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Last week, we were left wondering how someone close to Oliver would deal with the knowledge of who Arrow really was and how that would affect Oliver’s mission to clean up Starling City. Would that person understand and help the hooded vigilante or would he turn him in to the police?

This episode answers that question as well as show a more vulnerable side of Oliver. Romance, action and a cliffhanger you don’t want to miss! What more could you ask from a TV show? Well there is more but you’ll have to read to the end to find out!

Let’s get to the recap! (Spoilers ahead!)

This week’s episode picks up exactly where we left off in the last episode with Arrow/Oliver taking Diggle to his warehouse hideout after being shot with Deadshot’s curare laced bullet. He prepares an antidote that he learned to make while on the island and gives it to his bodyguard.

Diggle recovers and sees that Oliver is the vigilante. He takes a swing at him but Oliver easily fends him off. After all, Diggle is still a little weak from the poison. Oliver tells him about his mission and asks Diggle to help him clean up the city. Diggle rejects the offer calling Oliver a criminal and murderer before walking away.

At Queen Manor, Thea overhears Laurel admonish Oliver for not letting his family know he was okay after the shooting at the auction the night before (for us it was last week’s episode), and asks him if he is okay after Laurel leaves. He tells her he’s a bit tired as that’s the second time a friend has condemned him that night. He wishes her a good night and heads up to his room.

Later, Oliver is dreaming of his time at the island when Yao Fei (the Asian who shot Oliver then saved him) brings a caged bird to him. Yao speaks to him in Chinese but Oliver doesn’t understand what he’s saying. Oliver wakes up and can’t go back to sleep.

He heads downstairs where Thea is watching the news about Peter Declan (whom the episode is named after). He is accused of killing his wife. The two have a heart to heart with Thea giving her big brother some advice and advising that he should be himself around Laurel.

Later that morning, Moira informs Oliver that Diggle quit and she has hired a new bodyguard (yeah, this one will last!). As Rob the bodyguard introduces himself, the news is once again reporting on Declan announcing that he will be executed in 2 days’ time. His dead wife’s boss, Jason Brodeur, makes a statement and Oliver recognizes the name from his father’s list. He tells Rob to get the car as he wants to go into town. As Rob waits for him by the town car, Oliver rushes past him on his motorcycle and heads to the Batcave…I mean, the Arrow lair.

Meanwhile we see that Brodeur’s motive for killing Declan’s wife was because she was a whistle blower and had found out about his toxic dumping. (Wow! That reveal was quick! 10 minutes into the episode and we already know everything!)

Oliver heads to Laurel’s apartment as Arrow. Using a voice distorter, he tells her that he knows that Declan is innocent and could use her help as she would do anything to save the life of “an innocent man” (Nice subtle nod to the episode’s title.) and slips away.

The next day, Laurel meets with Declan and he tells her what happened and she takes his case.

Moira walks into Walter’s office telling him he missed their lunch date. He apologizes and tells her he’s been working on trying to find where $2.6 million went from their Vancouver subsidiary. Moira asks if he expects someone was embezzling but he dismisses it as an accounting error and they head off for lunch.

Diggle visits his sister-in-law, Carly, at the diner where she works. Just then, Oliver walks in to talk to Diggle. He again offers Diggle the chance help him help other families who were wronged by the powerful people who run the city. He shows Diggle his father’s book. Oliver admits that he had killed the sniper that killed his brother Andy and now Diggle has a chance to give other families like him closure. Before he leaves, he tells Diggle he hopes he’ll join his cause.

At home, Walter is still trying to find where the $2.6 million went and Moira comfess that she was responsible for the missing money. She had invested it in a startup venture for a friend 3 years ago. She will call Accounting to clear it all up.

Laurel meets Arrow on a rooftop and tells him that she spoke to Declan and thinks he’s innocent. She gives him the same information that Declan told her then asks him why he hides his face if he didn’t think what he was doing was wrong. He tells her it’s to protect the ones he loves before swinging away. (Shades of Superman, Spiderman and all the other romantic superhero storylines! Laurel is attracted to Arrow who happens to be Oliver who is attracted to Laurel. And she gets that same puppy dog look as he swings away like Mary Jane did with Spiderman and Lois with Superman. A bit cliché, don’t you think?)

The next day, Walter calls Felicity Smoak to his office (who’s a bit more of a spitfire than she was with Oliver in last week’s episode) to help him discretely dig up information about Moira’s so called transaction of 3 years ago.

Arrow demands Camille’s supervisor, Istook, in his own special way to tell him the truth about Camille’s visit. Istook easily confesses as he’d rather live another day than to die by train as he’s handcuffed to the tracks. He tells Arrow that Brodeur paid him off and that the files to incriminate Brodeur are in his office. Arrow allows him to live.

In a flash back, Oliver is back in the cave with Yao Fei who is cooking food. He refuses to give Oliver any and motions that if he wants to eat, he needs to kill the bird. Oliver refuses.

