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There Are Always Arrested Development Fan Theories In The Banana Stand

Updated September 28, 2020 2.2k votes 486 voters 11.8k views14 items

List RulesVote up the most plausible Arrested Development fan theories.

Even the goofiest sitcom can hide a deeper meaning if you really look. Fan theories have cropped up around television staples like SeinfeldFriends, 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. After you've made your voice heard, make sure to check out these other great shows like Arrested Development.

  • 5

    The Bluths All Have Herpes

    Video: YouTube

    Reddit user wilhelmfresh has an interesting take on the sex lives of the Bluth family:

    "As we know the Bluth family swaps sex partners A LOT. GOB has sex with Kitty a couple times and at one point says "...and risk another herpes outbreak with Kitty..." So now it's established that Kitty and GOB have herpes. George Sr. had a long running affair with Kitty and the only 'profalactacos' they were using were implied to be birth control pills. So George Sr. has herpes as well and gave it to his wife Lucille (1). Now GOB also has 'f*cked Lucille 2' a number of times. Knowing GOB I highly doubt he used a condom on Lucille 2 so I'm willing to believe she also has herpes, which she in turn gave to Buster assuming he didn't already have it from 'kissing mother' so much. Speaking of mother, Lucille also can be assumed to have given Oscar Bluth herpes from their constant sexual encounters. In the episode 'Prison Break-In' there is a flashback of when the family is deciding what to donate to for their annual fundraiser. Lindsay's suggestion was herpes. So Lindsey has herpes and since she has actually had sex with Tobias a few times we can say he has it too, and if he ever had sex with Kitty when they ran off to Reno it could be another way he got it if not from Lindsay."

    Is this plausible?
  • 6

    Michael Will Lose An Eye

    Video: YouTube

    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."

    Is this plausible?
  • 7

    Lucille 2 Faked Her Own Death

    Photo: Fox

    Reddit user gounu came to the rescue when another user asked what the Internet really thinks happened to Lucille Austero:

    "The last few scenes of 'Off the Hook' are full of evidence. Buster learns Lucille 2 sent his mother to prison, and that she's now dating his father (well, his uncle...). He wants to punch something, but Gene Parmesan gives him two cups of juice instead (uh oh). He hits Herbert Love, leaves the Thing costume, and runs off. (As an aside, I think Michael finds the Thing costume, dances in Tobias's play, and that's the thing he says he regrets from episode 1).

    Buster gets to the stair car at 9:23 according to the timestamp on the security camera footage. He arrives to find Lucille 2 laying on the stairs (dead? passed out?) and the 'You're Killing Me Buster' banner on the ground.

    It seems like Lucille 2 disappears quickly, but the next security camera footage is at 9:28, showing Lucille 2 gone and a Z in blood or something else (a shoutout to the concert film 'Liza with a Z').

    Buster wants to delete the camera footage, so he's trying to hide something. But Buster killing Lucille 2 in a juice-driven rage seems too obvious for this show, right? Just like Michael killing Lucille 2 for the $700,000 debt is too obvious. Or Sally Sitwell for political gain.

    I think Lucille 2 is still alive. We have a woman with severe vertigo, in the dark, on a stair car. I think she slipped and fell. Buster finds her and helps her fake her death for some reason. If you freeze frame where Buster is looking at Lucille 2 (not the security camera footage, but right after), it looks like the Z is NOT there. So it was added later. Does Lucille take off, leaving Buster to put down what he thinks is realistic-looking blood spatter? By the way, I'm not convinced each 2-second flash is in order here. Buster shrieks at the bloody Z, then starts touching what appears to be a bloodless stair car (though it's VERY hard to tell).

    So why does Lucille want to fake her death? And who will be blamed for it? I don't have a motive, but I think Ron Howard gave it away at the beginning of the season: 'It was Mae- [clears throat] It was May 4th.'

    Maeby did something to make vertigo-stricken Lucille 2 slip on the stairs (confessed to sleeping with Perfecto?), then ran off thinking she killed her. Buster found Lucille 2, helped her up, and made it look like murder. The first episode of the 5th season will be a murder investigation... until someone looks at the security footage and realizes Lucille 2 is still alive. Buster will have some fantastic excuse for pretending Lucille 2 is dead and the dysfunction will continue."

    Is this plausible?
  • 8

    Tobias Is Really A Genius

    Video: YouTube

    Yeah, it sounds pretty far-fetched, but Reddit user DrStevesMagicDrink makes some good points:

    "In the beginning, Tobias was a psychiatrist who graduated from a pretty prestigious college (Penn) and was at least moderately successful before losing his license after performing unnecessary CPR. Even though he made a critical mistake, he must have been smart enough to graduate from Penn with a PhD. After losing his license, Tobias evaluated his life and realized that his marriage was in ruins and his career was over. Due to the Bluths' wealth, Tobias knew he wouldn't need to work to support his family, and decided to use his Psychiatric skills to study the Bluth family's behavior, beginning to act more like them so they would underestimate him."

    Is this plausible?