The whole Bluth

The stars of Arrested Development take a fond look back

FAMILY PORTRAIT The Bluths leave the air and enter the gallery of TV greats.

FAMILY PORTRAIT The Bluths leave the air and enter the gallery of TV greats.

For fans of the critically acclaimed, bizarrely dysfunctional Bluth family, this is a bittersweet week. The good? Four back-to-back episodes of Arrested Development are on tap. The bad? No more are on the way—at least, not unless a cable network rides to the rescue. On Friday 10, Fox will dump, er, air the series's final installment as token opposition to the Winter Olympics opening ceremonies on NBC.... To mark the sad occasion, we asked cast members to discuss their favorite episodes of the Emmy-winning sitcom and reveal what's next for them.

Jessica Walter (Lucille, the booze-infused matriarch)
"Prison Break-Izn"
(Season three, first aired 12/12/05)
Lucille and the prison warden begin an affair to punish hubby George, while Tobias's body rejects his hair transplants.
"Just having a love interest [guest star James Lipton] was fun, and the chlamydia run—we were surprised that got on. There were some very dirty things that got through. I remember one during the second year where Oscar is trying to figure out how to slip me marijuana and says, 'Why don't I just stick it in her brownie?' Horrible!"

(Season three, first aired 1/2/06)
GOB accidentally gets a job and George-Michael goes to a New Age school without grades.
"'SOBs'—Save Our Bluths—was a wonderful episode about us being almost cancelled, or maybe cancelled—we still haven't officially been cancelled, so we can't do anything for pilot season. It's hard to pick favorite episodes because each one has such wonderful writing. I don't think we've ever had a loser."
What now? "I'm in the shop for repairs, doing everything I couldn't while we were filming. I just got my rotator cuff operated on and a tooth implant, too."

Michael Cera (The fragile, cousin-obsessed George-Michael)
"Motherboy XXX"
(Season two, first aired 3/13/05)
Embarrassed by Buster's handicap, Lucille kidnaps George-Michael to accompany her to the annual mother-and-son costume gala.
"Jason [Bateman] got his head smashed by a door in a scene where he and Buster are sneaking into a room. He really got hurt, but they left it in. When you watch the episode, you can hear it and see his head snap back. I had to wear clip-on earrings for the gypsy costume. That was humiliating. I was in pain. I cried."
What now? "Begging for change. But I won't beg for food—that's low."

Tony Hale (Buster, the one-handed mama's boy)
"Hand to God"
(Season two, first aired 3/6/05)
Michael's former fling (Julia Louis-Dreyfuss) appears to be pregnant with his child, while Buster's hand is bitten off by a loose seal.
"I love it when I finally realize I don't have a hand and destroy the living room. The characters on the show are so whacked-out that we all just channel our neuroses into it and are pretty sedate in our real lives. We really just cook and clean."
What now? "[My wife and I] are having our first baby in March, so just getting the house ready and trying to pay the mortgage."

David Cross (Tobias Fnke, Lindsay's fey "analrapist" husband)
"Spring Breakout"
(Season three, first aired 4/10/05)
Concerned about Lucille's drinking, the family checks her into rehab by telling her it's a spa, then sneaks her out for a drinking contest with George's ex-mistress.
"I like any show that doesn't have me in blue paint or 50 pounds of prosthetics, which rules out about 75 percent of the episodes. But the most fun I ever had was when we were shooting a flashback to a previous intervention for Jessica where we'd all just gotten drunk. We'd been shooting for ten hours and were tired and giggly, and they just let the cameras go. Tony is playing this weird dirge on the piano and I'm dancing with all my clothes off except for my jeans, and Jason and Will [Arnett] are on the table with Franklin the puppet, and Will and Jason are laughing for real. Will was laughing so hard he was crying. It's only two seconds long, but it was the single most fun shoot."
What Now: "I'm going to China, starting cooking classes and taking foreign-language classes. Then just trying to find a bar or performance space to buy and enjoying being a rich, single guy in New York.

The Arrested Development finale airs Friday 10 at 8pm on Fox.