LEGO Ideas 21328 Seinfeld features Jerry’s NYC apartment [Review]

There are not many sitcoms that were on air for as long as Seinfeld, especially given the famously simple premise of a show about nothing, which earned its reputation for taking mundane situations we can all relate to and turning them into pure comedic gold by repetition and exaggeration. Created by stand-up comedian Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David, Seinfeld had 9 seasons, premiering on July 5, 1989, and running until May 14, 1998, ending with 180 episodes. Now Jerry Seinfeld’s apartment joins the growing rank of sitcom-based LEGO kits which started with 21302 Big-Bang Theory and was followed up by 21319 Central Perk from Friends, and recently the neighboring 10292 Friends Apartments. Like those, the Seinfield set is jam-packed with easter eggs and references to some of the series’ most memorable episodes along with some very accurate details and some great building techniques, so let’s jump right in. LEGO Ideas 21328 Seinfeld includes 1,326 pieces and will be available to VIP members from July 21, and available to everyone on August 1, 2021 for US $79.99 | CAN $109.99 | UK £69.99.

The LEGO Group provided The Brothers Brick with an early copy of this set for review. Providing TBB with products for review guarantees neither coverage nor positive reviews.

The box and contents

The front of the box is branded with the LEGO Ideas theme, including the stripe of blue greebly details that now denotes nearly all of LEGO’s adult-focused sets. It also features the 18+ text, the set number, and part count across the bottom. The box front is dominated by a photo of the assembled set from a low angle approximating the audience point of view, populated by the four friends, and Jerry’s nemesis, Newman. There is also a row of inset images of the five minifigures in the lower right corner.

Because there’s really only one side to the set, it’s simply shown from a higher angle on the back of the box, with the characters arranged in a different scene. On the lower left side is an inset of the separate buildable stage for Jerry, where he would set up the episode with a short bit of stand-up comedy. Below the main image are two insets showing the characters in scenes that could have come from just about any episode. Finally, there is a schematic diagram of the set from above, showing the dimensions.

The top and sides are adorned with smaller scenes of the characters, and another image of Jerry on his stand-up stage. Inside the box are nine numbered bags, many containing more bags for smaller parts. There is also an additional unnumbered bag with the large baseplates and the scaffolding parts for the lights. There is also a medium size sticker sheet and a 174-page instruction booklet.

The front few pages of the instruction booklet include a description of the show and the main characters included in the set, as well as a brief introduction to Brent Waller, the LEGO fan who submitted the project, and an introduction to the LEGO Designer and LEGO Graphic Designers who worked on the official set.


The build

The build opens the way many episodes did, with a stand-up stage including a black table, and Jerry Seinfeld starting his routine with “What is the deal with…” Jerry sports his signature mullet. Although simple, this is a fun little build and provides the perfect lead-in to the rest of the set.

Moving on to the main set, we start with the floor, which is made from a substantial amount of nougat tiles and a few plates that will serve as anchor points for the furniture and stage positions for the Minifigs later on.

The rug at the center of the floor is made up of several printed black tiles with gray diagonal lines, which previously were used as carbon fiber panels in the Technic 42115 Lamborghini Sian FKP 37.

Next, we start in on the walls, which use grilled bricks to create the wainscotting seen throughout Jerry’s apartment. This section ends with the radiator in the small office, and the legs for a modern computer desk. With so much repetition with those grilled bricks, it is easy to misplace a brick so that the wrong side is showing, as I managed to do (and only noticed later when I was writing this review).

Once we attach the office wall section to the floor we move on to the back section, a small hallway that leads to the bathroom, and possibly Jerry’s bedroom, which is never shown on screen.

We also add more height to the left side wall which surrounds Jerry’s office, as well as the rest of the desk, and a computer, office chair, keyboard, and desk lamp.

Moving on to the right side of the set we start on the kitchen which includes a counter with two stools, a microwave, and Jerry’s refrigerator. The fridge is covered with stickers, references to several episodes which we will get to later. And speaking of references, the muffin on the end of the counter is a reference to The Muffin Tops (Season 8: Episode 21) where Elaine has the brilliant idea to start a bakery that serves only the top of the muffin, as the best part. When someone steals her idea, and gives the bottom of the muffins to a local homeless shelter, the homeless protest.

