9 min read

What if the Bluth Family from Arrested Development spoke at your 2024 Sales Kickoff?

What if the Bluth Family from Arrested Development spoke at your 2024 Sales Kickoff?

What if the Bluth Family from Arrested Development spoke at your 2024 SKO is our take on a potential SKO session featuring the dysfunctional Bluth family from Arrested Development. Click here to learn more about our 2024 SKO series.

Disclaimer: The characters used in this post are the property of The Walt Disney Company and 20th Century Fox Television. This post is for entertainment purposes, and we believe that this constitutes a “fair use” of the copyrighted materials as provided in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law. If your copyrighted material appears in this post and you disagree with our assessment that it constitutes “fair use,” contact us.

And now on with our show:

The “Arrested Development” Characters who will speak at our 2024 SKO

(Click here to skip straight to the script)

What if the Bluth Family from Arrested Development spoke at your 2024 Sales Kickoff?

Michael Bluth (Jason Bateman): General Manager of the Bluth Company. Michael tries to be the “glue” keeping his dysfunctional family together, even though he sometimes gets fed up and leaves (he always comes back). A workaholic, he is the de-facto heir to the Bluth company, though George Sr. often ignores and belittles Michael as a motivational technique.

G.O.B. [George Oscar Bluth] (Will Arnett): Eldest son of the Bluth family and a failed magician. G.O.B. was occasionally the President of the Bluth Company, but in title only (Michael said he had “no problem with that,” while he absolutely had a problem with it). Self-centered and lacking in any real skills, he constantly tries to gain approval from his father, which he almost never gets. G.O.B. is quite concerned about how he is perceived by others, and often says things to build himself up as a way to hide his insecurities.

Lucille Bluth (Jessica Walter): Matriarch of the Bluth family. Manipulative, controlling, and unabashedly self-serving, she is known for her biting one-liners and fondness for martinis. Typically the “puppeteer” of the Bluth family, she engineers situations that pit the family against each other while serving her own needs. Often motivated by spite, she constantly works to one-up her social rival (and sometimes romantic interest for her son) Lucille Austero (aka Lucille II).

Tobias Fünke (David Cross): The erstwhile chief psychiatry resident as Mass General Hospital, Tobias was the world’s first “analyst and therapist” but had his medical license revoked for administering CPR to a person who was not having a heart attack. Tobias is known for his awkward double entendres, but he never realizes the alternate meanings of the things he says. And while he aspires to be an actor, he is terrible at it.

George Michael Bluth (Michael Cera): Michael’s awkward teenage son. He tries to model his father’s work ethic, but instead he is often quite hard on himself. He is known for managing the Banana Stand, and his uncomfortable crush on his cousin Mabey.

Buster Bluth (Tony Hale): The youngest Bluth brother, Buster is essentially a fully grown child. He lives with his mother and their relationship is uncomfortably close. He enjoys “scholarly pursuits” and has several Master’s degrees, but, prior to joining the army (Lucille signed him up when a Michael Moore impersonator pressured her), has never had a job. He lost his left hand when he was attacked by a “loose seal” in the ocean.

George Bluth Sr. (Jeffrey Tambor): Patriarch of the Bluth family and founder of the Bluth Company. Ends up in prison for defrauding investors and spending company money for personal use, along with alleged “light” treason. Often teaches his children “lessons” through elaborate schemes, which always cause more harm than good. Spends much of the series trying and failing to escape prison/house arrest.

Lindsay Bluth Fünke (Portia de Rossi): Michael’s sister. Often gets involved in meaningless social causes for attention, but quickly leaves before making a meaningful contribution. Has started several business, all of which have failed. Often talks about being a parent, but is oblivious to what her daughter Maybe is doing.

The Narrator (Ron Howard): Narrates the show and provides ironic commentary. Gives backstory and context where appropriate. Often contradicts the characters in real-time.

SKO Presentation Title: When Life Gives you Bananas: Sales Lessons from The Bluth Family

*Author’s note: This talk takes place somewhere between the events of season 3 and season 4. Let’s just pretend that the show ended after season 3 and that seasons 4 and 5 don’t exist.

SKO Presentation Title: When Life Gives you Bananas: Sales Lessons from the Bluth Family

Narrator: Michael Bluth was giving a talk about sales strategies.

Michael: Being successful in sales really comes down to two things. First, you need to have a great product.

