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A Going Concern

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"A Going Concern" is the second episode of the second season and the twelfth episode overall of Archer. The story follows up "Dial M for Mother", the season one finale.

Plot Edit

After Malory is wiped out in a Ponzi scheme, she hatches a scheme of her own: selling ISIS - lock, stock and snack machines - to archrival spy agency ODIN. Archer and the rest of the ISIS employees, rightfully fearing for their jobs, must use every trick in the book (ISIS Field Manual, 3rd Edition) to try to stop the sale.

Synopsis Edit

While on the phone about what sounds like some sort of business deal, Malory is approached by Archer who slaps a small glass tube on her desk containing a small microchip. Archer explains when he complained of headaches to Dr. Krieger, Krieger knocked him out with some sort of tranquilizer and drilled into his head hypothesizing that it's a "satellite linked mind-control chip." Confused by the Russian markings, Malory and Archer argue over the meaning; Archer accusing her "boyfriend" Nikolai Jakov of planting it and demands the truth. Malory dismisses him in order to return to her "fairly huge deal." When Archer prods too much she blurts out that she is selling ISIS, to which Archer is speechless.

Malory explains that her bank account was wiped clean by a ponzi scheme leaving her penniless. Cheryl, who was eavesdropping at the time, darts off to tell Pam (who is smoking pot) and Cyril (who explains that it is in fact possible to sell ISIS). When the trio ponders who, Archer is heard screaming "ODIN!" Director Len Trexler then appears after Malory tells Archer he made her a very "attractive" offer.

At an unknown restaurant, top ODIN agent Barry Dylan is schmoozing Lana Kane into accepting Malory's position as "Regional Director for the Americas" on the sole condition she sleep with him. Back in the break room the team brainstorms ideas of how to save ISIS. Malory and Trexler enter; the former screaming at them to get back to work and the latter announcing he can't wait to have everyone join ODIN family; more specifically for Archer to welcome Trexler into his family which causes Archer to vomit. The team realizes Trexler is only buying ISIS in the hopes of marrying Malory. Cyril suggests they try to make Trexler "fall out of love" to which Dr. Krieger agrees is possible with a "deep-cycle marine battery...or LSD." Cheryl gasps and realizes that the "breath strips" Krieger gave her during their relationship were just LSD. Krieger states that emotions don't come from the heart but is interrupted by Archer's epiphany: "the brain!"...or LSD.

Archer runs off to snoop in his mother's desk which is rigged with 12 pounds of C-4. Archer calls Ray who quickly says "blue and yellow." Archer asks if Ray could look at it for more than half a second as Ray retorts he was the one who wired it. Archer snips the wires saying he could have began with that only to have Ray reveal he didn't actually wire the desk. Archer angrily punches the drawer, activating what is implied a giant vibrator. He reluctantly turns it off all the while being taunted by Ray i.e. like how there's no sink in the room. Archer now traumatized states that "there isn't enough liquor and therapy in the world to undo that" to which Ray replies, "Yeah, you should'be borrowed these" while standing at the door holding giant rubber gloves. Archer throws a vase at him prompting Lana to give warning not to break anything in her new office. After leaving because her foil swan is leaking Sweet-N-Sour, Barry enters motioning to the guard team in the lobby is there to stop anyone trying to disrupt the sale. Archer angrily swats Barry's foil swan on the ground as Barry mentally notes that that's how you get ants.

Dr. Krieger is shown testing the mind control chip on a rabbit which is dubbed "Rabbert Klein" by Archer. Krieger is certain that the chip will work but is unsure whether it will kill the host. Lana approaches Barry polishing his gun and excitedly tells of her many ideas, but Barry quickly reminds her of their deal much to Lana's chagrin.

The team is seen hatching their plan (crude schematic and weird figurines included). Cyril is assigned to help Krieger with surgery because he's "good at math" which is irrelevant but "can't hurt." Ray is to lure and trap Lana in the mainframe though he wants the job of luring Barry away. Sterling counters that he's the wrong bait because Barry was engaged at one point to which Ray admits he was married once for two years; albeit to a lesbian he met at a "pray away the gay bible group." Instead Cheryl is to lure Barry away and Pam is to trick the guards into taking the LSD breath strips after which Krieger accidentally touches a strip while warning them to be careful.

