I haven’t really learned a lot about life from Archer season one. I think maybe I learned about avoiding ants in my office place, and also to never EVER use “M as in Mancy” when trying to communicate letters over the phone, but otherwise, this isn’t really a life lessons kind of show. That said, it did make me think a lot about the potential for animated television and how that relates to the comic book industry, the benefits of in-laws and also the Arrested Development movie that may or may not happen.
Lesson #1: Holy Guacamole, Get Yourself In-Laws
This may seem counter-intuitive to the mainstream perception of in-laws. After all, countless married individuals curse the names of their spouse’s parents with such vitriol that sometimes I think their numbers are too many to count.
This is not without merit. It is difficult to watch a human do things you find really distasteful and know that they have been drafted into your life as “an important person” without your say in the matter. Technically this applies to parents as well, but for some reason we’re all perfectly resigned to the fact that we get parents and that’s that. In-laws wind up feeling more like pickles you didn’t order on a hot dog you were heretofore really effing excited about.
Ignoring for a moment that I just analogized my wife to a hot dog ( a good hot dog. A wife dog. A hot wife?), and hoping that she never reads this as frequently as the rest of the world never reads this, In-laws do have a major benefit. They are extra parents on Christmas. Or on Holidays. Or on any occasion people might feel socially obligated to celebrate your life with gifts.
In my case, this meant a subscription to Netflix that I’d been wanting. It’s an awesome gift. I think it’s possibly still uncool to like Netflix after their Qwik and rash decisions that pissed off loyal customers (and how dare they, amirite?), but this is just a damn fine service for me. I’m behind on like every major television program from the last 15 years (I’d say I was busy becoming a MAN, but if there’s one thing I am not it’s a scented candle, or also a MAN). Netflix is rapidly solving that problem and it all started with Archer season one. Good show. You should watch it.
Lesson #2: The Arrested Development Movie? It Might Be Really Good
I say this as a fan of Arrested Development (it was this show in TV in the aughts. You may not have heard of it): I’ve never really wanted a movie. I love the show. I love the comic styling. I love lamp. But movie this much later after the show ended? Seems like a cash grab and the only way to disparage the name of the critically acclaimed game-changer.
Then I watched Archer, which is from the creators of Arrested Development. You’ll pick up on this immediately for a number of reasons, namely Lucille voicing Archer’s mother (head of spy agency ISIS) and the style of recurring jokes and misdirecting camera work.
Archer is funny guys, particularly if you liked the humor of Arrested Development. This proved to me that these writers still have it. Is ‘it’ a small sad child for ransom? Maybe. But they have ‘it’ and I shouldn’t have doubted them.
The movie and Arrested Development comeback is going to be enjoyable. The people involved here – and I’m talking the behind-the-scenes writers and thinkers – are too bright and talented to let it fall.
Lesson #3: Animated TV Has a TON of Potential
It’s easy to overlook sometimes, but animated television is IMMENSELY popular. This isn’t news, but South Park, The Simpsons, Family Guy and now Archer are easily among most people’s favorite TV. Not just comedies – TV.
Part of the benefit here is that with animation you can get away with a lot more racy, risque gags (sometimes literally. Rihanna knows what I’m talking about). If there’s one advantage Archer has over Arrested Development, it’s that they can graphically sex up the show like a got damn flophouse. (Is that a whorehouse, or just where they sell pancakes? I think I’m mixing terms here. Well, just imagine a whore covered in pancakes and that’s what I’m talking about.)
As comic book fans know well, both Marvel and DC comics have had varying degrees of success with animated cartoon shows. Marvel’s 90’s X-Men and Spidey runs are a huge reason I’m even into comics now, and DC’s Batman and Young Justice series are widely beloved by just about everybody who’ s watched them.
But could either comic line ever have a crossover hit that had the same mass appeal as Archer?
It’s my opinion that they freaking could.
First of all, how much sense does a Deadpool animated series on FX make? Too much? The most of senses? All of the sense? How is this not happening?
I get that this would take some Big ol’ brass ones from Marvel. I get it. But with Deadpool you have the perfect character to match the absurdist, edgy material a sophisticated comedy audience wants. Plus the thrill of a good old superhero adventure within the Marvel universe! It’s effing perfect. You can’t tell me otherwise.
OR… you could tell me otherwise. In the comments section. Share any and all thoughts you may have, unless they’re about this new link-building product you discovered because guess what I already built my fence thank you.
- Arrested Development Movie – It’s Really Happening! (mrmovietimes.com)
- Blu-ray Review: Archer: Season Two (blogcritics.org)