Arrested Development

Season 1 Episode 5

Charity Drive

Aired Unknown Nov 30, 2003 on Netflix
out of 10
User Rating
391 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Michael and Lindsay try to prove their charitable sides to each other. Gob demands George Michael's respect, and Buster continues avoiding Lucille 2.

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  • "I'm not going anywhere until she's taken care of!"

    One of my favorite aspects of "Curb Your Enthusiasm" is the way Larry David sometimes sets up his stories so perfectly that every single plot he introduces has some effect on one another. Some of the episodes he does feel like they stretch a bit to connect all of the dots, but the best episodes of his feel like perfect writing, even though it's mostly all improvisation.

    The thing is, "Arrested Development" started doing this style of storytelling a few years after "Curb" premiered, and they did it even better with less time in an episode. This episode is a perfect example of how little details can accumulate to perfection with just a little tweaking here and there. It's difficult to say exactly where my interest in "Arrested Development" blossomed from intrigue to full-blown love, but it was right around here, this episode, along with the next one and the episode before this. They're perfect examples of how plot points can actually be a part of a big picture.

    For instance, with this episode, we have a bunch of little details that not only reveal plenty about the overall story in the episode but also reveals a ton about the characters themselves. For instance, the episode gets its title from two different things: the "charity" section comes from an auction that takes place once a year where people bid on other people to take them out on dates and whatnot, and the money that is bidded goes to charity. Every year, Lucille ensures that Buster bids on her, and every year, Lindsey tries her best to be hot so she can get the highest bid. The problem is, Buster is dealing with Lucille Austero, the other Lucille, who just so happens to be interested romantically with him.

    Meanwhile, the "drive" part of the episode comes from George Bluth's old car that he used to be super strict about. He never let Michael eat ice cream in it and was just the type of person who loved the car, regardless of anything else. Michael, who's been riding his bike to work ever since his father's arrest, learns that the rest of the family has been driving the car and that he's the only one who hasn't. This realization turns into an argument with Lindsey about who is the more charitable person in the family. Lindsey goes to volunteer in the Wetlands while Michael attempts to bring his mother's maid home as a charitable act.

    But the problem HERE is that the car has been defaced significantly, so much so that the car looks like it belongs to a serial killer: Lindsey's spilled nail polish looks like blood, Buster's skeletons in the backseat look like human remains instead of animals... oh yeah, and the maid that Michael picks up is not the maid but a random Mexican woman who thinks Michael is a serial killer. It doesn't help that Michael says things like "LOCO!" and "I'm not going anywhere until she's taken care of!" while talking to Lindsey. It's a classic misunderstanding situation, but the writers earned the payoff by including all the little details beforehand.

    And Buster's plot pays off well after he accidently bids on Lucille Austero instaed of his mother and faints as a result. There's also other little plots here and there involving Michael's attempts to make things right with investers by having Gob break into the office and plant some information that they were missing before, something Gob hands off to George Michael and Maeby. There's also the introduction to Gob's "BananaGrabber" character, a random but hilariouis addition to the Bluth family.

    Overall, this episode accomplishes the daunting task of introducting about five or six plots at once and then having them all connect with each other. Maybe it's not the best episode in the series' run, but it definitely is one of the best in terms of tying everything together.moreless
  • Charity Drive

    An episode that was hilarious from start to finish and definitely proved to be the best episode yet with "Top Banana" not too far behind. The story lines always start out so simple and we just get unexpectedly well done payoffs in the end. That's one of the reasons why this show is so awesome, and we definitely saw that here.

    From Michael "abducting" the supposed maid to Lindsay saying it was Michael's car in the end (a try for a nice moment ending in Michael getting arrested), just hilarious. One of the best endings I've seen in a long time.

    Buster bidding on the wrong Lucille, another hilarious tie in. Also no one bidding on Lindsay was also great. Also this show is great with sentimental moments too, it can just go straight to a hilarious scene in moments and pull it off. Overall, perfect episode of Arrested Development.moreless
  • Great

    With most of the family's cars impounded by the SEC, Michael has been forced to ride his bike to work. However, when it begins to interfere with his work, he realizes he needs a car. When he finds out that G.O.B. has been secretly driving their father's car, he confronts him about it at the banana stand. G.O.B. admits to having it, but says that Lindsay is currently using it. Michael then realizes that G.O.B. has been receiving free bananas from the company's banana stand. lol the best part was were the woman though Michaael was going to murder her I couldnt stop laughing. great episode.moreless
  • Absolutely Hysterical From Start To Finish! I laughed until I felt like I needed surgery!

