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15 Guest Stars You Forgot Showed Up In Archer

Adam Reed has carved out a niche in the world of animation with Adult Swim comedies like "Sealab 2021," "Frisky Dingo," "12 Oz Mouse," and FX's "Archer." Throughout it all, it's hard to argue against the fact that the voice actors Reed teams with to deliver the high-intensity dialogue he writes with are pretty high up on his list of assets. The main cast of "Archer" alone features the unmistakable voices of animation legend H. Jon Benjamin, as well as Judy Greer, Amber Nash, Aisha Tyler, Chris Parnell, and, of course, the late, great Jessica Walters. It's hard to imagine "Archer" with anyone else's voice, and that's a big part of what makes the show as distinctive as it is.

Likewise, the perfect "Archer" guest star has a way of leaving a mark on the series by joining in on the wild behavior of the main cast with absolute sincerity regardless of how unbelievable the scenario might be. Over the years, the show has had a truly wild number of big names stroll through an episode or several, and every one of them understood the assignment. Some became regulars while others only appeared in a handful of scenes before going on their merry way. After so many actors have lent their talents to the show, there's no time like the present to look back on some of the best guests who played roles small enough that you may have forgotten them, but who remain crucial to the world of "Archer."

The sheriffs from 'Reno 911!' as Charles and Rudy

In the Season 1 episode, "Honeypot," "Archer" gets a visit from the deputies of "Reno 911!" and comedy-scripting powerhouses, Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant. Attempting to help Archer with a sting operation in which he pretends to be gay in order to seduce the mysterious Ramon Limon, Charles (Lennon) and Rudy (Garant) offer observations from the sidelines as Archer attempts to throw himself at an uninterested Limon. Later, as Limon and Archer finally connect, Charles and Rudy reveal themselves to be hitmen by attacking Limon in his home at the behest of Castro. They fail, but apparently, go on to become "BFFs" with Limon.

The two are comically stereotypical, with Archer admonishing them for being a hairdresser and an interior decorator, while Charles shoots back, "You, like, sneeze glitter." However, they are also prone to running scams on Archer and the gang, and the last we saw them, they made off with a wild amount of money after faking their deaths for a second time.

Garant and Lennon have been a collaborative powerhouse since the mid-1990s with the MTV sketch comedy series, "The State," and that knack for comedic timing and the ability to play off of one another effortlessly contributes to their top-notch guest appearances in "Archer." Though they've been MIA for quite some time, here's hoping we see them again soon.

Ron Perlman as Ramon Limon

Also in "Honeypot," there is a surprise appearance from Ron Perlman in the form of Ramon Limon, a former spy for Fidel Castro. After coming into the possession of a sex tape featuring Malory, Archer attempts to run a "honeypot" operation on Limon. Despite being a gay man, he has no interest in Archer, dismissing him as not his type and then evading him at a bar. Finally, they have a jai alai match, and Limon knocks him out. When Archer awakens in Limon's apartment, Limon informs him that he's well aware of who he really is, and the two bond over their high-maintenance mothers.

In the fifth season, just as Charles and Rudy make a return appearance, so does Limon. This occurs after the disbanding of ISIS, which in turn sees the regular cast transform into a drug cartel. They set up a drug deal for twenty kilograms of cocaine to sell to one of Malory's connections only to realize that it's none other than Limon. As one might imagine, this all goes horribly awry, with the group losing both the cocaine and the money. We think Limon perishes after being shot, sharing a final kiss before dying with Archer, but by the end, it's clear that he and Charles and Rudy have all made yet another fast getaway. Will they show up again? Time will tell.

Clarke Peters as Popeye

Though most viewers might know Clarke Peters from his role as Lester Freamon in "The Wire," he also plays a small but iconic role in "Archer" in the form of Popeye, the second owner of the dry cleaners at ISIS, which he buys from Malory. Archer is dismayed to see Popeye at the front desk, grumbling that he shouldn't even be allowed in the building, while Popeye quips that Archer still owes him money and should watch his mouth. Archer seems generally pretty terrified of Popeye and notes that he now has a bulletproof door since "the Popeye incident," which is never fully explained but which we can assume Archer wasn't totally innocent of wrongdoing during.

His first executive function is to withhold Archer's suits until Archer settles his tab for escorts. Next, taking control of the dry cleaners' branding, Popeye renames it from the prior title of the Four-Five-Six Laundry to Popeye's Suds and Duds. Though his appearances are sparse, he's always hilarious, noting in his first appearance in the Season 2 episode, "A Going Concern," that he intends to lean into environmentalism by saying he's "going green up in here." Later in the season, in "El Secuestro," he starts adding services to the dry cleaners, including a bar, a liquor shelf, and a jukebox, thereby elevating it from a simple front created by Malory to throw off the trail of ISIS to perhaps the best dry cleaners ever.

George Takei as Mr. Moto

If you asked just about anyone what they know George Takei from, it's likely going to be for his role as the affable and brave Hikaru Sulu from the original "Star Trek." He's also a hugely successful graphic memoirist after charting his early experiences in a Japanese-American Internment Camp during WWII in the novel, "They Called Us Enemy." Ah, yes, but then that's leaving out one of his sleeper hits, and that's the role of Mr. Moto, the head of the yakuza in "Archer," a big baddie of the third season and a returning villain with an ax to grind against ISIS in Season 5.

When Archer's birthday gift from Malory, a Dodge Challenger decked out for spy stuff, goes missing in "Drift Problem," he suspects Mr. Moto to be the culprit. In typical "Archer" fashion, this leads to a chain of events that result in death and destruction, and it may come aas little surprise that Mr. Moto had very little to do with any of it. After his nephew perishes in a drift race against Pam, Malory shoots Mr. Moto, revealing that she stole the car to teach Archer a lesson in responsibility. Though he's believed dead for a time, Moto later returns when Pam steals one million dollars worth of cocaine from him and he aims to take revenge. This is all diffused when Archer simply gives him an exorbitant amount of cocaine and everyone calls it a day.

Kristen Schaal as Tiffy

The "Bob's Burgers" cross-casting moments are more common than you might think in "Archer," with Bob himself voiced by none other than series star H. Jon Benjamin. "Bob's Burgers" siblings, Louise and Gene, as played by Kristen Schaal and Eugene Mirman respectively, pop in for guest appearances in "Archer" as the couple Tiffy and Cecil Tunt. Cecil is the generally inept brother of Cheryl, affectionately referring to his sister as "Beans." We meet this pair in the Season 4 two-parter, "Sea Tunt," in which the gang goes to save an underwater sea laboratory (does that sound vaguely familiar to another Adam Reed-created series?)

With Cecil working against Cheryl in hopes of gaining her half of the "Tunt family fortune" after driving himself into poverty by donating all his money to charity, Cheryl starts showing visible signs of distress, attacking Tiffy in the cockpit and calling her a "brother-stealer" as she's attempting to pilot the ship. Though this episode is perhaps best known for its many "Sealab" crossover references, an appearance from Captain Murphy, and the ultimate destruction of the lab, it's impossible to forget Tiffy's cry of anguish as a ranting Cheryl dives to attack her mid-flight. Cecil's attempts to gain Cheryl's money abated due to having insured Sealab, and he has made return appearances since, but we may never hear from Tiffy again. Frankly, we'd probably be done with the Tunts after this mess, too.

Bryan Cranston as Tony Drake

Bryan Cranston has played a lot of characters in his day, but perhaps the two most notable are a study in opposites; endearing dad, Hal, from "Malcolm in the Middle," and the near-supervillain Walter White from "Breaking Bad." For his part as Tony Drake in the Season 3 two-parter finale, "Space Race," he tapped a little more into the latter, with this apocalyptic megalomaniac causing huge problems for ISIS with his plans for space colonization. Drake alerts the group to a potential mutiny in space aboard the ship Horizon, hiring ISIS to go to space to prevent this from occurring. However, once they are aboard the ship, they realize that Drake and his men are the real mutineers, and they plan to take off to Mars to populate the planet with the women of ISIS.

