The Bluths Are Back!

This Sunday, May 26 at midnight will mark the long awaited, and much celebrated, return of Arrested Development’s fourth season on Netflix. Lucky for us, the original cast of Will Arnett, Jason Bateman, Michael Cera, David Cross, Portia de Rossi, Tony Hale, Alia Shawkat, Jeffrey Tambor, and Jessica Walter, are all back as the main characters we grew to love. Many guest stars will be returning as well, including Mae Whitman, Judy Greer, Liza Minnelli and Carl Weather. The new season will consist of 15 episodes that each focus on a specific character.

As we wait in anticipation for the Bluth’s glorious return to the screen, we’re taking a moment to remember the family relations we’re most looking forward to. It may be unfair to separate the Bluth’s into those we love, and those we hate. More so, the Bluths are a family full of people we love to hate and love to love. In fact, we don’t really hate any of them. But they can certainly be divided into the nice Bluths, and the wildcards. Lucile, George, G.O.B., Lindsay, and Maeby all fan the flame (or simply are the flame) of the most dramatic tensions, while the sweeter Bluths make us say “aw” and hope their messed up family will turn out alright. Perhaps the character we are rooting for most is George Michael, though his dad has his gentler moments too.

Played by the adorably dorky Michael Cera, George Michael is a character that tugs on our heartstrings by defining youth vulnerability. Aside from his monologues and contributions to conversation, George Michael offers up an honesty in his non-verbals and facial expressions that make us want to laugh and then give him a hug. Anytime someone in the Bluth family does something scandalous or disappointing that breaks his chipper disposition and naivety, George Michael simply adds it to his collection of “not surprised by that anymore,” and continues on his merry way. If only we could all go through life maintaining such innocence and hope in the face of a family as disheveled as his.

It’s not only compassion for the parent drama George Michael gets caught in the middle of that we love him for. As strange as it is, something about his undying crush on his cousin Maeby, is not creepy, but endearing. How is this possible? Usually when a show hints at an incestuous relationship, it doesn’t lead anywhere good. Nor would we cheer for the characters involved. But somehow, Michael Cera’s acting chops, and good direction, have ensured that we view George Michael as a sweet kid stuck in an unfortunate family dynamic rather than a weirdo who should be avoided the like plague.

While Maeybe certainly adds to the show, perhaps the most important relationship dynamic in the Bluth family is the one between George Michael and his father, played by Jason Bateman. The strange yet deep relationship they share carried viewers through the first three seasons, leaving us with warm fuzzies and a desire to see more. His dad usually delivers the best lines during their exchanges, with quips like “Her?” when meeting George Michael’s less than impressive girlfriend Ann, and soft comments about his son’s ignorance. Yet, Cera’s character is the one who makes us soft for Jason Bateman’s character, as we want to look out for those that George Michael cares about too.

George Michael may just be the glue that keeps this family afloat, by keeping us emotionally invested in their well being  After all is said and done, we just want the best for the kooky Bluths- but we admit wanting to watch the hilarious roller coaster ride too. The Bluths wouldn’t be the Bluths without Buster’s fake hand, “Pops secret,” or Lucile’s derogatory comments and love/hate relationship with Oscar. The Bluths are only the Bluths as long as they’re dysfunctional  What will those crazy people do next? We can’t wait to find out.