    We finally really get in there good with a story focusing on Lindsay. She's a socialite activist. You know, she gives money to Charities in order to be at the big parties and hob nob with all the other socialites...

    For instance, Lucille Austero who is another of the Bachelorettes up for auction at the Wetlands Charity Auction. She wants the phobia-phobic Buster to bid for a date.

    Explaining the story is a great way to tell you what it's about but I'm forgetting all of the jokes... Lindsay spearing a frog while at the wetlands. Michael "not taking no" from his mother's maid... and Buster... he's another part of the 9 or 10 people on this show that always are saying something piss yourself funny.moreless
  • Everyone uses the company car

    The funniest aspect of this episode was the whole family using the company car (even having a schedule behind Michael’s back) and Michael riding his bike instead and some very good moments come out of it.

    Gob sending George Michael in to do his work was very funny especially George Sr’s response to this news, once again violating the “no touching” rule on purpose for once.

    The ending was brilliant with father and son being in the back of a police car, Michael for accidentally kidnapping someone who, from a series of car-related coincidences, believed him to be a serial killer, a very funny end to a hilarious episode.moreless
Jeffrey Tambor

Jeffrey Tambor

George Bluth Sr. / Oscar Bluth

Portia de Rossi

Portia de Rossi

Lindsay Bluth Fünke

David Cross

David Cross

Tobias Fünke

Ron Howard

Ron Howard

Narrator (uncredited)

Jason Bateman

Jason Bateman

Michael Bluth

Jessica Walter

Jessica Walter

Lucille Bluth

Mel Gorham

Mel Gorham


Guest Star

Bruno Oliver

Bruno Oliver


Guest Star

Christopher Gehrman

Christopher Gehrman

Worker #2

Guest Star

Liza Minnelli

Liza Minnelli

Lucille Austero

Recurring Role

BW Gonzalez

BW Gonzalez


Recurring Role

Judy Greer

Judy Greer


Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (3)

    • Spoiler alert!:
      On the side of the activists' bus are posters that say "Save The Marsh Toad". There's actually a species called "Marsh Frog", so this can all be related to the one Lindsey killed.

    • Spoiler alert!:
      In the candied apple store where Gob later loses a tooth, there's a sign that says "Proprietor not responsible for dental damage".

    • This is the only appearance we see of Bob Odenkirk's character, marriage counselor Dr. Gunty. Both Bob Odenkirk and the actor who plays Tobias, David Cross, were the stars and executive producers of the HBO sketch comedy series, Mr. Show with Bob and David.

  • QUOTES (22)

    • Lindsay: (loudly) Well, how embarrassing. My own brother buying me? I'd rather die. (whispers to Michael) Thank you. Maybe you're not that selfish.

    • George Michael: Save yourself. I'll take the hit. My record's clean. Well, I got my bike seat stolen once, but I don't think it counts on your record if you're the victim. I mean, there is a record, but it's not like --
      Maeby: Yeah, thanks. I'll take the rap next time we do something like this, okay?

    • George Michael: What are you doing? We're supposed to put the form in the wrong file.
      Maeby: I know. I'm just leaving my calling card.
      George Michael: I thought we didn't want anyone to know we were here.
      Maeby: Well, it's a little late for that. Our fingerprints are everywhere.
      George Michael: But you said they weren't gonna check for fingerprints.
      Maeby: No, I said don't wear your mittens. I didn't want you to look stupid on the security cameras.
      George Michael: There's a security camera?

    • Gob: All right, take this lock-pick, break into the permit office for me.
      George Michael: I think I'd better check with my dad first.
      Maeby: You're going to break into a permit office? Sweet. Can I come?
      Narrator: And George Michael saw a chance to get closer to Maeby.
      George Michael: You know, my dad hates to micromanage. Let's just do this.

    • Lindsay: (to a Taxi Driver) I don't know if that smell is you, the car, something you ate, or something you're about to eat, but my God, you're in a service business.

