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The Weak Become the Strong

"The Weak Become the Strong"
Directors: Mitch Hurwitz & Troy Miller — Writer: Jim Brandon, Mitch Hurwitz, Richard Rosenstock, Brian Singleton, Jim Vallely & Caroline Williams — Aired: May 4, 2018 — Icon-image      

"The Weak Become the Strong" was the eighth episode of chronological re-cut of Arrested Development's fourth season. It premiered on Netflix on May 4, 2018.

With nowhere else to go, Buster returns to a place he knows he's welcome. Lindsay and Marky leave the desert for more comfortable surroundings.


At Father B.'s Colony, George Sr. and Oscar are running a scheme to get money from CEOs by letting them spend an hour in the sweat lodge with Oscar before George Sr. convinces them to spend $10,000 on a glass of lemonade. George Sr. and Lucille are also pretending to divorce so they can work on their border wall project together without people suspecting them. George Sr. and Oscar eat maca and see a vision telling them to leave or the land will change them although they are unconvinced.

The vision was actually Marky Bark dressed as an ostrich because he lives with his mother and Lindsay on a ostrich farm next to the sweat lodge. Lindsay begins to hate her life however, when she finds out that Lucille has been put in prison, she decides that she should live in the now abandoned Balboa Towers apartment with Marky Bark and his ostrich. Unbeknownst to Lindsay, Maeby is also living in the apartment although she leaves before Lindsay can notice. Meanwhile, Buster has been kicked out by Lucille 2 and decides to return to the army.

One year later, George Sr. is now struggling to motivate the CEOs while Oscar becomes more belligerent. Lindsay and Marky Bark are still living in the apartment although its now been trashed. Marky Bark is planning to make a glitter bomb to protest Herbert Love, a very conservative politician, at a rally. His rival is Lucille 2, who Lindsay has been spending her time with. Lucille 2 has given Lindsay food as well as a red wig but she hides this from Marky Bark, who considers Lucille 2 to be "part of the problem". At the apartment, Lindsay also finds a $50,000 check for Maeby which she reads as "From Gangie for facelift".

In prison, Lucille finds out that Buster has been injured while piloting a plane. She rushes to the hospital to find Buster unharmed because he was actually piloting a drone over Afghanistan. The army hadn't told Buster that the drone was killing real people and, when Buster finds out, he cannot cope and falls off his chair. He has a new robotic hand because the army felt they must pay him off since he didn't know that he wasn't playing a game and he could sue. Buster wants Lucille's forgiveness but she tells him to grow up. The army still want Buster, however, so they can use his new hand as a weapon.

Barry arrives at the sweat lodge colony to tell George Sr. that he must pay $15 million because of the mortgage on the land. Barry suggests getting Herbert Love to support the border wall so they sell the land to the government. George Sr., who has become more distant from Lucille, convinces Oscar to visit her in his place so George Sr. can go to the Herbert Love rally.

Lindsay visits Lucille in prison to confront her over the check and Lucille finds out that Lindsay has been living in her apartment. Lucille tells Lindsay that they're much more similar than she thinks and, to prove her wrong, Lindsay decides to support Marky Bark's glitter bomb.

On the next Arrested Development: Fateful Consequences... Oscar, pretending to be George Sr., finds out about the border wall from Lucille before starting to seduce her.


Main Cast (in order of appearance)



  • Debra Mooney as Joan Bark
  • Justin Lopez as Guard Joe
  • Lamonica Garrett as Drew
  • Jackson Dismukes as Peters
  • Brian Patrick Wade as Sergeant Melnick
  • Josh Stamberg as Sergeant Briggs
  • Eli Vargas as Perfecto Telles
  • Zach Woods as Trippler
  • Eric Edelstein as Parameedic
  • Andy Buckley as Colonel Grimm
  • Thomas Creston Frayser as Colonel B. Arthur
  • Phil Reeves as Colonel Smalls
  • Jess Rowland as Derrin the Guard

Recurring Themes[]


  • Captain and Tennille - When Lucille Austero gives Lindsay the red wig she says "I used to wear that with the captain, and I was..." Lindsay then responds with "Tennille?". Lucille then says "... and not make eye contact. Yes!". This misconception occurs becuause of a play on words. Lucille thought Lindsay said "To kneel" not "Tennille", as in the recording artist. What Lucille meant was that she had to kneel and not make eye contact with whoever her captain was. We find out later that the 'captain' in this scenario is Buster, when in "Cinco de Cuatro I", Ophelia Love shows Buster the picture of Herbert and Lindsay (who was wearing the orange wig whenever she was with Love) to which he responds: "I've worn a captain's hat with someone who had hair like that!".
  • Don't Ask, Don't Tell Repeal Act - When Buster decides to rejoin the Army, they are open about who is gay. This is a reference to the repeal of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy.
  • Elizabeth Taylor & Richard Burton - Oscar hallucinates about the celebrities while eating maca.
  • Ender's Game - Buster's performance as a drone pilot, unaware he was attacking real targets is similar to the novel and film.
  • Nat King Cole - Marky and Lindsay think a picture of Nat King Cole is Herbert Love.
  • Ray Romano - When George is mocking the man who he thinks is an Indian, he asks for tickets to his casino to see Ray Romano perform standup comedy.

Callbacks/Running Jokes[]

  • Banners -
    • Lindsay makes a "I'm for Lucille 2 for Congres" banner on the back of Lucille's "You're Killing Me, Buster" banner from "¡Amigos!"
    • In a high school class president election, Lindsay hangs a banner that reads: "Vote Lindsay Bluth for Class President. Rich. Pretty. Thin. (Sally Sitwell's not even that hot.)"
    • In the same election, Sally won by hanging a banner that read "Sally Sitwell for President. I Won't Leave For Two Months and Come Back With a New Nose Like Lindsay Did."
  • Barry's bad legal advice - Barry admits that he went to law school in the Virgin Islands (graduated 1982) and that he paid a lookalike named Stuart to take the California Bar exam for him.
  • Contradicting the narrator - The narrator starts to say that Lindsay will never forgive herself for missing her mother's trial, but is interrupted before he can finish by Lindsay telling Marky they can take over Lucille's penthouse. Maeby also contradicts the narrator in "Cinco de Cuatro I" and so do G.O.B. and Tony Wonder in Turning on Each Other".
  • Facelift - The check that Lindsay thought was for a facelift for Maeby from Lucille but was actually a check from Gangie 4: Facelift for Maeby.
  • Fake Crying - Lindsay attempts to fake cry, as she does in "Pilot".
  • High school election - Lindsay ran for class president in 1982. G.O.B. and Michael ran against each other for student body president in high school, as mentioned in  "The Immaculate Election".
  • Gangee - A check from Maeby's movie is found at Balboa Towers. Maeby used to use that address to fool Tantamount Studios.
  • Gene Parmesan - Lindsay says "so you figured it out, Gene Parmesan" to Lucille at the tennis courts.
  • Juice - Buster drains a juice box during his turn as a drone pilot.
  • Lemonade - In this episode, George "squeezes" money from millionaires for a glass of lemonade. Oscar sold lemonade off his lemon grove in "Whistler's Mother" and John Beard uses lemonade to entrap local predators in "Recurring Dreams". While in a hammock in Mexico, Lindsay says she'd pay $20,000 for a glass of lemonade.
  • Lindsay's nose - A flashback to June 2, 1983 shows Lucille writing a check for $3,000 for Lindsay's nose surgery, which she spruces up by writing "a new nosey".
  • Maca - Oscar and his friends introduce George to the Mexican drug.
  • Neiman's - Lindsay finds a Neiman's catelog in Balboa Towers. She went shopping at Neimans in "Bringing Up Buster" and "My Mother, the Car".
  • Sedated animals - Lindsay and Marky find an iguana that has been sedated, probably by Dr. Norman.
  • The Literal Doctor - Dr. Fishman tells Lucille, "Your son went down while piloting a plane over Afghanistan. He deserves a big hand for that and we gave him one." Buster actually fell out of his seat while piloting a drone plane and received a large robotic hand to replace his hook.
  • True Kin - Both Michael and Lindsay lost their high school class president elections.

Hidden/Background Jokes[]

  • Ashamed of their name - Oscar and George don't use their last name in their sweat colony. George Michael is ashamed of his name in "The Parent Traps" and Michael calls his new company "The Michael B. Company" in "Three Half Men" and his movie "The Untitled Michael B. Project" in "Get On Up". The episode title "Queen B." in the original cut is a continuation of this.
  • Bees - George and Oscar call themselves "Father B." at their colony. A rule for Lucille's prison seen in the lobby is "No bees," a reference to the Season One episode "Let 'Em Eat Cake".
  • Dr. One - In the scene where Buster is piloting the drones, the Anaheim Plaza where he is stationed lists the "Dr. One Center" as one of the stores. This is referencing Tobias' pronunciation of "methadone" as "Method One," as this would be an Army code for "Drone Center."
  • Halliburton Teen - A teenager is seen wearing a Halliburton Teen shirt at the Ice Cream shop in the mall.
  • Mexican makeup - Lucille 2 dresses her adopted Hispanic son in a red wig and freckles, seen to be a favorite of Hispanic audiences previously in "Key Decisions".
  • "No touching!" - Another rule of the prison is "No touching."

Foreshadowing/Future References[]

  • Election - Sally and Lindsay campaigned against each other for Class President in 1982. At the end of the season, the campaign against each other for a seat in congress.
  • Herbert Love - This is the first episode Herbert Love is mentioned.
  • "High end hooker" - Before Lindsay actually becomes a hooker, Lucille calls her a high end hooker.
  • Lindsay is a true Bluth -
    • Lindsay says "I'd give $20,000 for a lemonade right now" like George did in "Just Deserters".
    • Lucille says "The apple does not far from the tree fall" and Lindsay replies "I am like you nothing".
  • Ostrich - George mentions that Divine Spirit looked like an ostrich. Also, many ostrich screeches are heard while in the desert.
  • Perfecto Telles - A photo of Perfecto and Lucille 2 is shown.
  • Red wig - Lucille 2's adopted son wears a red wig.

In Comparison to the Original Cut[]

This episode is made up from 4 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:


  • Michael Bluth, G.O.B., George Michael Bluth, and Tobias Fünke don't appear in this episode.
  • The title of this episode is said by the Divine Spirit to George Sr. and Oscar. It is also fitting as Oscar swaps from weak to strong while the opposite happens to George Sr. It could also be applied to Buster, who has rejoined the army, and Lindsay, who has committed to her ideals. The narrator references these changes:
    • Narrator: At the Father B Colony Retreat, sweat ‘n’ squeeze guru George Sr. was growing more empowered every day while his twin brother was bushed
    • Narrator: But in many ways, the strong was becoming the weak.
    • Narrator: George Sr., who’d been acting more like Oscar, found Oscar, who was actually exactly like George Sr.
  • During the Season 4 remix, the narrator often draws parallels between the Bluths' lives being similar despite being separated.
    • Narrator: And like Maeby, another Bluth right across the hall had just come close to being exposed with a mother. And since his own mother refused to see him, Buster went back to an old family.
    • Narrator: But after a year of not hearing from a youngest son she’d refused to see, Mother was about to get a load of bad news herself.
    • Narrator: And as Buster realized his tour of duty was just starting, George Sr. was about to get some bad news as well, from his attorney.
    • Narrator: And Lucille, who’d finally let go of Buster, was about to get another visit from a relative [Lindsay] first.