Well, at long last, we have come to the end of Season 6. A season which was set up to be a defining one for the aging series as it would be their first without flashbacks to Oliver’s time on Lian Yu (which I was just fine with) and show a more mature, adult Oliver. They succeeded handily at the former, but I’m not so sure about the latter as Oliver proved such a poor leader that Team Arrow split up, Oliver got into major fights with almost everyone on the team, lost his Mayorship, lied to his son, and the list goes on and on. The season had its highs and lows, some twists and turns, and while some may not rate it as highly as the bar-setting Season 2 of ‘Arrow,’ I think it did better than some other seasons, and at least kept up engaged along the way. But let’s dive into this finale.
The show wasted no time jumping right into the action, having Oliver and the Quiver Crew raid the SCPD station to take down Diaz’s army (and the man himself) with the help of their new FBI back-up, handily taking the station with minimal casualties, though finding Diaz had already escaped. After settling in, Oliver begins what is later described as his “farewell tour,” apologizing and making amends with Diggle and presenting him with the bbackupGreen Arrow suit saying he should have given it to him long ago. Later he also makes amends with Rene and tells the man he respects him and the work he does and the city needs him. Rene admits that meant a lot coming from Oliver. He also makes up with Dinah and says he admires her for putting aside her Laurel vendetta to do what is right. Dinah then breaks down and says that she admires Oliver as well. Apparently, Curtis was either not worth speaking to (rude) or not worth wasting the screen time on (worse), so we see no scene with him and Oliver.
Anatoly, still the leak and worried that Diaz has already sniffed him out when he conveniently missed the raid on the SCPD station, turns himself in and informs Oliver of a new location he is supposed to meet Diaz at. And Quentin, after signing paperwork allowing the FBI to have jurisdiction in Star City to get the job done, is called by Diaz who demands that Quentin throw the FBI out of town, or else he will kill Laurel. Knowing that they have a lead, Quentin tells him “Go to hell” and sits back worriedly, hoping Oliver and the FBI apprehend the man soon.
Of course, it all goes wrong as Diaz anticipated Anatoly’s betrayal and led them all into an explosive trap, but luckily no one was injured thanks to Felicity delaying the remote trigger. But not before we got a tense scene with Rene trapped amidst the explosives with two FBI agents, who watch him make a heartbreaking phone call to his daughter to tell her how much he loves her, just in case he did not make it out alive.
Now Diaz is even more pissed off and calls Lance again, threatening Laurel, and Quentin wants a “proof of life” meeting, a term given to him by the FBI woman who is coaching him now with Diaz, though she does NOT consider it a hostage negotiation as Oliver has told her who Laurel really is. Apparently Oliver told her everything, and while the team is worried about being arrested now that their identities are known to the FBI, she assures them they all have immunity from prosecution thanks to the deal she struck with Oliver, which makes Felicity very worried, same with Quentin, who brings it up to Oliver, right after telling him about a pacemaker he had installed a few seasons ago. Quentin meets with Diaz with the FBI not far behind, but when Diaz does not bring Laurel, Quentin acts against orders, tells Diaz the FBI are enroute, and Diaz takes Quentin to his new hideout to see Laurel. Upon arrival, Diaz immediately throws Quentin in a cell with Laurel, and demands the man now make a video telling the FBI to leave town. Quentin refuses, with Laurel beside him standing strong, further enraging Diaz.
The FBI is pissed about Quentin, but Oliver realizes he was told about the pacemaker for a reason, and Felicity manages to track Quentin using it, and they all head to Diaz’s final hideout to at last apprehend the man. Diaz meanwhile has given Quentin an ultimatum, agree to the video or he shoots Laurel. As he counts down, neither Laurel nor Quentin budge, and when he reaches “1,” Quentin throws himself in front of his pseudo-daughter and takes the bullet in the gut, freaking out Laurel. Diaz starts the countdown again, not caring that Quentin is injured, just as the FBI and Team Arrow arrive and attack the base. Diaz flees as Dinah frees Laurel and Quentin, breaking the power-blocking collar around Laurel’s neck so they can work together to get out of the building and get Quentin to a hospital, fighting together in a cool scene where we see both their Canary Cries in action.
As the last remnants of Diaz’s men are taken down (or so we think) Diaz flees to the roof, demanding a helicopter, but it is too late. He is confronted by Oliver, and they fight. Oliver is reluctant to kill the man, though Diaz continues to taunt him, saying that is the only way to end it. Right when Oliver has to make the decision, Laurel appears, making her own decision, and uses her sonic scream to blast Diaz off the roof and into the waters of the harbor below. Oliver is furious, knowing that Diaz most likely could survive a fall like that (but why? The guy is not a meta!) though Laurel looks pleased that she at least tried to kill him.
In the episode aftermath we of course learn Diaz survived, making him the FIRST ‘Arrow’ villain to make it through a season and onto a second still being a big bad, but it looks like he will not be Oliver’s problem. The deal Oliver struck with the FBI was for their help in securing the city and keeping it safe (as well as full immunity for the rest of Team Arrow) in exchange for Oliver’s confession and agreement to go to prison for being the Green Arrow. Sadly, they come to arrest him while everyone is at the hospital waiting to hear about Quentin’s surgery. Sarah Lance arrives to check on her dad, having been called by Laurel, and they share an awkward moment, with Sarah clearly struggling to figure out how to act around her sister from another Earth, especially since her father invested so much in the woman. Unfortunately for them all, the news soon comes that Quentin died during the operation, and while they are all absorbing that heartbreaking news Oliver is taken away for his sentence in prison, everything hitting the team at once in a heartbreaking scene.
The season ends with Oliver being taken in cuffs past the press with whom he has to admit that he has always been the Green Arrow. After saying goodbye to Felicity while in custody, Oliver is then put in a maximum security prison, where the criminals know who he is and hate him, and are clearly going to be going after him.
- The FBI being so bad-ass in this episode, while ARGUS was so weak in previous episodes, makes me wonder why we ever thought ARGUS was such a threatening organization. And even though I already know the answer (stupid Warner Bros suits not letting the Arrowverse use the characters), why couldn’t ARGUS send in the Suicide Squad to take down Diaz? Seems like the kind of situation they were made for.
- Who are the Archer Hunters that were mentioned in the episode? They spoke about them with much aplomb, and they never showed up. Was it just set-up for next season?
- Will Diggle wear the Green Arrow suit next season and lead the team for a little while? Would be fitting to see him take down Diaz early in the season before Oliver returns, especially after the comment Oliver made a few episodes ago that Diaz rose to power while Diggle was in charge.
- Could Roy return to help the team because Oliver is in prison?
Definitely one of the sadder season finales of the show, and not because Oliver is in prison, as we all know he will not stay there for long. Ever since the news broke that Paul Blackthorne was not coming back for Season 7 his death has been a big possibility for the finale, and seeing it play out was sad, as it reminded us of how much history he has with the series, and all of the characters, especially Oliver. And seeing Sarah back and grieving over her father was tough, especially for those of us watching ‘Legends of Tomorrow’ who know how Laurel’s death still haunts her, to see her lose her dad as well is rough. All in all, not a bad ending for the season, and they did manage to find a way to bring the team back together and really earn it, as Oliver literally sacrificing his freedom so the rest of them could have immunity will definitely resonate with all of them, and combined with his apologies, should make amends for all of their arguments this season, at least as far as TV logic goes.
Here’s hoping next year brings some fresh ideas, a little more consistency, a storyline that does not revolve around Oliver being outed as the Green Arrow (which has been done 3 times on the show so far?), and continues to be entertaining. See you back here in the fall!