joel wosk is lovely…
On this week’s episode of Archer, Sterling, Lana, and Cyril take a trip south of the boarder in order to stop a ring of human traffickers. In the opening scene, Mallory is debriefing Lana and Cyril after the mission, and given ISIS’ track record in the past, things probably haven’t gone very smoothly. I’d like to delve into that last statement for a moment by saying that for the past four seasons, barely any of the missions assigned to the ISIS agency go as planned or are even remotely successful in most cases. Now, this could be due to several factors. It could be due to Archer’s utter inability to restrain himself and not act on his impulses in almost every situation. Perhaps it could be because Mallory will often times misuse her power as head of ISIS for her own personal gains; whether it be sending agents halfway around the world to exotic locales just so she can go on vacation, or using agents to eliminate ex-lovers, or sabotaging missions in an attempt to acquire funds to renovate her office. The Archer family is transcends the word “dysfunctional” and should have a type of psychosis named specifically for them.
To shift the blame away from the Archer family for the time being, I would like to question the motivations behind bringing Cyril along on several missions. With the exception of the episode in which they go to South America to stop an international criminal and Cyril is able to successfully pass himself off as illicit accountant, he continuously ruins missions due to his complete lack of field training or experience. In fact, he often times ends up inadvertently shooting valuable suspects. The only person who is capable of actually doing her job is Lana, and she is usually undermined by Archer or gets so wrapped up in whatever self-righteous stand she is taking on whichever mission they happen to be involved in that she ends up sabotaging herself. Wow, that was a mouthful. I just had to get that off my chest. I understand that this is a fictional cartoon series, but honestly, why do any of these people still have jobs?
Moving on, the most recent ISIS mission has obviously gone awry and Lana and Cyril, both sporting black eyes and broken noses, are trying their best to explain to Mallory how everything went down. In the beginning of the episode, we learn that the ISIS team was dispatched to the Mexican desert close to the American boarder to intercept a truck filled with illegal immigrants, being led by the notorious human trafficker, Moreno aka “coyote” (a slang term for human traffickers). Lana and Cyril are positioned in the middle of the road pretending to be a stranded couple with a baby, while Archer is positioned a short distance away with a sniper rifle trained on the road. The plan is that Lana will flag down the truck carrying the illegals, and when it stops, Archer will put a bullet in the truck’s engine block. Archer succeeds in disabling the truck, but when he sees that Moreno is actually a beautiful woman, he completely loses sight of the mission and insists that they let her go. Lana and Cyril argue with Archer over this and they both end up being knocked unconscious by Archer in the ensuing scuffle. Archer then steals the station wagon the ISIS team was using as a road block and takes off for the boarder with Moreno and her cargo of illegal immigrants in tow.
The American Boarder Patrol eventually catches up with them and Archer ends up getting shot twice in the back. Moreno takes control of the situation and tries to get Archer to a hospital of some kind, but only succeeds in finding a shady veterinarian who is able to dislodge the bullets from Archer’s back with the help of some bracing shots of tequila. The adventure never stops, am I right? Archer is actually in worse shape now after being treated by the vet and desperately needs to be evacuated to a legitimate hospital. However, Mallory is reluctant to contact Archer because of her past history with his elaborate voicemail pranks. When she calls, he actually answers the phone, but she is convinced he’s messing with her and she hangs up. He is eventually evacuated via a chopper sent by the very Boarder Patrol agents who shot him in the first place. However, upon takeoff, Archer reads a note given to him by Moreno that reveals that she is not the woman they have been looking for. Her mother, the actual leader of the smuggling ring, sent her as a decoy because she knew of Archer’s weakness for beautiful women. She was counting on Archer to intercept the truck and lead the Boarder Patrol on a chase, thereby freeing up the roads for a much larger convoy of trucks. And who was behind all of it you might ask? Mallory. Are you surprised? If you have been keeping up with this series, you probably shouldn’t be. We see Mallory counting a hefty stack of Pesos given to her by Moreno, which she will put towards a newly decorated office.
This was a slightly unconventional episode in terms of the sequence of the action (flashbacks and such), but on the other hand was completely typical in respect to how Archer handles every situation involving a sexy female. As soon as a beautiful woman enters the equation, all loyalties go out the window. Archer even shot Cyril in the chest to subdue him, knowing full well that Cyril would probably survive because he was wearing a Kevlar vest. Cyril is an accountant, why does he keep getting put in these ridiculously violent situations? You have to feel a little bad for him on one hand, but on the other hand, he is so completely inept that you can’t help but feel a slightly satisfied when he gets smacked around a bit. Looking forward to next week’s episode, which hopefully will involve the impending showdown between Archer and the Bionic Barry we’ve been promised.
Check out Archer on FX Thursdays at 10pm. All Images Credit: FX Network