Welcome to the “Arrested Development” Rewatch. Leading up to the release of Season 4, Zap2it
will be taking a look back at the 53 episodes that made the show one of our
most beloved TV comedies. We continue with episode 11 of Season 1, “Public Relations,” which first aired Jan. 25, 2004. Watch the first three seasons of “Arrested Development” on Netflix.
Plot: Michael hopes to get George Michael into the prestigious Milford Academy (longstanding motto: “Children should be neither seen nor heard”), but runs into a hurdle because of his family’s current bad reputation. He decides to hire publicist Jessie Bowers (Jill Ritchie) to put a positive spin on the Bluth name. (Good luck with that!) She begins making romantic advances on Michael, which would be entirely welcome if he wasn’t still conflicted about how George Michael is handling the loss of his mom. It turns out — as George Michael puts it — “I didn’t want to go to that school and Jessie’s a psycho.”
Lucille’s answer to the Klimpy’s “plate or platter” question:
Lucille during the family meeting with Jessie:
Buster, the ideal Milford man:
Bluth Company status: One giant PR nightmare.
Secondary characters introduced: Carl Weathers as a fictionalized version of himself — a cheapskate acting coach Tobias meets on an airport shuttle and hires for $1100. Becky Thyre as Klimpy’s waitress Loretta, who later returns as a client of lawyer Maggie Lizer (Julia Louis-Dreyfuss).
Milestones: The Milford Academy is officially introduced, as is Cloudmir vodka (Jessie arranges for Lindsay to get a “job” promoting the vodka by ordering it a bar). It’s also the first time we learn Michael has slept with four women (when Gob is trying to prove Michael is unlikable) and the first Bluth family fight in a public place (Lucille and Lindsay’s dual restaurant brawls).
Huge mistakes: Gob misplaces Milford Academy founder Earl Milford during his Aztec Tomb trick, and later gets misquoted on the local news declaring “I killed Earl Milford!” And Jessie makes the major mistake of accusing George Michael of standing in the way of Michael’s happiness.
Most sexual tension: Maeby can’t believe how different she and George Michael are: “It’s like we’re not even related.” His response: “That’d be amazing!” Also, Michael talking to Lindsay about his attraction to Jessie: “She’s cute. She’s a cutie. A little cutie pie.”
Allusions to Tobias being gay: When Jessie remarks, “There are very few intelligent, attractive and straight men in this town.” Tobias chimes in: “Well that certainly leaves me out.” Later, when he’s discussing acting with Weathers, Tobias laments: “I don’t know if I’m cut out to be a De Niro or a Regis or a Pinkett-Smith or what have you.”
Best narrator commentary: When Jessie derisively refers to George Michael as Opie: “Jessie had gone too far and she should best watch her mouth.”
Next on “Arrested Development”: “Gob holds a press conference of his own” [to reveal he found Earl Milford, except now Milford really is dead] “and Buster moves to the kitchen” [still staying out of sight and sound].