There’s a running gag that pops up a few times in Arrested Development’s fourth season. It doesn’t lead to anything significant. There’s no pay off. It’s just … odd: The characters occasionally eat Parmesan cheese and mustard as a meal.
A plate of it. With a fork. On the surface, it means nothing other than a weird combo of food. But this is Arrested Development — a show where damn near everything has a reason and purpose, you just have to figure it out. So, of course, eating Parmesan cheese and mustard is a reference to the 1985 film adaptation of the board game Clue.
Here’s the ridiculous explanation behind the reference: Gene Parmesan is the Bluth family’s go-to bumbling private investigator, and is played by Martin Mull.
Martin Mull co-starred in Clue, wherein he played Colonel Mustard.
Ipso facto, Parmesan and Mustard. Need more evidence that doesn’t actually link to Parmesan and mustard but is also a reference to Clue? In the episode “A New Attitude,” Gene Parmesan buys a knife at a shop next door to a children’s play place that has a ball pit. The name of the play place is My Little Ballroom. The knife is a weapon in Clue, and the ballroom is one of the rooms in Clue.
So my Always Sunny self help book came today! I’m just flicking through at the moment, but this chapter caught my eye. Oh Mac. pansexualmacmcdonald, you may be interested in this if you haven’t already seen it, though I’m not sure how canon the book is.