Arrested Development—Season 3

9.5 Overall Score
Story: 9/10
Acting: 10/10
Visuals: 10/10

Great series, perfectly timed

The weakest of the three original seasons but still great


Get your chicken dance ready…Arrested Development is back!

The Bluths are back!  As Michael (Jason Bateman) tries to enter the world of dating again, his son George Michael (Michael Cera) continues to fight back feelings for his cousin Maeby (Alia Shawkat) who may or may not be related to him (and is working as a studio exec).  Maeby’s parents Tobias Fünke (David Cross) and Lindsay (Portia de Rossi) are working on their marital problems while George Bluth, Sr. (Jeffrey Tambor) and his identical twin Oscar deal with Lucille (Jessica Walter).  Gob (Will Arnett) continues his desire to be a magician while his brother Buster (Tony Hale) deals with the loss of his hand and getting away from Lucille.  The Bluths are fighting for the company and the end of the fight could be nearing!


Wedding bells for George Michael and Maeby?

Arrested Develop—Season 3 aired on FOX from September 19, 2005 to February 10, 2006.  The critically acclaimed series continued to struggle to find an audience but was brought back for a shortened season.   The final four episodes were all aired on February 10, 2006 in a massive block.  The season received Primetime Emmy nominations for Outstanding Single-Camera Picture Editing for a Comedy Series (“Ocean Walker”), Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series (Will Arnett), Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series (“Development Arrested”), and Outstanding Comedy series.


Gammy is coming for you!

Arrested Development is one of the best series around.  The struggles of the series did hurt the series and though this is still a very enjoyable season, it probably is the weakest of the series (and I use this lightly).  The show had a lot going on this season and though it does feel like it wrapped it up, it feels a bit segmented with Michael and his romance with Charlize Theron seems to take up most of the first half of the shortened season with less development in the second half…despite this, it is still great and loaded with laughs.

The reason this show works is not only the smart writing, but the actors cast in the show.  The whole cast works perfectly together and had the timing down from season 1.  The series frequently casts guest stars that really play into the role.  Be it Scott Baio as Bob Loblaw and his law blog or Judge Reinhold as himself with William Hung as part of his house band for his celebrity judge show (and Bud Cort as his rival).


Check out Season 3…Even Saddam approves!

The show also has really snappy editing.  The writing is quick and the actors are quick so it has to be put together right.  There are jokes that take episodes to pay out and the editing helps that work.  The show even has tons of throwbacks to first season and a lot of those throwbacks are from the visuals.

Arrested Development is just a smart, smart show that was too smart for its own good.  The series needed to be watched weekly or even daily and is one of the shows that benefited from “binge watching” because it paid off the viewer.  With changes in scheduling, repeats, and going into hiatus, Arrested Development never had a chance.  Arrested Development was cancelled after this season but did get a return on NetFlix in 2013 in a 15 episode season.

Arrested Development—Season 3 Complete Episode Guide:


“The Cabin Show”

3.1       The Cabin Show Airdate: 09/19/05

Lucille (Jessica Walter) decides Buster (Tony Hale) must move out, and Buster finds himself moving into the model home to live with Michael (Jason Bateman).  The Bluth Company’s status improves with George Bluth, Sr. (Jeffrey Tambor) in jail, but all is not as it seems.  George Michael (Michael Cera) tries to avoid Maeby (Alia Shawkat) after their big kiss.  When Michael learns that Oscar is really in jail, Michael decides he has to put off the camping trip to find his father.  Gob receives a letter from S.A.D. (Sons And Dad Reunion) and ends up meeting Steve Holt (Justin Grant Wade) without realizing their real connection.  Michael heads to Reno to find his father but instead discovers both Tobias (David Cross) and their lawyer Barry Zucherkorn (Henry Winkler).


“For British Eyes Only”

3.2       For British Eyes Only Airdate: 09/26/05

George Bluth has been captured and placed under house arrest with Lucille and Buster, and Lucille finds her sex drive coming back…with both George and Buster want it to end.  George reveals that he was framed by the British, and Michael heads to Wee Britain to investigate the frame-up.  Gob prepares a big “Free Bird” trick and hides from Steve Holt.  Michael tries to get access to hidden files and befriends a woman named Rita (Charlize Theron) to help him.  When Michael tries to leave Wee Britain, he finds himself threatened by a strange man (Dave Thomas) who might hold the secrets to the conspiracy.


“Forget Me Now”

3.3       Forget Me Now Airdate: 10/03/05

The family hires Bob Loblaw (Scott Baio) to represent him their case, and Lindsay finds her new crush.  Maeby dates Steve Holt to get over her feelings for George Michael but doesn’t realize that Steve Holt is family too.  Michael goes on a date with Rita but is not forthcoming about his family.  Tobias tries to get Buster to stand up to Lucille, and George, Sr. decides a party for Buster’s new army medal might be his chance at escape from the penthouse.  When the family believes Michael is shredding the evidence to protect them, they pick-up Rita at the school for the party…with disastrous results.



3.4       Notapusy Airdate: 11/07/05

Lindsay works for Bob Loblaw to try to get a free divorce and finds herself competing with Bob Loblaw’s daughter (Nathalia Ramos).  Rita goes on vacation, and Michael tries to spend time with George Michael…but ends up training for a triathlon with Steve Holt.  When George Michael reveals Ann (Mae Whitman) is joining a religious beauty pageant, Lindsay decides to enter Loblaw’s daughter with Tobias’ coaching help.  Maeby goes undercover to prove that the pageants are all about beauty but finds throwing the pageant as an ugly girl is more difficult than she thought.  Buster tries to find a way out of his accidental reenlisting and learns he can find a substitute.  George, Sr. enters the Scared Straight program to get to the fair.


“Mr. F”

3.5       Mr. F Airdate: 11/07/05

Michael spends time with Rita but finds someone is trying to separate them.  Tobias makes a new friend named Frank (John Viener) and doesn’t get that Frank works for the C.I.A.  When Japanese investors are tipped off that land might not be good, Michael is accused of revealing secrets to Rita.  In an effort to save the deal, Gob and Buster work on a plan to keep the Japanese buyers from leaving.  A jetpack discovered by George Michael leads to a disaster unfolds.  Maeby tries to save her failing film Love Indubitably…and has to think fast.  The real Mr. F is revealed…plus, the meaning of Rita’s bracelet.


“The Ocean Walker”

3.6       The Ocean Walker Airdate: 12/05/05

Michael has decided to marry Rita but doesn’t know she’s a M(entally) R(etarded) F(emale)…leading the family to question if Rita is after the money.  Tobias finds his health is suddenly failing and tries to find the source.  Michael is forced to rescue Rita from her uncle…and the family decides the wedding must happen when they learn Rita is a millionaire.


“Prison Break”

3.7       Prison Break-In Airdate: 12/12/05

Michael tries to get over losing Rita and tries to plan the Bluth Company fundraiser.  Warden Stefan Gentles (James Lipton) agrees to have the fundraiser at the prison, and Lindsay reveals that the fundraiser is for Tobias who suffers from GVH (Graft Versus Host).  George Michael receives a script from Maeby that indicates Maeby might be softening to his advances.  Lucille works to free George by seducing Warden Gentles but doesn’t realize that Warden Gentles has a plot for him…and the fundraiser for GVH takes a bad turn.


“Making a Stand”

3.8       Making a Stand Airdate: 12/19/05\

Michael tries to deal with working with Gob and suggests Gob open a banana stand…which he does with Steve Holt right next to the Bluth stand.  Maeby seeks inspiration for her horror film and looks to her grandmother.  Lindsay attempts to date Bob Loblaw leads to Loblaw representing Tobias.  Gob and Michael find their father has turned them against each other again and decide to teach him a lesson, but Gob’s loose lips could change the plans.



3.9       S.O.B.s Airdate: 01/02/06

The Bluth Family works on a “Save Our Bluths” fundraiser and tries to get Andy Richter for the dinner.  Andy’s brother Donnie Richter teaches George-Michael’s class and Michael thinks Donnie is turning George Michael against him when he hears George Michael reads a paper from Maeby.  Gob finds himself accidentally a waiter when he tries to play a joke on Lucille.  Michael questions if he’s being too hard on George-Michael and decides to say what he thinks about his family.


“Fakin’ It”

3.10     Fakin’ It Airdate: 02/10/06

The trial of the Bluth family is coming and the Bluths get a chance to test their case in a mock trial for a show hosted by Judge Reinhold.  Buster falls into a coma, and Lindsay uses the opportunity to get close to a man whose wife is in a coma.  George Michael finds himself posing as a groom with Maeby in a fake wedding for Alzheimer patients.  When Michael learns the mock trial could be used as evidence, he must decide if he can turn against his family.


“Family Ties”

3.11     Family Ties Airdate: 02/10/06

George Michael and Maeby find their wedding at the hospital is binding and that they are actually married.  Michael questions if he could possibly have another sister named Nellie when he finds a picture in the attic…leading to hiring a prostitute (Justine Bateman) who he thinks is his sister.  Buster continues to fake his coma to stay near his nurse.  Tobias finds himself attracted to his weight lifter trainer named Michael when he tries to increase his romance with Lindsay.


“Exit Strategy”

3.12     Exit Strategy Airdate: 02/10/06

The prosecutor tries to go after Tobias and get him to turn over secret documents.  Buster finds it hard to continue to fake his coma and is forced to come out to join Michael in rescuing Gob who has been captured on a trip to Iraq.  Lindsay and Lucille go into hiding under the guise of going to rehab.  George Michael tries to throw a Maeby a surprise party for Michael, Gob, and Buster’s trip to Iraq leads to big discovery!


“Development Arrested”

3.13     Development Arrested Airdate: 02/10/06

The Bluths find themselves cleared of the charges against them and learn that their stock has shot up in value.  As Stan Sitwell (Ed Begley Jr.) begins moving in on the Bluths shares, George Michael reveals his relationship with Maeby, but a discovery by Lindsay changes everything about her relationship with her family.  Gob’s girlfriend is revealed as Maeby tries to get her family to sign away the rights to their story.  The Bluths celebrate the company success, but the real enemy could be hiding in the wings!

Related Links:

Arrested Development—Season 1 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Arrested Development—Season 2 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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