‘Arrested Development’ Playlist: Songs the Bluth Family Would Love
It no longer seems right to call ‘Arrested Development’ a cult classic. As devotees absorb the season 4 revival episodes — which hit Netflix on May 26 — the Internet is lousy with superfans recounting their favorite recurring jokes and one-liners from the Fox sitcom, which originally aired from 2003 to 2006. Following its cancellation, those fans begged for a reunion, and rumors of such projects circulated for years, until filming of a fourth season began in 2011. In honor of the much-ballyhooed revival, we’ve come up with an ‘Arrested Development’ Playlist: Songs the Bluth Family Would Love. We go Bluth by Bluth, picking tunes we think this kooky clan would dig. Enjoy.
‘A Real Hero’ – College & Electric Youth
Michael, the second oldest Bluth child and the show’s protagonist, is (relatively) firm in his family-first motto, which forces him to put up with his family’s bizarre antics and careless spending habits. ‘A Real Hero’ has been a good fit for Michael ever since he didn’t bail on his family and head for Arizona in the pilot episode, and it’s certainly how he perceives himself.
'Ice Cream’ – Muscles
George Sr., the perpetually incarcerated Bluth patriarch, goes through mixed emotions regarding his time in prison, and it’s a bit uncanny how well this Muscles song captures those feelings. At first, George Sr. tells Michael he is having “the time of his life,” what with the seemingly endless supply of ice cream sandwiches and all. However, George Sr. quickly became familiarized with the dangerous reality of prison — dangers which seem to be most present during inmate baseball games for some reason.
‘Rich Girl’ – The Bird and the Bee
We could see Lucille Bluth, the matriarch of the family, jamming to this cover of the Hall & Oates classic. Between her collection of fur coats and suggesting that a banana couldn’t cost more than $10, Lucille lives extravagantly without much regard for her spending. Of course, this seems to be a quality that runs in the Bluth family.
‘A Mistake’ – Fiona Apple
‘Arrested Development’ has a long list of recurring jokes, one of which is GOB’s — the eldest Bluth child — catchphrase, “I’ve made a huge mistake,” which follows any one of his numerous missteps. For instance, GOB, a professional magician, is continually giving away the secrets behind his tricks (sorry, illusions). Of course, like many of the Bluths, GOB feels little responsibility for his mistakes, and we think he might chime in with this Fiona Apple tune that proclaims, “I’ve acquired quite a taste for a well-made mistake.”
‘Hey Boy’ – The Blow
In an act of rebellion against her parents, Lindsay, the only Bluth daughter, married Tobias Fünke, a psychiatrist-turned-actor who, unbeknownst to him, says and does things that bring his sexuality into question. While this is no secret to the rest of family, especially Lindsay, we think she might choose answer A in the Blow’s song posing the question, “Hey boy, why you didn’t call me?” (By the way, A is “You’re gay.”)
'Actor Out of Work’ – St. Vincent
As we noted, after quitting his career as a psychiatrist, Tobias became a self-proclaimed actor, although he never seems able to land any roles. After losing a part in a commercial (after over-acting a fire sale as though it were a real fire) to his wife, taking over as director of his daughter’s high school play and painting himself blue to land a spot in the Blue Man Group — he, too, is an “actor out of work.”
‘Momma’s Boy’ – Chromeo
Buster, the youngest Bluth child, never quite grew up. A grown man still living with his mother, he is definitely a ‘Momma’s Boy,’ and it’s caused him some problems not too far off from this Chromeo song. In the first season, Buster dates his mother’s best friend and nemesis, Lucille Austero. In order to differentiate between his girlfriend and his mother, he calls the former Lucille Two, because, of course, his mother comes first.
‘Banana Co’ – Radiohead
George Michael, Michael’s only son, is the (Mr.) manager of the Banana Stand, a Bluth business that sells frozen bananas. In attempts to distract himself from his growing feelings for his cousin, Maeby, he picks up more hours at the Banana Stand. Long story short, Michael and his son burn down the Banana Stand as a symbolic act of rebellion against the family, but mistakenly so, because George Sr. enlightens Michael, “There’s always money in the banana stand.” This Radiohead song found on ‘The Bends’ collectors’ edition perfectly captures George Michael’s Banana Stand troubles, even offering the line, “Everything’s burning down. / We’ve gotta put it out somehow.”
‘Marry Me’ – St. Vincent
Maeby, the daughter of Lindsay and Tobias, is always trying to rebel against her self-involved parents, who never seem to notice. At one point during the show, she even cons her way in as an executive on a movie set, which led to her go-to catchphrase, “Marry me!"
‘Barely Legal’ – The Strokes
This Strokes tune has some lines that seem perfectly parallel to the Bluth’s misadventures. The song brings up questions of work ethic and money woes, ones all too familiar for the Bluth family. Besides, the entire Bluth existence is “barely legal” — with some light treason to boot.