Arrested Development Season 4 Premiere Review: Huge Mistakes Were Made (But I Still Have Hope)

Arrested Development S04E01: "Flight of the Phoenix"

The first time I watched the debut of the "new" Arrested Development, I had problems.

I'd already been waiting years for the show to return, having eagerly accepted the first news of a movie as an indication that we'd eventually get another little taste of the defunct series... and then my hopes and dreams were dashed against the rocks by baseless rumors and empty promises. So by the time Netflix announced that it'd be producing new episodes, I was a jaded old man, shouting from the street corners that it couldn't be trusted. Even in an age when off-broadcast media companies have taken up castoffs with cult followings (Comedy Central with Futurama, DirecTV with Friday Night Lights, TBS with Cougar Town, etc.), it seemed too good to be true that Arrested Development would be one of those. It felt like a fool's game.

But it did happen and it's finally here. I settled in to watch the first episode, my expectations managed. Nostalgia, exposure, and years of anticipation threatened to ruin the experience; the magic was sure to have been lost over the years, the show tarnished by its imprisonment in the recesses of our collective fandom. So I knew I had to expect it not to be the same, especially since nearly every bit of media coverage the project has received has made sure to mention that the show won't be the same.

But even with all that preparation, I still had problems. "Flight of the Phoenix" (good title) was laden with so many nods to the rest of the series—past and future—that it distracted from the flow of the episode. Because this new season is being told from different characters' perspectives (this first episode focused on Michael's), the tendency to drop in small bits that will become important later began immediately; sometimes, the easter eggs were so obvious, so strangely phrased, that I felt forced to understand that they were something to remember for later. Basically, "Flight of the Phoenix" teetered on making other episodes too dependent on it, to the point where it couldn't be fully enjoyable on its own.

With that said, it's not quite correct to say I was underwhelmed by my first viewing of the episode. I laughed like the good ol' days at the jokes. The cast's delivery is still there, the writing is still sharp, and there were enough mentions of running gags ("loose seal," the Charlie Brown walk, the door handle in Phoenix being hot like the Cornballer) to blend with the Arrested Development of old. But at first glance, I felt like even those gags were pulling focus from the rest of the episode, like everyone was trying too hard to get us to remember.

The second time I watched it, however, it was a different experience. After actually re-watching some episodes from Season 3, including "Development Arrested," "Flight of the Phoenix" felt more cohesive, more directed, and less distracted. I was able to forgive some of the blatant "take note of this!" moments I mentioned above, especially when you consider that it's fitting for Michael's episode to have to set up the rest of the series and support the other characters' episodes. He's the one who has to hold everything together, so it makes sense that his episode is the terminus through which so many must cross.

So even though I was slightly turned off by the episode's disjointedness on my first pass, I ultimately embraced it. This is still Arrested Development, after all. Mitch Hurwitz has banked enough credit that we can roll through some early unevenness. And "Flight of the Phoenix" was a fine introduction to a season full of multi-layered punchlines. Fitting for the show's straight man.


OTHER THINGS AMONG THE ASHES

– Shut up, Sally. But you're right. You really did dodge a bullet.

– That the narrator would only describe what Michael did as unthinkable leads me to believe we'll only find out what happened during a Lucille 2 episode.

– The "unpleasantness" between Gob and Michael is distracting. And who is Gob squirreling away upstairs? Egg? Marta? Marta 2? Lupe? Sally? I want to know!

– We're not even a full episode in and they kill Pete the Mailman? Poor fella. He was so beloved. Who's Pete the Mailman?

– It would be neglectful to not mention the guest-stars. Kristen Wiig was perfect as a young Lucille Bluth. Seth Rogen wavered too much between being a dead-on impersonation of George Bluth Sr. and being Seth Rogen, but he was only around for a few minutes so I think it was fine. The Workaholics cast was an interesting cameo at the airport. Also the product placement for University of Phoenix. And the vulture outside the model home. At the press conference Netflix held a few weeks ago, Jason Bateman insisted that the vulture was a fine actor, hit all its marks, and smelled wonderful.

