Archive for April, 2010

Well, now that the season has ended, I was left with a satisfied impression.  The show had really funny moments and really boring moments as well as touching moments.  I won’t go into detail about them here as I described them throughout my blogs, but I think the balance of these three aspects made the show really memorable, enjoyable and stood out to me for others I had seen.

The blogging experience was mixed for me at times.  Due to the size of the first season it felt a bit tedious to write-up so many blogs, and at times even analyzing the episode made it less enjoyable to me.  In the end however, I realized how close I felt to the Bluth family.  I think the cast did a really good job of making their characters believable and stand out.  In fact, I don’t think there is one character in the family that felt like they barely contributed.  Even Oscar, who was there for a short few episodes, left a memorable if not a creepy impression.  Also, the part I enjoyed the most was the few episodes that I felt I could relate to.  It’s a good feeling when you could relate to what some of the characters are going through in the show; in fact I believe it makes them seem more believable.

The show had a very basic soundtrack and in a way it was relaxing.  I think compared to the over the top and over processed theme songs that most shows have this one seemed barebones and contributed to the mood very well.  The smooth sound of the ukulele had this simple and melodic effect which served to contrast the tension of the family.  Speaking of simple, I also thought it was ingenious how they described the show in a few words simply stating “Now the story of a family who lost everything and the one son who had no choice but to keep them all together.  It’s arrested development.”  It described the show so well and yet did not reveal any of the spoilers or key plot elements.  My English teacher from high school always said, papers should be like a woman’s skirt “short and to the point.”  As perverted as that may sound, it’s actually true and that line stands out so well because of it.  Also the show did make fun of a lot of stuff that was going on at the time such as the Iraq war, the Atkins diet, and I feel in a way that the show was close to what happened with the Enron scandal.

Another aspect of the show I liked was the narrator.  The narrator was a very important character in the show and even had funny moments where he would say something opposite of what a character would say (such as one of the episodes where Gob denies doing something and the narrator says he did do it).  My favorite episode would have to be a tie between Best man for the Gob and In God we Trust.  Those two stood out to me from the pack because they had really funny events such as the failed attempt to frame Ira Gilligan or the picture contest the family participated in.

Overall I have to say that I enjoyed this show and am glad I chose it.  For those who would like to get into the show, I would recommend watching the first episode to see what it is about and not do any background research until after they finish watching the show because it would’ve been more fun to catch some of the inside jokes, cameos ect.  I am looking forward to seeing the other seasons as well to see how the family will progress after George Bluth Sr. escapes from the hospital.

Series rating: 5/5


Viewed at 12 P.M. at home

Well here is the last episode of the season.  I kind of felt sad going into this episode, because I felt like I was bonding with the family.  The last episode marks the finale of this season and finally answers some long running questions.  In Lindsay’s case, I felt bad for her because she finally realized how oblivious Tobias is.  His latest foray with his book being popular with the gay community did not strike him as it would a normal person who is in touch with reality.  I personally would’ve slapped Tobias across the face, because this whole season he has done such stupid things out of obliviousness and not wanting to face reality.  I think (to use the technique he used to kill White Power Bill) that he hates himself and creates this barrier around his life to justify falsely any path he takes.

Also what surprised me was how jealous of George Michael, Maeby was.  George got a girlfriend and started spending more time with her than he was with Maeby.  Her act of kissing Annyong to get George jealous shows that perhaps she too has feelings for him.  I guess all this time she spent with him has made her fond of her cousin in a more intimate way.  I guess this is what happens when you are born into a screwed up family such as the Bluths.  Speaking of screwed up, George Bluth Sr. was the biggest screw up here.

I thought he was messed up from the beginning, but him faking a heart attack and escaping was very cowardly in my opinion.  Some highlights and funny moments were when there would be a scene such as when Kitty told Michael his father promised her the company followed by a scene not found white screen.  These appear a few more times and it was funny to see them because they were placed in such perfect moments and weren’t overused.  Michael also finds out why his father is in prison in the first place (houses built for Sadam).

On a final note, Gob shows just how retarded he is.  He mistakes Lindsay’s business proposition for bees instead of beads and says he will go and start a bee business.  Well if anyone had doubts about Gob being smart, they can be put to rest now, because it’s obvious that he has no brain what so ever.  It was entertaining when he got tackled in jail for showing a jar of bees.  The episode revealed most of the question asked and did a very good job with playing the role of the last episode of the season.  Unfortunately I would’ve liked for Lindsay to tell Tobias to take a hike.  I also would’ve liked for Tobias to finally admit he is gay, but as Michael mentioned in this episode “Well I want a Hamburger and fries, but can’t have the bun and the potatoes, get real.”  This last reference is to the Atkins diet that everybody seems to be on; which was humorous, because the Atkins diet was getting popular around this time.  Sadly it failed just like it does in the end of the episode, where everyone is eating bread.

