The animated FX series Archer, named after its title character, the secret agent Sterling Archer (voiced by H. Jon Benjamin), is going to drop the name of the fictional spy agency he works for, ISIS, in an attempt to distance itself from the terrorist organization ISIS. The animated TV series had the name first, but it is somewhat difficult to reason with a terrorist group who do not care much about international copyright laws. The cast and producers of Archer where at New York Comic Con 2014.
The acronym ISIS in Archer stands for International Secret Intelligence Service, unlike that of the terrorist organization, whose initials stand for Islamic State of Iraq and Syria. Of course, that is not to say that the ISIS in the animated series is not a violent spy organization; but, they do not kidnap and behead people, at any rate.
Matt Thompson, who is the executive producer of the series, reportedly said to that nobody associated with the show “want to have anything to do with it.”
Archer will incorporate the name change in the premiere of season six. It will air on January 15, 2015, in the United States.
Besides H. Jon Benjamin, other actors who lend their vocal talents to characters in Archer include Jessica Walker doing the voice of Archer’s mother, Malory; Aisha Tyler using her vocal talents in the role of Lana Kane; Chris Parnell doing the voice of Cyril Figgis; and, Judy Greer lending her voice to the character, Cheryl Tunt.
According to an article in the New York Daily News, quoting Archer‘s co-executive producer Casey Willis, ISIS is a terrorist organization that “doesn’t exist in our universe.” There will, of course, need to be a logical reason included in the storyline to explain the name change, without necessarily mentioning the terrorist organization.
That reason will be related to the storyline. According to Willis, the agency will be “working with the CIA so that’s the banner that we’re under now.” Willis did add that the terrorist organization, ISIS, will reportedly be mentioned in the season premiere of Archer, however.
There will be an addition to Sterling Archer’s life in the upcoming season. His co-worker, Lana, has a new baby and Archer discovers that he is the father. He is a very self-centered sort of character, so reportedly he will have a difficult time dealing with the related responsibilities of fatherhood.
Also, Archer’s mother, Malory, will be taking on the role of being a grandmother. Jessica Walter, who does Malory’s voice and is also the matriarch on the hilarious TV series Arrested Development, has stated that her character actually loves the baby, whose name will be “Aubergine.”
Lana has plenty of reasons to be suspicious, though, knowing how Malory has acted in the past. “Lana does not trust her to babysit,” according to Walter. She does, after all, try to get the baby’s name changed to her own first name.
According to Willis, a new character will be introduced in the popular animated series, the sister of Pam Poovey (Amber Nash). Her sister will be “played by Allison Tolman (Fargo),” Willis stated.
A couple of guest actors that Matt Thompson would like to have on the show are Tom Selleck as Tom Selleck or Daniel Craig, as a sort of James Bond-like character, maybe, except Thompson said he might like to see a different spin on the role, “to see Daniel Craig as maybe a cross-dressing German woman.” Thompson has suggested that it might be interesting to “have him maybe be transgender.”
According to a report in The Daily Beast, Adam Reed, the creator of Archer, mentioned in a meeting with executives of FX that they are now stuck with “all this extra ISIS merchandise.” He suggested having “the bad guys buy it,” but did not get any response to his remark. supposedly, the merchandise that they have that bares the ISIS name will, as Reed put it, be “going to a landfill somewhere.”
Possibly changing the name of a cartoon spy agency just because a terrorist organization happens to have that same name is going a bit far in the efforts to be politically correct and not offend viewers; that is a matter of opinion. Fans of Archer probably will not care very much, though, as long as the main cast of characters stick with the show and continue to deliver audacious, terrific LOL episodes of this adult-oriented animated series.
Written By Douglas Cobb