Narrator: The Bluth company was responsible for the Cornballer, a kitchen appliance that severely burned anyone who tried to use it.

Michael: And second, you’ve got to work hard. You’ve just got to sacrifice and power through no matter what.

G.O.B.: [Rides in on his Segway]: That’s the best you can do, Michael? Come on! That’s why I’m the president. 

Michael: And I have no problem with that.

G.O.B.: I think the guy in the 7,000 dollar suit knows a thing or two about sales. You see everyone, [“The Final Countdown” by Europe starts playing] sales is about spectacle. Illusion and misdirection. With just a little bit of magic, you can send your sales sky high with the BIRDS! [Lifts his arms with a flourish and looks up expectantly. A dead bird falls out of his jacket.]

Lucille: [Rolls her eyes] No wonder that little magic club of yours won’t let you back in. The only magic you can do is make a crowd disappear.

Narrator: G.O.B. had founded an organization for professional magicians called “The Alliance of Magicians,” who then expelled him after he accidentally revealed the secret to his Aztec Tomb illusion on the evening news.

G.O.B.: The Alliance will let me back in once they hear about my greatest illusion- making a yacht disappear!

Michael: They did hear about it. You sank the yacht.

G.O.B.: [Looks down and mumbles] It still disappeared.

Tobias bounds in to the 2024 SKO but finds something he didn’t expect

Tobias: [Bounds in and looks surprised] Michael?! Well aren’t you a regular Gordon Gekko. Finally, someone in this family supports my art.

Narrator: Tobias, having seen a note on the calendar that said “sales training series” thought it was an audition for a TV show about sales trainers.

Tobias: [Looks at the audience]  Well I wasn’t expecting to audition for such a large crowd, but I’m an actor so I can do this. [Takes a deep breath] Hello, I’m Tobias Fünke, and I’ll be reading for the part of “salesman number two.”

Michael: Tobias, this isn’t an audition. It’s an actual presentation about sales.

Tobias: Wait…so you’re not here to watch my audition?

Michael: No, Tobias. [Gestures to audience] I’m talking to these people about sales.

Tobias: [Chuckles nervously] Well, uh, that sounds just DEALightful!

Lucille: Even if this were an audition, it’s not like you’d get the part. You couldn’t even play yourself on Scandalmakers. Now if they were making a series about failed therapists who can’t act…

Michael: Listen, Tobias. why don’t you go home and spend some time with your daughter. Maybe take her out for ice cream.

George Michael: Someone’s taking Maeby out? Who is it? Is it Steve Holt? Not that I care. I mean, I do care. Of course I care. It’s like you always say, Dad, family first.

Narrator: George Michael had a secret crush on his cousin Maeby.

George Michael: And why should it bother me? It doesn’t bother me. Besides, I have a girlfriend .

Michael: George Michael! I didn’t know you had a girlfriend. Who is she?

George Michael: It’s Ann. You’ve met her lots of times. She had dinner at our house last night.

Michael: [Looks quizzically at George Michael] I think I’d remember that.

George Michael: She’s sitting over there by that plant.

Michael: Her?

Buster stands up to speak at the 2024 SKO, but finds out they didn’t know he was there

Buster [Standing up]: Michael, as you know I enjoy many scholarly pursuits, so I know a thing or two about sales.

Lucille: Buster, what are you doing here? Didn’t I tell you to wait in the car?

Buster: It was too hot in there, Mother – you left the windows up. I’ve been here this whole time.

George Sr.: [Proudly] You can always tell a Milford man.

Narrator: Buster was a graduate of the prestigious Milford school, where children are neither seen nor heard.

Michael: I’m kind of in the middle of something here, buddy. But you know, there is some juice on that table over there.

Buster: There’s juice?! [Buster runs to the table]

Lucille: Buster! No one said you can have juice. This is why I left him in the car.

Michael: I thought that was so he can drive you home after you crash this company’s happy hour.

Lucille: Well the joke’s on you, mister, because I’m not waiting for happy hour [drinks from a martini glass – it’s unclear where it came from].

Lindsay runs into the 2024 SKO late because she got some hop-ons

Lindsay: [Runs in] I didn’t miss my part did I? I had to take the stair car and I got some hop-ons.

Narrator: After losing their fortune, the Bluth family resorted to using their old stair car, originally intended for boarding their private jet, as their primary mode of transportation.

