Secret Agent. Asshole. Book nerd? Sterling Archer, the modern take-down of James Bond on Adam Reed's cult animated show 'Archer,' is many things, but that last detail has always been a quirk in the show, with literary references spouted out almost as often as jokes about oral sex. Often, these references in V and films don't stick as well as they should, coming off less as wit and more as self-indulgent name-dropping--it never made sense to me that Buffy Summers lamented that her slaying duties got in the way of her social life, yet was still able to stay on top of her pop culture references. Reed has admitted that the show's many literary references, including the many from other characters not included for time, are the remnant of his tenure as a frustrated English major, yet their contrast with the more deplorable aspects of Archer's personality was probably the first indicator of his humanity, his intelligence when he chose to use it, and maybe even an indication of his lonely, friendless childhood and adolescence. Plus, of all the mixed-up characters on Archer, Reed seems to know that it's most fun to hear the debonair, narcissistic spy mention an obscure Herman Melville book at gunpoint, read 10 Babysitter's Club books in preparation for guarding his daughter, or wonder out loud if he's gay for Tolkien. You won't find Sean Connery or Daniel Craig saying that with a straight face any time soon.
Serena Bramble is a film editor whose montage skills are an end result of accumulated years of movie-watching and loving. Serena is a graduate from the Teledramatic Arts and Technology department at Cal State Monterey Bay. In addition to editing, she also writes on her blog Brief Encounters of the Cinematic Kind.