SEASON 1 RUNS FROM: January – Present
RUNNING TIME: 30 minutes
WHEN YOU CAN CATCH IT:
Thursdays at 10 pm EST
Sterling Archer is a spying douche. These are his adventures.
H. Jon Benjamin, Aisha Tyler, Chris Parnell, Thomas Lennon, Ron Perlman and Jessica Walter
The spy organization ISIS is helmed by Malory Archer and her super-spy son Sterling. Sterling’s girlfriend has ditched his ass for a wimpy comptroller. Sterling can’t stand Malory, but he also has this weird mother obsession going. I don’t think we’re going to get any Flowers in the Attic later this season, but the Archers are a little too closer. Series creator Adam Reed also created Sealab 2021 and Frisky Dingo. So, there’s synergy.
The two episodes that FX sent over are Honeypot and Skytanic. By the time, you read this…they’ll probably have aired in the middle of February. The sex gags are rather lewd in Honeypot. Thomas Lennon and Ron Perlman guest-star as a bunch of homosexual spy-types that meet up with Archer. They make a couple of jokes and then they comment on how mundane it is to be a spy. Archer laughs, does some slight comedy and then comments on how mundane it is to be a spy. Then, another character enters and does the same.
Archer works in the sense that Adam Reed and company haven’t changed what worked in Sealab. But, the schtick is starting to wear thin. H. Jon Benjamin might factor into this with his portrayal of the titular character. Benjamin has become this low-key entity that has became a pillar in the world of animated stoner comedy. Hell, he’s practically the Kevin Bacon of Adult Swim.
Benjamin’s low toned delivery really wants to telegraph Don Draper to the audience. But, what you get is another bozo trying to play smart in the tired world of the spy parody. Since the material really isn’t there to support the series, you have something to focus. The focus being the droll delivery of poorly written smug that wears on the nerves. Still, it’s better than The League.
the show was first test-dumped in September, I didn’t know what to expect. I loved Sealab 2021, but Frisky Dingo was hit and miss. Archer feels like the third leg of the same tired race. I’ve seen better material in the prior show. This series has yet to do anything memorable in the seven episodes that have aired thus far. If this series gets picked up for a second season, I’ll eat my shoes.
When it comes down to it, Archer was telegraphed in its entirety from the pilot. Archer’s got a boner for his mom, he doesn’t respect women, he’s cheap and he’s a poor Bond analogue. Everybody chuckles, while I wonder why this subgenre got past Matt Helm. I hate to be the guy that’s got to shit over every little detail, so I’ll mention the cell shaded animation. Love it and I would like to see it used more in animated television.
end, FX is taking a risk on this standalone animated series. Sure, it’s not as safe as giving an entire night of programming to Seth McFarlane. But, I feel that this series could have benefitted from having some other animated shows to counterbalance it. I’d like to see more direction and a tighter overall focus for the series. But, I know where this is going. The secretary will get wise, Archer will learn something about himself and then status quo.
I’d recommend giving the series a chance. But, if you wait too long…it’s probably going to the chopping block. There’s nothing memorable here and there’s no key characters. The jokes are so passive that you might not even notice them. Where have you gone, Captain Murphy? A nation turns its weary eyes to you.