Funny quotes and scenes

All the clip missing scenes in the episode

Lindsay’s business of printing pictures of how children will look when they get old.

Gob: “nothing works in this house.”

Michael: “Tell me about it.”

Buster attacking Annyong for the cream cheese bagel.

Tobias: “I was walking in a strange place today, a place I’d never set foot in before.”

Narrator: “Tobias walking down a street he’d been down many times…” (It’s a gay neighborhood).

Episode Rating: 4.8/5

Viewed at 10 A.M. at home

Ah, the good old take your daughter to work day.  Michael should be glad that Maeby is the way she is.  While the episode focuses on many members of the family, I found the more interesting characters to be Buster, Uncle Oscar and Annyong.

Now in the previous episode we found out that George Sr. has a brother named Oscar.  He shows up in this episode to go to the soccer game with Lucille so nobody thinks she’s single.  Now during the soccer scene Buster goes into the trailer to ask Oscar to leave (as per George’s request).  It was so funny how Oscar greeted him, because Buster greets the same way, in fact they both looked like a dog chasing its own tail.  Their chemistry is so frighteningly identical that I really do think they are father and son.  The scene where Buster scores a goal was nice too because Oscar waved good job and goodbye to him before leaving.  I really think Buster should go and spend time with Oscar to get to know him.  The reason I say this is because of his power struggle with his brother-in-law Annyong.

Now we all know how unforgiving and cruel Lucille can be at times.  In the last episode she said that Buster can’t live by himself because he needs her.  This may be true, but if his relationship with Lucille 2 says anything about him, it’s that Buster can manage his life (to some small extent).  At this point, she is too involved with her new son to even care for Buster and she shows her colors very publically.  I feel bad for Buster though, because when he was flying away, his mother tried to sabotage everything, but now that she has a new son, she just turns her back on Buster.  Hopefully Anyong will be forced to leave, so that the family could resume its connection.

I really liked this episode.  It showed Buster with more confidence since he lost Lucille 2.  Also seeing Tobias in his psychology days with hair was kind of funny as well.  Maeby’s cleverness in finding Kitty helped make the episode fun too and showed that the power of a teen should not be underestimated.  For an episode this far in the season, I think it was great.  It had funny, triumphant moments.  On a last note, It was humorous that Gob not only failed in his debut of girls with low self-esteem but got caught shoplifting by a teen girl.  This was also the first time the music in the episode stood out to me.  I think the scene with Buster and Oscar as well as Buster’s soccer scene provided a good feel for what was going on.

Funny quotes and scenes:

Tobias: “Douche chiiiiills”

The scenes where Oscar sticks his face in Lucille’s chest and gives Buster a back rub (the music in the scene makes it even funnier, because it is the kind of music that would normally be played in a romantic scene).

Gob gets busted by a teen girl whose father is the security of the mall.

Michael: “Hello, oh hey George Michael.  Ugh, I’m sorry, in your pants?  I’ll be right there.”

Buster’s rage scene on the soccer field (the fast paced punk/ ska music provided a good atmosphere for his act).

Annyong: “heads up fatty!!!!” he then jumps from atop onto Buster as revenge.

Episode Rating: 5/5

Viewed on 3:10 P.M. at home

Well this episode is a shocker.  The family gets some money unfrozen, and everybody runs to Michael like rats to cheese.  The episode had a little influence from the Iraq war (Lindsay’s hair stylist is drafted and she goes to protest) and ties in nicely with why the government is after the Bluth company (the deals with Saddam Hussein).  Since we are on the topic of Lindsay, She takes a dramatic turn in her life in this episode.  With no chance of getting money and her relationship with her husband dropping by the minute, Lindsay needs something to get her self-esteem back up.

I feel bad for her only because a beautiful lady such as herself could do better than her husband.  Her attitude and personality however makes me think that she deserves what she gets.  It’s funny because both of them try to make each other feel better in this episode, but as usual they end up failing.  Lindsay however finds a worthy cause to finally protest.  It seems that her hair stylist is being sent to war, and knowing his alternative sucks, decides to protest the war.  I found this scene to be a shock initially but not after a bit of thought.  I think Lindsay wants to be a cage dancer to make Tobias angry.  Perhaps he would then see how she feels about him wanting to be an actor.  Unfortunately she is a lot better at what she wants to do than Tobias is at what he wants.

