Note: The following review goes into detail about the episode. SPOILER ALERT!
I’m really liking this “Oliver-lite” run of episodes so far. Don’t get me wrong, Oliver is the driving force of the show. But these last two episodes have allowed other characters to take center stage, and that can only be good for the show’s future. Vinnie Jones’s Brick continues to be a great menace to the city, and it seems like it will take a big effort from our growing band of heroes to defeat him.
After Roy and Dig’s team up last week, it was time to add Laurel to the mix. There’s been a ton of build up to Laurel taking up the Canary mantle, and this was her first proper test, which she failed miserably. Sure, her and Roy managed to rescue the hostages in the end, but before that was pretty rough. And I am delighted to see it go that way. It would have been a problem if Laurel had suited up and started kicking ass with the best of them, so it’s nice to see that there’ll be a steep learning curve for her. My only slight complaint is that she seems even less skilled than she did back in Season 1, but I’m sure she’ll catch up with that pretty soon.
Elsewhere, Ray still wants to get in on the action. I’m not sure how much longer they’ll draw out his eventual suiting up, but it’s gotten a lot closer now that Felicity has decided to help him. Felicity came to the realization this week that her work was too important to give up. I loved her line to Ray about how he might not end up dead if she’s there to help him, which had a huge element of truth to it. She was also there to give Laurel a pep talk when she needed it, so it was another big week for Miss Smoak.
The Malcolm and Thea side of things didn’t really work for me this week. After Malcolm’s declaration that they needed to leave the city immediately, Thea just kind of stalled for the entire episode. All of their scenes together this week basically consisted of Malcolm asking Thea was she ready to leave yet, and Thea saying no. This really felt like a filler week for the pair, with the only standout moments being Roy confronting Malcolm and the revelation that the DJ is working for the League of Assassins. That twist is actually very welcome, as Thea’s new DJ has stuck out like a sore thumb so far. He was either going to be a complete throwaway love interest or turn out to be a part of the overall story, so I’m glad it’s the latter.
Oliver’s resurrection remains a rather intriguing puzzle. The explanation we have been given so far is that Oliver wasn’t fully dead and his strong will pulled him through. I think there is surely a lot more behind it than that though. Oliver was stabbed a couple of times and thrown off a cliff, so it’d take a lot more than a strong will to survive that. Maseo and Tatsu’s relationship in the flashbacks and present day continues to be a strong point. Something has obviously happened to tear them apart, and it looks like it could be something to do with their child. With Amanda Waller involved, it could be something truly terrible.
Arrow is juggling a hell of a lot of different balls at the moment. Oliver and his flashbacks remain in the background for now, leaving room for Roy, Laurel, Diggle and co. to take center stage in their fight against Brick. Malcolm and Thea have decided to stick around and fight the League, while Laurel has taken her lie about Sara’s death to a whole new level with her father. The first half of Season 3 didn’t quite match Season 2’s heights, but Arrow seems to be setting us up for a barnstorming second half.
Are you satisfied with the explanation of Oliver’s resurrection, or do you believe there is a lot more to it? Let me know what you think on Twitter @Oldsnake24 or in the comments below. Also, be sure to follow us @YouNerded.
89/100 – Great
*We do not comment on anything relating to previews for the next episode and beyond.
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