Arrested Development: Season 1 (2003 - 2004)


Season 1
Arrested Development

Critics Consensus

Arrested Development puts an ambitiously complex, brilliantly fast-paced spin on dysfunctional family comedy, anchored by the efforts of a tremendously talented ensemble.



Critic Ratings: 21


Audience Score

User Ratings: 532
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Air date: Nov 2, 2003
Air date: Nov 9, 2003
Air date: Nov 16, 2003
Air date: Nov 23, 2003
Air date: Nov 30, 2003
Air date: Dec 7, 2003
Air date: Dec 14, 2003
Air date: Dec 21, 2003
Air date: Jan 4, 2004
Air date: Jan 11, 2004
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Arrested Development: Season 1 Photos

Tv Season Info

In the first series of "Arrested Development," Michael (Jason Bateman) leads his oddball family and their real-estate-development business following a securities-fraud fiasco. Along the way, Tobias (David Cross) directs Maeby (Alia Shawkat) in a school play, and George Sr. (Jeffrey Tambor) calls on Gob (Will Arnett) to cover a company error. Michael Cera, Jessica Walter, Tony Hale, Portia de Rossi, Henry Winkler and Liza Minnelli also star.


Jason Bateman
as Michael Bluth
Michael Cera
as George-Michael
Jeffrey Tambor
as George Bluth Sr.
Jessica Walter
as Lucille Bluth
Will Arnett
as George Oscar Bluth II
Tony Hale
as Buster Bluth
Portia de Rossi
as Lindsay Funke
David Cross
as Tobias Funke
Alia Shawkat
as Mae `Maeby' Funke
Liza Minnelli
as Lucille Austero/Lucille 2
Henry Winkler
as Barry Zuckerkorn
Amy Poehler
as Wife of Gob
David Reynolds
as White Power Bill
Michael Blieden
as Agent Cummings
Alden Villaverde
as Little Justice
Bob Odenkirk
as Dr. Gunty
Scott Atkinson
as Roger Danish
Tom Kiesche
as Umpire/Prison Guard
Steve Ryan
as J. Walter
Clint Howard
as Johnny Bark
Don Perry
as Earle
Michael Bartel
as Young Michael
Ethan Phillips
as Military Official
Jerry Minor
as Off. Carter
Iqbal Theba
as Nazhgalia
Jay Johnston
as Off. Taylor
Sam Pancake
as James Alan Spangler
Casey Sandino
as Cortesio
Don Took
as Cab Driver
Harry Murphy
as Brian Snee
Mia A. Nunez
as Guard's Daughter
Steve Witting
as Principal Conrad
Matt Price
as Agent Freeling
Teddy Lane Jr.
as Construction Worker
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News & Interviews for Arrested Development: Season 1

Critic Reviews for Arrested Development Season 1

All Critics (21) | Top Critics (14)

For all its edge and originality, "Arrested Development" has echoes of some of the best television past.

May 10, 2018 | Full Review…

Based on the opener, it's a voyage well worth taking - and, for Bateman, it's an easy personal best.

Jan 17, 2018 | Full Review…

Easily the most bizarre, inventive sitcom of the fall season, Fox's Arrested Development wrings laughs from the strange, the uncomfortable and the inappropriate. It's not your typical sitcom, but it is a welcome addition to the prime-time landscape.

May 3, 2019 | Full Review…

Arrested Development is one of the rare shows deserving of the praise. It is irreverent, you will laugh out-loud, and for the few who've actually watched the struggling Fox comedy, it is indeed an instant classic.

Sep 22, 2017 | Full Review…

[Jason] Bateman is a revelation - the ex-child star is great in this show.

Sep 22, 2017 | Full Review…

Arrested Development has been hyped to the clouds in a number of ads, all piling on critical encomiums from all over the country. This time they're telling the truth.

Sep 22, 2017 | Full Review…

The family relationships were clear and consistent, with just enough real emotion to keep all the zaniness grounded.

Aug 15, 2013 | Full Review…
Top Critic

Mitch Hurwitz's celebrated dysfunctional meta-sitcom left no witty wordplay unexploited or linguistic acrobatic unperformed.

May 10, 2018 | Full Review…

Instead, in this imperfect world, Arrested Development has the time slot formerly occupied by Richter, and lovers of laugh-out-loud comedy have to hold their breaths once more that audiences will discover another gem of a show.

Jan 30, 2018 | Full Review…

Fox, of all networks, has the most impressive collection of new fall shows, and Arrested Development is at the top of the crop.

