Written by Lucas P. Jones
This episode begins where the last left off, with the Figgis Agency encountering the REAL Ms. Veronica Dean, who has come to the agency to solve a crime that was committed against her personal property which, just happened to be committed by our lovable gang of, well, idiots. For $200,000 the team must recover the stolen data disc…which they stole in the first place…and gave to a fake Veronica Dean.
Archer and Lana travel to the house of Shapiro, where they are instantly recognized by his guard dogs, but still unrecognized by Shapiro, thanks to the cover of darkness and some handy night vision goggles. He informs them that it was his job to protect the disc for the real Veronica Dean, and that whoever has the disc now demands $2 million in payment. Archer, Lana, and Shapiro leave via limo to meet the mysterious group who holds the information. The rest of team is back at the Figgis agency, hard at work investigating how well the spinny chairs at the office spin, much to the chagrin of Cyril, who still can’t shake his old nervous accountant ways.
The plan to retrieve the disc is proceeding according to the plan, until the biker gang who is responsible for collecting the money opens the briefcase to find that the $2 million in the briefcase is actually just worthless pieces of paper, causing the gang to take Lana and Shapiro hostage, with an unknowing Archer stuck in the trunk thinking of punny names that rhyme with trunk, before taking a quick nap during the commute.
The limo is brought a salvage yard, where Lana and Shapiro are brought inside as hostages, and Archer remains in the trunk. That is, until Malory calls him and activates his signature “Mulatto Butts” ringtone. This sets up what is probably the best joke in the episode, which is a play on the long running Archer voicemail gag. The joke is so good I won’t spoil it here, suffice to say that you should watch the episode to experience the best part of the episode yourself.
The episode wraps up with Archer accidentally revealing to Shapiro that they were the ones who stole the disk, which is moments before Malory and the rest of the team shows up in the nick of time to save Archer, though his regret and shame is palpable. Cut back to the Figgis agency, where the team lists the pros and cons of the mission, and determines that their first real case is a mixed success. “The Handoff” succeeds in advancing the overall story arc, while still giving us a solid episode. The best joke is a play on a long running gag, but excellent Krieger one-liners punctuate the episode giving laughs throughout.