We’re counting down the days until Christmas by looking back at Christmas episodes from a variety of TV shows. Tonight we’re talking about “In God We Trust” from Arrested Development. What Christmas episode tropes did this episode use? Let’s take a look.
Directed by: Joe Russo
Written by: Abraham Higginbotham
Episode Number: Season 1, Episode 7
Where to Watch It: Netflix
Every year the Bluth family participates in a “living paintings” pageant. George Sr. always plays God and Buster always plays Adam in Michaelangelo’s The Creation of Adam. This year Buster backs out and gets George Michael to replace him, even though Tobias is the one who really wants the part. When Maeby compliments the way George Michael looks in the muscle suit (she tells him, “Kickin’ body”), he decides to wear it all the time. Because of this, Tobias mistakes him for a fellow “never nude” who can never be fully naked.
Meanwhile, the Bluth’s lawyer Barry offers to get George Sr. out of prison for one day so that he can participate in the pageant. Michael and Lindsay aren’t interested, until they realize they can use this one day to get George Sr. to catch Barry on a date with his wife Lucille, which will mean they won’t have to put up with having Barry as their lawyer anymore.
Buster thinks that getting out of the pageant will free him up to go on a date with his new girlfriend, but it turns out she wants him to attend the pageant with her.
Barry’s assistant James Alan Spangler wears a Christmas-themed sweater vest with a green bowtie.
The Bluth house is covered in wreaths, holiday lights and other Christmas decorations.
When George Sr. tries to flee from the pageant (causing someone to yell, “There is no God!”), a synth version of “Jingle Bells” plays.