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Re Cap'n Bluth

"Re Cap'n Bluth"
Directors: Mitch Hurwitz & Troy Miller — Writer: Mitch Hurwitz, Dean Lorey, Richard Rosenstock, Jim Vallely & Caroline Williams — Aired: May 4, 2018 — Icon-image      

"Re Cap'n Bluth" was the first episode of chronological re-cut of Arrested Development's fourth season. It premiered on Netflix on May 4, 2018.

When an ill-fated ride puts the Bluths in figurative hot water (but literal cold water), Michael decides to leave his family behind for good.


It is May 5th and a young Lucille and George discuss their missing cleaner, Rosa, who is celebrating Cinco de Mayo. Lucille decides that they must use up all the party supplies before Cinco de Mayo so it cannot be a celebrated. To do this, she creates Cinco de Cuatro.

Many years later, Michael is at Cinco de Cuatro where he is going to meet Lucille 2. Michael owes her $700,000 and cannot pay her back. He refuses to ask his family for help and instead decides he will sleep with Lucille 2 to settle the debt.

After doing something unthinkable, Michael returns to the model home where he finds G.O.B. who is angry with him. The brothers reconcile and G.O.B. offers to split a Forget-Me-Now with Michael so they can both forget what they've done. Michael refuses his offer. However, when Michael sees who G.O.B. spend the night with, G.O.B. forces him to take the entire Forget-Me-Now.

Six years earlier, Michael is asked to be the President of the Bluth Company. However, when his son George Michael tried to flee on G.O.B.'s yacht, Michael chased after him and they decide to leave the family behind. Meanwhile, Lucille sold the company to Stan Sitwell and decided to commandeer the RMS Queen Mary. Stan Sitwell decided to sell the company on almost immediately to Lucille 2. Lucille called Lucille 2 but, when Lucille 2 cannot hear her insults, decided to turn the boat around which lead to it crashing.

Michael and George Michael continued to sail away in the yacht until Michael found George Sr. as a stowaway. George Sr. suggested that Michael should return to the family now the Queen Mary has crashed.

Michael, George Michael, and George Sr. arrive at the Coast Guard headquarters where the rest of the family are already waiting. George Sr. asks after his wife while Lucille and Lindsay discuss a reason for boat hijacking which doesn't incriminate Lucille. Meanwhile, G.O.B. and Tobias discuss G.O.B.'s magic until G.O.B. spots George Michael and asks him to accept his relationship with Ann. At the same time, Lucille and George Sr. talk to Barry about her alibi. She decides she was going to save Buster from drowning however, when asked by the coast guard, Buster doesn't say this and Lucille is taken away. Barry then talks to Michael because Lucille's trial falls under Maritime law and Michael decides to stay with his family.

Three months later, the family gather at the Lucille's penthouse only to find out that Barry has missed Lucille's hearing. Michael discovers that his family have been selling their shares and George Sr. has bought Californian desert and will be moving there because Lucille and him are divorcing. G.O.B. also wants the money to fund his wedding to Ann. Michael is furious that none of the money is being used to finish Sudden Valley and that they also expect him to testify at Lucille's trial with Buster. Michael decides to leave his family for good by selling his shares to Lucille 2.

On the next Arrested Development: Fateful Consequences... Michael sends George Michael off to college with the stair car. The building of Sudden Valley is completed and Michael feels nothing can go wrong. However, it will as, six years later, Lucille 2's body is laid on the stair car at Cinco de Cuatro.


Main Cast (in order of appearance)
  • Brian Huskey as Chorizo salesman
  • Rudy Moreno as Mario
  • Pedro Lopez as Mercado salesman
  • Max Winkler as Young Barry Zuckerkorn
  • Mac Brandt as Coast Guardsman
  • Jayden Maddux as Young Buster Bluth
  • Rodney J. Hobbs as Earl Samuels
  • Lamarcus Tinker as Earle Monroe

Recurring themes[]


  • 20th Century Fox - Footage from Development Arrested has the watermark "PROPERTY OF TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX" because FOX aired the first three seasons of Arrested Development.
  • How the Grinch Stole Christmas - During the scene when Young Lucille plots to disrupt Cinco de Mayo, her face cream gives her the appearance of being green-skinned, much like the Grinch in this Dr. Seuss classic. Like the Grinch, she is plotting to upset a holiday for which she has a personal disdain. The narration also mimics the film, and again during the discussion of why Michael opened the fourth ballot. The film version of the Seuss book was produced by Imagine Entertainment.
  • Hanukkah - The Cinco de Cuatro boat parade is known as "The Festival of Lights".

Callbacks/Running Jokes[]

  • Ann's nicknames - Several Bluth family members forget Ann or her name:
    • Michael calls her "mouth".
    • G.O.B. calls her "Blank".
  • Austero Bluth Company - The Bluth Company has been renamed the Austero Bluth Company after Lucille Austero purchased the shares from Stan Sitwell.
  • I [bleep]ed - The narrator says "She [bleep]ed Buster and Gob"
  • Background music
    • When Lucille begins to plot against Cinco de Mayo, the music playing in the background is the same as the music that plays when G.O.B. discusses tiny town with Larry Middleman in "Mr. F."
  • Balboa Bay Window - Lucille and Buster appeared in the BBW as a protest to gay marriage, with the headline "Proposition Ape: Lucille Bluth Protests Gay Marriage by Marrying a Gorilla"
  • Big Bear - George, Sr. calls himself "Old Big Bear."
  • Dead animals - G.O.B. pulls live mice from behind Ann's ears and later has two dead doves, a dead rabbit, and some dead mice which drowned when the RMS Queen Mary capsized.
  • FOX 6
    • John Beard reports on Lucille's arrest with the headline "Pursed Lips Sinks Ship"
  • How dey do dat - Tobias asks "How'd he do dat?" about G.O.B. mice illusion. Tony Wonder calls dumb audience members "How dey do dats" in "Sword of Destiny".
  • "I'm here, I'm queer..." - Tony Wonder's magazine article has the title "I'm here, I'm queer, now I'm over here". In "Pilot", the gay protestors chanted "We're here, we're queer, we want to get married on the ocean."
  • "It Ain't Easy Being White" - After giving him a forget-me-now, G.O.B. sings to Michael, "It's so easy to forget."
  • Maritime law
    • John Beard mentions that many of Lucille's charges will fall under "the dominion of the little understood maritime law."
    • Also, George, Sr. asks Michael if he would tip an African-American "on a train," implying that different standards of behavior apply on different modes of transportation.
  • Seaward/C-Word - John Beard calls Lucille a "seaward matriarch."
  • "Selfish Michael" - [G.O.B. calls Michael "stupid, forgetful Michael."
  • Spanish
    • Lucille starts a new festival to pre-empt Cinco de Mayo, called Cinco de Cuatro. This translates, not to "Fourth of May," but rather to "Five of Four."
    • The mariachi band sings "La Cucaracha" in English during the Cinco de Cuatro festival.
  • The Great Dark Period - The time between 2006 and 2013 is referred to as "The Great Dark" period by the narrator and in text during the "rewind" animation.
  • The Trial of Captain Hook - A scene from Michael's childhood play is shown, with additional footage showing Michael's Peter Pan character attempting to fly.
  • "Where the [bleep]" - In the flashback at the beginning, George, Sr. says, "Where the [bleep] are my socks?" This is a reference to Tobias shouting, "Where the [bleep] are my hard-boiled eggs?" ("Good Grief")
  • "You're out of the movie!" - After young Michael crashes into the seal, he is told "You're out of the play!".

Hidden/Background Jokes[]

  • Young Barry Zuckerkorn - The actor portraying the young Barry Zuckerkorn is Max Winkler, Henry Winkler's son.
  • Letter about shovelling coal - It reads:
    • Bruce Wallenstein / SAT, ACT, GMAT, and GRE prep Tutor / [blur] Certified
    • Imagine Entertainment / North American Headquarters / Imagine Tower Building / N.Wiltshire Blvd. / Beverly Hills CA, 90272
    • To whom it may concern, / As a long time admirer of your program, I was both surprised and delighted to see reference made to a group sexual enterprise with the monicker "Shoveling coal" of which I must confess to enjoying some familiarity. Do I infer too much, however, to assume your light hearted elision "I don't even want to tell you what these guys thought you meant" might belie your own lack of familiarity with the carnal practice in question?
    • It is under the presumption that I trespass propriety in writing to offer you a helpful definition of the effective and [unclear] yet woefully under-publicized sexual stratagem.
    • "Shovelling coal" is an act which requires a minimum of 3 people whereby a [blur] takes [blur] (sometimes referred to as "the kipper") using only [blur] although regional differences apply. A fourth person (or third and fourth person if the first person hasn't been released) has to [blur].
    • [blur] (much like actual coal shoveling) [blur] when they [blur] until submission [blur] at which point he's now the "Loretta Lynn" if you will. [blur]
    • Some fun variation! At Christmas time, why not try adding a little [blur] unless they're Jewish, in which case [blur] The simulacrum realized the participants part ways - never to meet again.
    • I love your program, and good luck with the movie. Hope this was helpful. And here's hoping there's always money in the banana stand!
    • Sincerely yours, / Bruce Wallenstein / [blurred contact details]

Foreshadowing/Future References[]

  • G.O.B's date - The identity of G.O.B's date is revealed in 4x22 Cinco de Cuatro III.
  • Michael's debt: Why Michael owes Lucille 2 $700,000 is not explained in this episode.
  • What happened to Lucille 2? - Lucille 2's body seen on the stair car.

In Comparison to the Original Cut[]

This episode is made up from 6 episodes of the original cut of Season 4. Because the re-cut is chronological and combines the characters' stories into one narrative, new narration was recorded and there is even some additonal dialogue. These changes, as well as which scenes appear in which original episode, are listed below:

  • Young Lucille & George Sr. (4x1 Flight of the Phoenix)
  • Michael and Lucille 2 at Cinco de Cuatro, additional dialogue in italics (4x1 Flight of the Phoenix)
    • Lucille 2: (under narration) God, I love your-
    • The narration changes from "But seriously, she had gotten intimate with Buster and G.O.B.” in the original cut to “But seriously, she [bleep]ed Buster and G.O.B." in this episode.
  • At the model home, Forget-me-now flashback (4x1 Flight of the Phoenix)
    • Season 3 flashback (mainly new to the remix, some from 4x1 Flight of the Phoenix, 4x2 Borderline Personalities, 4x10 Queen B.)
    • Narrator: Michael’s fortunes had fallen great deal in the six years since the Bluth family business had finally made him their official captain.
    • This episodes seems to use different cuts/camera angles to the Season 3 finale “Development Arrested”.
      • G.O.B. used to say “build up the little guy’s self esteem” but says “build up his self-esteem” in the remix.
      • Plus, the split screen shows Michael laughing at this before being outraged (like in the original Season 3)
      • Lucille says “for 20% above the market. 15 and I’ll throw in Nellie” in Season 3 and the original cut and “for 15% above market” in the remix.
    • The letter about shovelling coal is new.
    • Narrator: And he set off to sea which should have been the end of it. Except this happened.
    • Men: We’re listing! We’re list-
    • Narrator: Michael, alone with his son, had escaped the rest of his family at last. He finally felt like the captain of his own ship. But when he awoke from a brief nap a short time later, he came face-to-face with the ugly truth.
  • Michael and George Sr. on the yacht (4x2 Borderline Personalities)
  • At the coast guard's office (4x1 Flight of the Phoenix, 4x2 Borderline Personalities, 4x3 Indian Takers, 4x7 Colony Collapse, 4x10 Queen B., 4x14 Off the Hook)
    • John Beard: But for now, the Bluth family's reputation is as sullied [...]
    • George Sr.: Excuse me, sir. My wife, where is she? [in the original cut, he said "how is she?"]
    • The narrator says "at the beginning of a fourth season that would never come" in the original cut, but "at the beginning of a fourth season that almost didn't come" in this episode.
    • Lucille: They're persecuting me because I'm a white woman who looks 15 years younger than my real age of 60! We both do.
    • George Michael: Hi, Uncle G.O.B.
    • Narrator: And that's when G.O.B. saw his nephew and noticed how both the betrayal and the time at sea had so clearly aged the boy.
    • Coast guardsman: All right, let's take her away.
    • This exchange has some new dialogue:
      • Michael: It's gonna be a tough one, because there's about 400 witnesses that are ready to throw her underneath the boat, buddy. I don't think I can even help.
      • Barry: That makes two of us. It turns out that stealing the Queen Mary comes under maritime law, which, I just found out, is an actual thing. Did you know that? It's an actual thing.
      • Michael: Maritime.
      • Narrator: And perhaps that's when Michael found a reason to stick around a little longer.
  • Family meeting at Lucille's penthouse (4x1 Flight of the Phoenix, 4x2 Borderline Personalities, 4x7 Colony Collapse, 4x10 Queen B.)
    • Barry: Well, I missed the hearing. My fault. [...]
    • Michael's line "Duh right? I mean duh" is in the original cut but it's difficult to hear under the narration.
    • Lucille's line "beat Barry's three years" has become "beat Barry's three tries".
    • Barry: This might be about my new sailor suit. (whispers) This could help us.
    • Lucille: We have money from selling some shares in the family company.
    • Narrator: And that's when Michael discovered that in the months he'd been busy sacrificing for the family, his family had been sacrificing nothing.
    • Buster: Oh. Love that.
  • On the next... (4x1 Flight of the Phoenix)
    • Narrator: And with the money from Lucille 2, he finally builds the long-delayed Sudden Valley, but this time with himself as captain.
    • The bad thing that happends in the original cut is the collapse of the housing market, it is Lucille 2's body on the stair car in the remix.


  • The title has two meanings. Firstly, it can mean "recapping Bluth" as it recaps what has happened to the Bluth family since the Season 3 finale. It can also mean "Re: Captain Bluth" as the episode is regarding Michael as captain of the Bluth family.
  • Michael is referred to as a captain three times by a narrator. Michael is made the "official captain" of the Bluth Company when he becomes the president. Later, when he leaves in the yacht with George Michael, he "finally felt like the captain of his own ship". Finally, he finishes building Sudden Valley "but this time with himself as captain".