After a season that garnered some mixed reaction from fans (Archer: Vice), the animated comedy-spy series is back to all their regular antics. Six seasons in, Archer remains as irreverent as ever, with all kinds of cleverness to go along with the adult-oriented nature of this series. Now, with the seventh season fast approaching, it is time to look at this DVD release, containing every season six episode and more.
For those unaware, the basic concept of Archer concerns secret agent Sterling Archer (voiced by H. Jon Benjamin) and his fellow misfits doing their best to tackle missions in service of America and themselves (mostly themselves). This latest season finds the team working for the CIA and dealing with all kinds of missions that take them around the world or simply leave them bickering in the office. The voice cast also includes Judy Greer, Amber Nash, Chris Parnell, Aisha Tyler, Lucky Yates and Jessica Walter. They all bring their own wacky elements to the series, which is happy to mix absurdity with crazy spy action.
This Release Contains Every Episode From Season 6:
- ‘The Holdout’
- ‘Three To Tango’
- ‘The Archer Sanction’
- ‘Edie’s Wedding’
- ‘Vision Quest’
- ‘The Kanes’
- ‘Pocket Listing’
- ‘Reignition Sequence’
- ‘Achub Y Morfilod’
- ‘Drastic Voyage: Part I’
- ‘Drastic Voyage: Part II’
Whether or not fans still believe the show to be in a consistent stride, it is rare to see any episode of Archer that really disappoints. That largely stems from how character-focused this series is. Similar to a series like The Venture Bros., Archer really knows how to balance the elements of humor in a way where it always makes sense to hear who it is coming from. Six seasons in, we should know what people we are dealing with and the show delivers in having us enjoy the ridiculous things Archer and the gang get involved in.
That said, the plotting may not be the deepest in serialization, but there are a few running threads that really set up a fun arc for this season. Two major things concern Lana and Archer’s child, along with the recurring presence of Christian Slater as Slater. Both elements continually lead to new developments for this series, which plays well in where things are taken as the season goes on.
It is also worth noting how fun the animation is. Archer has a very particular style that series creator Adam Reed likes to work with and it has surprisingly not let anyone down in the action department. For all the talking and yelling between characters, this show has a lot of fun depicting the spy missions and locations, which leads to over-the-top action sequences and other sources of fun.
Between all the fun in-jokes, the character work, the action and the genuine charm that could be seen by even those jumping in for the first time, Archer continues to be a show you can rely on for entertainment. It is not only one of the best animated series running, it is one of the most consistently enjoyable shows in general to be airing. Not bad for a series dependent on the worn concept of a spy parody.
Encoding: MPEG-2 NTSC
Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
Clarity/Detail: It would have been great to get a Blu-ray review copy, but so be it. The picture may not be HD, but it is still quite good. You have a bright and colorful series that does plenty to impress.
Depth: Given the animation style, there isn’t much to glean here.
Black Levels: Black levels are deep and inky for a series that has its moments requiring darkness. Crushing is minimal.
Color Reproduction: The colors pop here. Archer is a wonderful series in terms of getting so much visual splendor from the style of the series.
Flesh Tones: N/A
Noise/Artifacts: Clean enough for a DVD.
Audio Format(s): English Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French
Dynamics: This dolby digital track does what it needs to give this series the audible life it deserves. For a standard definition disc, you get plenty of bang in the form of dialogue and occasional action.
Low Frequency Extension: The LFE channel gets a chance to thump during some of the more audacious action beats.
Surround Sound Presentation: This is a pretty front-heavy show, with the dialogue obviously hitting towards the center. The rear channels do get a chance to play up the ambiance, but not much.
Dialogue Reproduction: There’s plenty of dialogue and you will hear it loud and clear.
It is a shame FX does not spring for more extras on these discs, especially when it comes to having so many potentially hilarious commentary tracks.
- Conan & Archer Battle Russian Mobsters (SD, 4:34) – Conan O’Brien guests in a secret mission with Archer.
- Slay-J (SD, 6:31) – A traditionally animated story of a ninja warrior voiced by the cast.
- Cooking with Milton (SD, 3:42) – Krieger is all over this special cooking segment.
If you are not already watching Archer, but enjoy clever, dialogue-driven comedy and spy antics, this is a series you could really find yourself eating up with pleasure. There is a lot of fun to be had here and this DVD does a pretty solid job of properly representing the shows visuals and audio at its finest. I wish there were more extras, but you do get one season of a continually enjoyable series to dig into.