Pier Pressure (Arrested Development)
|Arrested Development episode|
|Episode no.||Season 1
|Directed by||Joe Russo|
|Written by||Mitchell Hurwitz
|Original air date||January 11, 2004|
|List of Arrested Development episodes|
"Pier Pressure" is the tenth episode of the TV comedy series Arrested Development. TV Critic Robert David Sullivan of the AV Club ranked Pier Pressure as the eighth best episode of all time in any Sitcom.
Michael Bluth is disappointed with George Michael's latest test grade, an A-minus. Conversely, Lindsay is quite impressed with Maeby's C-minus because she didn't even study. Michael advises Lindsay to set boundaries for her daughter; Lindsay counters that Michael puts pressure on George Michael and is like their father, George Sr., who once used a one-armed former employee named J. Walter Weatherman to scare his children into learning what he considered valuable life lessons. Gob and his mother, Lucille, come in; Lucille needs someone to help her doctor some receipts of purchases made using company money before giving them to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). When Michael says he can't help her, she asks Lindsay. Lindsay refuses, but when she sees Maeby's latest grade, a D-minus, she realizes that perhaps Michael was right and decides to send Maeby to do the work as punishment.
At the same time, Michael overhears George Michael berate himself as he struggles with a math problem and realizes that maybe Lindsay was right: he is pushing George Michael too hard. He tells him to take some time off and relax. George Michael grows bored, though, and decides to work in the banana stand the next day, where he is confronted by his uncle Buster. Buster tells George Michael that his girlfriend, Lucille Austero's vertigo is acting up and she's experiencing some nausea. He has decided to ask George Michael, the most streetwise kid he knew, to obtain some pot (marijuana) for Lucille. George Michael, surprised, tells Buster that he has no idea where to find illegal drugs, which Buster refuses to believe, seeing as the Bluth Banana Stand used to be a well-known location for drug dealers, especially in the 1960s, when the stand's location and appearance inspired the song "Big Yellow Joint". Michael finds his son working and chides him for not taking time off; he gives him $20 to spend on himself. Buster pretends to agree with Michael, and gives George Michael $225, which Buster hopes he will use to buy pot.
Maeby is spending time with Lucille, examining jewelry. Lucille finds a brooch that Lindsay always wanted and decides to give it to Maeby. Maeby is excited at the chance to make her mother jealous, but is bothered by a remark Lucille makes about her freckles. George Michael, meanwhile, does not find Gob on the yacht, so he leaves a note asking if he can buy him some pot. Gob does, but tells Michael. Michael quizzes his son, who nervously denies it. Michael decides to teach his son a lesson like his father used to teach them. He visits George Sr. to get the contact information for the one-armed man, but George Sr. tells Michael he should just talk to his son. But Michael is still set on the lesson. With Gob's help, Michael hires some "Hot Cops" (strippers in policeman costumes) to stage a fake drug bust.
Lindsay finds out that her daughter got the brooch she always wanted, and worse, was getting along with her mother, who has criticized and insulted Lindsay her entire life. But when Lucille begins to do the same thing to Maeby, Maeby decides she's spent enough time with her grandmother. Meanwhile, George Michael heads for the yacht to pick up the pot. He boards, and Gob flashes the lights. Quickly, two men appear with a bag of pot and George Michael reluctantly completes the deal. That's when the Hot Cops spring into action, cranking some music and dancing around. Michael appears and tells George Michael a lesson has been instilled. But Buster, deciding to stand up for himself, comes forward and admits that the weed was for him, not George Michael. Michael, upset with Buster, tells him to take his son home.
Just as they leave, though, two real drug dealers, having seen Gob's light flashing, come forward with a supply of weed. But before Gob can explain, a police boat comes up, flashing its lights. The dealers, thinking they were set up, pull out their guns, and Michael and Gob become trapped in a gun battle. The brothers are terrified, until one of the dealers loses an arm, and they look up to see the face of J. Walter Weatherman. Michael realizes that, once again, his father had taught him an elaborate lesson: not to teach lessons. That night, back at the model home, Maeby gives her mother the brooch, glad to have a mother who doesn't treat her the way Lucille treats Lindsay. And Michael encourages George Michael to be honest with him. George Michael admits that he has a crush on Maeby, but Michael thinks he's joking.
- Snierson, Dan (Feb. 17, 2006). "Best of Bluth: The best of Arrested Development—The Fox series creator Mitch Hurwitz picks his five favorite episodes". Entertainment Weekly, p. 66. http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,1158373,00.html
- "Pier Pressure" at the Internet Movie Database
- "Pier Pressure" at TV.com
- "Pier Pressure" at The-OP.com