Arrested Development

Season 1 Episode 20

Whistler's Mother

Aired Unknown Apr 11, 2004 on Netflix

Episode Fan Reviews (2)

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out of 10
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  • "Oh, but give me an old pro like a Robert Redford. Oh, I'd jump into bed with him in a second."

    It feels weird to say that I found this episode of "Arrested Development" to be one of it's worst to date. Why do I feel weird? Because it was still fantastic. The worst episodes of "Arrested Development" still out-run most show's best episodes. I'm not sure why I didn't like this episode as much... one hand, we get the introduction of a great character: Oscar Bluth, George's brother, also played by Jeffrey Tambor, albeit in a much different way. On the other hand, too much of the episode was dedicated to easy jokes, whether it was Oscar's weird farting or the board members blowing the whistles on each other, literally most of the time.

    The episode is mostly about Michael coming into some money and wanting to buy land with it so he can build more model homes. He believes this is the best thing for the company. Meanwhile, it appears Oscar, George Sr.'s twin, has returned to town and George Sr. wants Michael to give him some money to make him go away. However, it turns out that Oscar has a ton of land that he is sitting on, and Michael sees it as a perfect opportunity to kill two birds with one stone: pay Oscar for the land and build new homes. However, it turns out that Oscar's land is useless, as it's owned by the Army, so Michael essentially pays Oscar for land that has tanks roaming across it all the time.

    Michael's not the only person attempting to make new financial leaps. Tobias and Gob want to take a little bit of the company money and invest it in a company. They decide to create Gobias Industries, which is a coffee shop or something? I never really figured it out, and for all the work that the two did on their plan, I don't think they figured it out either. For me, it was a plot that never went anywhere, and after the episode ends, it seems like the writers didn't really know what to do with it either, as they leave it by the wayside.

    Lindsey, meanwhile, for the umpteenth time, tries getting back to her volunteer roots and once again fails, this time protesting against the war, not because she hates war but instead because her hair stylist got called to Iraq. It's a pretty funny plot with a great payoff involving Lucille, but for the most part, it doesn't really go anywhere.

    That being said, the episode itself just felt like it was missing something, or perhaps it just wasn't that important to the overall story, save for introducing Oscar Bluth into the mix. I'll admit, I love the work Tambor does here; the difference between Oscar and George Sr. is evident beyond just physical looks. Tambor plays them both differently, and it's fun to watch.

    It's not as if I dislike this episode, it simply wasn't my favorite.
  • Twins do run in the family

    This episode is crucial to the series as it introduces George Sr’s twin brother, Oscar and also opens up a lot of unanswered questions about the character that could be useful later such as:

    What is the history between Oscar and Lucille?

    What is so bad about his past that the family hide Oscar’s existence from Maeby and George Michael?

    How much does he sell that lemonade for?

    Gobias Industries is one of the funniest gags in the episode and shows the true genius of Tobias and Gob.

    Lindsay’s plot may be my favourite, if only for the final scene with Lucille driving past stating that that girl didn’t have a good mother.

    Overall, this episode is very useful and also keeps people in suspense about the character of Oscar.
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