So by now I expect this show to be well known despite its cancellation. Arrested Development, one of the best shows on television from 2003-2006, was (and is) one of my favorite shows. I recently re-watched this and thought it would be good to give it a review it deserves despite its cancellation. I know nobody really gives this show bad reviews, but I just wanted to buffer reviews that already gave this show an amazing name. With the rumors (or preparations) for a movie to be released in 2012 (if we all make it) I think this would be the perfect time to talk about Arrested Development.
Now, Ron Howard, the executive producer and narrator of this show, is pretty well known if you don’t
Ron Howard. Thank you.
already know. And he’s quite great. (Some of my favorite films, A Beautiful Mind and Cinderella Man, are Ron Howard creations. Even the Dan Brown novels-films are quite great.) This combined with Mitchell Hurwitz,’s writing, (writer of such comedies as Golden Girls and The John Larroquette Show) makes for one of the best shows to ever grace television. Both of these guys, combined with the amazingly comedic acting talents of the main cast, leaves me laughing every time I watch any of the three seasons.
So, basic plot. Michael Bluth, the middle of 3 sons of the Bluth family, has to take over for his father’s business. The reason? His father has committed a number of felonies that have placed him in prison, awaiting trial. This structures the basis of the show. The rest of the show? The Bluth family. You have Gob, the failure, incompetent magician, kicked out of his own magical order. Lindsey Bluth, Michael’s twin sister and fair-weather activist. Buster Bluth, the momma’s boy younger brother and complete baby. Along with these are Tobias Funke, the failed therapist and husband of Lindsey. Their child Maebe, is the rebellious wild child. And Michael’s son George Michael has a thing for her. But don’t worry, he’s a goody two shoes, and he’d never step out of line. But everyone steps out of line once in a while. And that’s where the humor comes from. The unabashed comedy that flows from every character, every pun, every situation, and every ironic event.
Best cast. Ever.
And who delivers these genius lines? One of the best casts out there. First, you have Jason Bateman as Michael Bluth, the main focus of the show and the one holding the family together. Bateman’s cynical nature and pessimistic attitude stands in contrast to every other character and their lack of ethical and hard working spirit. Then there’s Portia de Rossi, Michael’s twin Lindsey. She’s the lazy good for nothing who brings the ditzy activist role to life. She literally understands nothing. And she’s great. It makes it funny that her and Tobias’s relationship really doesn’t work because she’s really a lesbian in real life. And her and Tobias never do it. Ironic, huh? Perfect fit though. There’s Will Arnett as Gob, my
Gob (Will Arnett) . Genius
favorite character. He’s the most offensive, hilarious, and unabashedly direct character who loves women, one-upping his brother, and performing magic to the “Final Countdown.” Michael Cera plays Michael’s son, George Michael. (Funny name, huh?) This show functioned as Michael Cera’s jumping off point for more work, but he’s never really done anything as good as Arrested Development. Alia Shawkat plays Maebe, George Michael’s forbidden love and cousin. She is one of the more grown up members of the family but always reverts back to her childishly rebellious state. Tony Hale plays Buster Bluth, the baby of the family. He’s great as one of the stranger characters and really plays the part so well. David Cross plays Tobias Funke, the failed therapist that seems gay and is a never-nude (Check that bit of news out, why don’t you.). Jeffrey Tambor and Jessica Walter fill out the family as George and Lucille Bluth, the parents and more dysfunctional family members than most. With their controlling natures and absurd sex drives, these two really bring out where their children’s bad behavior came from.
And that’s really about all there is that needs to be said about this show. This is what makes it good. With great writing and comedic elements, a great producer/narrator, and an amazing cast, what more do you need? These actors have all made names for themselves from this and other shows, and have gone on to do more than just comedy. I could watch this show over and over again. Although you may need to buy the seasons, their well worth their $25 a piece. Check them out. 10 out of 10.
And here’s the best of Tobias. Thank you David Cross for one of the greatest characters of all time.
