For the die-hard fans who watched Fox torture Arrested Development in its final months — ordering only 13 episodes, changing and rechanging its time slot — even the Complete Third Season’s packaging may prompt misty eyes. While previous seasons arrived in multidisc boxes, the truncated season 3 takes up a slim, sad-looking little case. It’s a bittersweet visual reminder that all the accolades in the world — including a best-comedy-series Emmy — couldn’t save this hilarious, repeatedly rewarding show.
If only creator Mitchell Hurwitz shared our rage. Considering the hoops viewers had to jump through just to find the show, a little behind-the-scenes explanation and spleen might have been cathartic. But instead, on the three overcrowded commentary tracks, he and the cast run out the clock by ribbing each other. (And they track down Jeffrey Tambor on his cell to harass him for skipping the recording session.) There’s a featurette on the show’s last-ever day of shooting; it’s mostly a bunch of glum-looking actors.
We’ll just have to make do with the episodes themselves — which featured some ingenious left-field comic turns. None of them would make even a lick of sense if we detailed them here, but let’s just say that the climax of ”Mr. F” — featuring a mole costume, a jet pack, and four befuddled Japanese businessmen — is reason alone to mourn Development’s demise. RIP.