Jessica Walter earns posthumous Emmy nomination for Archer
The legacy of Malory Archer lives on. Months after Jessica Walter died at the age of 80, the celebrated actress received a posthumous Emmy nomination for her voiceover work on the FX animated spy comedy Archer. Her fellow nominees include Maya Rudolph (Big Mouth), Stacey Abrams (Black-ish), Julie Andrews (Bridgerton), Tituss Burgess (Central Park), Stanley Tucci (Central Park), and Seth MacFarlane (Family Guy).
This is far from Walter's first Emmy nomination — she received her first for starring in the miniseries Amy Prentiss back in 1975, which she won — but it is her first for voiceover work. The character of Malory Archer — a foul-mouthed, martini-swilling spymaster and mother of series protagonist Stirling Archer (H. Jon Benjamin) — was explicitly modeled after Lucille Bluth, the boozy matriarch Walter played on Arrested Development. To be fair to Lucille, though, Malory is much more violent, and somehow even more cruel to her subordinates. Thanks to Walter's performance, though, viewers mostly end up cackling at Malory instead of despising her.
"I always tried to make her sound as mean and awful as possible, as cutting and acidic as possible, and then count on Jessica Walter's delivery to still make you love Malory no matter how mean the thing was that she said," Archer creator Adam Reed told EW last year.
The Emmys will air Sunday, Sep. 19 at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT on CBS and be available to stream live and on demand on Paramount+.