Let me first start off by saying that this show isn’t for everyone. If you don’t find dark, off the wall, probably funny if you were high or on large doses of acid, absurd humor funny without the addition of narcotics, this show is probably not for you. After I had spent time ritually watching Tom Goes to the Mayor (This is a blueprint stop motion animated short show in which Tom/Tim Heidecker goes to the Mayor/Eric Wareheim.) I found out about this show. I had only seen one segment prior, and my friends at school would laugh about the new episodes every Friday in school. But yes, my first and only image of Tim and Eric Awesome Show Great Job! was Chippy, the baby with a mustache that screams when spotted. I knew I had to check out this entire show.
And so I did. 5 nights, 5 seasons. Series 1 through Cinco. There was many a time I was frightened, and many a time I pooped my pants in laughter. My roommate Ian and I (he’s my movie/T.V. show buddy, we watch everything together) spent a week straight laughing for the hour and 40 minutes that was Tim and Eric. Frankly, this show has great actors, great characters, and great, absurd humor. I greatly applaud Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim for their work.
Great Job!, Tim and Eric
Every season consists of 10 episodes that are 10 minutes each. Eric and Tim play themselves, they play stock characters, they bust out the outrageous character or two. There’s really not anything to ruin as far as spoilers go in this show. Nobody dies (or stays dead for long) not really any continuous plot from episode to episode. It’s all about the absurdity and low quality/college campus acting and effects.
Best stock characters. Yes. We have James Quall, the horrific, dull, doll-like impressionist who loves Cosby and spaghetti and meatballs. David Leibe Hart, the man picked right off the streets for his work with ventriloquism assisted by the most frightening dummies known to man. Richard Dunn, the cantankerous old man who is always on the verge of kicking the bucket. Pierre (Ron Austar), the dad obsessed funk dancer who loves meat, but not
There's my Chippy
when it’s spoiled. And of course Chippy, the hirsute baby with the greatest scream on the face of the planet.
And it’s not just these drifters off the street that make up the show. We also have character/T.V. show/movie actors and other celebrities that make special appearances based on the episode. Of course there’s Dr. Steve Brule (John C. Reilly) with
For Your Health!
Brule’s rules and the varying segment where he drinks some wine or makes a panini. Tairy Greene (Zach Galifianakis. I feel like this is what made him popular.) the actor/director who shouts at children and dances as he flies through the air. Will Grello (Will Forte), the man who is haunted by his childhood and occasionally lets us into his brain to view his nightmares. Also of notable interest, David Cross who shows up as a pizza boy in a porno, a celeb exec, and a crazed old man who attaches paintbrushes to cats. There’s Josh Groban, singing the best of Casey Tatum and his brother, Marilyn Manson without makeup as the dark man, Rainn Wilson, always as some creepy character, and Paul Rudd, dancing it out on his computer to himself. There’s also a little scene you may discover interesting when Tim and Eric battle in tennis and they have stunt doubles. Check it out for yourself.
And if that doesn’t catch your interest with that laundry list of great actors and celebrities, there are the stock characters that Tim and Eric perform. There’s Jan and Wayne Skylar, Channel 5’s best married news team, although they don’t show up as much as I’d like them to. (Tim Heidecker always plays really good soccer mom looking women and such.)
Spagett, one of the greatest characters that Tim portrays, a balding, pony-tailed man who jumps out and spooks people with a “Spagett!” The Beaver Boys who can’t resist a good shrimp and white wine. Casey Tatum and his brother, always performing on Uncle Muscles’s (Weird Al Yankovic) Hour. This is consistently my favorite sketch and it’s great when they literally have Josh Groban on to do his own renditions of Casey’s songs. And I could go on. Every sketch is great along with every episode. The only part I would recommend skipping is the Women’s Afternoon Review.” Those sections disturb me, and I don’t mind 99% of the things I see on T.V. and movies.
What more is there to say about Tim and Eric. They take things far beyond any other show I’ve ever witnessed. (Man milk, puberty, eating their own boogers, etc…) They practice their scenes, I’m sure, to such a great degree that every action and gesture is done is such a way that it’s absurd, awkward, too long, and yet hilarious nonetheless. Their humor destroys. The have good guest stars. The premises of their episodes make no sense. And I would consider this among the top 10 funniest shows that have ever been on television. 9.7 out of 10. Check it out. Great Job!