Happy Friday! This has been, to put it mildly, a week. So, rather than wallow, I’m going to steal. One of my regular podcast listens is NPR’s Pop Culture Happy Hour, which if you’re not familiar is a weekly half hour (actually two 15-ish minute podcasts once a week, but I tend to listen to them both on the same day) that talks about current things in pop culture - music, movies, TV, plays, anything of the moment. I’ve discovered some cool stuff listening to that pod, and it’s always good to hear discussions of stuff I already watch, read, or listen to, because it helps deepen my appreciation for those things.
The last thing they do on their second podcast of the week is a segment called “What’s Making Me Happy This Week”, in which each panelist on the show mentions a thing - anything, in any medium - that is making them happy, regardless of whether it relates to the topics being discussed on the pod or not.
So, given that we’ve spent the majority of the last couple days being UNhappy at the state of our favorite club, I’m stealing that idea. My only rule is that what’s making you happy can’t be about Arsenal or the Premier League. What, outside soccer, is bringing you joy this week?
I’ll start. What’s making me happy is the return of Archer, for what is probably going to be its last season. This is season 10, and it’s gone from a series that’s theoretically about a spy agency and its employees to being...something else entirely. This season is set in space, in 1999.
If you’re not familiar with Archer, it centers on Sterling Archer, voiced by the fantastic H. Jon Benjamin, who at the start of the series was running a spy organization with his mother, voiced by Jessica Walter, and populated with a crew of weirdo smartasses. It’s so much more than that, but that serves as a good thumbnail.
It has gone from a show about the adventures of the world’s worst spy agency to a bunch of well-established characters just riffing off each other around a loosely organized plot for a half hour a week, but it’s a delight - they’re all jerks, in their own way, but they’re hilarious, the writing is great, and the jokes fly super-fast and super-thick.
So that’s what’s making me happy. What’s making you happy this week?