4x13 - George Michael 01

"It Gets Better"
Directors: Mitch Hurwitz & Troy Miller — Writer: Dean Lorey & Richard Rosenstock — Aired: May 26, 2013 — Icon-image      

"It Gets Better" is the thirteenth episode of Arrested Development's fourth season.

At UC Irvine things get steamy when George Michael finds himself in a love triangle with his best friend Ray and his girlfriend Becky.


After George's exoneration party and Lucille was arrested, George Michael was told by Maeby that she wasn't interested in him anymore (mostly because he was a bad kisser). Weeks later he was thrown a graduation party by his family at Balboa Towers. He was given a check from his grandparents to buy a car but his father made him rip it up. Instead, he was given the stair car and sent off to college. His freshman year he tried to grow out of his awkward phase and became slightly more social. His sophomore year he had two good friends Ray and Becky. He dated Becky and she later dated Ray, and he was emotionally devastated. He then studied abroad in Spain where he learned to kiss properly and made love to a Spanish housewife, who it is implied he unknowingly impregnated. Returning home with a moustache, George Michael found himself in an extra-large dorm room all to himself.

4x13 It Gets Better (24)

George Michael at his graduation party

After the California housing market collapsed and Pete the Mailman died, Michael moved in with him. He was later assigned a roommate Paul 'P-Hound' Huan. George Michael was attempting to get into Juilliard on the woodblock and found recording himself with a band wasn't highlighting his skills enough. He and P-Hound decided to make a woodblock app for the iPhone as his resume to music school. P-Hound paid $0.99 times three for other wood block apps but George Michael paid $5,000 for a trademark to the name FakeBlock. George Michael needed money so he signed up to tutor math students and he saw Maeby's name so signed up for her and played it off as a coincidence.

After Maeby, George Michael, P-Hound, and Michael voted Michael out of the dorm, George Michael agreed to take Maeby to the Opie Awards, hoping to get close to her. He booked a room in the hotel for the two of them but found out she had a boyfriend. Maeby had been bragging about FakeBlock to Rebel, to whom George Michael said his name was George Maharis. He wasn't interested in her, which made her interested in him. The next day news of FakeBlock was everywhere and George Michael tried to calm the storm until Maeby said "I wouldn't get into bed with you on this if I didn't trust you" and he continued with the charade, hoping to have sex with her.

4x13 It Gets Better (A1)

George Michael on the phone with his father

He then went to the Ealing Club to meet with his father but instead ran into Rebel and they began to flirt. George Michael was then looped into a game of deceitful phone-tag with his father before being pulled into a photobooth by Rebel where they made out. Days later George Michael met Rebel at a party thrown for him by the residents of Sudden Valley. A few days after Cinco de Cuatro, George Michael was sued by P-Hound for his rights to part of FakeBlock.


Main Cast
  • Maria Thayer as Tracey Bluth
  • Nadine Velazquez as Rosalita
  • Dan Zott as Guitarist
  • Kunal Sharma as Ray
  • Olivia Taylor Dudley as Rose
  • Antonia Jaramillo as Bernardo
  • Tara Copeland as Deann
  • David Henrie as Himself
  • Amy Heidt as Publicist
  • Lauren Katz as Scarlet Letterman
  • Joe Martin Thomas as Security Guard
  • Jake Martin as Ealing Club host

Recurring themes


  • ¡Átame! - George Michael's dorm contains a poster of the dark romantic Spanish comedy ¡Átame! The film is about a recently released psychiatric patient who kidnaps an actress in order to make her fall in love with him. The main character believes it is his destiny is to marry her and father her children. When the film was brought to America, it received an X rating from the MPAA. It, along with Les Cousins Dangereux, creates a running gag of George Michael having posters of movies about racy love stories in his room. The film also mirrors the plot of Maeby and George Michael's storyline in that George Michael tries to construct a love story through inappropriate means (George Michael selecting Maeby as a tutee in order to seduce her). It also serves as a reference to George Michael's year in Spain. 
  • Seinfeld - When George Michael is checking into the hotel, he says he wants one bed, not two, justifying his choise with the phrase "Why give her the option?" This is a reference to the pilot episode of Seinfeld in which Kramer advises Jerry not to bring a second bed into his apartment for a woman who's staying with him, asking Jerry, "Why even give her an option?"
  • Sit Down, Shut Up - When George Michael is watching TV in Spain, he is watching the short-lived FOX animated show, which was also created by Mitchell Hurwitz and starred Jason Bateman, Will Arnett and Henry Winkler.
  • Michael Cera's Film Career
    • Youth in Revolt - George Michael grows a mustache and gains bravado during his college years. This is a reference to Youth in Revolt where Michael Cera stars as Nick Twisp and alter-ego Francois. Francois has a cooler personality that wows women while donning a mustache.
    • Juno - It is implied George Michael got Rosalita pregnant during his study abroad year in Spain. Michael Cera played Paulie Bleeker, a teenager responsible for an unplanned pregnancy in the film Juno.
  • The Social Network and Facebook - In the "On the next Arrested Development" section, George Michael is in a lawsuit deposition scene very similar to that between Mark Zuckerberg and the Winklevoss twins, and later beteween Zuckerberg and Eduardo Saverin. They are all former partners of Zuckerberg, suing him for a portion of the tech company Facebook. Fakeblock is a direct reference to the name of Facebook. There is also a popular opinion that Michael Cera looks very similar to Jesse Eisenberg, who plays Zuckerberg in the movie. In addition, they often refer to Fakeblock as "The Anti-social Network"

