Have you binge-watched all of the new Arrested Development just yet? Have you opened yourself up to its labyrinthine configuration of in-jokes, references, homages, parodies, etc., and loudly voiced your support/displeasure on any number of social networks to which you belong? Finished or not, I don’t think it’s too much of a SPOILER WARNING to say that the ending isn’t so much an ending; that there’s more than enough space left for another installment of the show, whether a fifth season or movie or webseries or something else. Previously, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings called the fourth season “a fantastic one-off” that wasn’t likely to repeat. Now, he’s changed his tune:
“Arrested is unique because that’s really up to the talent. If the talent were willing to do more… I’m sure we would be willing.”
That coincides with what Jason Bateman said about the possibility of more:
“This [season is] just 15 episodes that serve as Act 1 of a three-act story. Those other two acts will be in the future; whether they’re a movie or back on Netflix, I don’t know. People smarter than me will figure that out.”
On the surface, that sounds fantastic. The new season takes a while to layer together, but I’ve no doubt that rewatching the relatively drab early episodes will prove more fruitful now that all of the references have been made clear.But if there’s one ugly thing that the new material revealed, it’s how inept and shitty we are at giving any kind of pop culture its due credit without reactively snapping to FAIL or WIN.Somehow, the shame is on showrunner Mitch Hurwitz and his cast for trying to do something admittedly different: separating the Bluth family members and making it so that their narratives are built up rather than unpacked; not so much fun to watch over the course of six months, maybe, but perfectly fine if you’ve had the free time to blast right through. And yet he should’ve known better because that isn’t how TV works—there being axiomatic laws to how TV must be produced, of course, never mind that this is essentially a webseries.
If you’ve avoided this kind of conversation, good for you. Because the worst thing about the new Arrested Development is having to listen to everyone’s boorish opinions on how the new Arrested Development is soooo bad; so grey-faced, mopey schmoes too paralyzed to shut it off or watch something they might enjoy. Kudos to Hurwitz, Hastings and Bateman if they want to do more, but maybe we’ll learn to shut up the next time around.