Cheryl is actually thrilled about the idea and carefully chooses the appropriate outfit to be kidnapped to Mars in. When Pam is able to train a gun on Drake, it leads to a showdown in which everyone's life seems to be forfeit until Drake's fellow mutineer Kellogg surrenders. Unwilling to live in a world where his incredibly weird plan has gone awry, Drake dies by pulling the trigger on the gun Pam has held to his head. It seems unlikely that we'll see Drake again after all of that, but shout out to him for bringing one of the wildest roles on this whole list to life.

Keith David and CCH Pounder as Lana's Parents

Far and away the parental relationship that gets the most focus in "Archer" is that of Archer and Malory. The series rarely misses an opportunity to delight in the spectacle of this highly dramatic duo, nor does it shy away from the emotional manipulation from Malory that inspired Archer to become the highly questionable specimen we have come to know throughout these many seasons of the show. Yet, even as strange as those two can be, it's not like they control the market when it comes to complicated relationships. In the Season 6 episode, "The Kanes," we learn a little bit about Lana's parents, and how she became the perfectionist we know her as today.

Claudette and Lemuel Kane are played by CCH Pounder and Keith David, respectively. These two are film and TV powerhouses, with Pounder appearing in recurring roles in shows like The Shield, Sons of Anarchy, Warehouse 13, ER, and more. Meanwhile, David is a classically trained actor whose film and TV appearances are quite literally too many to name, though you might know him best from films like "Cloud Atlas," "Pitch Black," and, most recently, Jordan Peele's "Nope." These two are loving if demanding parents, and it's a delight to hear them playing off of each other in this fan-favorite episode that regularly appears on "best of" lists for the series.

Jack McBrayer as Randy

Ray Gillette is a series standby, voiced by none other than Adam Reed himself and one of the main cast members of the show, known for being one of the most genuinely good-intentioned characters despite his knack for biting one-liners. A gay man who comically explains that he was once married to a woman — a lesbian he met at a "Pray Away the Gay" Bible Camp — the rest of ISIS is surprised to learn that Ray's past is even weirder than they initially realized when he's forced to return to his backwoods West Virginia home to help his brother Randy after receiving a distress call in which Randy expressed fear that he was soon to be thrown into jail for life by the town sheriff.

Despite being generally very much out of the closet, Ray is still closeted in West Virginia, pretending that Cheryl is his wife in the Season 3 episode, "Bloody Ferlin." This episode is a wild ride from beginning to end, but, long story short, Randy isn't a great brother and he definitely lied to get Ray to come to help him. He ends up serving a life sentence in prison, with Ray comically noting that he will likely never visit him. Sitcom fans far and wide will recognize Randy as Jack McBrayer, the unmistakable voice of Kenneth from "30 Rock," as well as his work in the "Wreck-It Ralph" franchise as Fix-It Felix.

Michael Rooker as E.Z. Ponder

With all the Gillette family hijinks in "Bloody Ferlin," it's easy to forget that TV and film legend Michael Rooker appeared in the episode as well in the role of the almost too relaxed sheriff, E.Z. Ponder. When Randy tells Ray that Ponder intends to steal Randy's marijuana and sell it for himself, Ray believes him, until Ponder gently convinces him otherwise. When Ray brings up the fact that Ponder used to tease him for being gay, Ponder surprises Ray by admitting that he regrets it, making him perhaps one of the most reasonable characters to ever appear in an episode of "Archer."

Rooker is another actor who has been a real workhorse in Hollywood for decades, making it impossible to sum up his career in just a few sentences. Regularly appearing as a morally dubious character with a few exceptions over the years, Rooker has made a career off of playing sketchy guys like the title character in "Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer" and Daryl Dixon's elder brother Merle in "The Walking Dead."

