Arrested Development “Red Hairing” (4.08)

TV Reviews Arrested Development
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<i>Arrested Development</i> &#8220;Red Hairing&#8221; (4.08)

Lindsay Bluth may have been the main character in this eighth new taste of Arrested Development, but the star was the looming presence of an absent Tobias Fünke.

We first catch up with Lindsay only 100 miles away from Newport Beach. She’s been living in the desert with her activist boyfriend—Marky, who can’t recognize human faces—and his borderline abusive mother. From the mother, she learns of her own mother’s trial outcome, which would send her to prison. And rather than mourning, Lindsay obviously sees it as an opportunity.

She decides to take over her mother’s vacant penthouse, where she lives with a guilty Marky for a year before we catch up with them next. Although his digs are no longer an eco-friendly RV, Marky is steadfast in pursuing his next activism target, who is politician (and not-so-smooth guy) Herbert Love, a man whom Michael dubs “everything that you pretend to hate.” The plan involves camping for days under a podium to cover Love in blue paint and glitter (and you can see where this is going).

Things haven’t changed much for Lindsay, and it’s clear in the men she surrounds herself with. After a botched attempt at protest that lands Marky in jail, Lindsay finds herself in an affair with Love. And it doesn’t take a screaming, “blued” Marky or Herbert’s lack of a filter to see the qualities that brings her to these guys: the blue-tinted shades of Tobias they bring out. After all, Marky has relied on Lindsay this whole time because of his own shortcomings. Love shows a stronger side of Fünke, a man with all the power he could want with none of the social grace to go with it.

Maybe Maeby said it best, seeing the blued Marky being taken away by police: “Well, you certainly have a type.”

What follows is a scene where Arrested Development thrives, toeing the line between blissful ignorance and unbearable awkwardness. Michael, now a film producer, bumps into Love and Lindsay during his own date with—unbeknownst to anyone at the table—Ron Howard’s daughter Rebel. So it’s borderline unbearable when the subject of Howard comes up, with Love taking jabs at him, and Michael humblebragging, stating that while there are many crooked producers, he’s not one of ‘em.

For a Lindsay-centric episode, it had everything you’d expect: Witty back-and-forths between her and Lucille, whore/hooker-jokes aplenty, fumbling at the exact worst time, not learning from her own mistakes. The late appearance of Sally Sitwell is just icing on the cake of the sad celebration of Lindsay.

But that’s one of the biggest hurdles for this season, making this the second (second!) Lindsay-centered episode, which amounts to over an hour so far of plot centered on a character who is starting to wear thin. This was the first episode that was a struggle to get through.