By now “Arrested Development” fans have either finished slogging through all of season four or are still slowly working at each episode. The show is known in particular for its subtle connections to later part of the show. While the connections aren’t necessarily apparent on a first viewing, watching the show over again can help strengthen those plot connections.
But if you’re looking to save some time that would be otherwise spent wondering where the plot will connect back, try watching the show with subtitles on, since it makes some of the later references much more apparent. In addition to hinting at certain plot connections, the subtitles also play on certain recurring jokes, or hint at jokes outside of the show. “Arrested Development” fans that haven’t finished the show yet be warned, the screenshots and explanations below contain some spoilers.
In Episode 3, “Indian Takers,” Tobias sings one of his signature double-entendres. The subtitles were in on the joke in this episode, but in the recap in Episode 5 “A New Start,” the double-entendre is notably absent.
Also in Episode 3, Lindsay says “Yeah… there’s nothing keeping us together,” and immediately there’s a faint coughing in the background. Without the subtitles you may have picked up on the probability that it was Maeby coughing sarcastically, but with the subtitles on, it becomes much more apparent.
This is later clarified in Maeby’s episode when the camera cuts to her at the same moment the above scene happens.
Later in Episode 3, after Lindsay coincidentally falls for an ostrich farmer named Marky Bark, Indian music is playing with somebody singing an extended “Co…incidence”, which isn’t initially apparent until Lindsay denies it, when the Indian music comes on again singing “yes it is.”
Sillier discrepancies popup later in the season with a mongolian shouting “Viva Mongolia!” and the subtitles reading “Viva Mejico!”
Other less subtle references include the Show Stealer Pro watermark that appears on many of the recap videos from previous seasons, jabbing at the rights issues with Fox with old episodes. “Arrested Development” took this one step further by actually making a website, advertising the fake software named on the watermark.
What other subtle references have you noticed in the show? Let us know in the comments.