It seems to be becoming a common school of thought that Season 4 doesn’t really get into its full groove until GOB’s “Colony Collapse” — and while I don’t disagree that the absolute best episodes are further still to come — “The B. Team” is where things really started hitting a sweet spot for me. It’s still a little short on Bluth family interaction, but lots of old favorites and new additions highlight the episode, along with setting Michael up on a path to navigate through stories.
Above all though it’s just funny, thanks to both new jokes and new takes on old jokes. Barry on trial, Michael’s first awkward Rebel meeting (including this glorious moment), Hollywood in-jokes, Conan sightings, Cuba, Isla Fisher on bagpipes (how is there still not a GIF?!?!), etc. Let’s jump right in.
“I think we got an ostrich.” Not only more ostrich usage (before we even see the street-mapping car) but I also love the idea that this is how Something employees talk to each other.
“Zuckerkorn Incident.” The van transporting the jury for Barry’s case has a pretty indicting label.
“I can’t reach the chotchie.” Hopefully this requires no explanation, but in case it does.
“The modest film, television, and streaming colossus.” In case you missed the full slogans. I’ve seen complaints about the Imagine stuff dragging on a bit, but I’m a sucker for Hollywood self-deprecation. “You’re not charring my tree.”
Active Development Vs. Not Going Forward Development. The production groupings at Imagine. Also, Maeby’s Bluth project was entitled “21st Century” family, which I like to think of as a at Modern Family even if it wasn’t intended to be.
Imagine Office Doorways. Ron Howard is hat. Brian Grazer is hair. If this is not the actual Imagine office please let me live in ignorance.
Them? The new “Her?”
Max Winkler Goes Full Fonzie. If you didn’t get the Chachi reference this one might have been lost on you as well. Also a good place to mention that all the Barry hates Ron stuff is gold. “You want me to tell him to go f*ck himself? I’ll tell Ron Howard to go f*ck himself.”
Michael’s Wife. In the first three seasons Michael’s deceased wife came up only a handful of times and almost never by Michael himself. Michael more actively talking about his wife and even using her as a pickup line is not only an indicator of just how much Michael has changed, but also how much darker the new iteration of Arrested Development is willing to get. “That is fun.”
Tipping black guys. When the delivery guys drop off the desk in Michael’s new office he looks like he’s digging in his pocket for cash but actually pulls out his phone and shakes their hands. This needs to be GIF’d pronto.
“Oh, hey Mike. How was Ojai?” We don’t find out until “A New Start” why Tobias knew everyone who worked in the ER.
Spanish Language Movie Posters. Here’s a fun collage of all the Ron Howard-directed movies with Spanish posters in Michael’s OC office. Only Angels and Demons seems to have gotten its own full Spanish remake. I’m intrigued by all the mas.
Mexican Porn. George Sr. showing up with a gift of latin-flavored adult magazines seems so incredibly random at the time. Only down the road during “Double Crossers” do we find out he was heading for Orange County Imaging to do something unthinkable to an MRI machine.
“Lem is six in August.” Rebel’s son seemingly shares a name with Ron Howard’s Lunar Excursion Module.
Farm animals love photobooths. When will the Bluths learn?
Next Up: “A New Start”