Monday, March 18, 2019

REVIEW: 'Arrested Development' - Lottie Dottie Presents a Damning Piece of Evidence Against Buster in 'Courting Disasters'

Netflix's Arrested Development - Episode 5.15 "Courting Disasters"

George Sr. and Lucille overestimate their new lawyer's expertise in the courtroom. Two familiar faces testify, and a video sheds more light on the case.

In 2018, there were 495 scripted shows airing amongst the linear channels and streaming services. The way people are consuming content now is so different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, there is less necessity to provide ample coverage of each specific episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site is making the move to shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of Netflix's Arrested Development.

"Courting Disasters" was written by Mitchell Hurwitz & Jim Vallely and directed by Troy Miller

In the previous episode, it seemed very unlikely that the show would find a way to make the flashbacks relevant or even slightly amusing. There were just so detached from everything else going on with no real sense of rhythm or purpose. And now, the show reveals why they were incorporated in the first place. It is just absolutely ridiculous and insane while not nearly justifying the amount of time spent in that new corner of the characters' respective pasts. The trial reveals that this isn't some home video or the latest memories that are suddenly coming to one of the characters. Instead, it is actually the Imagine Television project that Michael was developing and getting the rights for from the rest of his family. It's a project still in the post-production stages. But it's being used as an incriminating piece of evidence against Buster at his trial. That is so incredulous. Lottie Dottie is making the connection that because the character of Buster pushes his grandmother down the stairs and kills her in this new series the actual Buster must be guilty of doing the same thing to Lucille 2 because the evidence points to her dying in the same way. And yet, the only reason why this damning reveal was included in the new series was because of a very drunken conversation Lucille had with Warden Gentles. He would be so easy to pick apart on the stand. He very easily could have embellished this story because he was so desperate to be taken seriously as a written. This is a traumatic memory he got from Lucille during a tryst they had. He was drunk in that moment as well. Plus, he offers no more corroborating evidence. It's all just secondhand information. And yet, Lottie Dottie positions it as the smoking gun for the entire prosecution against Buster. It should be easy for any lawyer to pick apart this argument. And yet, Buster has Dusty who wasn't nearly as effective at knocking Lottie Dottie off her game as Lucille and George Sr. hoped. Their strategy was never going to work. That was a foregone conclusion the moment that the entire family accepted that it was the only thing they could do after agreeing the Guilty Guys weren't up for the task. But Dusty isn't a lawyer. He just knows things. He also has a hard time getting people on the stand to testify on Buster's behalf while offering any kind of cross-examination to the witnesses his former step-mother puts up there. It all has the potential of being amusing. However, it remains a real struggle to get past the ways in which the show is just skirting around the law. It's doing so in a way that would like to treat it all seriously even though this is not how any kind of courtroom would operate - not even a sensationalized one. That remains the key struggle for the Bluth family at the moment as well. They are coming up short in offering a defense for Buster. And so, he may be going to prison for a crime he did not commit. Of course, the finale also has a lot of work to do to explain many of the mysteries that have been playing out this season - like what actually happened to Lucille 2 and Lindsay. Meanwhile, George-Michael is given a potential sign of life by Murphy-Brown who has actually created the software for Fake Block. That may prove that he actually is capable of becoming the success story of this family even though he's tied up in all of their messes as well.