Netflix’s ‘Pacific Heat’ is an Aussie ‘Archer’ with Less Subversion | Television | Geek.com
Courtesy Netflix

Archer has been renewed through season 10, but unfortunately, that’ll be its last. If you’re not getting enough adult-oriented, action-packed, subversive satire of James Bond-esque films, you can always give Pacific Heat a shot.

The new series comes from Working Dog Productions, a group of Aussie comedy producers probably best known for Frontline, which was The Daily Show before The Daily Show was a thing. Most of the voices in the cast come from this group. The show was originally picked up for a run on the Comedy Channel in their home country before getting picked up by Netflix. The 13-episode season premiered on Nov. 27.

The show takes place on the Gold Coast of Australia, which is filled with crime. Pacific Heat is a group of operatives tasked with keeping the criminals at bay. They’re covert and highly-trained, but “they do have their own Facebook page.” Rob Sitch, an actor who voices the character Todd Sommerville, describes it as a combination of The A-Team, Hawaii Five-0, and Charlie’s Angels.

The comparisons with Archer aren’t unwarranted since they’re pretty obvious. The animation has the same bright, stilted characters, who don’t seem to move unless they’re talking, blinking, or shooting something. Archer makes up for this by playing around with the low-budget appearance of its aesthetics with bombastic fight sequences and noir-esque backgrounds. From the Pacific Heat trailer, there looks to be plenty of action sequences that the animators can play around in. However, the people look off in a way I can’t describe. It might be the small eyes, the superfluous shadow on the faces, and the bodies that seem to be slightly disproportionate.

Either way, the humor is similar, although dumbed down. In two clips shared with Geek, Pacific Heat shows off one of its characters, whose primary character trait seems to be that he’s an idiot who doesn’t know what year it is, and the dynamic amongst the group. Characters seem to talk over each other, misunderstand each other often, and talk to some off-screen presence instead of to each other. Plus there’s some old-fashioned racism.

I’m an American with little exposure to Aussie comedy, so I’m not sure if there’s something I’m missing. Pacific Heat and the kind of awkward, obvious humor that can stem from over-the-top situations surely has an audience. It’s loud, bright, and uncomplicated. Much of the comedy comes from misinterpretation between the characters and how people as incompetent as them can be tasked with saving us. There has to be more I’m not seeing, right?

The series will debut on Netflix on Dec. 3.

Netflix’s ‘Pacific Heat’ is an Aussie ‘Archer’ with Less Subversion | Television | Geek.com

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