Plan underway, Cheryl hands Barry a note from Lana asking to meet in the mainframe. Barry, passing the guards, warns them of Archer's possible attempt to throw the deal. Pam then offers them the breath strips saying one of them reeks of bad breath. Lana is showing her new name plate to a crying Ray who will miss her and tells her that Barry is in the mainframe indicating it's "now or never" if she wants the job. Lana show's second thoughts asking if Ray would hate her for it to which he quickly responds with a no, but also to "do reverse cowgirl because that carpet is seriously heinous."

With the guard team in utter disarray Archer lures Trexler away to "give his blessing." Ray then traps Lana and a nude Barry in the mainframe asking Lana to not hate him. In Krieger's lab, Archer warns Trexler that Malory is only making the deal in order to not be broke. Trexler doesn't care however and claims he loves Malory for who she is, so Cyril tranquilizes him and a very high and shirtless Dr. Krieger is ready to do surgery. Meanwhile Lana withdraws her decision to have sex with a still nude Barry.

With Trexler chipped and eyes held open with a headstrap, a slide show is presented showing Malory's face. The slideshow then starts the "Modified Ludovico," splicing Malory's face with images of the devil, atomic bombing, and overall negative imagery. With the chip activated Archer convinces him to not marry Malory. Trexler now only wants Rabbert Klein and the lettuce it eats. He then leaves with a nude and black eyes Barry.

The team celebrates keeping ISIS. Archer (somewhat) attempts to offer his mother coffee since she's still broke. Malory knows Archer tampered with her business deal, although he vehemently denies it, because "certain items" in her desk were not where they should've been. Instead she leased out three floors to help with her money problem and even sold the cleaners to Popeye, a (former) loan-sharking pimp of Archer's favorite prostitute.

Callbacks and Running Gags Edit

  • Wow, That's... Actually Better - as with "Stir-Friday" before it, Archer suggests s punny name for the rabbit ("Rabbert Klein") that's better than the unspoken name Krieger came up with on his own.
  • That's How You Get Ants - Barry's sweet-and-sour lunch leftovers.

Trivia Edit

  • Title Explained: "A Going Concern" is a stock investment term, referring to a company which has sufficient funds to continue operations.
  • Modified Ludovico is a reference to A Clockwork Orange, and it shows Len Trexler several disturbing images. Whenever the camera cuts to Len Trexler's eyes, however, the images are unmirror when they should be.
  • Archer refers to Len Trexler as "Lennie" when he says "Can we give Lennie the rabbit?", which is referencing the John Steinbeck novel, Of Mice and Men. Trexler develops a bond with the rabbit reminiscent of that in the story. Ray will later make this reference, to get Lana Kane to give Seamus back to Trinette in "Blood Test."
  • A bit of continuity comes up when Archer's microchip is removed from his brain. In Dial M for Mother, the chip was implanted on the left side of his forehead. In this episode, the chip is removed from the right side.
  • An animation error occurs when the ODIN agent raising his submachine gun peers into the barrel.  As he raises it, the back end of the gun is cut off by the background. 
    Screen shot 2013-04-01 at 10.13.31 AM
  • In the background when Archer is talking to Krieger about putting the microchip into Len Trexler's brain, there is a nod to the movie The Goonies as one of the plastic storage bins is clearly labeled "Pinchers of Peril," which was the invention that saved Data from falling into a pit full of spikes.
  • Sterling names the rabbit Rabbert Klein. This is in homage to comedian Robert Klein, who used to lick his leg as part of his standup routine. 
  • Archer describes Malory's dildo as being aubergine in color, "aubergine" being the English name for an eggplant. This is referenced later in the episode "Lo Scandalo," when Archer describes Malory's sexual liasons with Italian Prime Minister Savio Mascalzoni as "the crime of sodomy by rubber eggplant." Aubergines are mentioned again in the season 4 episode "Live and Let Dine," in a discussion of synonyms for the word "eggplant." 
  • Ackee and Saltfish is an actual Jamacian dish.

Main Cast Edit

Guest CastEdit

Gallery of ImagesEdit

There are 17 screenshots and images from "A Going Concern" on this Wiki, visit the category page for a complete gallery.


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