Archer takes Lana on a romantic fairy-tale getaway to Wales; however, it's not all pleasure. Actually, it's mostly fighting and business. Thanks to the CIA, Archer and Lana are tasked with aiding Welsh separatists in their escape from British intelligence. Back on the home front, AJ spends some quality (trauma) time with Grandmalory, and the rest of the gang — a.k.a. the idiots — have some fun with Ray and nostalgic TV references. Lana is still pissed about what happened in last week's episode (re: Katya), but Archer makes a convincing case that things weren't what they looked like. He's in it to win it.
The Highlight Reel
Okay, so at the beginning of the episode, it appears everything is fine between Lana and Archer. AJ, not so much; she's being babysat by Malory:
Archer: Thanks for watching AJ … no, as a matter of fact I don't think its a good idea to work some of that fat off her. … Mother she's a goddamn baby. … I will, and if I find out you gave her diet pills, no kidding, I will have you arrested!
[+1 to point to Archer for being a responsible father and for looking out for his offspring; -1 to Malory for being a psychopath, even if it's well-intended.]
Whoops. Lana groggily wakes up in the backseat of this beautiful Aston Martin, and reveals that, yeah, she remembers that when she was last conscious she was hysterical about Archer's ex-wife's vagina in his bathroom sink. Archer lets loose that he casually decided to tranquilize her, fly her overnight to Wales for a romantic getaway, and explain to her that he never cheated on her.
Lana: Where are we?
Archer: Yeah, surprise ruined.
Lana: No, it's not. I am extremely surprised!
[+1 to Archer for the nice thought, but, like, -10 for being a total Krieger in terms of carrying out the process; +1 to Lana for maintaining a caustic sense of sarcasm seconds after black out.]
So, yes, H. Jon Benjamin does both Archer and Bob Belcher, but watching Archer here trying to persuade Lana that he's doing something romantic is eerily similar to watching Bob's failed dates. Just more lewd. H. Jon Benjamin FTW, in both cases. Lana's not a huge fan of being drugged, so she tries to strangle Archer and they crash the beautiful car on a farm. After the crash, Archer puts tampons in his bloody nose, and tries to explain that it was the idiots who framed him in the last episode. If you're wondering what they're doing during all of this, they're busy finally trying to give Ray a hand:
Krieger: Alright, can someone give me a hand?
Cheryl: But doctor, I thought the patient was getting the hand?
Krieger: Speaking of hands, nurse?
Cheryl: Overplaying yours?
Krieger: Well I was gonna say puttying yours my dear, but I'll have to hand it to ya.
Cyril: Can we have a show of hands, who thinks this is getting out of hand?
Ray: God dammit! Can you please shut up and sew on my robot hand.
Pam: … Hand job.
[-1 to Krieger for being a sexual harassment panda; +100 to Pam for the nasty punch line.]
Lana is nowhere near forgiving — or believing Archer — yet, but the duo is down for drinking Archer's favorite scotch (allegedly "for the best of times"), so he does an impromptu ad:
[+1 to Archer for being a solid spokesman, even in the face of relationship-ending turmoil.]
Soon thereafter, it's revealed there's a work component to this romantic getaway, as Welsh separatists Lloyd (Matthew Rhys) and Daffyd barge into Archer and Lana's bastion. Rightfully so, Lana is livid. As of being drugged weren't already enough, now she has to deal with a inter-country drama, a selfish, stupid Archer, and a betrayal the CIA probably can't handle.
Lloyd tells Lana that their cause is just, though, as a Welsh town that had stood for 1,000 years was obliterated by America's ally:
Lloyd: The English deliberately flooded it.
Archer: Oh my God, to drown everybody?
Lloyd: No, to make a reservoir; they needed water, so they built a dam and that flooded and all the people lost their homes.
Archer: Oh my God, countless thousands of them.
Lloyd: Well, 48.
Lloyd: No, just 48, you know, four dozen.
Archer: So now they're all homeless?
Lloyd: Well, no, they were compensated, they got new houses somewhere else, and in many cases, much nicer ones.
Lana: Then what's the problem?
Archer: Who are you, Josephine Stalin? That shit wouldn't happen in America.
