The audience at New York Comic Con’s Archer panel cheered at the news that season eight of the animated espionage show is subtitled Archer: Dreamland, and will take place entirely in 1947. While surprising in its randomness, the hard-left turn isn’t; Archer has managed to remain fresh by methodically pulling the rug out under the show’s premise. The unfortunately-named private spy agency ISIS and its staff have been reassembled in various permutations over the years, most recently as private investigators in the employ of the Figgis Agency. And producers seem to be taking this ritual deconstruction a step further, confirming that while all of the main characters will be return, they will be in different roles with ”slightly different origin stories.” So if you’ve always wanted to see Pam as the tough-as-balls editor of the Chicago Tribune, or wonder what Ray would be like if he were the illegitimate child of Anubis, the dog-headed Egyptian god of the afterlife, next season might be your chance.
Taking a quick look at the internet’s catalog of 1947 in America, there are a couple of people and events that stand out as potentially having some peripheral impact on Archer’s post-war fever dream. There was the unsolved murder of “Black Dahlia” Elizabeth Short. In sports, Jackie Robinson became the first black player in major league baseball. For the conspiracy enthusiasts, the first widely-reported UFO sighting is made near Mount Rainier (there’s about a dozen different mishaps Archer could have triggered to cause that illusion). And if they really want to shuffle the deck, the team could appear as the opening-night cast of A Streetcar Named Desire.
All of that could happen, or none of it could, when a 1947-dreamland Archer returns (and moves to FXX) sometime in 2017.