Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Zack Snyder Defends 'Man Of Steel' Finale, Ben Affleck Reveals Bruce Wayne Knew People Who Died In That Battle Zack Snyder Defends 'Man Of Steel' Finale, Ben Affleck Reveals Bruce Wayne Knew People Who Died In That Battle New Book Contends Eric Stoltz Was “Difficult” & The Cast Wasn’t Shocked He Was Replaced On ‘Back To The Future’ New Book Contends Eric Stoltz Was “Difficult” & The Cast Wasn’t Shocked He Was Replaced On ‘Back To The Future’ Watch: Scott Lang Wants To Call The Avengers In New International 'Ant-Man' Trailer Watch: Scott Lang Wants To Call The Avengers In New International 'Ant-Man' Trailer The 20 Worst Films Of 2015 So Far The 20 Worst Films Of 2015 So Far Zack Snyder Reveals The Easter Egg Idea He Pitched Christopher Nolan And David Goyer For 'Man Of Steel' Zack Snyder Reveals The Easter Egg Idea He Pitched Christopher Nolan And David Goyer For 'Man Of Steel' New Images Of Bruce Wayne, Lex Luthor, More In 'Batman v. Superman,' Ben Affleck Compares Batman To Hamlet New Images Of Bruce Wayne, Lex Luthor, More In 'Batman v. Superman,' Ben Affleck Compares Batman To Hamlet Paul Thomas Anderson To Write And Possibly Direct Warner Bros' ‘Pinocchio’ For Robert Downey Jr. Paul Thomas Anderson To Write And Possibly Direct Warner Bros' ‘Pinocchio’ For Robert Downey Jr. Watch: First Trailer For Oliver Stone’s ‘Snowden’ Starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Shailene Woodley & Nicolas Cage Watch: First Trailer For Oliver Stone’s ‘Snowden’ Starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Shailene Woodley & Nicolas Cage Review: ‘Terminator: Genisys’ Starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Emilia Clarke, Jai Courtney & Jason Clarke Review: ‘Terminator: Genisys’ Starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Emilia Clarke, Jai Courtney & Jason Clarke 'Thor: The Dark World' Director Alan Taylor Says His Marvel Experience Was "Particularly Wrenching" 'Thor: The Dark World' Director Alan Taylor Says His Marvel Experience Was "Particularly Wrenching" Watch: Anna Paquin Is Rescued In Clip From 'X-Men: Days of Future Past - The Rogue Cut' Watch: Anna Paquin Is Rescued In Clip From 'X-Men: Days of Future Past - The Rogue Cut' Kevin Feige Says 'Spider-Man 2' Is "One Of The Best Superhero Movies Ever," Talks John Hughes Influence On New Spidey Kevin Feige Says 'Spider-Man 2' Is "One Of The Best Superhero Movies Ever," Talks John Hughes Influence On New Spidey Watch: Live Your Ultimate Fantasy With The First NSFW Trailer For Gaspar Noe's 'Love' Watch: Live Your Ultimate Fantasy With The First NSFW Trailer For Gaspar Noe's 'Love' Review & Recap: ‘True Detective’ Season 2, Episode 2, ‘Night Finds You’ Review & Recap: ‘True Detective’ Season 2, Episode 2, ‘Night Finds You’ The Punisher Will Reportedly Appear As The Villain In ‘Daredevil’ Season 2 The Punisher Will Reportedly Appear As The Villain In ‘Daredevil’ Season 2 The 25 Best TV Shows Of The 2014/2015 Season The 25 Best TV Shows Of The 2014/2015 Season The 25 Best Animated Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Animated Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 50 Best Films Of The Decade So Far The 50 Best Films Of The Decade So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season

The 5 Best Episodes Of 'Arrested Development' From The First 3 Seasons

The Playlist By The Playlist Staff | The Playlist May 23, 2013 at 3:13PM

"Arrested Development," as the opening credits inform us, is the story "of one wealthy family, who lost everything and the son who had no choice but to keep them all together." This synopsis, about the Bluth family and their continued struggles, makes it sound like something out of the Chuck Lorre factory of middlebrow mediocrity. But "Arrested Development," created by cracked genius Mitchell Hurwitz, would go on to become one of the most beloved (and short-lived) comedy series in the history of television, one whose fan-base was so outspoken that this weekend the series will be resurrected with a collection of episodes airing exclusively on Netflix's streaming service. The unthinkable has happened: The Bluths are back from the dead.
8

Arrested Development Cast

"Arrested Development," as the opening credits inform us, is the story "of one wealthy family, who lost everything and the son who had no choice but to keep them all together." This synopsis, about the Bluth family and their continued struggles, makes it sound like something out of the Chuck Lorre factory of middlebrow mediocrity. But "Arrested Development," created by cracked genius Mitchell Hurwitz, would go on to become one of the most beloved (and short-lived) comedy series in the history of television, one whose fan-base was so outspoken that this weekend the series will be resurrected with a collection of episodes airing exclusively on Netflix's streaming service. The unthinkable has happened: The Bluths are back from the dead. 