Ponder is a lot more laid back than either of those fellows and despite Randy's deceptions, we ultimately come to realize that Ponder did everything he could to avoid further conflict with the Gillettes. Though Randy's general bad vibes make that impossible, Ponder and Ray are able to make peace by the end of the episode.

Timothy Olyphant as Lucas Troy

Appearing only in the Season 4 episode, "The Wind Cries Mary," we have Lucas Troy, Archer's former best friend and once a fellow ISIS member who defected to ODIN for more money. After joining that group, Troy quickly killed four of his fellow agents and stole a lot of money with which he plans to open a nice B&B in Vermont. When Archer finds him, he's desperate to prove that Troy was framed, only for his belief in his friend to be very much leveraged against him. This episode takes some pretty unsettling turns, so we'll note that Troy's obsession with Archer is more extreme than anyone realized and that he dies by the end of the episode and it's fine.

Timothy Olyphant has played just about every type of character in his lengthy career in film and TV but is perhaps best known for his work in series like "Justified," "Deadwood," and "Santa Clarita Diet," just to name a few. Here, he plays a perfect counterpart to Sterling, showing similar confidence and manipulation tactics while also exhibiting a tendency toward betrayal that puts him in a class of supervillains all his own. It's unlikely that we'll see him again after he's killed by Lana and Cyril in this episode, but considering how genuinely terrifying he is, that's okay with us.

J.K. Simmons and Keegan-Michael Key as Detectives Bob Harris and Diedrich

Anyone who's read a book or seen a movie in the last hundred years or so is probably well-acquainted with the jaded, wisecracking detective trope, and "Archer" does it one better by giving us two of them working in tandem on both murder cases and running jokes. These two appear semi-regularly throughout the seventh season, first investigating a "Sunset Boulevard" style murder in which a corpse is discovered face-down in a swimming pool while the two spout rapid-fire Billy Wilder-inspired dialogue rather than showing much in the way of concern for the murder victim.

Keegan-Michael Key is perhaps best known as the co-creator of Comedy Central's sketch series "Key & Peele" with Jordan Peele, but he's been working in comedy for most of the last couple of decades, dating at least as far back as his six-season stint in "Mad TV" starting in 2004. Meanwhile, J.K. Simmons is no stranger to the world of the police procedural after his role as an Assistant Police Chief in "The Closer," though the world might know him better for his unforgettable turn as J. Jonah Jameson in Sam Raimi's "Spider-Man" trilogy. These bumbling detectives were a major highlight for the season, and even if they didn't do a ton of police work, their comedic banter remains some of the best of the series.

Burt Reynolds as Burt Reynolds

All of the "Archer" guest stars on this list nailed it when it comes to meeting the humor of the series on its level and delivering one-liners with the same over-the-top intensity as the series regulars. One of the best examples of someone who very much understood the assignment is none other than Archer's hero, Burt Reynolds, who simply plays himself. As we know from previous episodes, Archer is a huge fan of Burt's due to his references to the 1976 action movie "Gator." However, in Season 3's "The Man From Jupiter," Archer's fanboy idolization of Reynolds turns into angst when he discovers that the Hollywood legend is dating his mom.

Showing his typical level of emotional maturity, Archer reacts to the knowledge that Reynolds is involved with Malory by kidnapping him and leaving a breakup note for his mom, which she likewise overreacts to. In fact, the only person not losing it is Burt, who coolly drops life lessons for Archer while tied to a chair, even as Archer demands that he break things off with Malory. Naturally, as we are talking about Reynolds here, this (and the episode's b-plot) all lead to a high-stakes car chase in which Reynolds continues to calmly dismiss Archer's doubts while performing epic stunts as a driver. Though he and Malory may not have been meant to be, it's not because of the kidnapping, which barely registers to the devoutly unphased Reynolds.