Cheryl is one crazy Tunt. Heir to half of the $1 billion Tunt Railroad fortune, she works in an office everyday to be abused by Mallory and mocked by the Isis staff. Yes, she may be a schizophrenic, masochistic nymphomaniac…but she is our schizophrenic, masochistic nymphomaniac. So, when her brother comes into Isis this week to try to take her away, he has the wrath of the most incompetent staff on television history to stare him down.
This season’s penultimate episode, like the previous two, marks the beginning of a two-parter for the finale. Except what is at stake is not Archer’s pride, as the last two seasons ended on his relationship with Katya in some form. No, it is Cheryl’s. The previously unseen Tunt brother finally makes his grand entrance to Isis when he comes to ask for help in dealing with some hydrogen bomb thingy or other. Cecil Tunt, heir of the other half billion dollars in the family fortune, is the kind of philanthropic do-gooder who just makes you feel dirty. He dresses like Jacques Cousteau and co-founds charities every second week, such as “Children Without Plates” and “Doctors Within Borders.” Everything about this faux-humble vegan seems off. But he is offering Mallory money for a job and his “chopper-saurus” (a dinosaur-sized luxury helicopter) comes with a fully stocked bar, so the Archers are sold. Pam is even easier to buy off when she decides to eat from the Soy Shrimp buffet, soy allergies be damned!
Meanwhile, Cheryl knows her brother is untrustworthy. After a little bit of snooping, she discovers that he is videotaping all of the rooms where he is privately “interviewing” each member of Isis to find out questionable stories regarding Cheryl’s character.
“Choke Sex; that’s her kink,” explains Mallory between the glasses of scotch and brandy that Cecil keeps supplying. “With a KGB cyborg after she led him straight to the Isis safehouse at 921 East 73rd Street.” Again…well, yeah, Cheryl did those things. But we all make mistakes! Kind of like divulging classified information over cocktails.
Cheryl turns to Pam for help, but Pam and the rest of the gang all kind of think Cheryl is too crazy. That is until Archer and Lana discover there is no hydrogen bomb and Cecil is only trying to procure enough evidence to have Cheryl locked away, thereby collecting the other half of the Tunt Family Fortune! The diabolical fiend needs it to fund even more charity work! As Archer remarks, “Such rich people problems.”
Ultimately, Cheryl beats up Cecil’s aviator and “brother-stealing” vegan girlfriend while the rest of the gang destroys the tapes. Realizing that Cecil plans to cut Mallory off from her secretarial squeeze to the Tunt fortune, Mallory stops at nothing to protect Cheryl’s name. Even when Cyril wants to help a choking Pam, she shouts, “I’LL BUY YOU A NEW ONE!” Still, it may all be for naught when the cliffhanger reveals that while there is no hydrogen bomb threat, an evil mercenary in Cecil’s underwater lab is planning to launch nerve gas missiles at all the major cities on the Eastern seaboard.
This was a pretty satisfactory set-up for a big undersea blowout that will include harpoon guns. Like it has to, right? Yet for now, it all comes down to protecting Judy Greer’s brilliant concoction of stupidity and BDSM naivety. In short, someone whose qualities we can all appreciate. This side character has the a comedy MVP among all the background players at Isis and no sensitive older brother with his own Roger Moore-era Bond villain lair is going to stop her from coming in to work each day only to be choked out into nirvana.It ends on a cliffhanger with the promise of high seas hjinks to come. Count me in, yo ho!
Quotes from THE DANGER ZONE:“What, did Bub finally die?” Archer talking about his grandmother.“Yeah, Rien Poortvilet just called. He wants you to pose for him.” Archer about Cheryl’s brother. When nobody reacts, “Oh come on! Beloved illustrator of Gnomes? Jesus, read a coffee table book!”“Don’t say high functioning alcoholism.” Archer’s instinctive response when someone asks to talk to him.“Ah crap, already?” Pam mistaking Cheryl’s voice for a talking half-eaten soy shrimp. “Look, auditory hallucinations aren’t going to make you any less delicious.”
“Yeah and for six months, you also thought you were a werewolf.” Pam’s non-response to Cheryl worrying that Cecil thinks she’s crazy.“GODDAMMIT, SHUT UP JOHN WILLIAMS!” Cheryl to the voice in her head.