This is the story of one woman’s Arrested Development season 4 marathon.
Thanks to Netflix, long-time fans of Arrested Development have finally been given a gift in thanks for their unwavering devotion: a new season of 15 episodes. But does this new season live up to the hype? I can answer that question with a resounding “yes!”
Season 4 of Arrested Development begins five years after the series was abruptly canceled. The Bluth family is back and they are in a world of trouble, as usual. This time, Lucille (Jessica Walter) has been arrested after stealing the Queen Mary in order to attempt a slick getaway. And the entire family are dealing with issues of their own. Michael (Jason Bateman) is doing his best to stay as far away from his parents as possible, but ends up living with his son in a college dorm room. Gob (Will Arnett) is going through cycle after cycle of roofie circles and is seeking revenge on rival magician Tony Wonder (Ben Stiller). Lindsay (Portia de Rossi) has left Tobias (David Cross) and goes off to India in search of enlightenment. Tobias continues to seek out a career in acting. George and Oscar set up a scam for rich businessmen on the border of Mexico. George-Michael (Michael Cera) is desperately trying to make his way through college without his father. Maeby (Alia Shawkat) has retired from the movie industry and is doing her best to never graduate from high school. Buster (Tony Hale) loses it when his mother goes off to prison. Yes, this family will never catch a fair shake.
In season 4, each episode of Arrested Development is told from the point of view of one character. Ron Howard is back to narrate (and occasionally show up on-screen as himself) to tell us which family member the currently-viewed episode is about. This works really well because we see all of the characters in each scene, but from a completely different point of view. In later episodes, the blanks are filled in about what was going on from one character to another and the new information is often laugh-worthy. This really works as a great way to set up a series that will probably be watched in one or a few sittings.
The humor is also still available and at times, funnier than previous seasons. When Lucille is on house arrest, Buster and she finds a unique way to help her smoke cigarettes without setting off her ankle bracelet. If that doesn’t make you laugh, nothing will. There are also the usual hijinks that we have come to expect from the Bluth family and they are even more insane than ever. These new episodes of Arrested Development are the funniest thing not on TV (and beats out everything else on TV). To quote Yoda: “Laugh like crazy, you will.”
The actors are all on top of their game. I could list all of the actors and their strengths, but if you’re familiar with the show, you already know what they are each capable of. These are some funny people – truly the funniest on the planet. These characters they have created are each so individually screwed up that you cannot help but to howl in laughter at their self-inflicted pain.
The final episode ends on a question, as we have come to expect from the series. But this time, let’s hope there are no more abrupt cancellations. Let’s tell Netflix that we want more Arrested Development .