– If you're still wary on the resurrection of Arrested Development, you should watch the scene where Michael has to leave the dorm room silently (P-Hound and George Michael putting their fingers to their lips) as it dovetails into the Charlie Brown walk-off. If that doesn't prove the series can still produce witty comedy, there may not be  basically there's no hope for you.

– There are so many different things to pick up on with this show that I might be seeing ghosts when I don't need to. Like, I'm curious about who went into the Forget-Me-Now shop after Gob left and why Michael pointed out the "musician" on his way up from the showers. And why there was a camera crew behind George Michael and Michael as they walked to the cafeteria? Probably nothing, but is Arrested Development going to become the Lost of sitcoms? The answer to the show's riddle better not be magic. I'll accept illusions.



Note: We're gonna review each new episode of AD individually, so even if you've already binged and watched all 15 of 'em, keep checking back to discuss them one by one (and please, be mindful of spoilers!). Look for a writeup of Episode 2 either later tonight or tomorrow, and then a new review every couple days after that.

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You gotta enjoy it for how it already is, you just gotta go with it sometimes :)
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I really enjoyed this episode. And I'm enjoying the new format. The challenge is too be able to enjoy the format for what it is, realize they couldn't get everyone for each episode, and not let your expectations cloud quality even if it wasn't what you expected. Sadly, I do not believe most people can do that. Mitch Hurwitz predicted there was no way the reception would be anything above mixed and I think he's right for that reason.
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So today all 15 episodes of AD finally finished downloading on my PC (@1080p they were 18GB and the internet in the city I'm currently living sucks) and I just watched the 1st episode and completely loved it! I'm so glad NetFlix brought back the Bluth family! The jokes were as funny as ever, the running gags were back as well and I loved the cameos! Specially the Workaholics cast (too bad Jill wasn't there but at least they got Montell with the guys!). I'll probably watch half the episodes tonight and half tomorrow. I got goosebumps when I heard Ron Howard saying "On the next Arrested Development" again after all these years!.
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i used to watch a lot less tv back in the day (i was younger and did younger people things) so I never remained up-to-date with the episodes. did enjoy it when I caught it though. I wanted to go back and watch the other seasons first but my viewing partner refused. it was a bit difficult trying to get caught up by all of the flashbacks and narration and stuff but I made it through.

sorry for all of those who apparently had expectations and stuff, even though holding onto them for 8 years is odd. whatever the case there were a handful of laugh out loud moments and man does that seem absolutely rare any more. I've enjoyed the heck out of this and the first half of the second episode which I've caught so far.
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"The Narrator," are you kidding - seriously! At first it looked like a fake Liza Minelli but then suddenly it was she - very cool old chick/superstar. I live in Phoenix, so if you thought the airport exterior scene was a bit farfetched - NOT EVEN! Also, I loved this show but wasn't one of the ones who needed it back. But I'm certainly glad about it. Your concerns aside for episode one, it was, indeed Arrested Development - so I'm happy. Now, Netflix, bring back Human Target!
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I was apprehensive but I LOVED this episode, I laughed about as hard as any other Arrested Development episode. Yes it was a little different in tone and narrative style, yes it to some time to get its bearings, yes its full of references (they skipped 8 years, we need reminders, especially when Mitch obviously has an awesome magnum story planned) but as soon as Michael was living in the dorm room I thought it was brilliant. I can't wait to watch the rest.
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I'm just so happy to have it back!!! Liza Minelli was superb, the behind-the-door fainting had me in stitches!

