Amanda Gurall writes from New York Comic Con 2017, with photos by Jason Borelli:
Hammerstein Ballroom was packed with loud and wired Archer fans today for a panel and a surprise screening of the Season 9 pilot. The episode is "90% done", so expect some changes when it premieres in 2018.
We open with Archer sleeping peacefully in bed, several days of stubble darkening his face. Pam whistles and wakes him with a start, and we see the hotel room he is in as he does — fancy bed, a very tall Pam screaming at him, a naked woman flailing and crying, and a parrot in the corner. Everyone's screaming, feathers flying, then Archer shoots off a gun and they sort out what is going on.
The woman cannot stop crying. It turns out she was on her honeymoon, but got drunk and spent two days in bed with Archer, who is the one-eyed charter pilot for a resort in French Polynesia. Pam is for some reason very tall and has huge muscles — and the parrot is…Krieger?!
Honestly, I have no idea what the hell was going on with this episode, but it was fantastic. Last season was Archer's fever dream coma hallucination, and it looks like this season might be the continuation of that. Or could it be someone else's dream? Is it reality, and we have just started over with completely different characters? (OK, maybe not.) Since this is the penultimate season of the show, it's possible we have one last fantasy before getting back to the "real world" in the show — if we ever do.
The animation keeps getting better, and the design of this episode was excellent. The resort, owned by Malory Archer, has a beautiful 1930s glamour with lush plants and vibrant colors. The detail on the characters is wonderful and Lana (now island royalty) was especially stunning throughout. Crackers the parrot was hands down the funniest character, and every time they had to explain that he was indeed a fully sentient bird, the audience lost their minds.
Danger Island is home to a host of perils like quicksand, cannibals, and freakishly intelligent baboons. All of these elements sound like a good time for our favorite characters. Well, characters that were previously our favorites? People totally unrelated to the past seasons who we still like? Whatever it ends up being, I'm positive the show will retain the same humor and ridiculousness that fans love.
Archer: Danger Island is in production now and will air in 2018. The show stars H. Jon Benjamin, Amber Nash, Aisha Taylor, Jessica Walter, Chris Parnell, Lucky Yates, Adam Reed and Judy Greer, and was created by Adam Reed.