The kitchen wraps up with a rather elaborate build of the kitchen cabinets, where Jerry stores his coffee mugs, a cereal collection, and many other knick-knacks.

The last bit of the apartment structure is the front door and hallway, which includes the door to Jerry’s friend and neighbor, Kramer’s apartment, and an open door frame where the actors can queue up before their stage entrance.

We finish the apartment walls with a few more white bricks and a row of tiles. Also, along the top of four sections, clips are added to hold the optional set lights attached to the scaffolding.

Speaking of the scaffolding, the set includes three, which are capped with a single tile and clipped into place atop three of the walls. Three of the studio lights attach to these, while the fourth is attached directly to the wall above the main entrance.

The interior of Jerry’s apartment is very well furnished with a long couch that seats 2, an armchair, a coffee table, and a side table. One tall shelf and one short one line two of the walls, and behind the couch is a dining table and two chairs. Two stools provide seating at the kitchen counter, and the small side office includes a very nice office chair and a modern computer desk.

In addition to all of this nicely designed furniture for Jerry and his friends, there are a number of studs throughout the floor where the characters can take their stage positions to re-create any of your favorite scenes from 180 episodes of the show.


The Minifigs

The set includes five minifigures, Jerry, George, Elaine, Kramer, and Newman, and they all have printings on both the front and back of their torsos, and many of them have two expressions as well. Starting with Jerry and George, Jerry has a smile and George looks a little puzzled, or is he concerned, or thoughtful? Jerry’s other expression is a bit more serious, while George’s looks a bit judgemental. (I’m kidding, that’s his happy face…) No, George only has one expression.

Kramer and Elaine both have a happy, or more casual expression, and one where they look a bit more serious, or judgemental (there is a lot of judgment on the show).

Jerry’s button-down shirt has a few folds on the back, while George’s jacket sports a hood and some folds. Kramer’s jacket has a few folds as well, while Elain’s business suit blazer has a small buttoned detail along with some folds.

Finally, Newman, the mailman, Kramers part-time partner and accomplice in many a shenanigan, and Jerry’s arch-nemesis. Newman has a frown and a truly evil grin that reminds me of his other LEGO minifig, Nedry from 75936 Jurrasic Park: T. rex Rampage. Newman’s postal worker’s jacket has a seam along the back of the collar and a few folds.


The finished model

Once the set is complete, you are free to reenact your favorite scenes from the show. While many scenes may take place outside of Jerry’s apartment, in locations set throughout New York City, like Monk’s cafe, the apartment is central to the show and is even a reflection of trends and technology over the decade which the show covered. If there was one thing I would want to add, it would be a few more computers to swap out, since these change 3-4 times over the years.

Which scene did I set up first? One of my favorite episodes “The Pool Guy” (Season 7: Episode 8) in which Kramer, after getting a new phone number that was very close to Moviefone, a service which would tell you which movies were playing in the theaters, begins getting phone calls from would-be moviegoers, so he decides to go with it.


The easter eggs

This set is packed with easter eggs and references both subtle and obvious, and I did my very best to identify as many as I could, but if you see something I missed, let me know in the comments… Here goes.


Starting with the stickers on the fridge and the wall art, there is a portrait of George Steinbrenner, the owner of the New York Yankees, where George Costanza worked for several years. There is a photo of George posing in his underwear which is a reference to The Package (Season 8: Episode 5) where George misinterprets an accidentally mixed up photo of a lingerie model that he finds among his recently developed photos as a come-on from Sheila who works at the photo counter.

There is also a replica of a vintage Porsche advertisement. On the fridge are several stickers, including Superman, as Jerry is a big fan and many episodes contain references to the Man of Steel. There is a photo of Larry David, the show co-creator, and another Porsche. A menu from Monk’s cafe can be seen, and several “Yada’s” which are a reference to The Yada Yada (Season 8: Episode 19) where “yada yada yada” is used in several instances to shorten a lengthy story, leaving out less interesting details, but by the end of the episode is being misinterpreted as referencing a sexual encounter. Lastly, a note with a phone number and the word “Schmoopie” which references The Soup Nazi (Season 7: Episode 6) where Jerry and his then-girlfriend were grossing out George and Elaine with their annoying use of this term of endearment.

