Comic Book / Archer and Armstrong

Armstrong, a world-weary, nearly immortal warrior, crosses paths with the young and naive Archer, who can learn any skill after seeing it once. Originally published by Valiant Comics in the nineties, and relaunched in 2012 along with a number of other Valiant titles.

The relaunched Archer and Armstrong contains examples of:

  • Ambiguously Brown: Archer's foster sister Mary-Maria. She might be Latina.
  • Ancient Conspiracy: A number of them, many working against each other.
  • Akashic Records: Several of the conspiracies and Archer have the ability to tap into the Akashic Record, thus instantly gaining whatever ability is required at the moment. At the start of the series, Archer was "only" able to use it to become immediately proficient in whatever martial art or trained ability was needed at the time, but after an encounter with the HARD Corps, has begun making use of their psionic abilities.
  • Been There, Shaped History: Armstrong knew many historical figures on a friendly basis, was a knight on the quest for the Grail in the 6th century AD, caused the Great Chicago Fire, and was responsible for the sale of Manhattan Island to the Americans.
  • Beethoven Was an Alien Spy: There was more than met the eye to numerous historical events, from Archimedes' death to Alan Turing's suicide to the Kennedy assassination. Not to mention how many people just happened to be personal friends with the Anni-padda brothers.
  • Censored for Comedy: Played with with General Redacted. Some of his dialogue is censored in such a way that it's not clear whether he's swearing or not; it's implied that he's actually pronouncing the black bars somehow.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: The 1% is this combined with an Ancient Conspiracy.
  • Cursed with Awesome: Armstrong is almost immortal, but the millennia he's lived through come at the cost of "a million stolen lifetimes screaming inside me."
  • Dressing as the Enemy: Mary-Maria tries this; despite the outfit fitting fine, the first person she meets sees through it.
  • Expy: Elliot Zorn, a villainous businessman, totally doesn't look like Mitt Romney...
  • Gosh Dang It to Heck!: The entire Archer family speaks like this. Even when fighting to the death, they won't use anything harsher than "goldangit" or "flippin' bullcorn".
  • "I Know You Are in There Somewhere" Fight: Armstrong's justification for refusing to kill a possessed Archer.
  • Lost World: The Faraway, complete with dinosaurs.
  • Odd Couple: Archer is young, innocent, celibate, a teetotaler, agile, and a deeply religious Christian. Armstrong is ten thousand years old, has seen it all, is promiscuous, a heavy drinker, a brick, and an atheist.
  • On the Next: Each issue includes the first page of the next one.
  • Pillow Pregnancy: Mary-Maria uses one to smuggle guns into Area 51. "It's twins."
  • Shout Out:
    • When the group needs to answer a security riddle, Kay guesses "42".
    • One of Archer's army of siblings is named Bort. Which is even funnier when you consider he was raised in an amusement park.
    • The entire "American Wasteland" arc is one long series of appearances by celebrities that go unnamed, but whose identities are obvious: Elvis, Tupac Shakur, the Notorious BIG, Kurt Cobain, Bruce and Brandon Lee, and Jim Morrison are just a few therein.
  • Spiritual Successor: To The Incredible Hercules. Archer even looks like Herc (although he looked that way before the relaunch). The Eternal Warrior spin-off is even written by Greg Pak, Van Lente's Incredible Hercules co-writer.
  • Stout Strength: Armstrong may have gained some weight over the last few centuries, but he can still kick your ass.
  • The Cuckoolander Was Right: The Promised Land Supervised Fun Center And Learning Park has exhibits showing ancient humans interacting with dinosaurs. It turns out they're right.
    • Much like The Invisibles, one of the running points in the series is that most if not all conspiracy theories are absolutely true. This is played largely for laughs, but can get serious again at the drop of a hat.
    "So you know how the Internet is full of insane conspiracy theorists who say the world is actually run by a hidden cabal of secret societies? Funny story."
  • Warrior Poet: Armstrong is fond of quoting poetry, and has a well-known work of his own: The Epic of Gilgamesh