I do agree about this episode having to set up the others, which may be why it wasn't as laugh out loud funny as other seasons. Also, I missed all the characters being together, but there was enough of that and enough hints that we will get that later. I just want more Gob and Tobias action!!! :-)
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I want to go on record saying that I personally did not want this series revived. The problem with revving old shows is that they're never as good as what their audience imagined it to be. Dallas is pretty much the only exception to this rule, though that series is more focused on the new generation rather than the old, and that series has taken a big hit now that the actor who defined the series has died. Bringing in the old actors to resume where they left off is a bad idea 9 times out of 10, especially if the series itself is continued and not just put into a reuinion movie. Look at Family Guy, which got cancelled, revived, canceled again, and revived, though the second resurrection resulted in the characters being caricatures of themselves. Or, better example, Beavis and Butthead, which was a phenomenon BECAUSE it was too controversial in its hayday, but when MTV revived it, the new generation had been so desensitized by South Park and Family Guy that they didn't get what the humor was about. Times change, and Arrested Development SHOULD HAVE gotten a 4th season, but not this way. All this 4th season will be is a disappointment to fans who waited on baited breath to get their show revived, since their expectations of what could have been are always ALWAYS higher than what actually is. Take me, for example, who still is holding out for a movie finale of "The Cape," since the series was cut short and the given finale was utter crap in my eyes.
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I really thought that the Workaholics cameo was an interesting thing. At first I assumed it was just that the actors were available and talented so and likely as fans campaigned for parts so why not? I wonder now if it was something deeper. Comedy Central is also a network known for only really having sitcom success with animation and cancelling live action shows with mid-range ratings early. Workaholics as a show has been on the bubble virtually every season and is only kept around by a small but vocal fan base. Their styles of comedy are very different, but I wonder if A.D. saw a bit of themselves in Workaholics, which is basically a show about three young men that refuse to grow up.
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It made me laugh on several occasions - not smile or anything - real actual laughs. I can't say that about two thirds of Community.
Judging from the comments so far it's just going to be even better ... NICE!
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I'm in the minority, obviously, but I found it just as hilarious as ever. As someone who didn't get into AD until around 2010, I was pleasantly surprised by how well the first episode made the show feel like it didn't really go anywhere.
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Not as good as previous seasons, of course. but still, even though some parts were a tiny bit boring, overall, it was quite enjoyable, and fun to see the characters again.
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To me, AD is a show that is awesome ON THE WHOLE, like Buffy or something. But individual episodes aren't necessarily always great. There were plenty of AD episodes that I thought were just okay, even though the show on the whole was amazing. Same goes for Community, and for very similar reasons (tons of running gags and character-related humor, as opposed to just "jokes.")
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I watched it all. Save yourself the trouble. This was absolute garbage. Anyone who says different that actually watched the previous seasons consider this: they had a solid 7 years to come up with this? Come on son... And I hope the movie comes out just so I could be done with it. If it ain't broke don't fix it is something they should have taken into consideration when making this season. Deffintely not even close to season 1 and 2
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I felt like it was more like this was just a really long drawn out idea that was for the movie.
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Finally someone who takes their lips off Seth Rogen's pole for 2 seconds to realize he sucked in this show. He felt extremely out of place during this season and was one of the worst casting jobs of the guest characters throughout the season. Yes, I know everyone thinks Seth is just the greatest thing ever, personally I think he is massively overrated, but he didn't belong on this show. His agent should stick to finding him jobs that deal with smoking weed, drinking and acting like a loser.
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The fact that they used to do the 'way-back' flashbacks with the original cast and some wigs made me cringe at Seth Rogen and Kristen Wiig first too...

But then Krisin became a very believable Lucille for me. Seth Rogen remained a pot-smoking dipshit unfortunately.... It also has a lot to do with his voice and subtle lisp. He simply should have never been cast for this.

Max Winkler as Zuckerkorn junior was a fantastic little wink, though :)
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I love him and have seen a lot of his movies and i absoultely hated and cringed everytime he appeared in the season. I didn't cringe with Kristen Wiig as much, but I wouldn't mind just having the characters in wigs. It's much funnier to see George in a wig than Seth.
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Ninja, please!
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...RuPaul?

priceless.
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OK GOB's episodes was also so awesome. Tobias and GOB FTW!
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I haven't watched the rest of the episodes or read the comments below, but I think the person Gob was hiding in the model house is Tobias. It sounded a little like him when the person said something and ran away, and there was a video released on YouTube, in which half the things are bleeped out, but in a conversation with Lindsey, I thought I saw Tobias say 'I had a sex change'. Anyway, it'll be interesting to see.
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I've finished, and will probably enjoy the season a second go around. I think there are tons of laughs, but I while it's nice to have episodes completely catered to one characters events, it's probably the thing I like least.
-possible spoliers-