Arrow gives Laurel the files that will save Declan’s life and put Brodeur in jail. She finally admits that the city needs someone like him to help the people in the city.

Laurel tries to delay Declan’s execution by giving the files to the judge as the reason for the stay but the judge denies the request. Upset, Laurel turns on Brodeur and tells him it’s not over. He panics and back at his office, he tells his lawyer and henchmen, Ankov, that she is going after him and he can end up in prison. Ankov tells him not to worry as they have “friends” in prison that will take care of his problem when she visits Declan.

That night, Laurel tells Arrow that she failed but he assures her it’s not over. He’ll get that confession she needs to free Declan.

Meanwhile super computer sleuth Felicity reports back to Walter and tells him the company that Moira supposedly invested in doesn’t exist. The money was used to set up an offshore LLC called Tempest. (Nice nod to the DC superheroes with that name!) Although there are no records of the company in the state and federal records, she was able to track down a warehouse purchase they made a couple years back.

Arrow breaks in Brodeur’s office and orders him to confess. Brodeur tries to talk himself out of the situation but that just angers Arrow more and he shoots an arrow that pierces Brodeur’s hand and pins it to the wall. As Arrow convinces him to confess, Brodeur’s cell phone rings. It’s Ankov to tell him that the hit is going to happen in an hour. Arrow quickly learns that Ankov will be killing Declan and Laurel. He knocks out Brodeur and heads to the prison.

Laurel is telling Declan not to lose hope when all of the sudden the prison power is shut off. All hell breaks loose as prisoners start a riot attacking the guards. Laurel and Peter try to run but the prisoners soon target them.

Just in time, Oliver, who’s dressed as a ski masked guard saves the day. He tries to lead Declan and Laurel to safety but one of Ankov’s men heads them off and hits Oliver leaving him a bit disoriented. When Oliver sees the prisoner choking Laurel, he goes bezerk and beats him senseless until Laurel gets him to stop and the guards arrive.

Shocked at the sheer brutality from her hero, she watches as he walks away past the guards and Declan is taken back to his cell.

Outside, Quentin meets his daughter and tells her she was right. Ankov confessed to Camille’s murder. He also tells her that he still thinks Arrow is dangerous and she agrees telling her dad that he’s a killer.

The comment brings a flashback of Oliver telling Yao Fei that he’s never killed anything before and he’s starving. Yao doesn’t respond. In sheer desperation, Oliver opens the cage and kills the bird. It’s the first time he’s ever killed a living thing. Oliver hungrily eats the cooked bird when Yao Fei takes the opportunity to finally talk to him. In English, he tells Oliver that he will need to learn to kill in order to survive on the island.

In the cloak of darkness, Walter heads to the warehouse that was bought by the Tempest group and using Oliver’s father’s name, Robert, as the passcode, he is able to get inside. As he turns on the lights, he sees the remains of Robert’s yacht that was damaged in the storm.

At the station, Quentin gets an idea and goes over the security footage on the night of the auction shooting caused by Deadshot. He sees a snippet of Oliver in the stairwell removing his Arrow outfit from the trash bin…

Oliver watches in his lair that Declan has been released and Brodeur has been arrested. Another name is crossed off the list.

The next morning, Moira meets the well-dressed man in his limo. He gives her a picture of Arrow and tells her that Arrow is targeting the list.

Diggle meets Oliver at the mansion and tells him that he’s there to accept his offer. As they shake on the agreement, Quentin comes in and arrests Oliver. He takes him away as Moira, Walter and Thea watch in shock.

Episode Observations:

* Fan girl squeal time as John Barrowman makes his first appearance on the series as the well-dressed man who seems to be in cahoots with Moira!

* Moira has always been acting suspiciously and now we know why! She knows all about the whole degradation of Starling City. But which side is she on? Is she and the well-dressed man wanting to keep the status quo or are they also looking to clean up the corruption that has been occurring? Did she blame Robert for his misdeeds or like him, feels remorseful and wants to atone for what her family has done. Any thoughts?

*We get to see vulnerability from Oliver that hasn’t been shown in the last several episodes. He knows he must keep his alter ego a secret but he longs to make a connection with someone after being on the island for so long.  The weight of not being able to be himself with anyone and the need to continue the rouse that he is a self-centered playboy is becoming more and more difficult for Oliver.

* If you’re an English major, you probably saw the parallels to the use of the name Tempest in the episode and William Shakespeare’s play ‘The Tempest.’ After all, the play involves a shipwreck and a mysterious island and a character (in the play it’s Prospero) who is intent on bringing people to justice. Something to think about…

* Lastly, while I really enjoyed the episode (even though there wasn’t an ab shot in the entire hour), I didn’t care so much for the main story of Brodeur. It was pretty plan to see what would happen and the subplots of the episode well overshadowed this storyline.

Next week looks like it will be big. While there were no new DC characters introduced in last night’s episode, next week we’ll be introduced to the Royal Flush Gang! I better read up on them by my next recap.

In the meantime, if you missed last week’s episode, make sure you read the ‘Lone Gunmen’ recap to catch up!