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Key Decisions 

Determined to not be upstaged by his actress girlfriend, Gob decides to pull an elaborate escape at the Orange County Prison, where George Sr. is being held. Meanwhile, Michael falls for Gob's girlfriend Marta.


Anthony Russo


Mitchell Hurwitz (created by), Brad Copeland | 1 more credit »

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Jason Bateman ... Michael Bluth
Portia de Rossi ... Lindsay Bluth Fünke
Will Arnett ... Gob Bluth
Michael Cera ... George-Michael Bluth
Alia Shawkat ... Maeby Fünke
Tony Hale ... Buster Bluth
David Cross ... Tobias Fünke (credit only)
Jeffrey Tambor ... George Bluth Sr.
Jessica Walter ... Lucille Bluth
Liza Minnelli ... Lucille Austero
Leonor Varela ... Marta Estrella
Clint Howard ... Johnny Bark
John Beard ... John Beard
David Reynolds David Reynolds ... White Power Bill
Rocky McMurray ... Warden James Buck


Determined not to be upstaged by his actress girlfriend Marta, GOB goes to the Orange County Prison where his father is being held to stage an elaborate escape. Michael solves the family's transportation problems by selling their private jet, and escorts Marta to the Desi Awards, given for outstanding performances in Spanish language television. Written by halo1k

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




TV-PG | See all certifications »



English | Spanish

Release Date:

23 November 2003 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Tobias (David Cross) does not appear in this episode. See more »


A camera can be seen in the shot while Michael is giving Lindsay the keys to the stair car. See more »


Narrator: Gob was planning his escape from prison.
Gob: [peering into the cell block] Is there a private bathroom nearby?
George Sr.: [addresses the cell latrine] You're looking at it.
Gob: No, no, no. I can't use that. I need privacy. Yeah, I've always been that way. I can't go without privacy.
[sees that his dad is serious]
Gob: No, I can't pass this key without privacy!
George Sr.: Well, I could ask the guys to leave, but, uh, you know they've been locking the doors lately.
[goes back to reading]
Gob: [defeated] I've made a huge mistake.
See more »


Referenced in Chikara Key Decisions (2015) See more »


Cry Love
Written by John Hiatt
Performed by John Hiatt
See more »

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User Reviews

Can GOB Escape Prison?
19 August 2018 | by gab-14712See all my reviews

We are now here at the fourth episode in the first season of Arrested Development and I continue to marvel how the show is able to carry on multiple strong storylines at once. Generally, I would focus on one storyline because the subsequent subplots are often weaker. So far, not in this series. Take for instance this episode, "Key Decisions." There are three major storylines: Lindsay taking a stand with Johnny Bark (played by Clint Howard, Ron's brother), GOB claiming he can escape prison with his magic, and Buster finding love with Lucille's rival (by accident). It amazes me how much care the writers put forth into each storyline. They all add up to a theme where none of the Bluths care about a single thing for more than a day, but that really makes for some fun comedy! Also, we are introduced to another famous prop of the series: The staircar! With all modes of transportation gone, the Bluths are forced to drive this weird-looking car.

In this episode, an environmentalist by the name of Johnny Bark is taking a stand against the Bluths regarding their low-quality, high-cost housing projects by climbing up a tree which was to be removed for the project. Lindsay is told to talk to him, but instead she ends up taking a stand with him although she remains clueless. GOB decides to undergo a publicity stunt when he announces he will go the same prison as his father and escape from it. The warden decides to go along with it because he feels GOB could use the pain. Speaking of GOB, his girlfriend Marta (Patricia Velaquez) is up for an award for Spanish-language television, so Michael solves his family's transportation problems by selling the family jet and using the Staircar to escort Marta.

There is a lot going on in the episode, and I thought mostly everything worked. My favorite subplot is where GOB decides to escape prison, where we all know he will fail miserably. Part of the reason is to avoid going to the Desi Daytime Awards show with Marta (and I love the dig where he compares himself to Rita Wilson, whom we all know is Tom Hank's wife.) Also, I love how GOB loves it in prison (much like his father does). There is another interesting subplot I did not mention with the regular plot. Lucille heads to the awards show and Buster escorts her. There is a point where Buster blindly flirts with another old woman named Lucille (known to us as Lucille #2). Lucille #2 is played by Liza Minnelli. Arrested Development is known for casting excellent guest stars, and I think Liza Minnelli is my favorite.

Overall, this is yet another brilliant episode. It's funny, and the plots all work well with each other. The visual motifs are on point yet again, especially when we see the model homes fall part. There was a scene where Marta knocks on Michael's door, and glass falls down when she knocks. Funny stuff!

My Grade: A

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