Half hour, single camera comedy series premiering in 2003 on Fox about the Bluth family, wealthy owners of a real estate development firm, whose lives are thrown into turmoil when the patriarch and President, George Bluth Sr., is arrested on corruption charges.
George 'Gob' Bluth II
You know, GOB, you might want to start acting like the President. You're beginning to alienate some of the employees.
Yeah, like the CEO has to worry about alienating the employees.
George 'Gob' Bluth II
In fact, GOB had started to alienate some of the employees.
George 'Gob' Bluth II
[in the break room]...The worst that could happen is that I could spill coffee all over this $3,000 suit. Come on!
George 'Gob' Bluth II
[in the elevator] Yeah, the guy wearing the $4,000 suit is holding the elevator for the guy who doesn't make that in four months. Come on!
29 More Quotes
[in the bathroom]Yeah, like I'm going to take a whiz through this $5,000 suit. Come on!
|Will Arnett||George 'Gob' Bluth II||68 eps.|
|Ron Howard||Narrator||68 eps.|
|Jason Bateman||Michael Bluth||67 eps.|
|Michael Cera||George-Michael Bluth||66 eps.|
|Jeffrey Tambor||George Bluth Sr.||66 eps.|
|Portia de Rossi||Lindsay Bluth Fünke||66 eps.|
|Jessica Walter||Lucille Bluth||66 eps.|
|David Cross||Tobias Fünke||65 eps.|
|Alia Shawkat||Mae "Maeby" Fünke||64 eps.|
|Tony Hale||Byron "Buster" Bluth||61 eps.|
|3||Bringing Up Buster||11/16/2003|
|7||My Mother the Car||12/21/2003|
|8||In God We Trust||12/14/2003|
|9||Storming the Castle||01/04/2004|
|14||Shock and Aww||03/07/2004|
|18||Justice Is Blind||03/21/2004|
|19||Best Man for the Gob||04/04/2004|
|21||Not Without My Daughter||04/25/2004|
|22||Let 'Em Eat Cake||06/06/2004|
Arrested Development is, at its core, a satire on reality TV shows. It mocks the ridiculous, over the top attitudes of the people starring in these shows. Arrested Development's visual style is based heavily on Cops. It is meant to be a documentary about the posh Bluth family, that was sent into shambles when the patriarch George Bluth Sr. (Jeffrey Tambor) gets put in prison for questionable economics in the family's landscaping company. The responsible Michael Bluth (Jason Bateman) chooses to keep the family together, and try to keep them afloat, while trying to save his own sanity.
George Bluth Sr. (Jeffrey Tambor): George is the head of Bluth family. George is portrayed as a conniving, malevolent, scheming, omnipresent leader of the Bluth Company, a company which builds mini-mansions. For the first season, he is in prison for defrauding investors, and using the Bluth Company for personal spending, and, as we later discover, treason.
George shows little compassion for his family, although we do sense there is some love for them, despite his constant cons on them. Along with The Bluth Company, George sold the Cornballer, a faulty device which burns people hands. It is a big seller in Mexico.
George retired from the Bluth Company at the start of the series. He had to choose a replacement, so he decided upon his wife Lucille Bluth (Jessica Walter), much to the dismay of Michael. He was arrested at his retirement party. When asked why he chose Lucille as his replacement, he told Michael that a husband a wife cannot be committed for the same crime. Michael correctly pointed out this is not true. While in prison, George becomes Jewish, shown by his wearing of a bit of shoe on his head, meant to represent a Yarmulke.
Michael Bluth (Jason Bateman): Michael is the son of George Bluth, and father of George-Michael Bluth (Michael Cera). Michael is extremely work oriented, almost to a fault. He sometimes neglects the needs of his son, or himself in some cases, in favor for his work at the Bluth Company. He was expecting a promotion for his years of devoted work, but did not get it. He chose to another job at another architecture company, but eventually decided to take the job as head of the Bluth Company, and stick with his family.
