Note: The following review goes into detail about the episode. SPOILER ALERT!
Arrow has been lacking a little bit of intensity this season, with our main “villain” Ra’s popping in at random throughout the season. It’s a little unfair to keep comparing this season to the heights of the last, but the stakes were incredibly high, and Slade was a great presence throughout the second half. That being said, “Public Enemy” served as the absolute perfect shot in the arm. Ra’s and his League of Assassins are a massively formidable enemy, but there’s nothing like a whole city hunting our heroes to ratchet up the tension.
It’s been a long-running joke on the show that Quentin Lance would be the last person in Starling who would find out the Arrow’s identity, but Lance learning the truth only ended up adding significantly to the drama. Lance’s determination to take down the Arrow will surely be a bit frustrating for some, but at the end of the day, he’s got a pretty good point. Nearly everything that has happened to his family, and the city over the course of the last few years, has been unwittingly caused by Oliver. The Arrow is a vigilante who went on quite the killing spree, so Lance has more than enough reasons to take him down. Paul Blackthorne is a great presence on the show, and I thought he brought everything to his scenes this week—especially the ones with Stephen Amell.
I’m glad to say that the final act of the episode greatly surprised me. I felt that all of this was inevitably leading to Oliver accepting Ra’s’s offer to take over the League, so it was a welcome swerve to see him hand himself over to the police. It makes perfect sense for Ollie to sacrifice himself to save his team yet again, although it was disappointing to see him make this decision without consulting them first. Now that Roy has stepped in and publicly declared himself as the Arrow, things will have to change again. Perhaps Roy will end up facing the death penalty, forcing Oliver to take Ra’s’s offer to save him.
Everything concerning the hunt for Team Arrow was great this week, but Ray Palmer didn’t quite match that quality. With Ray already announced to be joining the Arrow and The Flash spin-off show, we knew he was never in any danger whatsoever. This took a lot away from this side of the story, and the random appearance of Felicity’s mother didn’t add anything to proceedings. The best part of this was Ray using his nanomachines to treat the blood-clot that was threatening his life. My knowledge of the Atom is not too good, but I wonder could this lead to Ray developing some sort of power outside of having his shiny little suit. The flashbacks involving Shado’s twin sister were rather forgettable too. There are only so many times that Ollie can get shot at by Waller’s goons before it becomes stale, and I fear we’ve reached that point.
“Public Enemy” proved to be exactly what Arrow has been looking for recently. In the space of an hour, the whole show has been shaken up and the stakes are at an all-time high for most of the characters. While the Ray material wasn’t great, Team Arrow’s flight from the GCPD made this episode exciting from start to finish. Roy’s declaration was a great way to end the episode, but I can’t see that stopping Lance’s vendetta against the Arrow. A couple of lacklustre moments aside, it looks like we’re fully back on track for the rest of the season.
88/100 – Great
How do you think Team Arrow is going to get out of this sticky situation? If you think you have the answer, or you just want to discuss the show with me, tweet me @OldSnake24 or drop me a line in the comment section below. And be sure to follow us @YouNerded!
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