Sunday, May 26, 2013

Arrested Development season 4 episode 1: "Flight of the Phoenix"

The rise of the phoenix, or the fall of an empire?

I don't know. I've only seen the first two episodes so far. It seems wrong to judge this season's individual episodes, especially considering just how many holes are present in episodes 1-2 and the fact that the season was designed as a single anthology for viewers to piece together in a larger entity. But I am impatient, bored, and so many of the best "Arrested" ideas come from single episodes that I'm going to run through a few points from the "premiere" anyway (Buster, GOB, the train, Tiny Town, the jetpack, the mole, the Japanese investors, the surrogate - all from a single episode!)

-Ron Howard
-Kristen Wiig as young Lucille
- Cinco de Cuatro and everything about this holiday
-Michael sending George Michael off to college in the staircar with a banner
-Michael having had a year of law school before George Michael was born with an minor emphasis on maritime law
-Every image and joke associated with maritime law and "You're a Crook Captain Hook!" especially Lucille being referred to as a "seaward/c-word matriarch"
-GOB living in the abandoned model home with someone...
-GOB and forgetmenows
-The LA reporter, John Beard
-The wee-Britain BBC2 O.C. reporter
-The "Michael B." company
-Buster losing his jewels
-Michael and George Michael's relationship and communication issues
-Michael's absolute hatred of George Michael's new Asian roommate "T-Hound"
-George Michael doing his best Jesse Eisenberg-as-Zuckerberg impression
-The mysteries: just a few like, Who is doing what during that Cinco de Cuatro celebration? Why does Michael go back at the end of season 3? Why does Lucille turn the Queen Mary around at the end of season 3? Why do we see George Sr. go into GOB's drugstore after GOB? What is the camera crew doing on campus around George Michael and Michael? What does Michael do in Phoenix? What is the real status of George Michael and Maeby's relationship?
-The mural Michael passes in the Phoenix airport
-The discussion about tipping African Americans

-Seth Rogan
-The timeline details don't quite seem to make sense, yet
-I'm kind of tired of money and the Bluth company's issues driving everything
-Lucille's legal status is...unclear
-The watermark joke about piracy isn't very clear or well-done
-Michael hitting rock bottom with Lucille 2 isn't as "rock bottom" as I would hope to see's back. We get more Bluths. I think I'm going to have a hard time fighting my own brain today and tomorrow with the rest of the "season" because one part of my brain wants everything to be so smart and fast and subtle and fit together as perfectly as seasons 1-3, but the other part also recognizes just how batshit crazy seasons 1-3 were, so reason and logic need not be barriers to quality, especially when viewing cumulatively. So, for example, when in episode 2 it seems as if George Sr.'s lemonade-seminar-sweatlodge-RV living-Oscar abusing-Roger Sterling drugtripping-hippieChloeGailTheSnailing operation in the desert apparently lasts a full year, I want to know what the hell is everyone else doing for a year that George is just off on his own, and if this year is between 2006-2007 or 2012-2013...But then it just overwhelms me that I'm not far enough in or appreciating this all enough, so I stop and write this all to help see and say that more "Arrested" is a dream come true and by the end of episode 15 I will see the new episodes as a brilliant exercise in comedy and pop culture. I hope.

1 comment:

NoJGenny said...

I thought the first 3 episodes weren't very good. Then the next couple got better. Then the episode with Gob's magic trick marriage to Ann was bad. I think these will be up and down, but there's still some really clever stuff in here. Haven't finished the season yet, so I'm reserving my final judgement. I like the quick glimpses of other Bluths in the background action.