We head back over to Michael, who gets a job at a company who owns the rights to their logo and therefore must be blurred out. [But if you need to know the name of the company, all you need to do is ______ it.] He’s given a company car with a camera on top of it, so it’s sure to “get a lot of stares.” Luckily, Michael is “used to a car with stairs.” Barry Zuckerkorn calls to tell Michael that Ron Howard wants to meet with him, but quickly has to go because he’s (literally) standing in front of a jury right now.
Michael heads over to Imagine Entertainment, the company owned by Ron Howard and Brian Grazer (AD‘s own executive producers). He runs into none other than Kitty Sanchez, who’s now working there as a “D Girl” (“That’s Development, you pig!”) after being hired by a then-17-year-old Maeby, who she quickly back stabbed out of a job. So what does Ron Howard want? He saw Michael’s picture in the Altitude magazine and wants to make a movie about Michael, the real estate crisis, and the father/son dynamic in the Bluth family. The catch? Michael has to get everyone in the family to sign a release. Ron also suggests “his girl” Rebel for the part of Michael’s dying wife. Michael assumes Rebel is his mistress, but in fact, she’s his daughter.
Things don’t seem to be going too well for Barry, who’s now being booked at a police station. Things begin to look up for Michael when he meets a beautiful red head (Isla Fisher), only to realize too late that he forgot to ask her name. He decides to swallow his pride and focus on getting the signatures from his family, who he hasn’t spoken to since Lucille went away to prison. Michael begins by approaching George Sr., who he finds on Lucille 2’s balcony, but has no luck with when his father tells him to go to hell. He heads back to Imagine Entertainment to assemble his “B. Team.” He asks Carl Weathers to direct, only to learn that Carl never actually bothers to get the rights to anything that he makes. Next up, it’s Warden Gentles’ turn because he’s a member of the Writers’ Guild. The Warden recommends that George Sr. be played by a “Philip Seymour Hoffman type.” This brings Michael to Andy Ritcher, who agrees to be on Michael’s Dream Team because Conan is mistreating him.
Ron and Brian are not impressed and set Michael up in an office in Orange County so he can be closer to his family. This kicks off a new gag – the Orange County Imagine office is frequently confused with the Orange County Imaging medical office. It’s not long before George Sr. pops up in the office with a peace offering in the form of Mexican porn. Once he hears that Michael wants his signature because he’s lying to a girl, Father B. is in. Unfortunately for Michael, Ron Howard is actually more interested in the father/son relationship between Micheal and George Michael. He considers dropping out of the project completely until he hooks up with Rebel, promises her a part in the movie and then realizes that he’s “dating Ron Howard’s girlfriend.”
I liked this episode much better the second time around. It sets up both the movie story arc and the Rebel storyline. I have to admit that upon first viewing, I felt I could do without the movie plot. I know it’s just a reason to get Michael to chase down the other characters and interact with them, but it feels forced at times. It made much more sense to me on second viewing. There were a lot of familiar faces and jokes littered through this episode and I loved all of them.
Things to Note:
- Lots of Happy Days jokes in this one: Barry cursing Ron Howard’s name; Barry telling the jury that he can’t reach the “chachi” to open the high school gate; Young Barry’s “Ehhh!”
- Bob Loblaw’s “if he can’t reach, this trial’s a breach” is an obvious reference to the OJ Simpson tagline.
- We get the “Bob Loblaw’s Law Bomb” to go with “Bob Loblaw’s Law Blog.”
- Michael when talking about his family: “Them?” (“Her?”)
- Ostrich reference: Google employees call StreetView car drivers “ostriches”.
- There’s a running gag alluding to a rivalry between Imagine Entertainment and Jerry Bruckheimer Films.
- Kitty’s Lucille-style wink at Maeby.
- Another Office alum: John Krasinski plays a Bruckheimer exec.
- Amazing nod to Rita and the Mr. F storyline when Rebel jokes about playing a mentally challenged role in the film for an Oscar.