Callbacks/Running Jokes

  • The band George Michael plays woodblock with are playing "Balls in the Air".
  • Bluth abortions - Rosalita is presumably pregnant from her affair with George Michael.  It may be because Rosalita is Catholic that she has kept the baby.  As G.O.B. said in The Immaculate Election, when you get a religious girl pregnant, she "stays pregnant."
  • The Cornballer - The Babytock device that taught George Michael his perfect sense of rhythm was a way of repackaging the timers from the otherwise unsalable Cornballers.
  • Company softball - George Michael narrates the events of a softball game against the Sitwell company to his new college friends.
  • Chicken Dance - George Michael very briefly does a chicken dance after P-Hound suggests the name "Block Block" for their woodblock app.
  • Maeby's schooling - The woman who gives George Michael the list of students in need of tutoring says that Maeby's last grade is just shown as an Elvis Presley head, a callback to the progressive school she was said to have attended in "Pier Pressure".
  • Her? - George Michael says not to "put all your Anns in one basket", a reference to the running gag where Ann is referred to as anything but her own name. This is a play on the saying 'To put all your eggs in one basket', as Ann was once referred to as "Egg" by Michael
  • Incest - When George Michael shows up at the Opies with Maeby, he checks out a redhead without realizing it's really his Aunt Lindsay in a red wig, and says, "Gentlemen, start your engines." Michael says the same thing in "Flight of the Phoenix" when he also fails to recognize her.
  • George Maharis - George Michael expressed wanting to change his name to his father because of the incident where real life celebrity George Michael was arrested for soliciting sex in a public restroom. ("Flight of the Phoenix") Not wanting to reveal his real name upon meeting Rebel Alley, George Michael creates the name "George Ma... haris" on the fly (having just heard Maeby mispronounce "heiress"). George Maharis is a real-life celebrity best known for portraying the role of Buzz Murdock on Route 66. Maharis was arrested in 1974 for committing a sex act with a hairdresser named Perfecto Telles in the men's room of a Los Angeles gas station.
  • "[synonym for arrested] Development" - According to the narrator, Michael's arrival "forestalled" his son's development.
  • Spanish - George Michael tells P-Hound about his idea to vote Michael out of their room and says "It's ciao Fathero." This is a callback to the fact that the Bluths still have a poor grasp on the Spanish language (Hermano etc...) This is also a reference in relation to Michael saying "It's adios brothiero." This is also a background joke to the fact that George Michael spent a year studying abroad in Spain and still can't speak Spanish.
  • John Beard's shows - John Beard appears as the anchor of the gas-pump-based bulletin UnLead News, a job he promptly quits.
  • Hop-Ons - P-Hound claims that since he put in the first three dollars for Fakeblock, that makes George Michael a hop-on.
  • Maeby is bad at math - On hearing that Fakeblock isn't 100% finished, she asks if it's 200% or 500% finished.
  • Les Cousins Dangereux - George Michael reveals that he knows Rebel Alley from her role in the remake of Dangerous Cousins.

Hidden/Background Jokes

  • When Maeby mispronounces "heiress" it sounds a lot like, "I'm Maharis."
  • When John Beard appears on UnLead News on the gas pump TV, the caption labels him as "former non-fuel anchor".
  • When GOB calls up George Michael, his name comes up on the phone as "Jesus Krist."

Foreshadowing/Future References

  • Rosalita says, "The drones are coming." before making love with George Michael in Spain. In "Off the Hook", Buster takes out an art museum in Spain.
  • In the "On the Next..." flashforward, Barry Zuckerkorn tells George Michael to "put in a good word on the missing Lucille 2 case" when he is speaking with P-Hound's lawyer.
  • In an early scene, after George Michael's band walks out on him, and the chalkboard in the classroom is displayed. It shows three lines of music on the left side and only one line of music on the right, with multiple empty lines between the third line and where the fourth line of music starts again. This is referencing the shows cancellation after the first three years, and then beginning again years later after the "the dark period." After the fourth line of music there are a few empty lines again, this could be saying that there won't be another season for a few more years, or that it is a stand-alone season.


→ See more quotes from "It Gets Better" at Transcript of It Gets Better.

Rosalita: You make love like a boy!

George Michael: Spanish, speak to me in Spanish. Because the only way the college credit is actually activated is if I have...

Rosalita: Tómame.

George Michael: Cook... cook at... cooking at you?

Rosalita: Overpower me! Oh, yes. Make me cry.

George Michael: You're a terrible mother.


George Michael: It's $5000 for the domain name, and then there's this whole XML website fee.

P-Hound: I got the last one.

George Michael: That was 99 cents.

P-Hound: Times three!


Rebel Alley: Well, you are George Maharis. Everyone's talking about your software company. I'm sure women are just throwing themselves at your feet.

George Michael: Well, you know, I, uh, I prefer a woman who aims higher.



  • In the opening credits, George Michael's theme uses a wood block, referencing his love for the instrument and his wood block app.
  • This episode marks the first time Michael's deceased wife Tracey Bluth has appeared on camera, after being mentioned numerous times.
  • The Spanish spoken by Rosalita is not European Spanish, but Latin American Spanish. The line, "Me lo cogí.", was translated as "I fucked him." That would be correct if George-Michael was studying in Latin America. As he was in Spain, 'coger' means to grab/hold onto. So, "Me lo cogí" translates as "I held onto it."
  • Buster does not appear in this episode. Lindsay appears, but is silent.


→ See 120 pictures from It Gets Better at Images from It Gets Better.

1. "Flight of the Phoenix"
2. "Borderline Personalities"
3. "Indian Takers"
4. "The B. Team"
5. "A New Start"

6. "Double Crossers"
7. "Colony Collapse"
8. "Red Hairing"
9. "Smashed"
10. "Queen B."

11. "A New Attitude"
12. "Señoritis"
13. "It Gets Better"
14. "Off the Hook"
15. "Blockheads"

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