Will the real Michael Bluth come forward?
On May 26, fans of emotionally distant comedy everywhere delighted in the return of Arrested Development, the beloved TV show revived by Netflix as an exclusive series. If my Facebook wall is any indication, some of those fans binged through several, if not all 15 new episodes before they had to return to work on Tuesday.
I, however, only caught the first episode, which centered on main character Michael Bluth (Jason Bateman), who has fallen even lower than his bumbling family and their real-estate enterprise. I sure hope he picks himself back up quickly. It seems reducing himself to sleeping with Lucille No. 2 (Liza Minnelli) and bunking with — then being kicked out by — his collegiate son George Michael (Michael Cera) has sapped Bluth of his greatest strength: his snark. The wit, the bite, the timing — all of it has dulled. Even a verbal volley with former easy target Gob (Will Arnett) has him wheezing across his side of the court.
I suppose it’s hard to condescend when you’re passing everyone on the way to rock bottom. But the rest of Arrested Development’s fourth — and possibly final — season needs to equally batter the other characters so that Bluth may find his marks — and thus rediscover that deadpan dazzle.