Though I loved both kristen wiig and seth rogen somehow neither of them did it for me.
But while I pretty much love every character I can't say I'm a huge fan of every episode being centered around one of the characters in the same set of of events more or less.
Also the timelime bugs me a lot. I dislike that the season is basically stuck in this time line that we see Michael go through in the first episode but just goes through what each character. The season for the most part just showed to how each character go to where they are today. I would have much more preferred, they did a quick wrap up in the first few episodes and let the rest of the season go in a different direction instead of circling around what with how each character ended up at cinco de cuarto.
But for what it's worth there were lost to laugh at, and if they did another season I feel like it would be easier for them to have the similar magic the first 3 seasons did than a fourth after so many years.
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I admit, part of my problem was that this story felt half-told, incomplete, ideas weren't fleshed out because they were relying on others that would probably come later. But at the same time, there were a lot of half-baked ideas, ideas that just weren't funny and felt thrown in without consideration for an actual story.

My main problem with this episode is that it dragged, it set Michael up in a storyline that required he do something smart and then something dumb, build houses in Sudden Valley but actively ignoring building the road part; move into the dorm with George Michael and go to online college while overlooking every single thing his son is saying and doing (Michael Bluth wasn't so thick-headed before, he'd get half of it); spending a hundred bucks to fly to Phoenix just to get a magazine; working hard to come up with a plan to kick P-hound out of the dorm. That was the plot of the episode, and none of it felt true to the character, it was all just nonsense with a much stupider Michael Bluth. And it was all too much stuff at once, instead of focusing on one thing per character it's just a shotgun blast of stories on him.

My other problem, and this one is perhaps more subjective, but I felt like returning gags like the Charlie Brown walk of sadness weren't executed that well, the timing and visual languages felt off on a few too many little things.

Wiig mostly had her Lucille Bluth down in voice, but I hated looking at her face, the facial acting was all wrong, that same big-eyed stare that drove me nuts on SNL. Seth Rogen was kinda funny as George Sr., but you are right that he wavered considerably.

I guess to me this felt more like a very expensive and well-cameoed fan film rather than a real Arrested Development, it didn't have the script polish or smartness or punch that made the original so great, and it didn't have the pacing either. The best inclusion may have been John Beard, who doesn't even work for the local Fox station anymore but is still the anchor here.

I voted that it's not "what the heck was that crap" nor anything better, it wasn't ok, it wasn't meh, it was troubled and weak sauce and not that funny, but it wasn't a total disaster.
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I'm confused are you talking about the whole season, or just episode 1?
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Just episode 1, this article is a review of episode 1 so I was trying intentionally not to comment on anything beyond the episode itself. I've only watched the first 4 so far.
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Oh, then I agree completely episode 1 is one of the worst of the entire season.
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it's the first episode that I've ever watched, it was nothing special and different from the other single-camera comedies, except the already 'star' cast...
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If you start watching TV shows from the 4th season, there is definetly something wrong with you.
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Especially if you're watching them on Netflix where they have the previous 3 seasons streaming as well...
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You cannot review one episode of the new season to make a judgement. All 15 episodes need to be reviewed as one whole. It's pretty damn genius especially since they had to shot it this way due to the actors schedules. I'm sure that once everyone has watched the 15 episodes they will go back to the first 3 and appreciate them even more.
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I disagree, if an individual episode cannot stand on its own, then it's a failure.
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I disagree. They made it perfectly clear that each episode shouldn't be entirely on it's own. They all tell a larger story. They decided to try something different.

If it were to air on television with one episode each week, it would absolutely be a failure, but when they go all together, it's quite creative and fun to watch. It keeps you thinking. It's also littered with little jokes and nods to the original three seasons (some very subtle).

I know you said before you've only watched the first four episode or so, but stuff really does come together. It's one of the most complicated shows I've ever seen, but I thought it was very well done and comes together quiet nicely.
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It's like you guys are in a cult. There's a reason it starts with a title card and ends with credits, it's a single episode, it was cut to stand on its own even as it's part of a larger story, otherwise it'd be a movie-length episode instead. I'd say it'd be a 7.5-hour long movie, but the amount of repetition left out from episode to episode would probably cut that down some.