Also in this episode is the debut of “POPOP WITH HAIR;” no it’s just Oscar (George’s twin brother). I am convinced that at some point in their marriage, Lucille had an affair with Oscar, because he is creepy, depends on others for support and acts just like Buster.  I am convinced that Oscar is Busters father, because they are just so alike it’s not even funny.  I think that is the reason why Buster is not in this episode; too much creepy characters for one episode.  This kind of makes the tension of the season go higher a bit, because there were enough dramas to deal with, but now we have yet another suspicion and unanswered question so close to the end of the season.

There was so much in the episode that it would make the blog too long, but let’s just say the big moment for me was when Michael confronts his mother at the end with his problem.  Now I have viewed Michael as a very mature, professional (somewhat) and responsible person.  He always tries to care for his family and help them out.  If him staying and taking over the company isn’t a sign of all that, I don’t know what is.  But here Michael makes a mistake and doesn’t know where to go from there.

It is at this point that he and his mother bond for real (the episode with the car crash doesn’t count).  She hugs him and tells him she will take care of everything.  I just found this to be a sign that Lucille isn’t as cold-hearted greedy and manipulative as we are lead to believe.  In fact, she may actually have a kind heart after all (even if it’s very small).  I think this touching moment made the episode so good.  It showed that Michael is not as strong as he thinks and is a human being after all.  I too act like that sometimes.  Thinking of others ahead of my own needs and blaming myself in a similar fashion that Michael does, so this is yet another episode that I feel I bonded with on a personal level.  That is why I really enjoyed this episode and found it to be really memorable.  Also there was a slight clue that Lindsay is not a real family member, as Lucille drives past her cage dancing and says “there’s a girl who could’ve used a real mother… WHORE!!”   More plot twists towards the end of the season; just what we need.

Funny quotes and scenes:

Lindsay turns on the song they listened to when the first started dating, and climbs on top of Tobias’ bed saying “I just feel like using my body.”

Tobias pointing to his book says “Lindsay can you use it over there, I’m trying to grow (implying mental growth).”

Lindsay gets off and says “ye its clear that’s not gonna happen (implying growth somewhere else).”

Tobias: “… I’ve always wanted to remake Anny Hall, except I wouldn’t wanna get in bed with a green producer like Sophia Copola though.  Oh but give me an old pro like a Robert Redford, oh I’d jump into bed with him in a second.  And I wouldn’t just lie there…”

Oscar saying hello in a Buster fashion.  Oscar then says “I need money; Oh I cannot tell you how that has weighed on me (fart).”

Michael: moves over to the next seat.  Shortly after Oscar says “… a love that was taken away from me (fart).”

Michael: “I hope that was the espresso machine.”

Episode Rating: 5/5

Viewed at 2 P.M. at home

Ok, this episode was really funny and a lot better than the previous one.  I will stick to the relationship Gob has with Michael and their father respectively.  Now Gob is a dimwit as is evident by his actions throughout the season.  Here however, it is revealed to be so as a result of his father.  I talked a bit about his relationship with his father in a previous blog, but here it becomes evident that he is so desperate to get his father’s attention that he will ignore his brother Michael.  An example is when Michael told Gob his marriage was a bad idea.  Gob knocked it off but agreed with the decision when his father said the same thing. Any respect I had for Gob after he rescued his brother from their mother is almost lost now.

Michael on the other hand is on to his father.  He knows how manipulative their father can get to accomplish what he wants.  Turns out the bachelor party was just to frame Ira Gilligan (their accountant) so he doesn’t testify against them.  This plan fails of course but for the reason that Buster drinks all the fake blood and becomes hyper and thus ruining the surprise stripper in the cake.  Now I find this to be weird, because from the past episodes it is obvious that Michael cares more for Gob than their father does about him.

In fact I think Gob is a laughing-stock of the family with all of his failures and cheap attempts to get out of situations.  He is also unfortunately not the brightest of the bunch, as he ruins the plot of the scheme but prematurely blaming Ira for killing the stripper.  I was glad to see towards the end that.  The two brothers united to get their dad out of their life.  It took a lot out of Gob to turn the T.V. off.  One other thing that I find weak about Gob is how easy it is to manipulate him or get him to think one way or another.  We see this as soon as his wife comes in telling him she fell in love with his brother-in-law.  Unfortunately he stopped at brother and punched Michael before she could finish the sentence.  He needs to really get his act together, but then again he can’t really be blamed for his actions.  His insecurity with his relationships is partly to blame on his brother, after going after his previous girlfriend Marta.

