Arrested Development Season 1, Episode 1: Pilot - Recap

For the past ten years, Michael Bluth had been waiting for his father, George Sr., to make him a partner in their family company. On the morning of his father's retirement boat party, Michael discusses the announcement of his promotion with his son, George Michael. The two of them are living in one of the Bluth's model homes, to show their support for the business. After dropping his son off at the frozen banana stand his father started, Michael goes to see his oldest brother (an amateur magician) Gob, to ask for his check to cover party expenses. Gob asks why the party cannot just be written off to the company. After all, their sister Lindsay had been staying at the Four Seasons for a month and the company is probably paying for that. Upset by both Lindsay's avoidance of him (being that he had not spoken to her for over a year) and her abuse of the company's largesse, Michael goes to tell his mother, Lucille, to spread the news that the company checkbook is closing. Tobias, Lindsay's husband, then enters. Tobias recently lost his medical license.

At the Banana Stand, George Michael's cousin Maeby plays a prank on him, taking advantage of the fact that he doesn't recognize her at first. The kids discuss how they never see each other, and Maeby suggests they kiss at the boat party to teach their parents a lesson that they need to see each other more often. Back at the hotel, Tobias, believing that the boat party is pirate-themed because of a joke from Michael, begins trying on Lindsay's blouses. He then mistakes a group of garishly dressed men for pirates, and boards a van full of homosexual protesters. Finally, the Bluth patriarch, George Sr., gives his retirement speech, and appoints the new CEO, which is his wife Lucille, much to Michael's dismay. Michael decides it's time to move on. The family is about to pose for a photo - at which point, Maeby goes through with her previous suggestion and kisses George Michael - when the SEC raids the ship. George Sr. calls his secretary with instructions on what to do. Lindsay takes command of the boat and Lucille tells Buster, her youngest son, to find a channel to the ocean on the maps. Buster, despite his cartography lessons, can only offer certainty that the blue part of the map is land before a panic attack sets in. The SEC hauls George Bluth away, leaving the family in turmoil.

At the police station, Tobias joins up with the family and discovers that the men on the other boat with him were not pirates, but in fact actors from the local theater. Believing that a path has been shown to him, Tobias informs the family that he has decided to become an actor. Michael then informs the family that their dad is being kept in jail, and the SEC is putting a halt on the company's expense account, which terrifies everyone. Facing adversity, Lucille decides to put Buster in charge. This is too much for Michael, who accepts a job in Arizona with a rival development company. When Buster discovers his academic pursuits didn't prepare him for running a big company, the family turns to Michael, begging for his help. Michael rejects their imposition, but Lindsay says he should visit their father before leaving. Michael does indeed visit his father in jail, asking why he wasn't put in charge. George informs him that he put Lucille in charge because they can't arrest a husband and wife for the same crime, which isn't true, and George curses the advice of his attorneys. At the model home, Lindsay is seeing what she can grab and sell when she comes across George Michael. He opens up his heart, saying he wishes the family could see each other more often, and when Michael sees this, he makes a decision. They decide to stay in California, give the family a shot and try to save the family business.


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