The Archer crew are spies once more. This season's radical change of Archer from a show about a group of spies to a show about a group of cocaine-peddling drug dealers (who used to be spies) was just a one-season experiment, the show revealed on last night's Season Five finale.
While the personality quirks and dynamics of Archer, Lana, Mallory, and the rest of the gang remained largely the same this season, the story arc switched from an assortment of spy missions to an assortment of attempts to sell cocaine in South America. On the finale last night, that plot was revealed to be an undercover CIA mission. The details aren't that important, but the resolution means that Archer will be back in the ISIS spy offices for next season.
That return to where the season began was always the plan, too, show creator Adam Reed told The Daily Beast. "I thought Archer: Vice would be a fun yet temporary change, and always envisioned returning to 'regular' Archer once this season’s storyline was finished," he said. That's likely to be a disappointment for the many fans that loved the big plot changes this season.
Indeed, The AV Club likened it to a "season-long up-and-back," a recurring TV structure in which the characters go on big adventures and appear to change, only to end up right where they started. "By the time we get to the end of season five of Archer, I’m not sure if that isn’t the case here as well. The characters seem to have changed ... But in reality, they’re more or less back where they started the season." To be fair, there is one big change in the story with the birth of Lana's baby and its impact on Archer. But overall, expect a return to the Archer of old next season.