Group Pans ‘Seinfeld’

September 12, 1998

LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Sorry, ``Seinfeld″ _ the American Lung Association says you still stink.

For the third year in a row, the NBC comedy was given the association’s ``Phlemmy″ award, handed out to TV shows that glamorize smoking. The dubious honor was announced Friday, two days before the Emmy awards.

``Seinfeld,″ which showed its final new episode in May, was chosen by a panel of more than 50 teen-agers who logged 126 hours of prime-time viewing in April and May.

The judges found that 28 percent of 179 reviewed episodes showed tobacco use and that NBC showed the most smoking of all the networks, followed by Fox, CBS and ABC.

NBC declined immediate comment.

Association officials said ``Seinfeld″ characters Elaine and Kramer helped to glorify cigar smoking and that Jerry Seinfeld also lit up.

Hospital dramas ``ER″ and ``Chicago Hope″ were lauded by the association for pointing out problems associated with smoking.

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