Each episode is presented separately and put together in a standard format. If it doesn't stand alone first and foremost, it's a failure. If it requires an audience to find it funny only after watching 7 more hours, it is not doing its job.

I've now watched 6 of these, 1 was a funny episode and the rest have been limp.
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Arrested Development has always had a multi-layered presentation, especially the new season where you can digest the entirety of it in one sitting. Each episode is cumulative, and it is the format that makes this possible. Had this been a normal series where they could be cancelled before an entire season was completed, they'd never be able to do anything like this. As it is however, it's even more brilliant. Also like the first three seasons, there will be jokes and sight gags that you will only spot with multiple viewings. Hurwitz expects a lot from his audience, and doesn't pander to the lowest common denominator. You can no more watch an episode of Arrested Development on its own than you could an episode of Game of Thrones. If you want episodic television, go watch CSI.
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On TV, that would be the case. But the reason they're playing around with this format and with multi-layered episodes that all intertwine, is because it's written for Netflix. And that's a big difference.

The older episodes where always pretty 'hard to watch' by tv-standards. It needs your full attention. And now it's not just the episode that needs your full attention, it's the season (aka the over-arching story) too.

I loved several new episodes. Most of 'em where funny, but i've only loved a few. But then the stories start to dovetale into eachother and it becomes a larger picture. It's like; I love the album Karma Police, by Radiohead. But the song 'Fitter Happier' just plain sucks.
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Its a different format, you can't judge it the same way you judge normal TV. Netflix released the entire season at once, and Hurwitz took advantage of that by making this season a lot more complex an each episode is purposely not stand-alone.
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I'm on the Maeby episode and everything is coming together. The episodes all build off of each other, replaying the same days from multiple perspectives. It get greats toward the ending.
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The Tobias episode is GOLD!
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I want Anustart as my license plate.
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I agree with you, I'm at episode 7 and the Tobias one was the best.
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My wife and I decided to watch the first four episodes last night. We knew it was a stretch goal since we are as old and weather beaten as the show's primary generation. Even with a glass of wine three Twix bars, my interest was piqued enough to feel strong as we started Flight of the Phoenix. I made it through the first three and slept through the fourth. I could spend all morning trying to quantify what that means. How do I factor in how tired I should have been and also account for how much I wanted the show to be good? It would be nice to let my subconscious assign an overall grade, but the computation is too fraught with peril. I'll just jump to my conscious opinions.

I was not laughing out loud. There were a few places where I laughed audibly, but only about once per episode and not heartily. Michael living in his son's dorm room should be hilarious because it hits home; don't we all (40-somethings) want to go back to our dorm days? Why was that fantasy not used more? Give me some candy. I want to laugh at a guy with a teenager's hair and crowsfeet thinking he can use his wisdom to do it better this time and failing. The voting Michael out joke is tedious and mostly just sad. Its best use is when the security guard makes reference to it later. So, I'll blame the writing for some of my lack of laughter.

But, more than that, there is something about the execution that just doesn't do it for me. I've been watching Bringing Up Buster (Season 1) recently, and in that one Michael sets his hand on the cornballer and his reaction is genius - it's real and it's LOL funny. Later Tobias gets to close to the cornholer (wink) and has a a physical fit of his own and it is acted brilliantly. Compare that to when Michael grabs the cab's door handle in Phoenix. That scene has a mere sliver of the emotion of the original. If you are going to rehash something and your heart's not in it at least make up a new catch phrase. "Mother of God" wasn't even the funniest line from the multiple times Michael burned himself. How about a new one like "Sweet tap dancing Christ!" Again, I want candy. I want to laugh at the Michael's subtle expressions, Tobias's physical humor, Gob's rich mohagany idiocy, Lindsey's vapid cutenesses, Buster's creepy man-childness, etc. I'm not getting those from this series on first watch.

Maybe I'll laugh at some jokes when I put the puzzle pieces together. I kinda doubt it, but I has happened before. I was told there would be no math.

