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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.

Wednesday 10:00 PM et/pt on FX
8 Seasons, 95 Episodes
January 14, 2010
Adult Cartoon
Cast: H. Jon Benjamin, Judy Greer, Amber Nash, Chris Parnell
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Archer Full Episode Guide

  • In the season finale, Archer visits Dreamland and receives a big break that leads him to Woodhouse's killer.

  • Archer and Trexler try to escape a rampaging Dutch by telling the world's worst knock-knock joke.

  • All roads lead to Len Trexler as Archer and the gang try to avoid unfriendly ghosts.

  • Dutch becomes a new man while Archer's ransom exchange goes up in smoke.

  • While investigating a kidnapping, Archer divulges too much about Figgis and Krieger shares too much about his past.

  • Archer plots to escape from jail with the assistance of a psychotic heiress and a dysfunctional jazz quartet.

  • A mysterious woman hires Archer to fake her death, but he fails to carry out her wishes.

  • The set of Deadly Velvet takes an unexpected turn when someone turns up dead.

  • Archer and the gang investigate suspicious activity on the set of director Ellis Crane's new movie set.

  • The rocky relationship of Archer and Slater causes problems for the rocky relationship of Archer and Lana.

  • Who's sexier, Cyril or Krieger? Pam or Cheryl? Only one way to find out.. Bar fight!

  • A hostage negotiation spirals out of control when Archer and Lana disappear.

  • Party crashers transform a fundraiser into something serious.

  • A mysterious stranger seeks Archer's help in locating his birth mother.

  • A prep school reunion provides an unexpected business opportunity for Archer.

  • Archer and Lana complete a difficult handoff while the rest of the gang hears the ultimate voicemail.

  • In the season premiere, Archer infiltrates a mansion to restore the honor of a Hollywood starlet.

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