Special Ed debuted with a superb, precise album, produced with numbing ferocity by Hitman Howie Tee. Archer had previously practised his lyrics in junior high school, perfecting his rhymes until he hooked up with Tee, who agreed to produce some tracks for him.
These were promptly delivered to Profile Records, who immediately expressed an interest and sanctioned Special Ed's debut album. Though he was only 16 when it was released, the rhymes were mature and supremely confident; over half a million sales confirmed his arrival. There was a more romantic discourse evident on the follow-up, which while less abrasive, was still an exemplary introduction. Still largely with Tee, he produced four of the tracks himself. He also introduced a number of his friends, including his brother Drew Archer and homeboys 40-Love, Little Shawn, and DJ Akshan. There was, however, a three-year hiatus between Legal and his third album, proposed for 1993 release. According to Archer, the time was spent, "working with groups and putting together a studio and office in Brooklyn." He also produced a track for 2Pac's Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z. He was reported to be working with DJ Premier, Large Professor, and A Tribe Called Quest's Q-Tip on sessions for the album, while further collaborations placed him alongside Masta Ace and Buckshot (Black Moon) in the highly successful Crooklyn Dodgers project ("Crooklyn").