Arrested Development Wiki
Arrested Development Wiki

Family Leave

"Family Leave"
Directors: Troy Miller — Writer: Mitchell Hurwitz & Jim Vallely — Aired: May 29, 2018 — Icon-image       (Remix)   

"Family Leave" is the first episode of Arrested Development's fifth season.

Surprises greet Michael at the penthouse and Sudden Valley. George-Michael confides in Maeby, who's trying to avoid Sudden Valley.


Months after Cinco de Cuatro, Michael is working at a web search company and is making friends and staying busy.

Michael and Buster[]

Months earlier, two mornings after Cinco de Cuatro, Michael leaves the model home but is told by Steve Holt, fumigating the house for his Steve Holt! Pest Control business, that someone is in the attic. Michael reminisces about failed scuba trips with his son George Michael and is startled to find his brother Buster in scuba gear in the attic. Buster explains that Lucille told him Michael would take care of him. Michael says he has too many problems of his own and leaves.


Outside Rebel's apartment, moments after George Michael punched Michael in the face for knowingly sleeping with his girlfriend (4x15 — "Blockheads") the father and son swallow the awkwardness and pretend as if nothing happened. Michael returned to the penthouse where he left a note for Lucille 2 telling her that he's sorry he missed her, while simultaneously on a call with her ignoring every word she said. He meets Lt. Toddler who is inquiring if Lucille 2 is home. Michael leaves his son a voicemail telling him that Rebel doesn't know that they are father and son. He goes to leave the penthouse but is again questioned by Lt. Toddler who is looking for Lucille 2, who hasn't been seen since Cinco. Michael tried to charm her and distance himself from Lucille 2 but an unphased Toddler asks him a series of questions about the redhedded woman in the Bluth penthouse (who was George wearing Lindsay's red wig) and Lucille Bluth and Tobias's whereabouts. Michael awkward babbles through both answers and leaves, deciding to report Buster as a missing person as a method of getting Lucille (Bluth or Austero) to take care of him again.

George Michael and Maeby[]

George Michael calls Maeby who's in Lucille Austero's penthouse cleaning up any evidence that she was there having sex with Perfecto Telles. She convinces the maid to swap clothes with her so that she can leave the building without being discovered. Maeby goes to meet with George Michael who hands her a cup of coffee. He tells her that he punched Michael and that he doesn't know what to do. Maeby tells him that she told Michael about Rebel having a boyfriend because she hoped something like this would happen. Maeby also tells him that he should call and apologize to him because it'll make Michael feel horrible. George Michael gets a call from Michael but declines it.

G.O.B. and George Sr.[]

Meanwhile in Mexico, G.O.B. attempts to buy forget-me-now pills to forget his tryst with Tony Wonder but is interrupted by his father George arriving. They two pretend to be super-machismo and agree to party their way through Mexico.

Lucille and Tobias[]

Lucille and Tobias flee Austerity. Lucille Bluth and Tobias arrive at the Bluth beach cottage.

Lindsay at the border[]

Lindsay attempts to pass the border in her limousine.


  • Scott Broderick as Self-Defense Instructor
  • Traci Crouch as Realtor
  • Pedro Lopez as Bodega Owner
  • Ross MacKenzie as Limo Driver
  • Rob Norton as Scuba Instructor
  • Jimmy Ortega as Mexican Border Officer
  • Sam Pfoser as Young George Michael
  • Zakary Risinger as Young George Michael
  • Gloria Sandoval as Rosa
  • Kimmy Shields as Lisa
  • Ryan Bailey as Cop #1
  • John F. Schaefer as Cop #2
  • Kristin Vahl as Krystal

Recurring themes[]

...on the next Arrested Development[]

"Lindsay arrives at the border she had just called for a wall to protect. Lindsay is proud that she thought to include her driver . And Lucille and her therapist arrive at their beachside casita."


  • Liza Minell's career - Michael jokes that it’s “like the Weimar Republic” inside Lucille 2’s condo. A reference to Liza Minnelli’s famous portrayal of Sally Bowles in Cabaret, which is set in the Weimar Germany.
  • J.F.K. and Jacqueline Bouvier - Buster tells Michael he and Lucille used to dress up as "Jackie O"  and "John-John"
  • Ron Howard's career - Rebel Alley was raised by a totally different mother
  • Transparent — The Narrator mentions that George Sr.'s impression of a woman (George Sr. in a red wig) wasn't going to win him any awards (the actor, Jeffrey Tambor has been nominated for multiple awards for his role as Maura Pfefferman on the series Transparent).

Callbacks/Running Jokes[]

  • ANUSTART - Michael spells out Tobias's license vanity plate to Lt. Toddler, who correctly deciphers it as "A new start".
  • Analrapist - Michael also begins to spell out this word to Lt. Toddler.
  • Boyfights
    • Maeby tells George Michael to put a video of him punching Michael in the face on a website called Dadfights, riffing on the Boyfights concept (with sons fighting their fathers instead of brothers fighting each other).
    • She then talks to him about That'sWhatSon, where dads fights their sons
  • Cutoffs - Tobias is wearing cutoffs on the beach
  • Winking - Michael winks at Toddler
  • Notes  
    • Michael leaves a note on Lucille 2's door
    • G.O.B leaves himself a note 
  • Love Each Other — Michael tells Toddler about Pete the mailman and the phrase "love each other" as an excuse for ending his note to Lucille 2 with "love you."
  • Forget-Me-Now (pill) – G.O.B. attempts to order a "shame-wow" from the store in Mexico.
  • Do a something search - Google continues to refuse to have its logo be seen
  • Spanish 
    • The narrator says "casita"
    • Tobias yells "Vivo,vivo!"
    • Lindsay misunderstands her driver's words: "Soy americano"
  • Bleeps
    • Lucille says: "Oh, [bleep]"
    • Gob says "What do you say you and I [bleep] our way through Mexico?"
  • Is Tobias gay?  
    • When Tobias and Lucille run away from Austerity Tobias puts on Lucille's clothes
    • Tobias doesn't take off the women necklace
    • Lucille refers to Tobias, before recognizing him, by using the word "fruitcake", a slang to indicate someone gay
  • Is Gob gay? - Gob says he did something a little out of character
  • Lucille's proverbs - This episodes marks the fisrt appereances of Luicille's proverbs "Forget but never forgive" and the one about raped murderers
  • Characters speaking along with the narrator
    • The narrator and John Beard say "Like his predator hole had been fished out" together 
    • The narrator and the scuba-diving instructor say "Underwater communication" together 
    • The narrator and Sally Sitwell say "Photos of Herbert Love with a mystery redhead" together 
  • John Beard's To Entrap a Local Predator: Orange County Edition: Super Creeps - John Beard comes back in the model home to retrieve some hidden cameras.
    • It is announced that John Beard's To Entrap a Local Predator: Orange County Edition: Super Creeps would come back in July
  • Two weeks! - Gob, once again, picks this number of days to determine the duration of something he wants to do, he did the same in "Colony Collapse" and in "The One Where They Build A House"
  • Cottage - The cottage makes its first appereance
  • Red wig - Michael finds Lindsay's wig from season 4
  • George Michael hasn't met Lucille 2 - George Michael doesn't remember Lucille 2, because they've never met. He drives her car though and Maeby has told him who she is many times.
  • Pick a lane! - This phrase is yelled many times by Buster and Michael
  • I am a monster! - Buster asks Michael: “Am I that much of a monster, Michael? Even to you?”
  • Ciao/Bella - This is the first time Michael and George Michael greet each other with this two italian words, they'll do it other times throughout the fifth season
  • Are we good? — Michael calls George Michael to repeatedly ask if they're good, much like GOB did with George Michael in "Colony Collapse". In both instances, this was followed after George Michael punching them in the face.
  • Bluths in scuba gear - Buster wears a scuba gear, later also Michael and young George Michael wear it in a flashback
  • Scuba-diving - Michael's passion for scuba-diving is revealed
  • Running away from a hotel — Tobias and Lucille run away from Austerity in the same manner that Tobias and Lindsay ran away from their hotel in "Pilot"
  • Therapy — As soon as Lucille is having a breakthrough in her therapy Tobias is not paying attention, similar to the therapy session in "Queen B.".
  • Buster's hands - Buster gets a robotic hand
  • Steve Holt! - Steve Holt yells: "George Sr.!"
  • Attic - Buster is sleeping in the attic as George Michael, George Sr. and Michael have done many times
  • Nobody recognizes Steve Holt - Michael doesn't recognize his nephew
  • Insensitivity about Michael's wife's death - Michael says “I’ve seen one person die,” referencing the death of the Sudden Valley postman in Season 4 that left a strong effect on him. It seems Michael has forgotten that he watched his wife pass away
  • Try again - Michael makes an error on his computer and he is corrected with the words "try again", which was a running gag in the third season's episode "Exit Strategy"
  • Pest Control - While Michael and Steve Holt are talking, in the background can be seen the Pest Control car
  • Music - The song Motherboy plays while Buster is talking about dressing up 
  • The line "Lindsay is proud that she thought to include her driver" is a callback to season 1 episode "Shock and Aww"

Hidden/Background Jokes[]

  • Woodblock - The woodblock sound of George Michael’s Fakeblock accompanies the “A Netflix Semi-Original Series” card before the episode. This will countinue for the whole season
  • Dressing up - Buster’s fond remembrance of dressing up as JFK and Jackie with Lucille indicates that they did so in some uncomfortable locations, including a DUI stop for Lucille and Michael's wife funeral, as shown in the photos
  • Ostrich - While playing volleyball, Michael sticks his head in the sand.
  • Notes -  Michael's note to Lucille 2 featured the words "haha", a line Tobias always creepily added in his notes to casting directors in  S.O.B.s
  • There are some Gob's photos on the board in front of the cash desk in the mexican shop where he used to buy forget-me-nows

Foreshadowing/Future References[]

  • Fantastic FourGene Parmesan is seen with the rock monster 'Thing' costume, and likely performs in Fantastic 4: An Action Musical.
  • Scuba Diving - Scuba diving and its underwater communication will play an important in future episodes 
  • Maeby is in Lucille 2's apartment - When Michael walks near Lucille 2's apartment a housekeeper walks out with a sex toy in her laundry basket and some unusual clothes for a housekeeper. They're later revealed to be Maeby's.


→ See 89 pictures from Family Leave at Images from Family Leave.

1. "Family Leave"
2. "Self-Deportation"
3. "Everyone Gets Atrophy"
4. "An Old Start"
5. "Sinking Feelings"
6. "Emotional Baggage"

7. "Rom-Traum"
8. "Premature Independence"
9. "Unexpected Company"
10. "Taste Makers"
11. "Chain Migration"
12. "Check Mates"

13. "The Untethered Sole"
14. "Saving for Arraignment Day"
15. "Courting Disasters"
16. "The Fallout"

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