Heartwarming: Archer


  • Lana actually being supportive of Archer is pretty good.
  • Despite everything Sterling does to him, Woodhouse was still there when he graduated from college.
  • Archers childlike happiness when he deals with animals is oddly heartwarming, such as him bonding with Cheryl's pet Ocelot Babu, and the tiger in Calderon's zoo that he named Shane.

Season 1

  • Understated one in "The Honeypot" when Archer finds himself in a bar that hosts chicken-fighting matches. A big, weeping Dominican man is sitting next to him, crying over the death of his slain rooster. The next time we see Archer, he is covered in dirt and carrying a shovel, and mentions that he spent all night helping the guy bury the dead bird. For Archer of all people, this is a surprising bit of kindness.
    • This becomes even more Heartwarming in Hindsight after the second season reveal that alligators are one of Archer's three biggest fears (along with crocodiles, which Archer explains are also native to the Everglades).
    Camp Gay: "Then where were you all night?"
    Archer: "Way the Christ out in the Everglades burying some Dominican guy's rooster!"
    Camp Gay: "Fun! (beat) Oh, you mean literally."
  • A precious moment between Archer and his mother, after she shoots him six times "right in the 10 ring".

Season 2

  • In "Blood Test", Mallory pouring out her heart to Archer about wanting grandchildren. Lana even tears up when she walks in, hearing the end of the conversation.
  • Woodhouse's origin story in "The Double Deuce". All of it. The whole story was enough to impress Sterling.
    • He avenges his friend Reggie's death by killing the entire squad sent to kill them. He eventually ends up owning a bar in Tangier, Morocco, when a pregnant Malory Archer shows up on the run and Woodhouse delivers Sterling Archer. He even helps come up with the name Sterling.
    • Later, Woodhouse sells his bar to buy a boat to get to Lisbon, Portugal, and then sells the boat to get money to send Malory and baby Sterling back to the United States. He ends up raising Sterling singlehandedly until Sterling was 5.
    • Of course this being Archer, the sentiment is quickly undermined when it is revealed that Woodhouse kept the scalps of the Germans he killed.
  • "Stage Two"
    • Lana storms into Malory's office and demands to know what the hell is wrong with her after Malory deliberately poured coffee on a dessert gift that Pam was going to send to her dad.
    • Archer shares a moment with Woodhouse. Not to mention accidentally blurting out the fact that he thinks he's in love with Lana. It may or may not be true, but it was sort of sweet when you consider Archer probably has no idea what love feels like considering his background.
      • As well as one with the Wee Baby Seamus. Archer makes a point of spending time with him, even though he isn't really his son, because he's "probably the closest I'll ever have." Really, "Stage Two" is a pretty heartwarming episode, at least by Archer standards.
  • "Placebo Effect":
    • Krieger checks up on Archer's cancer progress and informs him he's being sold fake medication, kicking off the episode's plot. Might have been a downer, but he did it out of genuine concern.
    • Archer's interactions with a fellow cancer patient named Ruth. One of, if not the only time Archer has ever shown genuine niceness to a fellow human being.
      • He even gets a Bond One-Liner out of it.
        Archer: "Don't you worry, Ruth; I'm gonna make them pay for it." (The "them" is the Irish mob).
      • Hell, his RAMPAGE against the Irish mob for selling fake cancer medication is at least 50% about them doing it to Ruth and other cancer patients. If it was just him, one could assume he would take only half the gear.
    Malory: What do you plan on doing??
    Lana: Dogs of war.
    Archer: Whatever farm animal of war, Lana!
    • The fact that Kreiger thinks it's sad that little kids get cancer, and accepts Archer's excuse as to why he thought his cancer pills were chewable (they were candy, but Archer didn't know that).
  • The concern Archer shows for Cheryl's pet Ocelot. One would expect him to be characteristically pissed off that it shredded one of his suits, but instead he insists on buying it toys to play with.
  • In "El Secuestro", a surprising one from Cheryl. After getting Pam kidnapped by pretending that Pam was her (they were really after Cheryl in the first place), Cheryl not only shows a lot of guilt over the matter, but refuses to sign Mallory's contract to make ISIS her personal bodyguards until Pam is rescued. Given how selfish and spiteful Cheryl usually is to her co-workers, that says a LOT, and it shows that she and Pam really are Vitriolic Best Buds.
  • From the two part season finale, we have Archer finally finding someone he actually loves, Malory's legitimate fears that Sterling had died and Katya giving her life to save the man that she loved.
    • The reveal of what Katya and Krieger were actually discussing.
    • Throughout the episode Woodhouse was doing all he could to stall Archer in his apartment by pretending not to know where his bug out bag is but when Archer told him that he was truly in love with Katya, Woodhouse immediately stopped stalling and gave Archer not only his bag but also his grandmothers ring. Makes sense he would be sympathetic to love no one else would understand.

Season 3

  • In Heart of Archness: Part 3, when Archer tells Lana that even though they fight, he considers her his friend, and his only friend at that.
  • In "Crossing Over", Archer bonding with Jakov over shots in the safehouse. Seriously, two of the meanest, shortest-tempered characters put everything aside to make up for 35 years of lost time.
  • In the Season 3 finale, "Space Race: Part II," Archer chooses the ISIS crew over fighting Barry.
  • In the same finale, Archer makes up for an incident in the prior episode. As ISIS launches the space shuttle to go back to Earth, Cyril is forced to be the pilot as he is the only qualified person remaining. In the prior episode, Cyril had flown a flight simulator until Archer disrupted his concentration. Cyril crashed in the simulator. On board the shuttle, Archer tells Cyril that Cyril is going to make it, which elicits a thank you from Cyril to Archer. AND in response, Cyril uses the shuttle's rocket propulsion to disintegrate Barry's shuttle, stranding Barry.
    • Yet in typical Archer fashion, the Heartwarming Moment is ruined by the end. Archer grabs the throttle from Cyril just as they're about to land, crashing the shuttle in real life. Much to the chagrin of the ISIS agents, Archer gets almost no injuries from the rough landing, while the rest of them were so severely injured that their insurance provider dropped ISIS as a client.

Season 4

  • A weird meta moment in the teaser of Fugue and Riffs, which is a gentle parody of Jon Benjamin's other show, Bob's Burgers. Archer (Bob), who has no memory of his life as a spy, is closing up for the night when a four-man KGB hit squad enter the restaurant. Thinking they are robbers, offers them the money from the till, and even gives them permission to sexually assault him, so long as they don't hurt his family. Archer has been submissive to the intruders, but the moment one makes a move to murder the Belchers, Archer—who still has no memory of his previous life, and is unarmed—brutally kills all four men.
  • In "Legs", Krieger restores Ray's ability to walk again. Although he resorted to drugging him, he did make Ray's life much better without any selfish intent.
  • Archer and Luke's entire relationship in "The Wind Cries Mary". Luke is one of the few people Archer genuinely likes and he spends the entire episode trying to prove Luke's innocence. Too bad Luke really did turn out to be a traitor and revealed to Archer in his death bed confession that he raped Archer when they were on a mission.
    • Cyril admitting to Lana the only reason he cares about the peer review is because Pam cares about it.
    • Cyril stating that dating Lana was one of the best moments in his life.
  • Archer and Ron's bonding in "Midnight Ron".
  • In the episode "Once Bitten", Archer remembers back to his childhood, when he spend yet another birthday alone. Sterling's father walks into the room and gives him a stuffed alligator.
    • As crazy as it appears, Krieger gives a wedding to a couple of mice. Complete with a mouse-size cake and even a mouse priest.
  • In "The Honeymooners", it's quickly ruined but Archer fearlessly diving off a skyscraper to save Lana is kind of sweet. Y'know, by Archer standards.
  • In "Un Chien Tangerine", Archer has a one-way confession to Kazak and almost reveals his true feelings for Lana. He gets interrupted, of course, but it's clear that he's starting to realize he might actually be in love with her, even though he doesn't know what to do about it. And judging by Lana's reaction to what she thought was a wedding ring, it might not be one-sided.
    • Archer asking Lana to not quit from ISIS again, because they make a good team. He even admits that he can't promise that he'll stop needling her, rather than making an empty promise.
    • In general, Archer totally bonding with Kazak.
    • Archer deciding to spare the survivor of the group of men who tried to kidnap Lana. He even berates himself after he makes a racist comment.
  • In The Papal Chase Archer's horrifying reaction to Lana getting shot.
    • Malory, for some reason or another, taking Krieger to see "The Wiz", both stage and movie version.
  • In "Sea Tunt Part II" Archer risking his own life, without hesitation, to guarantee Lana's survival because she's going to be a mom.
    • Not to mention the fact that he yelled 'I LOVE YOU, LANA!' with his last breath mere moments before drowning.
    • And his one condition to this event? That Lana promises to be a better mom than his own was.
    • And on a weird side note, Archer tickling Ray and teasing him about giving him mouth-to-mouth, especially after all the shit he's put him through was actually pretty freaking adorable all things considered. Even though it ended badly.
    • Malory sharing a drink with Cheryl and Pam.
    • Cecil and Cheryl reconciling with each other.