George Sr.: Well, of course you got hop-ons. You’re gonna get hop-ons

Lindsay: You want my advice? Sales is the easiest thing in the world. You just ask people for money and they give it to you.

Michael: Asking Dad for money doesn’t count as sales.

Lindsay: [Glares at Michael, then looks back to the audience] You just need a good reason, like if the money’s for beads or a tub of diamond cream or a good cause or whatever.

Michael: A good cause like “Clean the Streets?”

Narrator: Thinking it was an organization dedicated to public safety, Lindsay had been involved with an organization called “Clean the Streets,” but quickly left when she found out that they literally cleaned the streets by picking up trash.

Lindsay: Well I wasn’t about to do that in these shoes.

Lucille: Suddenly she needs shoes to sit on the couch all day.

George Sr. takes over at the 2024 SKO because that’s what he does

Michael: How about we all just get back on track. Another successful sales strategy is to focus on customer service like we do at our Banana Stand.

G.O.B.: Customer service? Is that why you make your own family pay at the Banana Stand? Your own family, Michael!

Lucille: It’s a banana Michael. What could it cost, ten dollars?

George Sr.: There’s always money in the Banana Stand. [Walks over to Michael and pats him on the head] Listen, Mikey, you’ve clearly lost control of this situation. I’ll take it from here.

G.O.B.: That’s right, Dad! Michael couldn’t hack it. But I can! Right, Dad? I mean, you know I can do this, don’t you?

George Sr.: [Ignores G.O.B.] Sales is about control. You have to keep your people on their toes. You can’t let anyone think they’re doing too good a job. And if your people get out of line, fire them.

Narrator: In what became known as “Black Fridays,” George Sr. would have his employees load the office valuables onto a rental truck just before he fired them all. They never saw it coming, even though their first task was often to unload computers from a rental truck.

George Sr.: [Points at the audience] That’s why you’re all fired.

Michael: Dad, we can’t fire these people.

George Sr.: Well you can’t. You don’t have hiring and firing power.

Michael: I do, but we can’t fire these people because they don’t work for us. You would know that if you hadn’t been in prison.

George Sr.: That wasn’t my fault! I was set up!

Michael: You still broke the law.

Lucille: Who died and made you Judge Reinhold?

Michael: You also lied to us. And in this family, we don’t lie to each other

[The entire Bluth family stares at Michael and then they all burst out laughing].

The Bluths wrap up their 2024 SKO presentation

[A man in a suit stands up and walks over to Michael]: Well that was a great presentation and I’m sure it will boost our sales. And I would know because I’m sales manager [takes off prosthetic nose] Gene Parmesan, how you doing?

Narrator: Lucille often hired private detective Gene Parmesan to keep tabs on her family.

Lucille: Ahhhh! Gene! Oh, Gene! Isn’t he the best?

Narrator: Gene had failed to discover any evidence of George Sr.’s numerous extra-marital affairs. He was far from the best.

Michael: Gene? What are you doing here? This is a presentation about sales.

Lucille: I hired him because I knew you were doing this sales presentation just to spite me.

Michael: Why would we do this to spite you?

Lucille: I know you and my “friend” Lucille Austero are making a power grab. You’re trying to cut me out.

Buster: Lucille 2 is here?

Michael: No one is trying to cut you out, Mom. You want to know why I put this whole thing together? Your birthday is coming up, and I wanted to make some money to throw you a surprise party. But we can’t even come together for 5 minutes to finish a presentation about sales. So that’s it – I’m done with this family.

Narrator: And it was then that Lucille felt something she hadn’t in years: regret. But that feeling quickly disappeared when Lindsay spoke.

Lindsay: Wait, that’s why we were doing this? For Mom? [Scoffs] You told me it was so I could go on a vacation.

Tobias: We’re going on a vacation?

Lindsay: [Sighs] I didn’t say ‘we,’ Tobias.

George Sr.: And you told me it was to pay my legal bills.

G.O.B.: And you told me it was to pay for my next illusion.

George Michael: And you told me it was so we could spend some time together.

Buster: And you didn’t even tell me you were doing this.

Michael: I’ve made a huge mistake.

Narrator: Overall, it was one of the Bluth family’s better events.

And Now a Word from our Sponsor

Your 2024 SKO is a time to not only get your team excited about the coming year, but also give them the skills and resources they need to hit their numbers. If you’re interested in learning more about SKO programming that will deliver a measurable impact in 2024, let’s chat.

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