[+2 to Archer for the history burn and for being so sympathetic toward Lloyd and his countrymen; +1 to Lloyd for being a great storyteller.]
Lana explains that the above story actually could — and has — happened in America. She points Archer to the Tennessee Valley Authority, and the movie Deliverance:
Switching gears, the idiots are busy talking about the dearth of black characters on MASH, and you're probably wondering, Where is this going? Well, just wait. Lana calls Malory to see why the team keeps getting these absurd assignments from the CIA, while the Welsh wildlife harrasses her:
[+1 to this guy.]
While Lana's outside, Archer brags about Katya hitting on him because he can't pass up a good macho-ed out bro fest. Of course Lana overhears some of it, and her trust in Archer's fidelity is re-crushed. She's unable to do anything about this blatant foolishness because an MI5 operative drives into their little slice of fucked-up paradise. Lana shoves Archer and Welsh Hodor into a closet (which Archer naturally has a problem with for more reasons than one), while Lloyd, in a kitschy American accent, pretends to be Lana's pushover of a lover. Why is your car totaled and why are you here? asks the MI5 man.
Lloyd: Our marriage is on the rocks and I have two Michelin tires.
[+1 to Lloyd.]
Lana has to handle the MI5 guy, because she gives Archer a closet rampage and he blows everyone's cover (while Daffyd blows something else in the closet like the animal he is):
[+10 to Lana for saving the gang; +1 to Daffyd for being shameless.]
Archer does that incredible thing where he tries to backpedal everything and make it seem like Lana is overreacting, so she responds in what is this season's favorite way to respond to something nonsensical:
Lana: I'm sorry, I think one of us must have just suffered a massive stroke.
Lloyd: Yes, come and have some toast, Daffyd.
[+1 to Lana for using a tried and true gem (but R.I.P. Milton, gone too soon, we miss you, buddy); +1,000 to Daffyd, him yelling TOAST in this episode was sensational. Clips or dialogue snippets don't really do the moment justice, so just imagine a helpless, half-erect Hodor enthusiastically yelling breakfast foods at you. #NSFWales.]
So ... the MASH payoff you've all been waiting for: They were talking about black characters because they gave Ray a black hand. Now, give the writers on this show a hand. Archer is tasked with beating up Daffyd, sans firearm, and he gets bloodied enough that he needs to shove two more tampons up his nose. With the business side of the getaway, more or less done, Archer and Lana ride off into the sunset bickering about trust issues and Archer's best idea ever:
Archer: So you put giant magnets in the bumpers of all the cars so that every car repels every other car so there would never be any accidents.
Lana: Except every single time you're at a red light and a car comes and bounces you out into an intersection, and you get the shit T-boned out of you.
Archer: Thanks for the tampons.
[+10 to Archer for crushing the non-sequitur one-liner; +10 to Lana for shooting down a near-fatal idea for humanity, and also for putting up with this amazing schmuck.]
What a weird, surreal episode. The Ray scenes felt like hilarious bad dreams, and the whole bit with Daffyd and his brother (Rhys was stellar) was odd. Nothing really happened, but as usual, the writers somehow made very little action very hilarious. Of course, Lana is the champ here. Her kicks, as well as her amount of never-ending patience and forgiveness, were insane. At one point, she threatened to see other people in this episode, which almost made my heart stop, but, hey, by the time the end credits rolled, things were looking pretty okay. Lana keeps having these mini, contained snaps, where she almost loses her mind dealing with Archer. But nothing on the level of one of Archer's stressed-out-fly-to-another-country-type benders. She's a true saint. Archer was a little immature this episode, but still, on the whole, a doofus keeping his own version of chivalry alive and well (we can give him a runner-up kudo).
- Incredible animation throughout. Let's crash more cars, please.
- So it could be one of Krieger's jazz hands (as Reddit has astutely pointed out), but it would be way better if Ray's new limb were Conway's. CONRAY.
- #NSFWales. Yes.
- "Cows are our friends, they may even be our best friends." Also, yes.
- Hopefully pervy Krieger doesn't get fired. Then again, Pam does HR, so.
- I guess we have to wait until the finale for this whole where-the-hell-is-Woodhouse thing to pay off.