For British Eyes Only - Episode Notes - Cultural References

Cultural References

  • Brad Garrett Michael tells George Sr. that "you're a regular Brad Garrett." Brad Garrett had won an Emmy for his work in Everybody Loves Raymond over Jeffrey Tambor's performance as George Bluth Sr. shortly before this episode aired.
  • Britain The introductions of Wee Britain and British characters lead to various allusions to British culture.
    • Accent George Sr. was confused in his business dealings by the British accent as he claims that "they're polite and the men all sound gay." Later on, Michael fails to realise Rita's mental retardation due to the masking capabilities of her accent in "The Ocean Walker" episode.
    • Background In Wee Britain, a Hackney carriage, a red telephone box, a contemporary London bus stop, typical British school uniforms, a sign for the "London Tube", a hotel referencing The Strand, a MINI Cooper (also a callback to Tobias' Mrs. Featherbottom driving a properly British car in "Meat the Veals"), and a Routemaster tourist bus, can all be seen in the background. Also, Michael is almost hit by a blue MGB at the crosswalk (pictured), and Trevor drives a red Austin-Healey 3000, both British cars.
    • BBC Footage is seen from "WeeBBC", a variation on the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), the UK's main television network.
    • British comedy There is a Monty Python-esque exchange in the pub regarding the soup of the day.
    • Britishisms Michael embarrasses himself with attempts at British turns of phrase, which are mostly in the Shakespearean vein. "Ponce" and "bloody" are also heard being uttered. Michael later shows his pick-up of British slang in "Notapusy." These remarks make Michael seem strangely similar to Tobias.
    • Greenwich Mean Time Wee Britain runs on GMT, which makes it difficult for Michael to access the records office there.
    • Currency Michael misses the opportunity to bribe his way into the records office because he confuses the British currency - the Pound Sterling (Pound) - as the measurement of mass.
    • IRA Television news reporter suggests that attack on Michael by the Mary Poppins puppet may be a work of "itsy-bitsy" Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA) members.
    • James Bond The title of this episode is derived from that of the James Bond movie For Your Eyes Only, and the Sheena Easton song of the same name, whose melody is heard several times in the episode. The closing credits of that movie mention that Bond will return in Octopussy. The unusual ending of this episode states that "Michael Bluth will return in "Forget Me Now"," the next episode, which is a reference to the ending of 60's James Bond movies.
    • Lanes The road lanes swap from right to left once one enters Wee Britain.
    • Telephone code the telephone number that Trevor instructs Michael to call from his car includes the 0 11 44 code that is necessary in order to call the UK from America.
    • Wee Britain First a play on Great Britain, the title of the area is in the style of naming small nationality-specific enclaves in large cities as "Little Italy" etc., as well as it possibly being a play on the title of the British comedy Little Britain which uses a similar word play.
    • The Yellow Fang Pub This is in regard to the stereotype of substandard British dentistry. Bad breath of Britons is referred to by both Michael and George Sr.
  • Donald Rumsfeld Rumsfeld's being pictured with Saddam Hussein is cited as an example that interacting with Hussein does not necessarily end your career.
  • Eve Arden The red Eve Arden style wig is the first that Tobias tries on in the costume shop.
  • Free Bird Gob intends to call his illusion this but is unable to get the rights to it, presumably because of its fame as a Lynyrd Skynyrd song title. In a deleted scene, they send a fax complaining that they "done copywrit" the title (although it would, strictly speaking, be a trademark).
  • Jack the Ripper Michael's stumbling attempts at offering Rita money in order for her to get the records he needs results in him comparing himself to Jack the Ripper and his murdering of prostitutes.
  • L.A. Law Harry Hamlin appears as the opposing counsel, paid off as a presence in much the same tactic as George Sr. tried to employ Andy Griffith.
  • Lincoln Michael tells Lindsay that her new car (the cabin car) is "more like a Lincoln", using the ambiguity of referring to both the Lincoln Logs toy cabin and the Lincoln car.
  • Mary Poppins The "Merry Poppuns" tourist attraction in Wee Britain references the Mary Poppins character. The spelling is a reference to the British accent used by Dick Van Dyke in the film, which was generally thought to be appalling.
  • Matlock George Sr. tries to employ Andy Griffith as a background presence in the courtroom with the aim of endorsing his side of the trial with some form of gravitas, his fee is mentioned as being $10,000 a direct reference to the show. Narrator Ron Howard also starred in The Andy Griffith Show when he was younger.
  • The O.C. Michael says "don't call it that" when George Sr. refers to builders operating outside 'the O.C.', which refers to their Fox colleague which uses the term, short for Orange County, as a title.
  • Seinfeld George Sr. tries to explain away his encounter with Saddam Hussein as a confusion in believing that Hussein was the Soup Nazi character from Seinfeld.

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