    • Michael: Gob, can I talk to you for a sec? Listen, um ... I'm really sorry about before. I said some things, and I got a little carried away. It's not the way you're supposed to treat a brother. Especially one that I value so highly. Oh, I need a favor.
      Gob: That was subtle.

    • Michael: Hey, Busty, have you been using Dad's car?
      Buster: No ... Well, yes.

    • Lucille: (to Lucille 2) I got you tickets to "The Producers". I already saw it in New York. But that's of no use to a woman whose vertigo makes flying a grotesque misadventure.

    • Lucille: Don't you judge me. You're the selfish one. You're the one who charged his own brother for a Bluth frozen banana. I mean, it's one banana, Michael. What could it cost, ten dollars?
      Michael: You've never actually set foot in a supermarket, have you?

    • Lucille: Supposedly, Luz had to take her daughter to the hospital. That's Lupe, her sister.
      Michael: I hope she's okay.
      Lucille: She's awful. Can barely wash a dish.

    • Michael: I don't do anything for myself. Everything that I do is for this family.
      Lindsay: Oh, you don't do it for us, Michael. You just do it because you love being the guy in charge. 'Cause you love saying no. Like you said to Gob when he wanted a frozen banana. And even after he gave you the rights to his "Mr. Banana-Grabber" character.

    • Lindsay: What car? I don't know what you're talking about.
      Michael: Dad's car. The one you didn't tell me that you had, even though I had to ride my bicycle to work all week.
      Lindsay: Oh, Dad's car. Well, obviously, I'm going to use it if it's an emergency.
      Narrator: Lindsay had such an emergency three days earlier when her salon was able to squeeze her in at the last moment.

    • Michael: Hey, I can't believe you. I asked you two weeks ago whether we should use Dad's car, and you said it would be bad form. Now, I hear you're driving it!
      Gob: That is a lie. A bald-faced lie.
      Narrator: Gob was lying. He had been driving his father's car.

    • Gob: Give me a "Gob."
      George Michael: Gob!
      Gob: No, I didn't mean for you to yell my name at me. It's what I call a double-dipped banana with everything on it.

    • Kitty: (to investors) Bye, you guys! Really great to see you again ... (to Michael) They think you're full of (bleep). I think it's the sweating.

    • Michael: (on the phone with Lindsay, after he had said she was uncharitable) Hello?
      Lindsay: I'm in the wetlands. I've got a poker thing and I'm going to clean them up. So, the next time you wanna tell me that I'm uncharitable, why don't you just ask yourself, who called you from the wetlands?
      Michael: Who is this?
      Lindsay: Nice try. You're the selfish one. Now, if you'll excuse me, I've got some nature to save.
      (Lindsay hits the ground with her 'poker', and a frog makes a croaking sound)
      Lindsay: (Lindsay gasps) AAAAH!

    • Gob: But I'll tell you what. If you want to use my likeness for a Hamburglar-type character, I'll sign off on that. 'Mr. Banana Grabber' or something.

    • Michael: Come on, face it. You just do all this charity crap just to stroke your ego. You don't even know what the auction's for tonight.
      Lindsay: The wetlands.
      Michael: To do what with them?
      Lindsay: Dry them.
      Michael: Save them.

    • George Sr.: I'm under a lot of pressure here. I'm trying to get my newsletter off the ground. I'm trying to decide which gang to align myself with.
      Michael: Is it pledge week already?
      George Sr.: I've got it down to two. But honestly, I don't even want to choose. I just feel... I feel like the prettiest girl at the dance.

    • Lindsay: Look, I screwed up, ok? I'm lost, and I hate them. I hate the wetlands. They're stupid and wet, and there are bugs everywhere, and I think I maced a crane, Michael.

    • Michael: I mean, I guess it would just be a guy who you know, grabs bananas and runs. Or, um, a banana that grabs things. I don't know why. Why would a banana grab another banana? I mean, those are the kind of questions I don't want to answer.

    • (Michael asks the woman he thinks is Lucille's housekeeper where she is going)
      Woman: Yo ... Scared-o.
      Michael: Izquierdo ... I know that word. Left turn it is, missus!

  • NOTES (3)


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