In honor of this glorious return, which is far more impressive than Jesus showing up, we decided to run down the five best episodes from the first three seasons of this twisted series. Hopefully this list will please everyone – analrapists, never-nudes, kissing cousins, racially inappropriate puppets, banana stand employees, and Carl Weathers. We've included Hulu embeds of full episodes where we could -- but the rest are available on Hulu Plus or other digital outlets (but we included a couple key clips to make up for it). Onward.... 

Arrested Development SOBs
5.) "S.O.B.s" (Season 3, Episode 9)
Behold, "Arrested Development" at its angriest and most meta-textual. The episode starts off by mocking Fox's gimmicky ad campaigns for similar shows it actually bothered to support, before the family decides to create a campaign of awareness for their plight (the "Save Our Bluths" campaign – which actually had a functional website for many years). At one point Michael says, "I can't believe it's come to begging," at which point Ron Howard, as the nameless narrator, steps in to say, "Please tell your friends about this show." It was both sad and funny: Mitch Hurwitz and the rest of the cast and crew knew that they were being abandoned by their network and probably wouldn't make it past the next few episodes. It will probably go down as one of the funniest, most unapologetic cries for help in the history of the medium. The episode never becomes maudlin, instead imbued with a razor-sharp indignity and genuine outrage. They make jabs at other Fox series like "The OC" and openly reflect on what other networks would take them ("Yeah HBO is definitely not going to want us"). All the typical "Arrested Development" balls are in the air – Tobias' closeted gayness, George Michael's nervousness, and Gob's total cluelessness (he gets a job as a fake waiter, working with a fellow waiter played by Jack McBrayer) – while forwarding the mission statement of the episode, which including a number of ill-placed celebrity guests mixed with true desperation ("We've got a better shot at Nicole Kidman"). Even in its waning days, "Arrested Development" had the tenacity to give The Man the middle finger.

Arrested Development Good Grief

4.) "Good Grief" (Season 2, Episode 4)
A number of plot threads finally merge in this exemplary early-season-two episode, which brings together everything from George Michael's fractured relationship with Ann (her?) to George Sr.'s run from the law, to Gob's attempt at magic-world legitimacy, into one delightfully insane package. In the first few minutes of the episode, Ice the Bounty Hunter makes the startling announcement that George Sr. has died in Mexico -- he was murdered by a Mexican guard (confirmed by dental records, a death certificate and a "political cartoon from a leading Mexican newspaper"). This sends the family into a frenzy, with Michael unsure of what's going to happen to the company, and Gob seeing the opportunity to use his father's death as an excuse to get into magic magazine Poof by performing a trick involving the coffin. While things certainly move along at the show's typically frenzied pace, this episode does slow down for a few subtle gags, like Tobias' speech about John Wayne and feelings (including a joke about the airport) and a hilarious exchange between Buster and Gob about stripper clothes. This episode has a number of "Sad Peanuts" gags (the name of the episode is even a reference to Charlie Brown), including a canine on top of a red doghouse and a man dragging a Christmas tree behind him, while other small gags like the Mexican political cartoon featuring George Sr's failed kitchen appliance The Cornballer, the similarity between George Michael checking out the newly discovered (and alive) George Sr. and news footage of Saddam Hussein after his capture, and a really sly Anne Frank joke, are so small that they fail to register at all (or at least on initial viewing). Of course it's the end of the episode that really makes this unforgettable, as Gob tries to do a magic trick involving his supposedly dead father's grave, with his assistant Buster wearing a militaristic stripper's outfit. "I will become my dead father's body as I am lowered into his grave," Gob announces, before falling out of the coffin and being buried alive. It couldn't have ended more perfectly.

This article is related to: Arrested Development, Mitch Hurwitz, Jason Bateman, David Cross, Will Arnett, Features, Television, TV News


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates