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What Goes Around

"What Goes Around"
Directors: Mitch Hurwitz & Troy Miller — Writer: Mitch Hurwitz, Dean Lorey, Richard Rosenstock & Jim Vallely — Aired: May 4, 2018 — Icon-image      

"What Goes Around" was the fourteenth episode of chronological re-cut of Arrested Development's fourth season. It premiered on Netflix on May 4, 2018.

Lucille takes control in prison. A new start brings things full circle for Tobias. Michael bonds with an actress but still doesn't know her name.


At Orange County Correctional Facility L.I.T.E., Lucille has joined a prison gang called the Jade Dragon Triad. However, she is starting to annoy the other gang members. George Sr. suggested that she join them years earlier although not before telling her that she can get a reduced sentence if she goes to Lucille 2's rehab. She initially impresses the gang by showing them how to smoke inside. Olive Garden offers to pay off the debt on the land although this means the Chinese will own the border wall. Lucille doesn't care though because the government will still pay the Bluths for the land.

George Sr. is devastated by this news because he has found out that the land is in Mexico and not the USA. He tries to get Herbert Love to stop supporting the wall but doesn't have the money to do so. George Sr. asks Michael to convince Herbert Love to speak against the wall at Cinco de Cuatro.

After getting mistaken for a predator by John Beard, Tobias ends up in prison but is released as long as he works at Austerity. Tobias is now working at the rehab center as a therapist and his patients include Mark Cherry and DeBrie Bardeaux. Argyle Austero, Lucille 2's brother, realises that Tobias and DeBrie already know each other and bans Tobias from being her therapist. Tobias convinces him to make a Fantastic Four musical with the patients so he can still see DeBrie as a producer.

Tensions rise in prison and Lucille is almost stabbed by a member of the gang. Afterwards, George Sr. admits to Lucille that they bought the wrong land. She changes their plan so that Herbert Love should speak against the wall but after they build enough for the government pay them for the land. George also tells her that he fired G.O.B. after he ruined the sweat lodge business. Lucille says to give him another job and also to produce evidence of the wall being built. To do this, George Sr. has a wall built and he drives around it with Buster while filming. However, it becomes clear that it's a circular wall and isn't miles long when Buster must leave the truck because he feels travel sick.

Michael arrives at the Ealing Club to see Rebel Alley's band but first, outside the club, he meets Ron Howard. Here, Michael finds out that when Ron said he wanted a film about a Bluth father-son relationship, he meant Michael and George Michael, not George Sr. and Michael. Michael is unsure whether he can ask his son for his signature. Ron Howard leaves and Rebel Alley arrives, although Michael still doesn't know her name. He watches her band and then have a drink together. Michael offers her a part in his movie and she tells him about the trouble she's having with her son Lem. He sympathizes with her although it turns out her son is six and isn't an adult like George Michael. Afterwards, Michael and Rebel go into a photo booth before they part ways. When looking at the photos, he realises that she is Rebel Alley.

On the next Arrested Development: Fateful Consequences... Tobias convinces DeBrie to join his musical.


Main Cast (in order of appearance)



  • Amy Hill as Noh
  • Suzanne Whang as Olive Garden
  • Bobby Lee as Miss Oh.
  • Peter Giles as Raphocwcps Narrator
  • Daniel Amerman as Mark Cherry
  • Hamish Clark as Band Leader
  • Bob Glouberman as David the Aide
  • Barry Wiggens as Actor Portraying Carl Weathers
  • Andrew Secunda as Process Server
  • Asif Ali as Trout
  • George Watsky as Chris Kazmierczak

Recurring Themes[]


  • Charlize Theron - Rebel says that turning her character into a mentally challenged woman might win her an Oscar, and Michael is reminded of Rita. Charlize Theron, a previous Oscar winner, played Rita.
  • Marilyn Monroe - Lucille sings "Happy Birthday Mr. President" to George to stimulate him.
  • MARVEL - A Broadway musical production of another MARVEL character, spiderman, has had a lot of trouble with accidents, recasting, financing and copyrights. Legal battles over copyrights on comicbook characters are notorious in Hollywood, often resulting in studios releasing mediocre projects to maintain control over a franchise.
  • Olive Garden - Lucille says that she got China Garden's aunt Olive to offer them "unlimited bread". The restaurant Olive Garden is known for offering unlimited breadsticks.
  • The Fantasticks - Argyle and Lucille 2 stared in a community theatre rendition of the 1960s play The Fantasticks which tells the story of two neighbors who fake a feud to get their children to fall in love.

Callbacks/Running Jokes[]

  • Analrapist - In prison, Tobias learns to call his "analrapist" title a "theralyst".
  • ANUSTART - A prison guard calls Tobias "ANUSTART" in prison.
  • Army - Buster wears his army outfit in George's RV.
  • Hot Cops - The music for Tobias's acting reel is a theme song for the Hot Cops.
  • "I don't like it... I love it!" - Argyle uses the same expression Carl Weathers used in "Marta Complex".
  • John Beard's To Entrap a Local Predator: Orange County Edition: Super Creep - Tobias' episode plays in the TV in the prison holding cell.
  • Lady Allure - This song plays as Lucille smokes, as it did in "Just Deserters".
  • Motion sickness - Buster gets nauseous when he tries to look through binoculars while the RV is in motion, just as Gene Parmesan does in "Turning on Each Other".
  • "Mr. F" music - When Argyle mentions that people used to call him Mr. Fantastick, the "Mr. F" theme music plays.
  • Noodle Stab - Lucille is threatened with a prison shiv made of a sharpened dry noodle. George referred to his limp erection during sex as a "noodle stab" in "Just Deserters".
  • No Touching - Lucille's prison has "NO TOUCHING" signs visible in the dayroom.
  • Prison - Tobias is admitted to prison, where he previously studied for the role of Frightened Inmate Number Two.
  • Rita Leeds - When Rebel suggests making her character a mentally disabled woman, Michael responds, "there's a part like that too", and tries to excuse himself again for his past obliviousness.
  • Sheep / Photo montages - While looking over the Photos of Michael and Rebel from the Ealing Club's Photo Booth, a sheep can be seen intruding on the couple, similar to Buster's incident in the series one episode, "Staff Infection", in which a Sheep interrupts him in a photo booth.
  • "The blue on the map is land" - The revelation that the map displayed on the show and apparently used by George Sr was drawn by Buster explains why Mexico is colored in blue and the ocean is colored in green.
  • Tobias' acting reel - Tobias's reel has many of his past performances seen in the series:

Hidden/Background Jokes[]

  • Austerity Clinic - The sign for the clinic reads "Austerity: A Full Service Way to Live Without".
  • LEM - Ron invited Michael to talk inside the LEM (Lunar Excursion Module). Rebel's son is named Lem.
  • Lucille's Number - Lucille's prison number is 07734 - which is "hello" spelled backwards in "numeric" form.
  • Argyle Austero wears argyle (diamond patterned) sweaters.
  • Actor David Cross auditioned for House M.D.
  • The production of the Broadway production of a show about another MARVEL owned character, Spiderman the Musical has been troubled by many misfortunes like (fatal) accidents, recasting, financing problems and copyright issues. The movie/tv/musical-rights to various comic book characters are a hot topic in Hollywood, and often projects are greenlit and rushed just to keep control over a franchise.

In Comparison to the Original Cut[]

This episode is made up from 5 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:

  • Real Asian Prison Housewives, new dialogue in italics (4x10 Queen B.)
    • There is a new filter on the TV footage
    • Mrs. Oh: Is this first time you ever do?
  • Lucille and George Sr. at prison (4x10 Queen B.)
  • Tobias joins Austerity, flashbacks to how he got there (4x9 Smashed)
  • Lucille plays Mahjong (4x10 Queen B.)
    • In the flashback to Lucille smoking with Buster, the song Lady Allure is now playing, as it did in "Just Deserters"
    • Lady Allure plays again when they smoke in prison.
  • Lucille calls George Sr. (4x10 Queen B.)
    • Lucille: They'll own all of it, but they'll make us very rich in the process because the government still needs to buy that border property from us.
  • Flashbacks to the wall (4x6 Double Crossers)
  • Lucille and George Sr. (4x10 Queen B.)
  • Tobias and DeBrie at Austerity (4x9 Smashed)
  • Tobias flashbacks (4x5 A New Start)
  • At Austerity (4x9 Smashed)
    • Narrator: Tobias wasn’t the only family member to have show business aspiration of his own.
  • Michael the producer flashbacks (4x4 The B. Team)
    • Ron Howard says “We’re gonna need everybody’s signature on these releases in order to make this movie. Although the real heartbeat of this thing is the father-son dynamic,” while the Narrator says “We’re gonna need everybody’s signature on these releases in order to make this story. Although the real heartbeat of this thing is the father-son dynamic. Or words to that effect.”
    • This exchange is slightly extended:
      • Rebel Alley: I'm in a band.
      • Michael: Yeah.
    • The Michael and George Sr. scenes are from 4x4 The B. Team and 4x6 Double Crossers.
    • Narrator: So the old family was back together again… on paper, while Lucille had a new family of sorts. And as she had done with her last one, she was soon turning them on each other.
  • Lucille at prison (4x10 Queen B.)
  • Lucille is visited by George Sr. (4x6 Double Crossers, 4x10 Queen B.)
    • Lucille: You’ve gotta make this work, George.
  • George Sr. and Buster make a video (4x6 Double Crossers)
  • Michael at the Ealing Club (4x4 The B. Team)
  • On the next... Tobias encourages DeBrie (4x9 Smashed)
    • Tobias: Yes, the last couple of tries made your body shut down but [...]


  • Maeby and George Michael aren't in this episode.
  • The title of this episode is likely referring to the phrase "What Goes Around, Comes Around". George Sr. and Buster also drive around the circular wall.
  • During the Season 4 remix, the narrator often draws parallels between the Bluths' lives being similar despite being separated.
    • Narrator: Lucille was also fitting in with a new group [like Tobias].
    • Narrator: Tobias wasn’t the only family member to have show business aspiration of his own.
    • Narrator: So the old family was back together again… on paper, while Lucille had a new family of sorts. And as she had done with her last one, she was soon turning them on each other.