G.O.B Bluth II (Will Arnett): George Oscar Bluth II (Gob for short) is the oldest Bluth sibling. He is a magician, that was disbarred from the Magician's Alliance for revealing how a trick was done. At his father's retirement party, he tried the "Aztec Tomb" trick in which someone is put into a large tomb and is meant to look like they disappeared. On the news, the secret behind the trick was revealed. Gob was unable to even perform at the smaller venues because of this.
Gob takes after his father in his constant scheming, although he is not nearly a bright as George Sr. Gob had a brief stint as a puppet master, with his African American puppet Franklin. The two recorded a single "It Ain't Easy Being White", but it failed to generate much of anything. Gob has one son, Steve Holt (Justin Grant Wade), which was unknown to him until the later run of the show.
Lindsay Bluth Fünke (Portia De Rossi): Lindsay is the only female Bluth sibling. She is married to former Dr. Tobias Fünke (David Cross), although she is most likely only married to him to spite her father. Lindsay is an activist for several causes: including HOOP (Hands Off Our Penises, an anti circumcision organization) and "No hair for oil", an anti war organization. She joined this because her stylist was sent to fight in the Iraq War. Lindsay has one child Maeby Fünke (Alia Shawkat). Lindsay takes after her mother in that she is selfish, materialistic, and somewhat petty. It is revealed at the end of the series that Lindsay was adopted by George and Lucille.
Lucille Bluth (Jessica Walter): Lucille is the wife of George Sr. She may or may not be an alcoholic. She is constantly seen drinking, and even told her children lies about alcohol in their youth to justify this (for example grape juice turns into wine if left out). Lucille has a serious problem controller her spending, and an even bigger problem letting go of her youngest son Buster (Tony Hale).
Buster Bluth (Tony Hale): Byron "Buster" Bluth is the youngest, and most dependent Bluth child. He still lives with his mother Lucille, despite his advanced education. He has studied everything from Native American tribal ceremonies to cartography (the mapping of uncharted territories). He also suffers from crippling panic attacks, and has difficulties talking with others. Buster is volunteered for the army by his mother when Michael Moore badgers them when allegations of George Sr.'s treason arise. Buster looses his hand when he goes swimming to rebel against his mother. A seal bit it off. Buster apparently spent 13 months in Lucille's womb. There were claw marks in the inside of her uterus.
Buster attended the prestigious Milford Academy, where students were meant to be neither seen nor heard. He succeeded so well at not being seen or heard that he was able to stay there a full year after he graduated. Whenever he sees Gob or Michael, he softly says "Hey brother", a phrase which became Buster's staple catchphrase.
George Michael Bluth (Michael Cera): George Michael is Michael's awkward, soft spoken teenage son. George Michael takes after his father, except he is far less combative. He develops an odd love for his cousin Maeby. He begins to investigate once he suspects they are actually not related. While he's investigating, he is dating Ann Veal (Mae Whitman), much to the disinterest of his father.
Annyong Bluth (Justin Lee): Hel-loh "Annyong" Bluth is the adopted Korean son of Lucille and George Bluth. He is called Annyong (Korean for hello) because when he says his real name (Hel-loh), Lucille thinks he is saying "hello." She responds with "hello" and he responds with "annyong." Annyong was adopted by Lucille because Buster didn't want to eat his cottage cheese. She said she would get a son who would eat his cottage cheese. Annyong is sent to the Milford Academy.
Oscar Bluth (Jeffrey Tambor): George's identical brother. Oscar is not nearly as successful as George, and is basically a hippie. Before George and Lucille were married, Oscar and her had a relationship while he was in the military, and she was a USO dancer. With George in prison, Oscar takes the opportunity to reignite the relationship between him and Lucille.
Oscar has a full head of hair, a major point of jealously for George. In order to escape, George fakes his brother into thinking he wants to become friends again. George shaves his head, and Oscar is imprisoned. He starts a website I'mOscar.com because of this. He is the true father of Buster Bluth.
Tracey Bluth: Michael's deceased wife. Not much is known about her.
