Even the goofiest sitcom can hide a deeper meaning if you really look. Fan theories have cropped up around television staples like Seinfeld, Friends, and especially the cable-turned-streaming oddity Arrested Development. The show is known for cramming tons of subtle jokes into every episode, giving fans more to discover with every viewing. The writers love to leave little hints, clues, and easter eggs, so it's no surprise there are so many fan theories about Arrested Development.
Some of these theories focus on the family ties of the Bluth clan. Viewers have suggested a different parentage for the eternally put-upon George Michael, and have even connected narrator-slash-character Ron Howard to the Bluths. And then there are the really out-there ideas. Do you think the Bluths are representations of Norse gods?
Whatever you think of the plausibility of these Arrested Development fan theories, there's no denying that it's good to have the show back. The quirky comedy has become a cult classic since it first aired on Fox in 2003, and thanks to Netflix, TV watchers can enjoy the Bluth's continued misadventures. Check out these crazy-yet-somehow-still-plausible Arrested Development theories, and vote up your personal picks.
Maeby Killed Lucille 2
Reddit user resistyrocks has a hunch that Maeby is responsible for the death of Lucille 2, and that Ron Howard gives it away right at the beginning of Season 4:
"In the pilot Maeby's real name is said to be Mae 'Maeby' Funke. The opening lines of the 4th season are 'It was May,' then the narrator clears his throat and finishes with 'it was May 4th.' I think he's actually saying 'It was Mae,' I think the narrator blatantly tells us who Lucille 2's killer (or person responsible for her disappearance) is in the very beginning of the 4th season."
Michael Will Lose An Eye
User Benjamin.bush submitted this fan theory on the Arrested Development Wikia:
"I would like to submit a theory that Michael becomes a pirate: When Carl Weathers first comes into Michael’s office in episode 4, he picks up a stuffed toy and mentions that it’s missing an eye. Totally random, no further follow up. But in subsequent episodes Michael gets hit in the left eye. First, after fighting Gob in Miniball World, some kid hits him in the eye. In the follow scene Lucille asks him ‘What happened to your eye?’ with no further response from Michael. He gets another black eye his fight with Lucille 2 on Cinco de Cuatro, and it looks like GM punches him in the eye at the end. If there is any parallel to the foreshadowing in Season 2 when Buster eventually loses his hand, I think we’re in for Michael Bluth losing an eye (...hopefully complete with eye patch).
I would have thought that I was stretching for this except for the many pirate-themed threads throughout the show: Michael is studying maritime law, he was in a Hook play as a kid, Buster of course already has a hook (and education on ocean cartography), the Bluths have stolen two boats previously (Season 1 with George Sr. and Season 3 with Lucille), the new references to Jerry Bruckheimer (Pirates of the Caribbean) complete with even showing a pirate ship in his office... and of course George Michael is working on anti-PIRACY software."
George Senior Is Actually George Michael's Father
Reddit user RyanDesmond presented this theory back in 2014:
"I'd like to present some evidence that supports a new theory – the idea that Michael is not George Michael's father. In fact, they're brothers. One might say they're 'just like twins.' Furthermore, George Senior is George Michael's true father...
This is a very META concept. It's the show about the show. And Ron Howard reveals something very interesting about the true nature of Season 4. He tells Michael that he's interested in his father/son relationship and Michael attempts to get his own father's rights. But Ron Howard clarifies himself and tells Michael that the relationship he's interested in is between Michael and his son.
From the mouth of the creator of the show himself we, the audience, are being told that Season 4 is really about Michael and George Michael...
Now, I'm not sure if Michael is aware that George Michael isn't his son or not – but I'm pretty sure he's the kind of guy that would raise someone else's kid. How do I know? Ron Howard told us so in the episode where Maggie Lizer returns and Michael thinks she might be pregnant with his baby. Ron says: 'Michael always wanted to think of himself as that kind of good guy - the kind of guy who would raise someone else's child."
The Bluths Represent Norse Gods
Reddit user MisterTaylor has a theory that each member of the Bluth family represents a different mythological Norse god:
"Tyr lost one of his hands when it was bitten off by Fenrir, a giant wolf that was created by Loki. Buster's hand was bitten off by a seal that was 'given the taste for mammal blood' by his brother Gob.
Loki is referred to as the god of chaos, or the Trickster god. 'It's an illusion, Michael. A trick is what a whore does for money.'
Its not hard to see how Lindsay can be associated with Freya, the golden haired god of beauty and sexuality. You could also consider her to have something of a role reversal with Loki. Loki was adopted by Oden from the Ice Giants, where as Lindsey was adopted out from under the Bluths' rivals, the Sitwells.
That would make George Sr. Odin, who does have a brother that stands in for him from time to time when he leaves.
Lucille even somewhat resembles the wife of Odin, Frigga as 'The keeper of the family's secrets.'
That leaves Michael as Thor, and I have a hard time making that connection. Any help there?"