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You can't be a huge Arrested Development fan if you're honestly writing an assessment of the new season without actually watching at least half of it. It picks up at Episode 4, and is back to being hilarious as it ever was at Episode 6. And then the first few Episodes get a big boost after you've already seen the rest of the Season. The only Episode i'm still not huge on is Episode 2.
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Thumbs down. He's writing an assessment of the episodes he watched, totally reasonable reactions throughout, and this idiotic epithet of "you can't be a real AD fan unless..." needs to go, it's entirely wrong-headed. And that ignores the fact that you yourself call out the next episode as being not good, does that mean YOU aren't a real AD fan? No.

James' assessment is well expressed and makes good points. The fact that it doesn't jive with your opinion doesn't make it less valid.
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Totally agree episode 2 was terrible
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The first three episodes are weak but the rest of the season is a master piece. In fact the rest of the season makes the first 3 episodes actually better because you finally understand what's happening. Keep watching it.
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first of all, don't call it "episodes" because they are more snapshot or vantage points of each character. It takes time to break into it but it all comes together quite brilliant in the end. The amount of hidden jokes is insane and some of them are quite sophisticated, Hurwitz definitely added a new layer of humor there which will reveal itself after watching it again. Different pace and concept and yet the bottom line is the same.. it is brilliant as always
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I had a hard time watching the first three episodes, I wasn't used to the way they were telling the story, but at the fifth episode and onwards, I laughed just as much as I would in a older episode of AD, and it made me look forwards to rewatching it.

The fact that they managed to pull this concept (Multiple perspectives, and more detailed motives) off is amazing to me, not only did all of it make sense once you get used to it, it also manages to stay as funny as it was in the old days. Despite basically reliving a bunch of stuff over 15 episodes, you laugh at the same scene for different reasons, and it's all amazing.

Mitchell Hurwitz is a genius and I hope he gets to do more stuff like this.
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I have to say the first 3 Episodes were pretty weak, but after watching the 4th Episode the old AD Feeling came back. I liked it that you have to watch each Episode a couple of times to get every joke and connection out of it.
This season is different to the the 1-3 seasons but I wouldn't say it's weaker. It's new and they changed some things which was not a bad thing in my opinion.
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I watched the season premiere yesterday. I was expecting a lot, so it might have clouded my judgement, but I felt that at first, there were too many things going on. But I really enjoyed the second parf of the episode, so I might have to watch it again to really be on board.
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Yeah, so all of the episodes need to be watched together to truly appreciate the jokes and the story - reviewing the season episode by episode is kind of pointless, because all of the episodes are intertwined and you can only understand certain details in each episode after seeing them all. After finishing them all, I can say with complete certainty that this season is as genius as it ever was. The new episode format did take some time getting used to, but it all makes sense in the end. My only gripe is the fact that each episode is missing characters because of the format - for example, a few episodes will be missing Tobias, and then a few don't have George Sr., etc.
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Woah, so weird, I compared Arrested Development to LOST yesterday!
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We're all split on THIS yet Community had overwhelming support for it's mediocre last season?

COME ON!
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its not as funny as seasons 1-3 , they made it so complicated that you basically have no idea whats going on until about 7 episodes in. Then the story starts coming together and the laughs can finally begin.
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Watch them all, then try to say that again, Nick.
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No, it sucks. Maybe I only think that because seasons 1-3 were so good, but man, this sucks.
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You obviously haven't seen more than the first three episodes.

