The rebooted seasons feel similar to the recent trend of mini-series and anthology series — I think for an audience it’s easier to follow just one season, particularly now that there are roughly one billion shows made every year. Did that logic play into it at all?
I love that it’s happening at the same time for us, but I believe this has all grown out of just Adam and I, our pattern of the shows that we made. The first show that we made was called Sealab 2021, and anything could happen. Any character could die, anything could blow up, and in the next episode you would come back and everything’s fine, that never happened, you just don’t discuss it. Nonsensical. And then in the next show that we made [Frisky Dingo], it became extremely, heavily serialized because we had gotten tired of the nonsensical and no rules. Then when we started Archer, we reacted negatively to our last serialization on Frisky Dingo because we thought that it made people tune out.
When we first started Archer, the idea was to try and cast a happy medium between heavy serialization and allowing people to enter your world. And that lasted for a good four seasons. We didn’t want it to be “mission of the week,” because we thought that would be death to us. So when we finally got to Season 5, we were like, what if we just start telling these stories by season? You don’t have to have seen Seasons 1 through 7 before you see Season 8 — but if you have seen them, it’s deepening the comedy for you.
This season feels very divorced from current politics — it’s set in L.A. in 1947, and it’s kind of all a dream. I guess that’s true to an extent for the other seasons, but I was wondering if that was intentional, to avoid making a comment on actual world politics.
I try my best to not bring up politics in general because it sucks all the air out of the room right now. But Archer has always taken the standpoint to, for the most part, create our own pop culture — we’re not talking about current events ever on Archer. If we do talk about something, it’s something that is famous enough to have been around for 15, 20 years. There are no deadmau5 references. I think South Park does that better than anybody’s done that, ever. The only way to compete with something like that is to not play, so we create our own world and we fill it out the best that we can with our own references and our own recurring gags.
So I take it next season is not going to be Archer: Trump.
Archer has been renewed for another two seasons, and that’ll be that. Do you know yet what those two seasons are going to look like?
Adam and I never decide until the show’s been on for at least a month and we can see how everybody’s reacting to whatever it is we’re doing. There’ve been no decisions made. There’s been a decision about when we’re gonna talk about making the decision. I know for a fact that we’ve enjoyed being in 1947, but that’s it. Archer: Dreamland is case closed, problem solved. We may be going back to L.A. to be detectives, and we may be going back to New York to be spies. We may be, I don’t know, going to outer space to have adventures in outer space. But the great thing about working with FX is, they’re cool with it as long as we tell them why — as long as we explain, here’s why it’s important for us to do this, they’re on board.
Archer: Dreamland premieres tonight at 10 p.m. on FXX.