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Arrested Development is unbelievably witty, charming, and uproariously
funny. I don't think I can add much to what has already been said about
it, but it is just so unbelievably enjoyable to watch. Some comedies
you just set on and watch people do uncomfortable things and you might
chuckle once or twice. Arrested Development isn't like that. It is so
tightly-written and well-paced. It's hysterical.
I can only think of two flaws - the story isn't especially compelling (what can you expect, it's a comedy show); and if you laugh a lot while watching run-of-the-mill comedy TV, this show might actually send you to the hospital.
The first few episodes of Arrested Development are funny, then it just
gets repetitive. Every episode, everyone is ragging on everyone,
there's next to no character development, and it's not really that fun
to watch. I enjoyed the first few episodes, but after that it was just
a chore to get through.
4 out of 10
After viewing several episodes, I found this to be a witty, and
sometimes delightfully funny program. Droll, hardworking, and recently
widowed Michael Bluth (Jason Bateman) has to endeavor with his father's
(Jeffrey Tambor) imprisonment (in part to his real-estate company
trading practices) his pampered mother Lucille (Jessica Walter), twin
sister Lindsay, younger brother Byron "Buster" Bluth and his
out-of-work oldest brother magician GOB. (or George Oscar Bluth II,
pronounced "Jobe"). After George Sr. is sent to prison, the unbearable
family members turn to Michael to head the corporation and handle their
funds. Through it all, Michael has a son, George Michael, a timid and
rather confounded young man who idolizes his daddy, has a mild
infatuation with his only cousin, Maeby (Lindsay's daughter), and is in
charge of the semi-popular Bluth frozen banana stand at Newport Beach's
Not to mention the unexplainable Carl Weathers guest appearances, Ron Howard's uncredited narration, and brother-in-law Tobias' acting attempts, this program deserves its merit.
Previously, I had written off this show without giving it a chance,
assuming that it's just another show about rich people with problems, a
la "The OC". It's too bad I didn't give it a chance because I just
happened to watch a random episode right while waiting for "Malcom in
the Middle". Little did I expect to laugh so hard at George Michael
continuously wearing a muscle suit just because his COUSIN. Maebe, gave
him a passing compliment. And the absurdity of the situation was
amplified by Ron Howard's deadpan narration of the episode, giving it
the seriousness the situation doesn't deserve.
The show was still confusing because I wasn't clear on all the relationships and the origninating humor that the episodes look back to. Good think FOX did a marathon of the show in order to set me straight.
Bottom line, this show did not win all those Emmies for nothing. It could give Frasier, Friends and Seinfeld a run for their money any day. Let's hope the Emmys shielded the show from the FOX cancellation bug that afflicted other good shows such as "Action", "Titus", "Greg The Bunny" and ESPECIALLY "Family Guy".
Throughout its original run, Arrested Development received overwhelming
critical acclaim. It is widely regarded as one of the defining comedies
of the 2000s and has been praised by many critics as one of the
greatest comedies of all time. In 2007, the show was listed as one of
Time magazine's "100 Best TV Shows of All-TIME". Mugshot arrested
Randall Amiel of Entertainment Weekly praised the series, saying "Is it beating a dead horse to once again state that this under-appreciated gem is the best sitcom on TV? Too bad. Arrested Development is the best sitcom on TV!" David Bianculli from the New York Daily News stated "If you're not watching this series on Fox, the least you can do is buy it on DVD. You'll love it, and it's such a dense show (in the best sense of the word) that it rewards repeated viewing. Like Scrubs and the British version of The Office, it is the sort of show that truly deserves to be seen uninterrupted, several episodes at a time, for maximum enjoyment. The laughs-per-minute quotient here is insanely high, making it great value as a home library purchase." In 2004, the first season received seven Emmy Award nominations with five wins. It won for Outstanding Comedy Series, Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series, Outstanding Casting for a Comedy Series, Outstanding Single-Camera Picture Editing for a Comedy Series and Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series.
George Bluth (Jeffrey Tambor) runs the family business of property
development. He gets arrested and puts the family out of its comfort
zone. His widowed son Michael Bluth (Jason Bateman) returns with his
son George Michael (Michael Cera) to run what's left of the family
business. Lucille (Jessica Walter) is the spoiled matriarch and Buster
(Tony Hale) is the hopeless idiot son. Son GOB (Will Arnett) is an
unsuccessful magician. Daughter Lindsay (Portia de Rossi) is married to
weird former psychiatrist Tobias Funke (David Cross). Their daughter
Maeby Fünke (Alia Shawkat) catches the eye of George Michael who has
inappropriate feelings for his cousin.
I love this family of dysfunctional selfish people. It would easy to hate these self-obsessed narcissus but the show keeps them weird and fun. Their misadventures are comic gold. The rapid-fire dialog keeps the jokes coming. Even the Ron Howard narration works to keep the quirky tone light and full of life. Normally, I don't like narrations but it's perfect in this case. The three year Fox run is some of the best TV around. It's too bad that it never got the ratings despite the critical acclaim. The Netflix continuation is a flatter, less energetic version. It's not as sharp as the original run but it's still fun.
I will watch anything Arrested Development...a movie, outtakes,
repeats, etc. I want more!
I absolutely love this show. I lean towards character driven dramas or comedy and this show has characters....boy does it ever! I have a hard time deciding who my favorite character is, they are all so wonderfully horrible in their own way.
