Our nation — or at least parts of West Hollywood — can sleep a little easier tonight, knowing that Q-Force is on the job.
The premiere of Netflix’s new animated series — of which all 10 episodes are now available to stream — introduces us to Steve Marywhether aka “Agent Mary” (voiced by Sean Hayes), a once-promising wunderkind of the American Intelligence Agency whose future at the AIA was derailed when he came out as gay. Eleven years later, he and a motley crew of LGBT superspies are now working undercover in WeHo to solve… well, not much of anything.
It soon becomes clear that the straight-and-narrow AIA still isn’t willing to entrust a group of queer spies with anything important. In fact, AIA Director Dirk Chunley (Gary Cole) says as much during a particularly irate phone call with Deputy Director V (Laurie Metcalf). “They’re too soft for active duty!” he declares. “What if someone strains their pronoun?” Oof.
In V’s defense, of course, she also has it pretty rough at work. “I’m the only woman in this entire agency with any power,” she tells Mary. “The next highest-ranking woman is Joanie, the pasta chef in the cafeteria. And her pasta sucks. And everybody hates her.”
Anyway, Mary decides that he’s tired of waiting and decides to go rogue, rolling out a plan that the rest of the team reluctantly agrees to follow. What ensues is arguably the gayest mission in television history, as Q-Force fires up their Subaru McClanahan, uses Grindr to track down a suspected anarchist at WeHo hotspot The Abbey, and employs an Ariana Grande drag impersonation to distract the unsuspecting patrons. Did I mention that the drag queen is literally named Twink (Matt Rogers)?
But just when the AIA is ready to fire Q-Force for disobeying orders (“Let me put this in terms you’ll understand: sashay away, agents!”), it’s revealed that Q-Force successfully obtained information that foiled a possible black market nuclear deal with a tie-in to the federal government. Go team!
V argues that Q-Force has proven itself worthy of becoming an actual field team, agreeing to put her own job on the line if something ever goes wrong. Chunley obliges, setting up Mary & Co. with a high-tech (and color-coordinated) command center, but there’s one small catch: professional d-bag Rick Buck (David Harbour) has been assigned to watch over the “Spice Girls,” effectively making him their new boss.
It’s a fun set-up for the irreverent series, which simultaneously feels like a new Netflix cartoon and a leftover relic from the early Logo days. But will you be sticking with this gay Archer, or was one mission enough for you? Weigh in via our polls below, then drop a comment with your full review.