I really thought this episode was a good one.  It returned to that comedic failure the show is known for where all the plans get screwed up and never work out the way they were supposed to.  That and Dr. Fünke’s 100% Natural Good-Time Family Band Solution was ridiculous.  Obviously Gilligan’s name was a take on the famous show Gilligan’s island.  We see that his name is screamed out just like the skipper does in the show, and Ira is even dressed as Gilligan at the end.  Ironically the woman he is with happens to be the narcoleptic stripper they try to frame him with killing.  Also Tobias’ jacket and then going naked in Michael’s office go further and further in a suggestion that he is gay.  I have a feeling for some reason that towards the end of the season he will not come out but perhaps by the end of the series itself this might be revealed.

Funny quotes and scenes:

The scene where Maeby talks about her parents and her and a graph shows up showing how much alone time she gets when they are together and apart.

The scene where George Bluth takes a friend to a cake where a narcoleptic stripper falls out still asleep.

Tobias: “… this family is not about using; we are pushers not takers.”  Lindsay then takes a pill and Tobias says “… Lindsay spit it out, that’s not real happiness.”

Lindsay: “well it’s better than what we’ve got now.”

Gob: “Why do I have to bring him?”

Lucille: “Because he is your brother and I am not gonna leave him home alone with all this J.U.I.C.E. around here.”

Buster: “I can spell mom, you spelled juice.”

Lucille: “Oh you’re so brilliant; let’s see you find it…”

The scene Where Buster drinks all the corn syrup and runs around looking for his next fix.

Episode Rating: 5/5

Viewed at 10 A.M. at home

Ironically as I am writing the blog of this episode it is spring break and I am sick, which is funny because, the episode is about spring break.  I have to say though; I would take a sick day over being in the shoes of the Bluth family any day.  Well Gob is his usual self in this episode with his tricks failing.  It’s weird though because most of his tricks have worked in the previous episodes.  I guess his detachment from the magician’s society has affected his performance.  His big magic act however, did work when he sinks the family yacht.

Lindsay is being her typical self here as well, trying to get money; this time from her Nana.  Unfortunately she and Maeby confuse an old woman for their Nana and figure it out a bit too late in their visit.  I personally find Maeby to be a lot better of a schemer than her mom.  Don’t get me wrong, I think the benefits she puts on are nice but they are very typical and in a way cliché.  Maeby however is better than her, especially when she poses as the dying girl and gets all the money for it.  Now since we are on the topic of these two, I feel I should mention Tobias to as he demonstrates how the mind can be conquered.

Tobias is still in jail learning how to be the frightened inmate #2.  Last time he was sold to White Power Bill by his father in law.  This turns out to be in the prisons benefit as, Tobias’ psychologist comes out and makes Bill kill himself.  Now, this was a very crucial scene for me for a few reasons.  First off, Tobias is still a competent man in his past profession.  Yes, he did kill the man, but he did what a psychologist does, and that is use the power of words and comforting to get people to realize something about themselves.

The killing part was purely a coincidence and was not really anticipated.  The other thing is that somehow he becomes the leader of the prison.  He is referred to as Dorothy who killed the wicked witch.  Now I don’t know if this is true or not, but Little Justice calls himself “friend of Dorothy,” which in some circles refers to homosexual preferences.  While the gay jokes aren’t aimed at Tobias as usually, they do play on the prison stereotype of inmates turning gay.  I’m still shocked at how he becomes the big boss there, but I guess its how most movies and shows of this type play out.  It’s always the little guy with the brains that becomes the leader and overthrows the giant oppressor.  In any case, I think Tobias would definitely live a better life as a prison psychologist.  I may bite my words should this come true, but I think he has the power to make a lot of the inmates realize what they are doing and perhaps change their colors (in a non-homosexual way).

Overall this episode was not that entertaining as I would’ve liked.  Some reviews online made good points about how the episode was good, but I would have to disagree with them.  The only other thing I can think of in terms of remotely interesting, was the fact that there was a lot of nipple flashing action in here (mostly from Kitty and Gob).  Kitty was horrific though, as her nipples resembled a cross-eyed man (which is not a pleasant sight).  Also we see more hints at Bluth Sir’s involvement with Sadam as the boxes in the yacht have Maddas H. written on them.  Overall, I think this episode was missing something that the other episodes had in the forms of memorable moments and humor.

