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Archer is an animated television show that features the antics of a group of intelligence agents who belong to the fictional organization known as ISIS. ISIS is located in the heart of New York City, and it employs a number of dysfunctional, selfish employees, including the titular main character, Sterling Archer.

Sterling Archer is a self-proclaimed master of modern espionage known as Duchess. Despite his alcoholism, his womanizing and his intensely narcissistic nature, he manages to be extremely effective. A great deal of his success lies with the strings pulled by the head of ISIS, Malory Archer, who also happens to be his mother. Other significant characters include Lana Kane, a fiercely competent ISIS agent who used to date Archer and Cyril Figgis, the accountant who ends up more dangerous situations than a paper pusher should. Some of the action of the show takes place in the ISIS office itself, and some of the action takes place abroad, where the ISIS agents compete with foreign governments and rival intelligence agencies for state secrets.

The show is very casual about its setting. It parodies spy shows that were prevalent during the fifties and sixties, and the characters themselves dress as though they were in the sixties. The Soviet Union is a very present threat, but in many cases, the show drops the setting in order to make a timely joke. In addition to this, ISIS is capable of fielding a wide variety of technological devices that verge on magical in their effectiveness.

Despite the show's comedic nature, there is growth and progression from episode to episode. The history of Archer's much put-upon butler and Archer's mother are revealed slowly, and Archer's breast cancer is only settled after a few episodes. The pace of the show is very quick, and it is not necessary for a viewer to watch the entire season to get the gist.

The tone of the show veers towards crude humor, social commentary and a certain dark comedy. Sterling Archer is a petulant, petty and arrogant man, and a great deal of the humor of the show comes from watching as his personality gets him into unpleasant situations. Archer is certainly not alone when it comes to having an unlikeable personality; many of the people around him have glaring faults that interact with the faults of others in explosive and often hilarious ways.

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Thursday 10:00 PM et/pt on FX
6 Seasons, 68 Episodes - Currently Airing
Adult Cartoon
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Clips & Extras

Archer Full Episode Guide

  • Archer accompanies Pam to her sister's wedding.

  • Archer, Lana, and Ray rise to the top of an assassin's hit list.

  • An agent from the past puts a strain on Archer and Lana's relationship.

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