Daily Cartoon! ARCHER: S.5, E.1: “White Elephant”

Welcome back to the Friday edition of the Daily Cartoon! I apologize that this is coming already late in the day, but sometimes these things happen. Quick programming note: this feature will go from being daily to weekdays only. I appreciate everybody coming back day after day, but it’s quite the commitment and I have other irons in the fire to attend to as well. Of course, I will be plugging any and all of that here once those take off.

This isn’t ending, by any means. I love doing this and will continue to do so. I also may introduce a new wrinkle into things to have something a bit different coming up soon too. I just need to free up some time to do all the things I like.

OK, so happy Friday and all that jazz. Today we’re watching Archer which is something I decided to watch on my own. Truth be told, I know a few people who love this show, but I’ve never seen it. It’s always one of those shows that I want to start watching and I mean to, but then I get lazy and don’t want to put in the commitment to starting a new show when I can just watch Parks And Rec again and fall asleep to the sweet sounds of Andy Dwyer singing “Bye Bye Li’l Sebastian”.

The reason I picked this episode is pretty simple. Lately, all the shows I’ve been watching have had pretty short runs or were produced for syndication so there was never a chance to see what works and what doesn’t and to make adjustments to the show whether it be in characters or tone.

Archer not only adjusted, they changed the entire fucking show around. What was a spy program for the first four seasons apparently turned into Archer Vice for Season 5 and dealt with the characters selling blow. That’s a pretty big fucking adjustment, I’d say.

So I just wanted to see how they did it. Was it something they explained? Or did they just show up for the first episode of the season like, “Hey! We’re about drugs now!” I want to know these things.

That’s where we stand. And with all of that said, let’s watch a cartoon.

Archer: S.5, E.1: “White Elephant”

Originally Aired: January 13, 2014

Plot:

We’re greeted by Archer as he’s walking into ISIS headquarters with some beautiful music playing in the background. It’s a slow and deliberate intro with all the other characters making quick appearances until he arrives in his mother’s office and – SUHPRISE – there’s a huge explosion that take us into the opening credits and theme song.

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When we return, there’s a massive shootout happening in the office. Bullets are whizzing by everywhere as Archer tries to figure out Beaker from The Muppets’ boss. After one of the opposing “storm ninjas” – as they’re called by Cheryl – gets shot, it is revealed that they’ve been battling FBI agents. Probably not the best idea.

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The whole team is cuffed and taken in and Malory – Archer’s mom – tells everybody that she’ll take care of things, but nobody should say a word. As everybody is getting interrogated separately, they immediately all start giving up anything they can think of except for Archer and Lana who just get into a fight with each other to sucker in the FBI agents before knocking them out, freeing themselves and then heading out to free the rest of the team. They gather up everybody before crashing into the room to save Malory last who is putting the finishing touches on a deal that gives the entire crew immunity.

I’m really shortening things here, but what is said as they go back and forth from all the interrogation rooms is absolutely stupendous. This show is fucking something else. So Malory gets them all off the hook and the FBI won’t take any of the blame for having killed their co-worker, Brett Bunsen to which Archer lets out a huge celebratory yell because hearing that name reminded him that Beaker’s boss on The Muppets was Dr. Bunsen Honeydew.

The crew goes back to the ISIS offices to get whatever of their stuff is left and start pondering what they’ll do for jobs and money and health insurance. Cheryl is planning on being a big-time country singer. Archer says he’ll play professional lacrosse. Pam openly wonders about getting back into underground fighting. Lana tells everybody that none of that is possible.

At this point, Archer says they should discuss the elephant in the room and hits the switch to open the secret compartment behind Malory’s desk to display literally…not figuratively, but literally a ton of cocaine. The theorize that it’s probably worth between $50-60 million and Malory says starting a cartel shouldn’t be that hard since Mexicans are able to do it.

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Archer then drifts off into a wonderful fantasy sequence about the entire crew running their cocaine cartel before snapping out of it and whispering, “Archer Vice”.

Final Thoughts:

I’ve summarized quite a bit here, but trust me, this was fucking stupendous. Like I suddenly want to binge watch this whole fucking season right now.

This was clever, witty, funny and whatever other glowing adjectives I can bestow upon this. I love that they just decided to completely change the direction of the show and the way they did it was wonderful.

I will definitely continue to watch me some Archer. I guess I should start from the beginning, but that sounds rather imposing since there’s already something like 6 seasons on Netflix. Oh well. I’ll just have to jump in and get started.

If you’re already a fan of this, I’m sure you’re excited to see my excitement. If you’ve never seen it or wondered if it’s something you should ever give a chance, go do it. Give it that chance and watch. I’m assuming the rest of the series is along the same tone as this episode and – if so – this show may become one of your new favorite shows. So get on the Netflix and start rolling through episodes.

Have a great weekend and I’ll see you on Monday.

❤ Joe

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