The original three seasons of Arrested Development were intricate, delicate and quite intelligent. They were about stupid people who made bad decisions on a daily basis, but we somehow loved them all. They were family.
After Fox cancelled the series, which lacked in ratings and not awards, fans took it to the internet to express their concern over the end of the beloved show and begged for it to return like no other. After seven years it finally happened, but do the new episodes really live up to the fanboy hype?
From the moment the opening titles appeared, I knew there was something different. Arrested definitely seemed of higher quality than its original counterpart, albeit not as funny. Netflix funded the program and Hurwitz definitely tried getting the cast together for what appeared to be the toughest job in the world; pleasing the internet.
The show doesn’t get very funny until about episode 4 where it begins to really feel like an episode of Arrested, but it’s completely disjointed and you won’t really understand a lot of it until you complete the series. It’s like one big joke you’re supposed to sit through eight and a half hours to complete. Michael, who was the glue that kept the family together in the first seasons, is now a sad, lonely man whose Sudden Valley homes now have diminutive value. His once attached son, George Michael, now wants to change his name and as an adult needs space from his father.
The show is no longer restricted to 21-minute episodes. In fact, a few episodes almost reach the length of forty minutes which is quite nice when you hear about it, but once you’re on the couch it feels as if it’s overstayed its welcome by a few minutes. It would have been nice had any of the other seasons garnered such great lengths, but as the fans have aged, so has the show.
George Senior’s episodes seem to be the worst for me, but GOB and Tobias’ episodes are absolutely hilarious. If it seems boring, it’s all just one piece of this enormous puzzle that includes more cameos and guest appearances than you can count with all your fingers. Appearances from Steve Holt, Annyong and Ann are all welcome and Ron Howard finally in the series just makes it all a worthwhile time on television. It’s not perfect, it’s not the same, but it’s one hell of a show and probably the best series on television today. Here’s to another season down the road.
Thank you for bringing back Arrested Development, Netflix.
3.5 out of 4. Film-Social.com