FX is giving its buzzworthy new animated comedy "Archer" a super secret sneak preview behind "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia."
When it ordered the show a few weeks ago, there was talk the series -- about a super secret spy agency-- would get a six-episode run behind "Sunny" this fall. But long production lead times for the show meant FX wouldn't have enough episodes to run throughout the fall.
What's more, after greenlighting "Archer," FX picked up another comedy, "The League," which revolves around a bunch of guys involved in a fantasy football league. FX wanted to make sure that show ran behind "Sunny" during football season.
FX had to decide how to get both shows on the air while "Sunny" was around. The solution? The network has ordered four more scripts of "Archer" (a show of faith in the series) and now says it'll officially premiere the show in January.
But in a bid to begin building buzz for "Archer," FX will quietly air the show's pilot this Thursday at 10:30 p.m. right after the "Sunny" premiere. While key TV critics are being told about the stunt, the network isn't informing listing services about the move, isn't marketing the episode and isn't taking out ads for the preview.
FX is hoping "Sunny" fans will simply discover "Archer" on their own and then remember the show when it returns in January.
Meanwhile, insiders tell TheWrap that fans of "Arrested Development" will have another reason to check out "Archer."
Jeffrey Tambor, the head Bluth from "Arrested," has signed on to guest star in an episode of the series. "Archer" already features Tambor's TV wife, Jessica Walter, in a regular role.
Adam Reed is the creator and exec producer of "Archer." TheWrap recently named the series one of its new season buzz list.
Check out a promo for "Archer" below: