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‘Archer’ Review: “Midnight Ron”

Archer Midnight Ron Review
FX

Archer’ season 4 heads for the border with its fourth episode of the year “Midnight Ron,” as Sterling finds himself paired with his stepfather Ron Cadillac (Ron Leibman), as they drive back from Canada together and encounter numerous complications along the way .

Last week’s ‘Archer’ episode “Legs” saw Ray accepting Krieger’s help in surgically restoring the use of his legs, while Archer desperately tried to stop them, fearing a machine uprising, so how does “Midnight Ron” stick together?  Is ‘Archer’ season 4 racing toward its most classic season yet?

Read on for your in-depth recap of everything you need to know about ‘Archer’ season 4 episode 4, “Midnight Ron!”

Malory argues over the phone with Ron about his being in Schenectady when they have opera tickets that night, before Archer calls from Montreal requesting an extraction after losing his money and passport (guess how). She dismisses both her husband and her son, lamenting how boring Ron is, as we see Ron drinking in his dingy hotel room and babbling about how epic he is. He’s freakin’ epic.

At a Canadian payphone, Archer gets rejected for help by all of his co-workers, even poor Woodhouse, before Ron pulls up and offers a ride, hoping to bond with his son-in-law. Along the way, Ron reminds Archer he lacks a passport, and will need to ride in the trunk as they cross the Canadian border into New York.

After successfully passing the border, Ron keeps a drinking Archer in a the trunk a bit longer, before another car attacks them from behind! Still in the trunk, Archer manages to kill the pursuing men with his gun, but a lucky shot from their side sends Ron’s Cadillac off the road, throwing Archer clear of the vehicle. Once they come to, Ron reveals that he makes the trip regularly with a suitcase full of cash, the same men ambushing him each time.

Archer and Ron argue by the side of the road about his bi-annual trip, before a passing trucker agrees to drive them the rest of the way to New York if they ride in the trailer. Sitting atop cases of beer, Ron reveals his real last name as Kaczynski, and explains that he and his crew used to steal cars in New York, before finally opening up their own chop shop.

One day while out buying lunch, Ron’s crew was arrested, after which he started his car dealerships, and began making bi-annual payments to thank his incarcerated friends. Archer deduces that crew member Fat Mike must be the one making the seizures, as the only one not to complain about the theft, frustrating Ron. Despite Archer’s revelation that Malory finds him boring, Ron makes Archer promise not to tell Malory about his past, as we see the truck’s driver take an exit away from New York toward Coxsackie.

When the truck comes to a stop, Archer and Ron open the trailer doors to find a number of lingerie-clad hillbillies waiting for them with melee weapons, intending to shoot what Archer describes as a “really rape-y snuff film.” Archer pulls his gun on the men, momentarily saving the day, before Ron’s insistence that Archer shoot the men reveals that the gun has no more bullets.

Archer and Ron run for their lives, Archer realizing the predicament matches a prediction from Cheryl’s gypsy, and he urges Ron to follow the woman’s instructions by “making it rain.” Ron reluctantly surrenders half of the money as Archer throws the cash into the air, though it blows in the wrong direction. The two men continue running toward a departing train, as Archer manages to climb aboard, teasingly declining to help Ron for marrying his mother. Ron protests that Archer wouldn’t be happy with anyone marrying his mother, before Archer reluctantly pulls him aboard.

After fending off some hobos, Archer realizes they’ll soon need to jump off the train anyway, in order to secure transportation at Ron’s Catskills dealership and get him back to Malory in time for the opera. After Archer playfully shoves his stepfather out of the train, the pair speed back to Manhattan in a brand-new Cadillac. Stopping by Woodhouse for a change of clothes for Ron, Archer drives Ron to meet Malory at the opera, knowing their newfound friendship will irritate the woman.

Ron successfully makes the opera, to Malory’s chagrin, as Archer reclines in his hot tub and listens to Woodhouse sobbing over the bowl of spider webs that his employer forced him to eat as punishment.

Considering how abruptly Ron was dropped into the premiere “Fugue and Riffs,” we’re glad an entire episode was devoted to testing the relationship between Archer and his new stepfather, particularly when the voice actors share such strong chemistry. Though largely inconsequential to the relationship, the capers across northern New York make for an effective story, while not much in the way of interesting happens with the supporting cast back at Isis. Hopefully the relationship between Ron and Sterling holds together, considering Ron Leibman (Jessica Walter’s real-life husband) has made such a stellar addition to the cast thus far. Ron Cadillac is freakin’ epic!

What say you? Did you get your fill of spy-spoofing ‘Archer’ action?  What was your favorite gag from “Midnight Ron?” Join us next week for another all-new ‘Archer’ episode recap of “Vicious Coupling” on FX!

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