Review: Arrested Development

I remember watching the pilot for the first time two years ago.

It came across as silly, borderline stupid. Sure, there were some clever moments, but everything was so bizarre. After all, one "normal" person in the house full of wackos? It just seemed too ridiculous.

But after giving it some more time (and watching through some more episodes), I decided that it really is one of the best comedies on TV - particularly because this one can actually get me to make an audible sound (even something as small as a chuckle or a "ha") on a consistent basis.

After watching the pilot, my original fear was that the show's humor would be based on character flaws or forced situations so common in today's stale formula (think Family Guyor any sitcom, really). Though the vanity does slip its way in (inevitable, really), it's more of supporting factor rather than an actual cause (it reminds me of Boy Meets World, except we have a cast of Eric Matthews). And the instead of uncomfortably forced situations, we get very sane initial suggestions that fall apart due to said character flaws. This makes the off-the-wall characters a little more believable and sympathetic, than, say, the cast of Glee. Sure the characters are caricatures, but they represent something in society and not just misfits doomed to be the butt of jokes.

With humor derived primarily from satire, wit, misunderstanding, awkwardness, and "full-circle" jokes, it makes this true situation comedy a pretty good riot. Too bad they had to end it in 2006, but at least we have a feature film to look forward to.

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