Archer Wiki
Archer Wiki

Sterling (Danger Island) is the dream persona of Archer in Season 9 "Danger Island".


"Sterling Archer is a seaplane pilot to whom the years and the drink have not been kind. He lives at the Hotel Lotus and barely ekes out a living by – in no particular order – flying assorted cargo and passengers, unwittingly smuggling contraband for his mother, gambling, and ruining young brides."[1]


Sterling's dream persona is an obvious riff on Rip Riley, "sky captain of yesteryear", from Season 3's Heart of Archness (Trilogy)

Archer eye hole

Archer's eye hole

  • He has an eye-patch over his absent left eye, whereas Rip lost his right eye to Noah’s spoon attack in Part III.
    Loose Goose

    "Loose Goose"

  • He sports a 5 o'clock shadow just like Rip
  • He carries a M1911 .45 just like Rip
  • And most importantly, he is a 'sky captain of yesteryear' - a mocking slur masking his admiration for the role - piloting a Grumman G-21 Goose just like Rip's.  It is even officially named "Loose Goose" after Rip's pet name ("Old Loosey Goosey"), and he refers to it as "Lucy Goosey".

When piloting 'Loose Goose'he wears a brown leather flight jacket and white visor cap, possibly a Army Air Corps officer’s cap with the insignia removed.

Character Traits[]

  • Drunk
  • Womanizer
  • Heroic

Cultural References[]

  • Tales of the Gold Monkey (1982):  Archer resembles Jake Cutter from the action adventure show, and flies the same type of plane (Grumman Goose).  This show is a primary reference for the season. 
  • French Polynesia : Archer is holed-up in French territory composed of 118 geographically dispersed islands and atolls in the South Pacific Ocean. Archer is enjoying his retirement working for his mother Malory's airline ('Archer Airways').
  • Spanish Civil War (1936-39):  In Disheartening Situation (s9e2) it is discovered how Archer lost his left eye: whilst fighting on the Republican side in the Spanish Civil War as a pilot, he fought the German Condor Legion (a combined arms unit of air and ground combat troops of the Wehrmacht that tested German tactics and weapons while supporting the Nationalist army of General Francisco Franco against the Communist armed forces).
  • Babylonian Law / The Bible:  In A Warrior in Costume (s9e4), Archer mentions 'an eye for an eye' or the law of retaliation. Archer is bent on revenge, literally.
  • CampingIn the same episode, he (anachronistically) references the modern gaming term by yelling “Oh, so now we’re just camping?!” after Ziegler shoots him down right after takeoff from his base.
  • Star Wars[2] (direct)Red Three (indirect):  He also doesn't respond to -
    • Rojo Tres - the Spanish call sign he is flying under because he thinks his call sign is 'Red Three' (the English translation).  This happens to be the call sign of Luke Skywalker's best friendBiggs Darklighter.  (The ultimate anarchronism!).
    • Red Three - The name given to the Swiss branch of the The Red Orchestra - the name given to the anti-Nazi Soviet espionage network during World War II.[3] Whilst Archer's fantasy involves him being a pilot, and not a spy, he is fantasising about fighting against the Nazis alongside the Communists in the Spanish Civil War.
    • Han Solo:  Pam is Chewbacca to Archer's Han.


  • In A Warrior in Costume (s9e4) it is discovered that Ziegler (Archer's nemesis) was the one to fire the shot which caused Archer to lose his left eye.


Charlotte:  "You destroyed my marriage!"
Sterling: "Hey, it takes 2 to tango"
                                                                                    Season 9: Danger Island - Episode 1 - Strange Pilot


Archer: "Good luck!  Except for you Fuchs - I hope you end up as an entree"
                                                                                    Season 9: Danger Island - Episode 1 - Strange Pilot


Reynaud:  "Monsieur, this is French territory: of course adultery is not illegal."
Sterling:  "What about consensual buggery?"
Whitney: [sharp inhalation of breath]
Sterling: "Ahem...asking for a buddy…"
                                                                                    Season 9: Danger Island - Episode 1 - Strange Pilot


Lanaluakalani:  No, and should you - be drinking?"
Sterling: "Yes..."
                                                                                    Season 9: Danger Island - Episode 1 - Strange Pilot


Person 1: "Quote Here"
Person 2: "Quote Here"
Person 1: "Quote Here"

Gallery of Images[]