Season 5

  • "White Elephant":
    • Archer proposing to Lana and offering to help raise her baby in the Season 5 premiere. Granted she turns him down, but it's one of the most genuine and nice things he's done in the whole series.
    • Archer and Lana busting out their friends.
  • In "A Kiss While Dying", Archer kissing Ramon in his dying moments without hesitation to fulfil his dying wish. Granted it's revealed that Ramon faked his own death and had been working with Charles and Rudy the whole time, but it really stands to show just how much of a heart of gold Archer has.
    • Lana apologizing to her unborn baby when she runs while pregnant and promising the kid anything he/she wants.
  • In "A Debt of Honor", Archer comes extremely close to calling Ron his stepfather, though he changes at the last moment to "my mother's husband". Considering how badly Archer took his mother's marriage (and his general behavior when it comes to the men his mother gets involved with), even this is a huge step forward for him.
    • From the same episode, Cheryl calmly willing to put down a huge amount of money to save Pam's life is surprisingly touching. As is her happily giving over a full arsenal of family-owned weapons to the team, and then basically saving Ron's life by leading his group through an underground tunnel on the fastest possible route to the nearest hospital. For someone who is clinically insane and often sadistic, she can be surprisingly sweet!
    • For all the hypocrisy in her statement, Malory saying that Lana doesn't give Archer enough credit is a HUGE Pet the Dog moment.
  • In House Call, Lana considers running away from the mansion to avoid getting busted by Agent Holly. Archer tells her he'd support her if she took this action, simultaneously cheering her up by being his assholish self by quipping she should spend 5 minutes giving a combination "Goodbye/Thank You blowjob". She hugs him.
    Lana: [tearfully sincere] I can't leave you, stupid!
    • And earlier on, we find out that Archer has been looking up on several pregnancy complications because he was worried about her.
    • When Cheryl mistakenly thinks the others are planning to kill Pam, Cheryl becomes genuinely angry.
  • Archer taking the heat for Pam for having no gun during the bus attack.
    • When in the same episode Pam tells Archer that the possible fatal side effects of eating cocaine are worth it because people like her now because of her weight loss he explains to her that people liked her (well, hated her less) BEFORE she lost the weight and possibly dying of an overdose isn't worth it. Keep in mind that Archer is one of the very few characters in the show that has WILLINGLY had sex with Pam on more than one occasion.
  • In "Baby Shower": Archer going through all that trouble just to get Lana a good present for her baby shower.
    • Topped off by Woodhouse wheeling in Archer's old crib. A gesture that nearly makes Lana cry.
    • Believe it or not, Malory gets in a good one, buying Lana pretty much everything she needs for her baby. Of course, she regrets it immediately afterward when it turns out Krieger lied about his business, and she is still flat broke. But the mere fact that Malory would do that for Lana if she could afford it is nice by her standards. This is a woman who thinks a potato is a good Christmas bonus.
  • "Palace Intrigue: Part 1": On a show where it's seldom very clear that any of the character even really like each other, it was kind of sweet to hear Cyril tell Ray that he finds him to be good company. Ruined by Ray pointing at Cyril and shouting QUEER.
  • "Palace Intrigue: Part 2":
    • Archer and Lana showing great concern when they think Pam was killed by Calderon. Followed quickly by Cheryl's roaring rampage of revenge.
    • Despite him being hurt earlier at his friends' comments, Krieger stills shows concern for then when Calderon is threatening to take them to prison.
  • "Palace Intrigue: Part 3":
    • Malory showing some rare compassion during the season 5 finale. During and after the birth, she acts downright motherly to Lana, and even acts nicer than usual to Sterling.
      • On top of this, Lana wanted to quit ISIS - not because of the risks she'd faced, or concern for her daughter's wellbeing, but because she believed Archer had lied to her, something he'd never actually done before in spite of his frequent Jerk Ass behavior.
    • "Sterling Archer, I'd like you to meet your daughter."
      • A stunned Archer may well have missed a follow-up explanation, nearly faded away by sound effects: "Despite it all, I [Lana] really do love you."
      • In that same vein, after Archer sits down, he's so gentle with the baby, tickling her chin in a gesture so affectionate it's honestly shocking that Lana doesn't comment on it.
    • Archer revealing that he got certified as a doula (aka Midwife) to make sure that Lana was safe in a worst-case scenario (which ended up happening of course)

