After seven long years, thousands of desperate message board pleas from heartsick fans have finally been answered. Arrested Development is back for a fourth season. As of last weekend, all fifteen episodes are available on Netflix in one pretty little clump, totally ripe for the kind of binge-watching that diehard Arrested junkies crave.
Couldn't stream AD in its entirety because of your Memorial Day plans? Consider this an intervention. Turn off your phones, sever ties with anyone who doesn't have Mitch Hurwitz's Wikipedia page memorized, and tell your dog to shut the hell up because you've earned a one-way trip to Bluthville. But before you hop aboard the Bluth Express (are these transportation jokes doing anything for you?), you may want to reacquaint yourselves with a few peripheral characters, old and new. Don't worry, we won't tell anyone you needed a refresher.
Lucille Bluth (in flashbacks)
Kristin Wiig plays a younger incarnation of the ever-acerbic, ever-inebriated Lucille Bluth.
Goateed megalomaniac magician Tony Wonder (Ben Stiller) is back on the scene in Season 4 and he's got a whole new bag of tricks — all aimed at one-upping his less talented and, more importantly, less goateed rival, Gob.
For a time in Season 3, the coyly named attorney, Bob Loblaw (Scott Baio) served as the Bluth's replacement lawyer. Until he lobbed a Bob Loblaw Law Bomb at the clan, that is.
George Bluth Sr. (in flashbacks)
In 25 years, Seth Rogen will turn into Jeffrey Tambor. At least that's what Arrested's Season 4 casting directors believe, because the stoner king of Apatow's empire makes a mustachioed debut as a younger Bluth patriarch.
George Michael's decidedly bland high school girlfriend Ann Veal (Mae Whitman) was always a bit of an anomaly to the Bluth family, who thought Michael's son deserved someone more...someone. She starts sleeping with Gob at the end of Season 3 and is still on the receiving end of his special brand of magic in this fresh batch of episodes.
Lucille Austero (A.K.A. "Lucille Two")
Lucille Bluth's across-the-hall neighbor, Lucille Austero (Liza Minnelli) reprises her complex role as tantalizer of Bluth men and unlikely real estate scion. When she's not falling over from vertigo.
Jeff Garlin seamlessly transitioned from Larry David's manager on Curb Your Enthusiasm to Arrested's Mort Myers, a movie executive who works on the studio lot with Maeby when she chooses to ditch school for life in the Hollywood fast lane.
From the bench seat of the stair car to cornballs soaked in scalding oil, Michael and George Michael Bluth have shared a lot over the years. And in Season 4, they're in love with the same woman — aspiring actress, bagpipe whiz, and Ron Howard's fictional daughter, Rebel Alley (Isla Fisher).
Barry Zuckerkorn (Henry Winkler) is now and (almost) always the Bluth's consummately uninformed, hopelessly lovable attorney. Watch out, Bob Loblaw!
Barry Zuckerkorn (in flashbacks)
In Season 4 flashbacks, Seth Rogen and Kristen Wiig are joined by Max Winkler as the younger Barry Zuckerkorn. The resemblance is uncanny.
Andy plays himself as well as Donnie, Chareth, Rocky, and Emmett — members of a clan of quintuplets.
Never one to back down from a well-placed pop culture reference, Mitch Hurwitz introduces Season 4 viewers to politician Herbert Love (Terry Crews) — a brilliantly obvious Herman Caine analog.
Once George Bluth Sr.'s assistant and not-so-secret jump-off, Kitty Sanchez (Judy Greer) is known for two things. And both of them are her boobs.
Carl Weathers, football star turned action hero turned comedic ensemble staple turned Tobias Fünke's acting mentor, returns in Season 4 as a fictionalized version of himself.
Any Arrested fan worth their weight in banana stands knows Ron Howard produces and narrates the series. He also appears in the Season 3 finale, playing a version of himself that might be interested in making a movie based on the Bluth family (cue years of big-screen rumors swirling around Arrested). And wouldn't ya know it, Old Opie's back in Season 4 to make that very film.
The indiscriminately smitten Tobias's Season 4 heartstrings are artfully played by the recovering meth addict and former actress, Debrie Bardeaux (Maria Bamford).
Yep, John Slattery sheds his Mad Men three-piece for a more ethereal look as a drug-addicted physician.
Another new Season 4 addition is Heartfire (Mary-Lynn Rajskub) who makes her way from Oscar Bluth's crew of desert-dwelling spiritualists to George's assistant without ever uttering a word. She prefers communicating telepathically.
Now, please fire up Netflix and get to watching Season 4 of Arrested Development. You'll definitely want to get all caught up now, before the movie that's definitely being made comes out! Just kidding. Or are we...? Yes, we are.