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"Motherless Child" is the fourth episode of Season 7, being the seventy-ninth episode overall. It first aired on April 21, 2016.



A mysterious stranger surfaces and asks Archer to help him find his birth mother.


As Archer staggers drunkenly out of a bar one night, he is infuriated to find a boot on the front wheel of his car. With impeccable timing, a taxi happens to pull up next to him and he gets in. Once in the taxi, however, the doors lock and Archer finds himself trapped inside with none other than Barry Dylan, draped in gauze due to the loss of his outer flesh after their last encounter. After an unsuccessful escape attempt that results in worsening Archer's tinnitus, Barry reveals that he actually wants to hire Archer.

Barry tells of his time growing up in an orphanage, and he never knew his mother. He hopes to acquire the services of the Figgis Agency to track her down and find some measure of closure. One refusal and an ill-timed quip later, Barry dumps Archer out of the cab.

As he makes it back to the office, Archer finds the rest of the Figgis Agency (sans Malory) being held at gunpoint by Barry. Having anticipated Archer's refusal to help, Barry tells Archer that he had kidnapped his mother.

MotherlessChild (26)

Collection of faces and hands

Eventually, they discover the location of Barry's mother but he can't visit her with his current robotic appearance. Krieger appears and says he has a solution, he reveals to everyone's horror that he has a lab containing back up skins and hands for them. Krieger tells them that he had them for no reason. He asks Barry who he'll pick for his skin, as Barry starts to consider.

Later on, Archer laughs at Barry's choice, as the latter asks if he thought he pick him to wear. It then reveals that he has chosen the face mask and hands resembling Cyril from Krieger and leaves to meet with his mother, but gets hit by a bus after leaving the building. Barry announces that he's alright.


Cultural References[]

  • The Invisible Man (1933): Barry's face and hands being completely swathed in gauze bandages with dark glasses covering his eyes prompts Archer to ask if he is "invisible now", referencing the similarity in appearance to that of Claude Rains' titular character in the classic science fiction horror film.
  • The Terminator (1984): Barry's cyborg appearance is similar to "a" Terminator, specifically to the metal endoskeleton of the T-800.
  • Frank Langella: Barry calls Ray a poor man's Frank Langella, an American stage and film actor.
  • The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920): Cyril calls Krieger's cabinet containing the groups faces and hands "the cabinet of Dr. Krieger".
  • Los Angeles Aztecs: A defunct L.A. based soccer team that competed in the North American Soccer League from 1974–81. Archer tells Barry that if he's come to L.A. to see the Aztecs play he's got some bad news for him.
  • Of Mice and Men: Archer makes reference to the 1937 novella when he says "quit squeezing the puppy Lennie" to Lana as she is bandaging his leg.
  • Don the Beachcomber: The tiki bar Archer is seen leaving along with the tiki mug he's holding are likely references to the trendsetting L.A. bar which opened in 1933 and is believed to have pioneered the tiki mug.
  • Topsy the Elephant: Archer wants Krieger to fry Barry's CPU similar to the way Thomas Edison allegedly had an elephant electrocuted.
  • Superman: Barry references many early Superman movies in which villains had a tendency to throw their guns at Superman once they had emptied all their bullets into his chest only to have them all bounce off
  • Spice Girls: Barry calls Cheryl "Creepy Spice".
  • Samuel Johnson: The eighteenth-century writer and critic of English literature is mentioned by Barry as saying that puns are the lowest form of comedy.
  • Star Wars (1977): Archer refers to Barry as "Darth Barry" in comparison to Darth Vader, the mechanically augmented antagonist of the classic space fantasy.
  • Jaws: The Revenge (1987): Lana says to Archer "Were you gonna say, 'This Time... It's Personal'?" about getting revenge against Barry, to which he replies, "Yeah.. But I didn't." Both refer to the tagline of this 1987 film and how bad it really was.
  • Back To The Future (1985): Krieger mentions needing "gigawatts of volts" in order to electrocute Barry, which is the same unit as Doc Brown needing "1.21 gigawatts" in order to power the flux capacitor and transport the DeLorean time machine (and Marty McFly) through time in all three films (1985, 1989, and 1990).

Running Gags[]

  • What Is This, A Factory: While walking up the stairs of the Figgis Agency, Archer asks, "What is this, a stairs factory?"
  • Robot Bird: As Archer is leaving the bar, he is seen holding leftovers wrapped in tinfoil in the shape of a swan, as they so often have been in previous episodes.
  • Malp! Malp!: Archer's tinnitus flares up once again from firing his gun in the enclosed backseat of a cab.
  • Phrasing: Lana prompts Archer to use his catchphrase in an attempt to cheer him up.
  • Network Insecurity: The password for the State of California's Vital Records Database is "GUEST".
  • You're not my [robot] supervisor!: Cheryl yells this variation of her catchphrase at Barry when she is denied to use the restroom.
  • Core Concept: Archer once again empties his gun into Barry's chest in a futile attempt to kill him.
  • Smells Like Glue: Cheryl is seen (in silhouette) with an open bottle of glue in a newly added commercial bumper.
  • The Giggling Sadist: Cheryl finds it audibly amusing when Archer is shot in the leg by Barry. Cheryl also laughs when Archer states he hopes Malory is OK. Although the later could merely be an indication of her extreme contempt with Malory.


  • Barry is wrapped in gauze due to being caught in a grain elevator explosion which left him stripped of his outer flesh. ("Edie's Wedding").
  • Barry’s AK-47 is gold plated, just like several that were owned by Saddam Hussein and his son Uday.
  • Malory again uses the phrase "I'll have your guts for garters!" ("Heart of Archness: Part III")
  • Barry makes several callbacks to past encounters with Archer while in the taxi cab:
  • Barry asks Cheryl, "Didn't I murder you one time?" ("Crossing Over")
  • Barry calls Cheryl by one of her previous identities, Carol. ("Training Day")
  • Archer sternly tells everyone not to touch his leftover crab Rangoon, with emphasis on Krieger, due to his reputation as a food rapist.
  • Ron Cadillac makes his first appearance in Season 7.
  • This episode introduced a new commercial bumper depicting silhouettes of Cheryl, Pam, & Ray each engaging in their well-established vices.


Archer: "Barry, oh man, I mean, how could it occur to you for a nanosecond that I would help you?"
Barry: "Hey, I'm coing to you as a man here."
Archer: "No, you're not. You're coming to me as a robot mummy!"
Archer: "Oh my God, who's--"
Barry: "Archer, no!"
Archer: "Who's got--"
Barry: "Don't you say it!"
Archer: "No mummy!"


Cyril: "So not only do you not know your birth mother's name..."
Barry: "No."
Cyril: "You don't know the hospital where you were born."
Barry: "Uh-uh."
Cyril: "Or the town, or even the county."
Barry: "Nope."
Cyril: "Or even your actual date of birth!"
Barry: "I-- look, if this was easy, I wouldn't have to bury ladies out in the desert!"

Episode Teaser[]

Gallery of Images[]

There are 32 screenshots and images from "Motherless Child" on this Wiki, visit the category page for a complete gallery.

External links[]

Reference List[]

  1. Archer Season 7 Ratings on