Season 6

  • "The Holdout":
    • Archer ringing up Sato's wife for him, after what is possibly 6 decades without hearing her.
      • Previous to that, though, Archer is genuinely devastated and upset when Sato learns about Hiroshima and Nagasaki via his cell phone. You can tell he did not want him to find out that way and without the proper context.
    • Archer feeding a banana to a baby deer.
  • Regardless of still being his usual asshole self, the mere fact that Archer is really taking being a father seriously. In "Three to Tango," when he and Lana arrive in Buenos Aires, he notes that his primary concern about the two of them flying there together on the same plane is out of fear that it crashes and leaves little AJ without either of her parents to take care of her (leaving that to Malory, and we all know how well that would turn out).
    • From the same episode, we have Malory of all people freaking out when AJ goes missing, tracking down Cheryl (the one person in the office who absolutely hates (human) babies) and threatening to kill her with her bare hands if she so much as harmed "one single hair on her little brown head."
    • To complete the trifecta of touching moments, we find out Lana was stalling about talking to Archer about who would take care of AJ if they died because she didn't want to hurt Archer's feelings with the truth—that her parents would take custody of AJ instead of him, and if they happen to die, her sister would be the one to take care of her then. Archer is a constant pain-in-the-ass to her, but it's clear Lana still cares about his feelings even if (most of the time) he has no regard for hers.
  • "Vision Quest":
    • Archer calling himself, Pam, and Lana the strongest.
    • Pam, Cheryl, and Lana all agree and say that Cyril looks good in his sweater vest.
    • Archer apologizing about the sweater vest when Cyril tells him it's cashmere.
  • Archer going Papa Wolf on a rogue agent in Sitting. Well, about to go.
  • "The Kanes" has this exchange (Which ends slightly in a moment of funny.)
    Lana: So, listen I wanna thank you, for trying to save my dad's research, and even though I'm obviously still furious about the hot tub incident, and will be, probably, for years to come, I can see how you— you, Archer, could have misconstrued the situation, and even though it's kinda hard for me to admit it, you are family to me, and not just because of A.J. and I realize now that I should have invited you to the family reunion, so I'm sorry. Sorry that I hurt your feelings.
    Archer: Well, thanks. I accept your apology. Sorry I tried to spit-roast your mom.
    • Lemuel explaining that he and Lana's mother will always be proud of Lana, capped by the fact that he admits that it's stupid that she chose to have a kid with Archer, but still admitting Archer is now family all the same.
  • Archer realizes in "Pocket Listing" that Pam is his best friend, and she happily happily hugs him in response.
    • Archer and Lana making out and later having sex, after six seasons of protesting that they aren't in love. The relationship is probably not going to make it past the next episode, but it was really sweet to see them just give in finally.
  • "Edie's Wedding" has Archer volunteering to pretend to be Pam's boyfriend for her sister's wedding.
    • This episode as a whole shows how far Archer and Pamís friendship has come that Archer demands a sincere apology from Edie for the way she treated Pam. And the last time Pam was kidnapped (El Secuestro), Archer was just as dismissive of Pam as anyone else. This time he forced Edie to help him as he prepared himself to face Barry heading straight there to rescue Pam.
    • Boris, the assistant to Nikolai Jakov (former head of the KGB) probably got the most shit out of almost any character in the series from his various bosses. To see him in a happy relationship with Katya is honestly touching in its own way.
    • Cyril offers to get a hotel room near where Lana is undergoing her SEERE training in case she gets worried about Abijean. Sure he's trying to get back together with her via a somewhat underhanded method, but it's sweet that he underwent the effort. Likewise, Lana didn't ask Cyril to watch AJ not because she doesn't trust him with the baby, but because she's aware what she did completely ruined their relationship.
  • "Reignition Sequence" has two really big ones: first, Lana admitting that she's the happiest she's ever been in a while as she and Archer try to date a second time and Archer confirming that he won't cheat on her again (2) second, Archer's speech about how lucky he is to have fallen in love with Lana, his best friend, to have her love him back, and to also be a father with the woman he loves. The second was such a heartfelt speech that his asshole coworkers who organized Katya's appearance to break them up all run off to stop Lana from seeing Archer and Katya together and misinterpret it as him cheating on her again. Naturally, it's still ruined at the end of the episode, but those two things are easily the sweetest things that have happened on this show in years.
  • The very end of Drastic Voyage. After being blacklisted from the CIA, Malory wonders if she can get back into their good graces. Archer rallies the group by calling themselves the scrappy underdogs, which they all support. Despite the fact that the cast barely gets along, they still always support each other in times of crisis.
    • Archer expresses concern that Ray is going to kill himself after Ray is paralyzed again.


  • Near the end of the 2015 Comic-Con Panel video, Archer act's like a little kid at Christmas when Krieger tells him there is a new Star Wars movie, by showing him a working lightsaber modeled from the first trailers. He immediately changes his mind about wanting to go to Comic-Con with him and Pam.
  • After George Coe passed away, FX gave both him and Woodhouse a heartfelt tribute, emphasizing the character's status as Archer's competent (if extremely addled) surrogate father.