On the tall shelf in the back of the set are more references. There is a sticker that references The Fusilli Jerry (Season 6: Episode 21) which involves someone falling onto a statue of Jerry made by Kramer from fusilli pasta. There is also a copy of a movie called Prognosis: Negative that references The Dog (Season 3: Episode 4) in which Jerry has to miss going to the movies with George and Elaine as he agrees to take care of a man’s dog whom he met on a plane.

If you think that is a lot of references, you are right, but they don’t stop with the stickers. Each minifig, aside from Jerry, who holds his mic for the stand-up stage, includes accessories. We’ll start with the Festivus pole. This is a reference to the fictional holiday invented by George’s father as an alternative to the commercial holidays. The holiday was referenced in The Strike (Season 9: Episode 10) in which Krammer finally goes back to work at the bagel shop after a 12-year strike, but his boss refuses to give Kramer the day off in observance of Festivus. The central feature of the “Festivus for the rest of us” is the shiny metal Festivus pole.

George comes with a fishing pole and a loaf of bread which references The Rye (Season 7: Episode 11) which involves George and Jerry trying to return a much fought-over marbled rye to his girlfriend’s parents’ house using a fishing pole.

Kramer holds a book and a pretzel. The book is a copy of the Coffee Table book of Coffee Tables, a book written by Kramer, featuring coffee tables of celebrities, and which even includes wooden legs that fold down so the book can be a coffee table itself. The book is a reference to The Opposite (Season 5: Episode 1) where George decides that the way he is living his life is not working so he decides that he’s going to do the opposite of what he usually does.

The pretzel is a reference to The Opposite Side (Season 3: Episode 11) where Kramer lands a bit part in a Woody Allen movie, with one line: “These pretzels are making me thirsty”. Elaine holds a goldfish in a plastic bag, which is a reference to The Parking Garage (Season 3: Episode 6) where the gang wanders through a parking garage looking for Jerry’s car while Elaine worries that her goldfish won’t survive.


Conclusion and recommendations

If you are a fan of the show about nothing, or if you have any of the other sitcom-based LEGO sets, I fully recommend adding the Seinfeld set to your collection. It is tons of fun to build and is full of great parts hidden throughout the build. The set is remarkably close to the original LEGO Ideas submission from Brett Waller, who mentioned that he was inspired by a model of the actual set. The only noticeable difference is the furniture, which is scaled up to provide more brick-built designs. The official set is just a bit taller and includes the scaffolding and lights.

Brent Waller’s original LEGO Ideas submission

The official set is also very closely matched with the physical set, as you can see from this model (possibly the same model that inspired Brett)
Image from seinfeldsetreplica.com

LEGO Ideas 21328 Seinfeld will be available to VIP members from July 21st, and generally on August 1st, 2021 for US $79.99 | CAN $109.99 | UK £69.99

The LEGO Group provided The Brothers Brick with an early copy of this set for review. Providing TBB with products for review guarantees neither coverage nor positive reviews.


7 comments on “LEGO Ideas 21328 Seinfeld features Jerry’s NYC apartment [Review]

  1. Jedd

    I don’t buy lego sets very much, but this one is a no brainer for me. I never thought I’d see a Seinfeld leg set. Great review!

  2. Jedd

    And I’m not positive, but that might be a portrait of Jerry’s Uncle Leo instead of George Steinbrenner?

  3. Brent

    The butter on the counter probably references “The Butter Shave” episode, where Kramer rubs butter all over his body and gets sunburned…too bad they didn’t add a turkey to put Kramer’s head on for Newman to fantasize about eating him :)

  4. Jack

    It’s a little more complex than Jerry’s bedroom never being shown on screen – we see Jerry in bed several times, we even see Kramer in it once. But Jerry’s bedroom is never shown in a wide shot; it’s always close up on the character in bed.

  5. Håkan

    @Jedd

    I don’t think George Steinbrenner is actually seen in person once during the entire series. When he’s in the picture, it’s always from behind. Steinbrenner’s back is from the actor of Lee Bear gesticulating, while the monologues are ad-libbed by Larry David, same person as mentioned above.

  6. Amad Horus

    I’m pretty sure the George Steinbrenner sticker is actually Uncle Leo. Steinbrenner was never shown except from behind when he was talking to Costanza and ranting about something stupid.

  7. Ted

    What is the green bench looking thing next to the stage on the official photos on the Lego website? I don’t see it included in your photos.

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