Tobias Fünke (David Cross): Tobias is Lindsay's husband. He was chief resident of psychiatry at Mass General for two years and did his fellowship in psycholinguistics at MIT. His medical license was revoked after he gave CPR to a man that was not actually dying. He then started to attempt a career at acting, with not much success, despite his mentor Carl Weathers (yes, the Carl Weathers). Tobias is a "never-nude", a rare condition which means he has a severe stigmatism about being completely nude. Because of this, he wears denim short-shorts at all times.
Tobias' major acting job was as a stand in for the Blue Man Group. Even though he never actually appeared on stage with them, this gave him a much needed confidence boost. Tobias wrote a successful novel, The Man Inside Me, which was really only successful in the homosexual community, because Tobias unwittingly replaced all the gender pronouns with "him." Tobias is looked down upon by the rest of the family, and is not taken very seriously. Tobias was a professional twice over, an analyst and a therapist. The worlds' first analrapist (pronounced Anaal-Rupist)
In the second season, him and Lindsay experiment with an "open relationship", but he mainly spends his time spying on Lindsay. Him and Lindsay eventually become separated, and in order to keep an eye on Maeby and Lindsay a Mary Poppins-esque housekeeper Mrs. Felidia Featherbottom. Tobias' sexual preferences are left ambiguous, but it is heavily implied that he is gay.
Maeby Fünke (Alia Shawkat): Mae "Maeby" Fünke is the daughter of Tobias and Lindsay. Maeby looks to rebel against her mother in every way possible, even if it means spending time with Lucille. She eventually cons her way into a job at a major Hollywood studio. Whether or not she is the biological daughter of Tobias and Lindsay or if she was adopted remains a major question for the rest of the series. It is revealed at the end of the series that while Maeby is the biological daughter of Tobias and Lindsay, Lindsay was adopted by Lucille and George Sr.
Michael Bluth is a good man. The rest cannot be said about his family however. His older brother Gob (George Oscar Bluth) is a failed magician, his sister Lindsay is self centered and materialistic, his younger brother Buster is hopelessly dependent on his mother, his mother Lucille is an alcoholic, and his father George Sr. has just been arrested. George was arrested at his retirement party because of defrauding investors of his company the Bluth Company. At the party, he was supposed to choose his replacement for the head of the Bluth Company. Michael was expecting the position, but was disappointed to find out George gave it to Lucille.
Because of this, he decides to take his son George Michael away from his family, and never talk to them ever again. Including Lindsay's dimwitted husband Tobias Fünke and Maeby. Tobias was a doctor, but his medical license was revoked. He now is trying to make it as an actor. Michael decides to stick with his family, despite a tantalizing position at another company, and take the job as head of the Bluth Company, and try to keep his family together.
Trying however, is much harder than Michael expected. Lindsay and Lucille both have trouble controlling their spending, and George is actually starting to enjoy his time in prison. Until, a riot breaks out. Then, he decides he wants out.
Fans of the series have constructed a detail family tree of the Bluth/Fünke families.
Steve Holt (Justin Grant Lee): Steve is a dumb jock whose catchphrase is yelling his own name "STEVE HOLT!" Steve was wondering his whole life who his father was, but was disappointed to find out it was Gob. Steve Holt has repeated senior year of high school twice.
Ann Veal (Mae Whitman): Ann is the plain girlfriend of George Michael. She is very religious. She is extremely forgettable, according to Maeby and Michael. Maeby says you couldn't pick her out of a line up of one, while Michael has trouble remembering her name. He would start to make up fake names for her. This eventually became a recurring gag on the show.
Kitty Sanchez (Judy Greer): Kitty is the fiercely loyal assistant of George Sr. She had liaisons with both Gob and George Sr., and made sexual advances on Michael. Kitty gets breast implants in the first season, and as a result is constantly flashing them to everyone. Kitty shows little to no respect for Michael, and constantly tries to undermine his position and overall just make his life even worse than it already is.
Lucille Austero (Liza Minnelli): Lucille Austero, called Lucille Two for convenience, is the arch enemy of Lucille Bluth. She suffers from severe vertigo. She had a brief relationship with Buster, who wanted to spite his mother, even though he made a concerted effort to keep her oblivious to this.
Barry Zukerkorn (Henry Winkler): The Bluth's dimwitted, slightly sleazy lawyer.