The last season of Arrested on Netflix was brilliant. I think I watched the entire season 3 times in a row and saw something different each time.
I was happy to see that Arrested Development was the highest rated TV comedy of all time on IMDb. I couldn't agree more.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This is by far one of the best and most clever television shows ever.
First off, I'll address the first three seasons. As you progress
episodes by episode in season 1, you start to see how clever the show
is when they refer back to themselves and maintain continuity. Once the
show expands into multiples seasons, the callbacks are awesomely
ridiculously. Foreshadowings are over the place. The best thing about
callbacks and continuity is that it shows the writers care and at least
try the best to maintain a consistent continuity in the fabricated
world. Of course, this wouldn't be possible without the amazing
Gob is one of my favorite characters ever. I tend to hate the spoiled and lousy eldest characters. However, there is a painful aspect when it comes to the character. His family basically hates him in favor for his younger siblings. His ridiculous love for magic probably stems from a need for attention. Along with the final countdown, this guy is just epic.
Many folks hates season 4, and it is justified I suppose. The best part about the show is the ensemble cast. Once they are split it, it's hard to be nearly as strong. This is worked around by the peculiar structure of season 4. Of course this can easily be seen as a conceit that possesses a pretentious air of creativity. Conversely, I thought it was a resourceful use that further cements the show as an expert at callbacks and continuity.
DO NOT MISS THIS SHOW!
Arrested Development was once the funniest show on television, and is a
contender for the funniest show of all time. In my opinion, the only
show that could come close to this show's level of comedic brilliance
is The Office, but later in the show's run, the humor fell flat and got
worse as time went on. This is not the case with Arrested Development.
Yes, the 4th season was lackluster compared to the seasons before, but
once you get past the first few episodes of season 4 (the only inferior
episodes of the show), the show's originality and witty humor takes
flight once again. What stands out about Arrested Development the most
to me is that I cannot remember an episode in which I didn't laugh.
Most shows lose their genius over time, but since AD was cut so short
the humor sticks with you and never turns stale.
Arrested Development is the reason I watch TV, and should not be missed by anyone who loves witty humor, running gags, and sensational writing.
ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT - 10/10 - MASTERPIECE
It's not every day you come across a show with the history that the
popular sitcom "Arrested Development" has. This show was on for three
seasons and it got cancelled after the third season due to low ratings.
A good number of audiences were upset by its cancellation, while some
new audiences took a look back at the past seasons. And I guess critics
and audiences alike liked the past seasons enough to the point where
this show is now officially back on the air only on Netflix. It should
be noted that I've only seen the first season of this show so far. In
other words, this review will be solely based on season one. Based on
what I've seen from season one of "Arrested Development", I can
understand why people like this show. Though I wouldn't go as far as to
say that it's one of my favorite shows.
"Arrested Development" centers around Michael Bluth (Jason Bateman) who tries to keep his dysfunctional family together and try to prevent certain family members from doing something stupid. Amongst Michael's family members are his son (Michael Cera) who seems to try a little too hard to live up to his father's standards, his trouble-making father (Jeffrey Tambor), his alcoholic mother (Jessica Walter) who is judgmental of every family member. There's also his socially awkward younger brother (Tony Hale), his older brother (Will Arnett) who is an unsuccessful magician, his spoiled twin sister (Portia de Rossi), her husband (David Cross) who is also an actor, and their rebellious daughter (Alia Shawkat). The show follows these family members and whatever funny situations they experience.
I can't say that I'm a fan of either Michael Cera or Will Arnett, but I find them tolerable in this show. I liked how in one episode I've seen, Will Arnett's character tries to break out of prison, gets beaten up in prison, is sent to the hospital, and in his hospital bed, he simply says "Ta-da". That was a good joke. If the actor came up with more comedic material like that, I'd be less mixed on him as a comedic actor. As for Michael Cera, he does do the same old routine he would continue on doing later in his career. His act works here though because it fits with the character he plays as opposed to just being awkward and tiresome.
This is one of those shows in which I am able to identify with the characters and yet unable to identify with them both at the same time. Tony Hale's character, aka the socially awkward brother, is a great example. Like him, I seem to get along more with people older than me than I do with people younger than me. But at the same time, I wouldn't date anyone that was at least 10 years older than me because that would be too weird. Portia de Rossi's character, aka the spoiled twin sister, is another noteworthy example. While I'm willing to admit that I'm used to living the good life and not having to take care of everything, I'm also pretty careful when it comes to deciding how much money to spend on a weekly basis unlike Portia de Rossi's character.
The other characters are interesting including Michael's father, played by Jeffrey Tambor. I like how in the first few episodes when he's in prison, he says to his son that he actually likes it there and claims that it's like being on vacation. That's one way of looking at time in prison. As a writer, I'm up for looking at things through different points of view. David Cross' character, aka the husband of Michael's sister, is also entertaining. His funniest moment is when he and his wife attend couples therapy in one episode and this therapy turns into an acting rehearsal of sorts for him as the therapist has taken interest in his profession. I don't want to reveal too much but that story in that episode is hilarious because of David Cross.
While I don't think that I'd declare "Arrested Development" one of the greatest television sitcoms like everyone else seems to, I do understand why critics and audiences generally like it. I like most of the characters. A majority of the jokes hit their targets. The acting in general is well done. The storytelling is efficient and so is the narration by Ron Howard that accompanies it. Even if a couple episodes or jokes aren't quite up my alley, I'd still say that this show is worth a look.
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