Talking With Archer’s H. Jon Benjamin! An Archer Movie? What Would He Like To See Happen! And Which Pam Is His Favorite!

OMG!!! I can’t believe I actually got a chance to talk to the main man himself, Sterling Archer. Well, the awesome man behind Sterling Archer’s voice, H. Jon Benjamin. Unless you are a huge Archer fan, you might not even recognize Jon if you spot him on the streets, but that voice! You are sure to recognize that undeniably epic voice when you hear it. I’ll be lying if I say I didn’t freak out and totally fangirled out as soon as I heard his voice. I’m actually proud of myself for refraining from asking Jon to say “Danger Zone”. Trust me it was harder than I thought. Anyway, it was such a pleasure talking to Jon and below are few of the questions I was lucky enough to ask him.

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Playing Archer, how much of your own personality do you bring into the character?

H. Jon: Well, I don’t know. I really don’t know. I’m not totally like Archer in real life, although I think I have my moments. I clearly possess some of his qualities. We have the same voice. I can get pretty loud, and mean to people at times. So, sure, I’m definitely a little bit like him. I’m a little more demure in real life. I don’t want to get hit. I can’t get into a fight, that wouldn’t be good for me.

Are there any talks about turning Archer into a movie? And if so, who would you like to see playing Sterling Archer?

H. Jon: Well, definitely not me. Let’s say, Paul Giamatti, he kind of looks like me. No, no, that wouldn’t work. I don’t know, that a tough one. There is a lot of handsome actors out there. I saw a trailer for the British spy movie that’s coming out recently that had a guy that kind of looks exactly like Archer. He seemed like he had the attitude, I just don’t know what his name is. So it can, but you have to figure out who it is for me. I think it is The Man from U.N.C.L.E. That being said, the guy who’s going to be in The Man from U.N.C.L.E, the movie.

(So I did figure out exactly who after a quick click on Google. Who is this perfect person to play Sterling Archer aka Duchess? Drumroll please…………. Henry Cavill!!! Yup. Oh I could totally see that happening. Awesome pick Jon. You nailed it! Who is better to play Archer than Superman himself? I would love to see this come alive in theaters. Adam Reed, make it happen! We might not get to see this any time soon, but Jon did mention the following. So keep your fingers crossed.)

H. Jon: That being said, there’s certainly been talk about making an animated movie of Archer. I know people have brought it up. I guess that would be up to a consortium of people who would give the money to do it, and I don’t mean to make that sound nefarious.

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I think it would be awesome. I’ll be looking forward to it, if it happens.

H. Jon: Yes, I feel like they would strive to make an animated feature before they would make a live action one. I would think, just because the show’s for the fans and the show.

After learning about all these characters throughout the seasons, if you get to switch with one of them for a day, who would it be? Who would you want to voice besides Archer?

H. Jon: Out of the cast, probably Pam. I like Pam. Pam says the craziest sh**, and I’m a big Pam fan. Then I’d get to do my famous southern accent.

He actually did a bit of his Southern accent. I wish I could share. Even though no one could really replace Pam, it’s fun to know how much Pam is loved and even Jon himself would want to spend a day in her shoes. Amber Nash does such an amazing job with Pam; you can’t really be surprised of her massive following.

Speaking of Pam, do you like Season 5 coke-crazed Pam compared to “normal” Pam?

H. Jon: I like regular Pam the best. I like Pam the way she is. I like office Pam more than crazy coke adult Pam.
Aww….this makes me so happy.

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The following are some of the other questions Jon got from the call.

From all the things that Archer’s done, all the places he’s been, is there anything that he hasn’t done or anyplace he hasn’t been to yet that you would like to see them do in future episodes?

H. Jon: Wow, there’s like nowhere left, right? Now he’s going inside the human body and I wouldn’t have thought of that one. He’s been in space and in the ocean. I’m trying to think, back to the womb? I don’t know where else he could go besides, he’d have to reverse time maybe. Time travel? That’s the only dimension he hasn’t covered yet.

Do you like the fact that Archer has gone, over the years, more and more out there and bizarre? Or do you wish it would go back to being more of a regular spy show?

H. Jon: I think actually this season, it sort of did kind of go back to a little bit more of the way it used to be until the finale. But Adam Reed is always trying to push the stories. For sure I think there’s been little elements that have gotten weirder, a little weirder, and more surreal. I think that’s good.

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Now that Archer is a dad—in this week’s past episode there was some suggestion that maybe he should be considering his own, the risks he takes in his mortality. Do you think Archer is thinking about that? Does he have the depth to think about that?

H. Jon: Yes. I think it’s evident in the show that he’s definitely, it’s a consideration for him now. I can only
speak from experience, I didn’t care about my kid until he was like nine, so he’s got time. That’s maybe not so good to say. But he can’t read, he’s twelve, so he’ll never read this.

I think there’s always— especially considering the way he had his child, he is slowly improving from the last child he had. Progress is slow, but life is pretty short. Archer, I think he’s got to pick up the pace as far as self-examining and figuring out how to get his life on track. But I’m not sure that will ever happen in the show. But like I said, he’s got some time to while his daughter’s still a baby. Maybe try and speed up some actualization.

If the characters where real, could you see yourself being best friends with any of them if you had to choose?

H. Jon: Oh man, that’s rough. Maybe, I can’t see myself hanging out with Archer. That would be— although I have hung with people like him in my past. But at this point I couldn’t keep up, and wouldn’t want to. I would have to go with— and I’m not going to hang out with Krieger. I’ll go with a safe bet and say I’ll hang out with Cyril, although it wouldn’t be that much fun. I could see a movie with him, maybe grab a glass of wine. I don’t think anybody would hang out with Krieger, I don’t think, right? You’d just be, like immediately call the cops. And be like, I met a guy who’s just going to kill people.

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You have a bunch of great guest stars throughout Archer’s run, is there any chance you’d get someone like Scharpling and Wurster to appear on Archer?

H. Jon: That would be great. Yes, let’s see, silly boy Roy on Archer. I see those guys once in a while and it’s a good recommendation. I’d be happy to pass it on. They would be great.

Jon, what is your favorite season finale from any TV show?

H. Jon: Oh, from any TV show? From any TV show? I sometimes I like to say St. Elsewhere just because it’s so— but I didn’t really like it. But I think I ironically started to like it and then I talked about—and I use it as a reference all the time.

If I’m in any situation where I’m talking about a TV finale, that the whole thing was a— as I remember it, a, St. Elsewhere was a hospital building in a snow globe. And the whole thing was a dream of a boy with mental disabilities. I just thought that was pretty good. So I have to say, I’m dating myself, St. Elsewhere. But let’s face it, we’re all going to die.

What is your favorite Archer season finale?

H. Jon: Oh, wow. I liked the Sealab one. But I think probably my favorite would have been “Archer Vice”, where it wrapped up that whole season arc. I thought that was really smart, and I didn’t know what was coming until I read the script. That was cool to figure out why the whole thing was a sideways plot by Malory; which makes total sense considering her character. So I liked that a lot, so I’ll say that one.

Can you give us any little clues or hints about what to expect? This season final is clearly inspired by the movie Fantastic Voyage. And that movie takes some little twists, including a traitor being on board in the original film. I know you can’t reveal that, but can you help?

H. Jon: Yes. I’m going to toe the line and say, I can’t say what’s going to happen. But mainly because I have no recollection. But let’s go with, I can’t say.

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Maybe you can talk about, it’s not common for Archer to venture into really pure science fiction. Maybe you could tell us a little bit about what inspired that move and how much fun it was maybe, or not, to work on this episode?

H. Jon: Well no, it’s great. I had him read his, sort of ventured into this territory before with the Sealab finale and when they go to space. A lot of some of that stuff comes from allusions to shows and scenarios from fiction that he’s liked. Animation allows you to do that.

For Archer, it seems to work. I guess some of the crazy, and he certainly has a science fiction bent. And so whenever he can let that creep in, he does. Certainly not in the first four seasons, but I think now that Archer is getting on in years, it’s like he’s letting that loose a little bit. I think it’s fun. I always like it.

If you could see an animated movie for Archer, what kind of shenanigans and plot would you ideally love the characters to get into? If you could go a one minute pitch.

H. Jon: Wow, that’s a tall task. Yes, that’s a tough one, to pitch an Archer movie. I would have to, I feel like I would let Adam Reed do that for me. I’d go to the meeting and I’d bring the full cutout version of Archer and stand behind it and talk to help sell it. But as far as a plot goes, I don’t know. That’s a tough movie to make. I feel like you’d have to really go crazy with like a serious, you’d have to go think really crazy about what mission you’d want to focus on for them.

That’s a big ask. Plus I don’t want to ruin it. I don’t want to say some dumb idea, and then they’ll never be able to sell the movie because I said that.

Judy Greer is going to be in Ant-Man pretty soon. Is there any dream comic book or superhero movie that you’d want to be a part of?

H. Jon: I don’t know. I always like Sub-Mariner. That’s the one movie they never made. Maybe that’s for a reason because nobody likes Sub-Mariner except for me. But I feel like maybe they’ll never make Sub-Mariner. But I would love to be Sub-Mariner, especially with my real body. That would be so weird, be a real Jewish, middle-aged Sub-Mariner.

The biggest impact of any single character on the show this season, I think would have been made by the one that hasn’t been mentioned at all so far, and that’s Abbiejean. I was just wondering what your thoughts were on how she affected Archer personally.

H. Jon: Yes, I think the underlying plot element in this story, or certainly the underlying emotional element in the story is Abbiejean’s existence. And how it affects Archer’s relationship with Lana, which I think is the principal relationship in his life, and the one I think he needs to keep going. I think they did a really good job with it because it’s complicated for Archer to change so radically, even when you have a kid.

I think a lot of people think that change is easy, just by the sake of having a kid, but in actuality it’s not. Like I said before earlier to somebody, he’s making progress. Hopefully it will catch up, but she’s going to be a mess. I think if I were to tack on a real life trajectory for Abbiejean, she’ll be a mess. Lana is, compared to Archer, is pretty stable. She’s probably the most stable character in the whole show.

I could just listen to him talk all day. Didn’t mean to sound creepy, but the fangirl in me was doing cartwheels. I can’t thank Jon enough for taking the time off his day to talk to all of us. Archer concluded its sixth on FX and can’t wait to see where the gang ends up next. Until next time, stay off that Danger Zone! 😉

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