Netflix is an online TV and film streaming service that bought the rights in to broadcast the episodes of Arrested Development's fourth season. The episodes were a joint production between Netflix, 20th Century Fox Television, and Imagine Entertainment. The partnership was announced on November 18, 2011.
The fourth season premiered on the streaming service in all Netflix-supported regions on May 26, 2013 to "pleasing" viewship numbers to Netflix CEO Reed Hastings and Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos. Mitch Hurwitz and Sarandos have stated multiple times in 2013 that they wish to work together to produce more Arrested Development, be it Season Five or a Movie.
After securing the rights to the fourth season, Netflix began hiding Arrested Development Easter Eggs throughout their library.
Fake TV shows and movies
In December 2012, Netflix added 10 fake TV shows and movies to their library from Arrested Development. In March 2013 they added five additional titles. Selecting the titles would play clips from the relevant episode:
- Girls with Low Self-Esteem — Sunshine and self-esteem issues collide as drunken, scantily-clad co-eds with low self-worth and absolutely no shame hit Spring Break in Southern California. It's a wild, weekend adventure that you'll never forget … but they'll wish they could.
- Families with Low Self-Esteem — Tobias Funke, the semi-renowned Freudian analyst/therapist and former chief resident of psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital, provides counseling to families deep in crisis in this deeply probing and emotionally uplifting series.
- Wrench — When faced with some of the toughest cases the mean streets of Los Angeles has to offer, by-the-books detective Frank Wrench realizes he needs to loosen up, break some rules and maybe even throw out the book entirely, in order to get tough on crime.
- Les Cousins Dangereux — To escape the scorn of their dissaproving families, two cousins flee to a sleepy, provincial town in France but are forced to hide their incestuous affair from the prying eyes of local villagers in this awkward tale of forbidden romance.
- Scandalmakers — No stone goes unturned and privacy means nothing in this reality series where sordid secrets and ugly truths come to light. Go behind the scenes of today's tabloid headlines with re-enactments of real-life incriminating scandals.
- Ready, Aim... Marry Me! — After an acrimonious parting of ways with fellow Nazi hunter, Red McGibbon, Bullet shows he's nobody's sidekick by flying solo in search of comedic adventures. But along the way he discovers romance in the arms of a sassy socialite.
- Mock Trial with J. Reinhold — All rise for actor Judge Reinhold as he presides over this reality courtroom/variety series, featuring music by American Idol sensation William Hung and his band, Hung Jury, as they take real families and put them through mock trials.
- Caged Wisdom: Musings from Prison — Based on his book, "Musings From Prison," George Bluth presents the latest collection from his ongoing series of life lessons and motivational discourses on the Jewish faith, all while incarcerated at the Orange County Prison.
- Boyfights — Sibling rivalry is taken to the extreme as brothers battle it out in this compilation of adolescent boyfights featuring "A Day in the Life of American Boys," A Boyfights Cookout," "Backseat Boyfights" and "I Don't Want to Go to Bed."
- World's Worst Drivers — Classic crashes, funny fender-benders and stupid sideswipes are on all display in this series that tracks down the world's most terrible drivers on (and off) the road. There is nowhere to hide from these highway horrors.
- Junk — From the directors of Dangerous Cousins comes a bleak portrait of drug addicts, brought together by fate, who compete in grueling dance marathon.
- Homeless Dad — A street-walking, homeless junkie is desperate to win custody of his kids. Society may be against him but they don't expect his secret weapon: Love.
- El Amor Prohibido — A lusty telenovela chronicling the complex love lives of the staff at a hospital for terminally-ill kids. Can even innocent eyes tame their passion?
- Love, Indubitably — An unapologetic comedy of manners about a clumsy cad who always lands in hot water when it comes to affairs of the heart.
- Franklin Comes Alive — Witness unseen footage of the historical recording sessions for the CD, "Franklin Comes Alive," and its raw, often painful, call for racial harmony.
When clicked, a clip from "The One Where Michael Leaves" is played, showing the first time Tobias' is seen in blue paint.
Bananas as stars
When Arrested Development is in your instant queue, the stars appear as bananas. When clicked, it shows a clip from "Making a Stand".
Yellow bow tie
In the "Popular on Netflix" carousel on Netflix.com, a note for milk can be seen if scrolled to the left. When clicked, it plays a scene from "Pier Pressure" about J. Walter Weatherman teaching the kids a lesson about leaving notes.
Character-based "Recently Watched"
In November 2014 it was noticed that in the Netflix interface a section titled "Watched by Tobias Fünke" featuring gay-friendly titles including I Don't Want To Be a Man and The Birdcage. All 9 main characters have been spotted. See this Reddit thread for examples.
Arrested Development interface
For each of Netflix's original series, they design a customized interface for all streaming devices to show off the episodes and characters. For Arrested Development, they continued the orange shipping container motif used in the rest of their Season Four marketing materials.
On the web, console, and tablet interfaces, Netflix advertised Arrested Development by highlighting the most popular clips from Seasons One through Three, as voted on by Facebook fans.
Mentions in Arrested Development
In the fourth season, several nods to the streaming service are hidden: