TV Review: ‘Arrow: Honor Thy Fathers’ (Season 5 Episode 21)

Posted Thursday, May 11th, 2017 05:00 pm GMT -4 by

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Well, I got my number count wrong for ‘Arrow,’ this is actually the third to last episode, which is very odd because it felt like it had all of the ingredients for what could have been a season finale. Which is a problem we have run into with ‘Arrow before. All too often it feels like the show blows their climax a few episodes early and the final episodes they struggle to find something even remotely as gripping as what they rushed through a few weeks prior. But I’m getting ahead of myself, let’s jump in.

arrow dig and ollie in cementTonight’s episode starts with Mayor Queen getting a package that everyone basically knows is from Chase, and despite the BOMB SQUAD telling him to stand down until they know it is safe, apparently Oliver knows better than everyone and opens it anyway (at least let everyone else leave the room so they don’t die of your stupidity Oliver!). Inside he finds a corpse trapped in concrete, which we eventually learn is a man that was killed by non-other than Oliver’s father, Robert Queen. Chase even sends along security footage (a courier who we will discuss later) showing how it happened, and even though it was clearly an accident, Robert Queen did his best to cover up the death, and Chase wants Oliver to know that the man who put him on the path to “save the city” was a bad guy as well, a fact which haunts Oliver for the episode. Thea returns to deal with all of this alongside Oliver, and we learn that Oliver never actually showed Thea the video their father left for her, which Felicity points out is typical Oliver, as he did not show Thea as he did not want his father’s message asking Thea to look after Oliver to be a burden on his sister. So as Mayor Oliver reels with the political implications of the Queen name being dragged through the mud once again, he finds the man who was the lawyer for Chases’s father (who is actually the one who gives up the video footage of Robert Queen killing the man) and learns some information that will prove useful against Prometheus later in the episode. First though, while tracking down a lead Prometheus traps Dig and Oliver in a room with concrete being poured inside, which pulls Curtis and Dinah off stakeout duties so they can save our heroes, and feels like a trap set up by the Joker in the old 60s Batman series.

Thea returns to deal with all of this alongside Oliver, and we learn that Oliver never actually showed Thea the video their father left for her, which Felicity points out is typical Oliver, as he did not show Thea as he did not want his father’s message asking Thea to look after Oliver to be a burden on his sister. So as Mayor Oliver reels with the political implications of the Queen name being dragged through the mud once again, he finds the man who was the lawyer for Chases’s father (who is actually the one who gives up the video footage of Robert Queen killing the man) and learns some information that will prove useful against Prometheus later in the episode. First though, while tracking down a lead Prometheus traps Dig and Oliver in a room with concrete being poured inside, which pulls Curtis and Dinah off stakeout duties so they can save our heroes, and feels like a trap set up by the Joker in the old 60s Batman series.

arrow curtis and dinahMeanwhile, Lance and Rene are preparing for Rene’s hearing to get custody of his daughter back, but Rene is not happy when he learns it will involve dredging up the past in front of his little girl, going into her mother’s drug addiction and everything that went down leading up to the events the night his wife died. Lance tries to convince Rene that the little bit of pain his daughter will experience during the court proceeding will pale in comparison to the pain she will feel if Rene does not show up at all, and reminds Rene that if he gets his daughter back he can have lifetime of good memories with her to make up for everything. Sadly though, by episode’s end, Rene misses the court proceeding, though I suspect we will find out it was not entirely his fault, as Rene seems too good a dad to disappoint his daughter like that.

The UndertakingChase meanwhile, has a whole new plan and seems to be shifting MO to go full supervillain, because, you know, it’s the end of the season. It seems he is going to be releasing a super-virus that will infect the city, based on something his own father had been involved with 5 years ago when Oliver killed him. Of course the Quiver Crew finds out about it and sets out to stop him, and after a pep talk with the important people in his life, Oliver even goes so far as to don the Green Arrow costume once more, with little explanation for how he is going to survive should the SCPD come after him again (because, you know, the Green Arrow is a wanted vigilante now).  And to make matters worse, Chase has a whole gang of bad guys to help him out, because the city has released a number of criminals because they were convicted by DA Chase, who everyone now knows is a serial killer, so all of his convictions are no longer valid apparently.

So while the majority of team Arrow fights these criminals to stop the virus bomb thing on the ceiling of this week’s abandoned building/warehouse, Oliver fights Chase inside the building, in a semi-decent brawl that ends when Oliver reveals what he learned from Chase’s father’s lawyer. Apparently, the man was about to disown Chase, because he knew his son was deranged. The man who Chase’s whole quest for vengeance was based on did not even want him, which apparently is enough to break Prometheus, as he collapses to his knees, telling Oliver to kill him. Instead, Oliver knocks him out and says he is going to let him serve time instead. Wait, what? Prometheus cannot be that easy to take down Oliver! You should know that by now! Plus there’s two episodes left!

arrow released criminalsIn the flashbacks this week, we see Oliver and Anatoli flying back to Lian Yu, where Oliver plans to wait for a fishing boat Anatoli will bribe to “happen” upon the island, finding Oliver pretending to have been stranded there since the shipwreck. Anatoli even gives Oliver a KGB disguise kit which I am assuming will help Oliver plaster on a fake beard so it looks like he was there longer than the two days he will be waiting for Anatoli’s ship. There is heavy foreshadowing as Oliver finds the Deathstroke mask and places it on the beach where we saw it in the pilot episode (cannot wait to see the man himself come back!), and then Anatoli leaves Oliver there alone after they visit the graves of all of those they’ve lost, and Anatoli warns Oliver again at his naivety in thinking he can hide behind a mask and somehow protect his loved ones that way. After his friend departs, Oliver is struck with a dart, and we see that Kovar and his men have tracked Oliver to the island, and he has his own plans for Oliver, which might leave our hero stranded on the island for real…

arrow return of the costumeIn the episode aftermath, Oliver holds a press conference and admits that his father did indeed kill the man whose body was delivered to city hall, but does a whole speech about how he and Thea will move forward, and should not be judged by the actions of their father, blah blah blah, placating the crowd with the news that the Green Arrow and his associates have apprehended Prometheus, who is now in an ARGUS cell, watching the press conference. Problem is, Chase does not look upset at his current predicament, and that is never a good thing, especially since we know he found Oliver’s son William last week.

BOW-STRING THEORIES:

  •  That weird smirk by Chase at the end… does that mean this is all still part of Prometheus’s plan?
  • Thea is back! Kind of… though one would think after that video of her father asking her to watch over Oliver she would stick around, so maybe she is back for awhile…
  • By episodes end Mayor Queen is lauding Team Green Arrow for bringing in Prometheus, does that mean the city will forget all about the charges Mayor Queen brought against The Green Arrow a few episodes back? That does not make a lot of sense to me. I HATE when ‘Arrow’ does this.

Not the best of the season, but a pretty solid episode, and did a lot of work laying the groundwork for the final two episodes, though at this point I have no idea what Chases’s plan is, or how they are all going to get to Lian Yu for finale, and that is actually a good thing. I hate when I can telegraph a show’s plot. Only two more weeks to see if ‘Arrow’ can capitalize on all of the good things they’ve done this year with an epic finale, keeping my fingers crossed. See you back here next week!

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horizontal lineNick is a freelance writer based in Los Angeles, who belongs to the privileged few who enjoyed the ending to ‘Lost.’ For more of Nick’s thoughts and articles, follow him on Twitter.