Sep 22, 2017 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Arrested Development: Season 1

  • May 03, 2016
    A bold new type of sitcom, Arrested Development: Season 1 is an ingenious comedy with a unique brand of humor. Using an interesting meta narrative format, the show follows real estate developer Michael Bluth as he struggles to keep his family together and save the family business after his father is imprisoned for embezzling funds. The cast is especially strong, particularly Jason Bateman and Will Arnett; who both bring a lot of charisma to their roles. There are also a number of impressive guest stars featured, including Heather Graham, Carl Weathers, and Julia Louis-Dreyfus. Additionally, the comedy is extraordinarily sharp, and remarkably consistent; as a number of jokes reoccur and are carried on throughout multiple episodes. A groundbreaking television show, Season 1 of Arrested Development is outrageously hilarious and incredibly fun.
    Dann M Super Reviewer
  • Mar 13, 2019
    Easliy one of my favorite seasons of television ever made.
  • Feb 04, 2019
    A TV show with the perfect characters and setting for comedy. The perfect depiction of a dysfunctional family.
  • Nov 29, 2018
    This Is by far the best show I have ever seen! If you want to binge watch a well written/ hilarious show...look no further.
  • Jul 08, 2018
    Arrested Development is a rare case of steady direction, hilarious and well-written script and a talented ensemble cast that combine to deliver a great comedy sitcom.
  • Jun 12, 2018
    I guess you love it or hate it. I hate it. In the face of overwhelming opposition, I can't even be bothered to say why.
  • Jan 17, 2018
    One of my personal favourite examples of single camera sitcom is arrested development, a satirical comedy that follows the life of Michael (Jason Bateman) who leads his strange family and their real-estate development business following a securities fraud situation caused by his own father. Along the way, Tobias (David Cross) directs Maeby (Alia Shkat) in a school play, and George Sr. (Jeffery Tambor) calls on Gob (Will Arnett) to cover a company error. A young Michael Cera, Jessica Walter, Tony Hale, Portia De Rossi, Henry Winkler and Liza Minneli also star throughout. This show received incredible scores from critics worldwide, receiving 100% on rotten tomatoes and each episode receiving no lower than an 8/10 on imdb. It’s brilliantly innovative for the more mature viewers and is honestly heaven-sent for anyone who’s been longing for something outside of the comedy norm. It’s comedy is so unique using an interesting meta narrative. Arrested development is produced by Ron Howard, who also serves as narrator throughout the duration of the programme, He’s the ideal comic choice: a down to earth, family friendly voice subversively put to the service of a comedy about a wildly dysfunctional family. The closest the Bluth family comes to normal is in the form of Michael (Jason Bateman’s character) a hardworking widower with a 13-year-old son named George Michael, a name choice that proves his dad is a bit off himself. Although off, his intentions are pure, Michael has spent his life sacrificing for the Bluth family development business, but his reward he thinks, is on the way: A long, expected partnership. It’s safe to say out of all the family members he’s certainly the only sibling who deserves a promotion. His twin sister, Lindsay spends the family money on losing causes, such as an anti-circumcision movement. And as for his older brother Gob is a failed magician: and his younger brother Buster… well he just generally fails at everything he participates in. And finally, we have Lindsay’s husband, Tobias is an ex-doctor who is assumed to be gay by everyone... including Lindsay. Yet instead of promoting Michael, George Bluth Sr. gives the job to Michael’s brittle mother and then promptly gets dragged off to jail by the SEC. This show is a great example of single camera drama, the comedic value is high whilst still engaging audiences throughout. It uses traditional single camera techniques, yet also stays unique and gives audiences a completely new experience by introducing incredibly well written characters, there quirky mannerisms will sometimes leave you in stitches, these characters paired with the sarcastic narration is just fantastic. As previously mentioned we follow a Meta narrative it isn’t as straight forward as most shows placed within the same category.
  • Jun 27, 2017
    Incredible television. I long for a comedic TV shows as brilliantly executed as Arrested Development.
  • Mar 29, 2017
    Extremely well acted, although it's less noticeable when the show's not funny. Aside from the first three episodes, and Episode 11, I barely laughed. Not quite sure why everyone likes this so much.
  • Jan 26, 2017
    It's hilarious and unpredictable; nuanced and complex; well-written and well-acted. (The Original) Arrested Development rests at the pinnacle of the Mt. Everest of TV-Sitcoms.

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