Lupe (B. W. Gonzalez): Lucille's housekeeper. She is eventually fired after Lucille discovers her in bed with Buster. She is replaced with a cleaning robot, who Lucille also finds in bed with Buster.
Starla (Mo Collins): The Bluth Company "business model." Gob first meets her when he looks to buy a boat, The C-Word, and decides to buy it because she is just a model for the boat, and will only come if he buys it. She claims to have had a relationship with Quincy Jones. He denies the two ever met, but he cannot explain the six gold records in her apartment.
Arrested Development was shot to model a reality TV show in the same vein of COPS. The show is shot like a documentary, and meant to be a mockumentary like This is Spinal Tap. A Nameless Narrator (Ron Howard) comments on the goings on in a slightly tongue-in-cheek way.
Every episode ends with a "On the next Arrested Development" teaser, although none of the material in the teasers ever makes it into the next episode. They started in the pilot because creator Mitch Hurwitz wanted a good way to incentive the network FOX to pick the series up.
Every episode begins with the introduction (with a few exceptions). This is unlike most shows that begin with a "cold opening." The intro features the narration, which gives us a brief overview of the premise of the show.
There is no laugh track at all. The show was shot completely on hand held cameras. The show also makes heavy use of flashbacks to clips of the Bluth family in years prior, clips of concurring events, pictures, and even Predator.
Like with a documentary, cursing in Arrested Development had to be bleeped out (this was a Network show after all). The actors always had to cover their mouthes when cursing.
Arrested Development's recurring jokes are one of its hallmarks. These are just a few examples of some of them:
Two central themes in Arrested Development are incest and homosexuality. From the second episode, hints of George Michael's love for his cousin Maeby were dropped. These hints eventually turned into blatant references at love. He has a secret shoe box of incriminating notes expressing his love for Maeby.
In the pilot episode, a group of gay protesters protest near the Bluth yacht about the country club's exclusion of gays. Tobias accidentally thought George's retirement was a costume party, so he dressed up as a pirate, using Lucille's clothes. He then boarded the gay protesters boat. Mitch Hurwitz pointed out on the episodes' commentary that the gays are the ones having the fun, and the people are the Bluth's yacht are mostly miserable. Tobias' sexuality remained a big question for the rest of the series.
Arrested Development was one of the most beloved series' of its day, and is often considered one of the greatest, if not the greatest, comedy series of all time. Its legacy has lived on with a cult fanbase, and the DVD's continue to make new fans of the series.
The show earned six Emmy Awards, with 22 nominations: Outstanding Comedy Series in 2004, Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series in 2004, Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series in 2004, Outstanding Single Camera Picture Editing in 2004, Outstanding Casting for a Comedy Series in 2004, and Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series in 2005.
Despite the critical love, Arrested Development never managed to get a large audience. Chalk it up to unlikable characters, subtle humor, complex, contiguous storyline, or obscure references. The series saw a two million viewer drop from season two to three (6 million to 4 million). The episode order for the second season was shortened from 22 to 18. This was parodied in the episode The Sword of Destiny, where the Bluth Company's housing order was cut down to 18.
In 2012, the online streaming service Netflix announced that it would be bringing Arrested Development back for a fourth season as one of their Netflix original shows. The fourth season was released on the website in 2013. Unlike with previous seasons, each episode focuses on telling a different character's story through their point of view. This season is planned to be followed by an eventual movie.
|forum||Arrested Development Season 4 Discussion Thread||FinalDasa|
|news||Arrested Development Season 4 Trailer||FinalDasa|
|forum||The Date We've All Been Waiting For||meaninoflife42|
|news||Netflix and Arrested Development||staceywi|
|news||The State of Television||staceywi|
|forum||Entire Season on Sale - 70% off||Acura_Max|
|news||Television Viewing: Binge vs. On-Air Watching||staceywi|
|news||Arrested Development Season 4||staceywi|
|Date of 1st Airing||Nov. 1, 2003|
|Date of Last Airing||Feb. 10, 2006|
|Original Air Day||Monday|
|Original Air Time|
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