Please watch the whole thing before opening your mouth about it.
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Thumbs down.
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I disagree. I think a lot of people were expecting the show to be identical to past seasons, but c'mon, it has been seven years. Appreciate the new season on its own merits and be delighted.
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I was also stressed out following all the plot lines when I first watched flight of the phoenix, but after I watched the second episode I went back and watched the first over and was gasping with laughter. I really like where this is going, even if at first it did seem a little jumbled.
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Also, does Portia and Michael Cera look weird to anyone else on this show? It's like Portia has too much botox in the first episodes and Cera's nose is 3x the size it used to be.
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Cera's hair is the problem, not his nose. It frames his adult face much more oddly, makes his other features stand out more.
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Yea that could be it. I guess I shouldn't have watched the entire series before the watching the new episodes. I imprinted my mind with what they should look like and now it doesn't know what to recognize. But it stopped being an issue after the first few episodes.
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Because he's not in them?
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No I don't know what it was. I guess I just got used to him like that. Same thing with Portia I got used to the way she looked as well when she has just short hair
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its not botox, it was the whig, it made her look like Christine Taylor, after she cuts her hair she looks like Lindsay again
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The premiere was definitely better on re-watching, it pointed towards being enjoyed more with repeat viewing and watching in context with the rest of the episodes. So by itself, the pilot's a good but not excellent start, but that's at the start of our journey! I'd rather 15 isolated episodes as opposed to 15 pieces of a huge puzzle but I'm very happy to have AD back. And I haven't hit Tobias' or GOB's episodes yet, and I'm sure they're stormers! I think reviews of S4 will be hard done by as reviews go out on the pilot -so a general lackluster response- but (most sites) won't revisit the show after watching the episodes in context. Here's hoping for a S5 or a movie!
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As someone who didn't catch AD when it first aired, when I finally stumbled upon it and marathon-ed the seasons I thought they were ok but not the best in the world. But then I randomly saw an episode later and fell in love with the show. When I re-watched the series after that I died laughing all the way through. After seeing this new season, I think it will be like that for me again. It's funny at times and is still pure genius, but I know the more I'll watch it the more humor I will find and the more obsessed I'll be.
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There was so much going on and I get the impression it's all going to be great when all 15 episodes are watched; even though I planned on binge-watching I've watched 4 episodes at this point. Like mentioned above I noticed so many little things that I felt were going to become important later. I read that when Mitch Hurwitz was putting this season together his planning looked like one of those crazy boards with pictures and maps and strings tieing things together and I thought, wow what the hell could he be doing- and after a few episodes (well after one) I get it. But I am laughing, I do see the old wit and humor, and even though I'm not feeling the same "wow that was hilarious" as the original 3 seasons, I am just glad they're back together; and I have no doubt it will all be brilliant once it's tied together and not so scattered. Then I can't wait to watch it all over again.
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Interesting how close all the opinions are. I have to say that it was a great episode despite the fact that it had a few issues.
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I just want my kids back.
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I have watched them all and the first 5 twice. All are ridiculously better the 2nd time around. There is so much going on that even with the obvious eggs you still miss tons. Also, seeing some of the things in the background that match for later adds extra humor. They did a GREAT JOB, and just the best ending. It is hard watching them all together as it will wear you down, and things are brilliant, and you know you should laugh harder but afraid that you will miss something else. I keep singing...."get away get away.................Hello Darkness my old Friend"
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Alas, I don't have a Netflix account, so I have to wait until I go over to someone else's house to watch these.
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It's what, 8 bucks? 9 bucks? That's not taking into account a free trial. Just sign up for it and don't bother mentioning that you're less invested in AD season 4 than a small pizza.
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I don't know whether this applies outside the UK but you can get a month trial of Netflix for free at the moment. All you have to do is cancel your subscription before the month's up and you won't be charged. It's only £5 a month over here anyway, I'm considering just keeping my subscription after the month's up anyway. Especially with Breaking Bad just a couple of months off...
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Gob deserves a shot at true love. It better be Tobias up there.
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this season is on such an odd structure that the only way to appreciate it is to watch all 15 episodes... there id a lot of confusion with the large amounts of information being thrown at you....Not to mention the large jumps in time... The entire time it was very hard to understand whether it was 5 days after season 3 finale....or 3 years....but all in all, i can't wait for season 5.
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I was a casual Arrested Development fan, probably saw half the episodes so watching the first one was so chaotic and confusing for me at times, it just got to the point that I gave up trying to understand it. I did enjoy all of the George Michael dorm room stuff but I watched a second episode and then just gave up.
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I honestly didn't think a casual AD fan existed. I thought people either watched all of them 30 times religiously, or didn't remember it was ever on, no in between. No judgement, just as observation.
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I just finished the entire series and it made me laugh frequently. There is clearly meant to be another season though, and if there isn't then they should have just left it at season 3.
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