Maybe it’s the fact that I am sick and couldn’t enjoy the episode, but I feel that it could’ve done more or should had been incorporated into other episodes.  Gob’s magic failures were kind of sad to watch here, as I think his previous attempts were much better.  The only good and entertaining part was when Lucille puts all of Nana’s money in a trust fund for Annyong until he turns 18, not realizing that he already is (Lupe realizes this in the end).  I had a little snicker at this lying and manipulative woman’s failure to get her kids this time.  Also I couldn’t help but feel confused at the fact that Annyong is adopted and is 18.  I have a feeling this will play itself out somehow in the future episodes or seasons.  If there was one other humorous aspect I found to this episode, it was the shooting of the Girls with Low Self-Esteem videos which is a humorous jab at the Girls Gone Wild video.  It would explain why Kitty was on it, seeing as how nobody likes her except George Bluth (even he grows somewhat unsatisfied with her saying that she feels like a little boy).

Funny quotes and scenes:

The scene where Kitty flashes the GWLSE camera only to have the camera moved away from her.

Kitty coming back to work with cross-eyed nipples (this was more gross than funny but still somewhat humorous).

Episode Rating: 3/5

Viewed at 6:30 P.M. at home

Well I guess we can add another character to the list if alter egos; Maggie’s watch dog Justice.  Seems that Justice is not a watch dog after all and apparently Maggie’s been the one leading him this whole time.  A signal that this is part 2 of a two-part episode is the fact that once again the scenes in the “on the next Arrested Development” are shown in the next episode.  The name of the episode is a humorous ode to the phrase “justice is blind,” meaning that in the court of law sometimes the guilty are not guilty and vice versa.  Here we also see a conflicting relationship between Buster and his recent brother Annyong.

Now Buster was starting to look like a man in the middle of the season when he was going out with Lucille Austero and trying to leave his mother.  Now that their relationship is ruined (no thanks to his mother’s manipulative nature), Buster is portrayed as a squabbling baby who is trying to get his mother back.  Only now she has Annyong who seems more competent.  In fact, we see this in this very episode when Annyong apparently knows more about the case than Buster.  He even hits a sore topic when he mentions as soon as George Bluth Sr. comes back, buster will be gone.  Now we find out that not only is Buster having a conflict with his new brother, but also that he hates his dad.  This will cause Buster to fall to the dark side and go to the prosecution in hopes that his dad stays in prison.

Now back to Maggie and Michael’s relationship.  Now that Michael tells her who he really is, their sexual relationship reaches a new high.  Their relationship is in a way forbidden, because they are both on opposing sides and if caught can be facing some serious repercussions.  I actually feel glad for Michael for two reasons.  First off, he is finally starting to show some backbone by sleeping with the enemy.  For the second reason, as weird as it may sound, I think he and Maggie make a good couple.  In a way, I wish that they stayed together, because they look happy together, and after losing a wife and waiting long enough, I think he is ready to move back into the couple realm.  I also think that if he had her as his attorney, he would win more unlike the useless Zuckerkorn.  I don’t even know how that guy got to become a lawyer because he is so useless and unprofessional.

Gob actually proved useful here too (which is a rare sight) with his illusions.  If he was someone in another lifetime it would’ve been a thief or pickpocket, because that’s how he was in this episode.  Gob also took on a characteristic closer to his mother and father.  He successfully manipulated Tobias to do what he wanted.  Now I will admit that the task wasn’t so hard, but the fact that he did that shows him warming up to his parents and trying to impress him.  His acquisition of the files was also something that seemed to please his father.  Maybe in the following episodes he will finally get some recognition from his father.

The episode was pretty good.  It wasn’t a laugh riot like some of the others were, but still had its moments.  The biggest factor of this episode however, was that it showed a lot of progression and stepping outside of a comfort zone for some of the characters.  It essentially made me laugh and think, which is always a good combination.  Also, the scene where Tobias sneaks into Maggie’s house and she plays around with him was funny, especially in the end of the chase when she’s about to hit him only to be sprayed in the eyes by perfume.

Funny quotes and scenes:

(After revealing how GM got his cast) Tobias: “Ah the clumsy adolescence.  A phase we’ve all been through; except for me.  I was like a cat; I always ended up on all fours.”

Maggie: “Do you know anything about your father’s trips to overseas?”

Buster: “I know I had a fun time at home, alone with mom.”

Maggie: “… did you ever see him return from these trips with anything unusual?”

Buster: “He came home once with a black statue with an erect penis.”

The scenes where Tobias is trying to evade Maggie in her house.

The scene at the end where Maggie calls for her dog Justice, who runs into the courtrooms door.

The scene where Michael chucks the bible at Maggie only to have her get hit by it (this is probably the only time where she was legitimately blind).

Episode Rating: 5/5