When the creators of a series write the script for an episode, then you know you’re in for a treat! Some of the best episodes from ‘X-Files’ where written by Chris Carter and we won’t even go into all the episodes of all the shows Joss Whedon created and wrote on. This episode of ‘Arrow’ is no exception as Andrew Kreisburg and Marc Guggenheim wrote the teleplay with Kreisburg and Greg Berlanti getting story credit.
The episode picks up exactly where last week’s left off with the Hood confronting Moira about her clandestine activities. If there was any doubt that the lady couldn’t hold her own, that was dashed away within minutes. Moira pleaded for her life by bringing out the mother card and it worked. The Hood let his guard (and arrow) down long enough for Moira to grab a gun and shoot him at close range. As she hid behind her desk and called security, he managed to get away.
Don’t know how, but the Hood managed to sneak into Felicity’s car where he exposed his secret and begged her to take her to the Arrow lair where Diggle was waiting to hear the outcome of Oliver’s meeting with his mom. It wasn’t the outcome he expected as Felicity surprises him with a bleeding and unconscious Oliver.
With Felicity now knowing Oliver’s secret, she helps Diggle save his life.
Diggle manages to remove the bullet lodged in Oliver’s chest and stitch him up. He’s surprised Felicity wasn’t too shocked in finding out that Oliver was the Hood, but she tells him with all the “extra” research he had been giving her to do, she figured something was up. What she couldn’t figure out was why come to her. Diggle put it simply. Even if Oliver won’t admit it, he sometimes needs help.
While Oliver remains unconscious (and no bad guy of the week to go after) the episode focused on Oliver’s time on the island via flashback and Manu Bennett is back in the role of Slade Wilson. We see that Yao Fei is not the only one who trained Oliver and it was Wilson who taught him the art of Escrima as he prepared the boy to fight for their escape off the island.
I was told that in the comic series that Wilson is a sworn enemy of Green Arrow so watching the two together had me scrutinizing Wilson’s actions and wondering if their relationship was similar to the beginning of Superman and Lex Luther’s relationship were they were once friends then turned adversaries.
We also see that Laurel was what kept Oliver alive as he continues to look at her picture for a reason to live and get off the island.
Oliver’s history is not the only backstory we get in this episode. Wilson tells Oliver that Deathstroke is really his partner Billy Wintergreen. Their mission was to extradite Yao Fei and find out why Fyers was so interested in the Asian archer. Instead, they both got captured and when Fyers asked them to join his cause, Wintergreen accepted and Wilson declined. Wilson is a tad bitter knowing that his friend and godfather of his child turned his back on him.
The time has come to take over the air strip and all Oliver has to do is kill the guy in the control tower but he fails. Luckily Wilson was able to save Oliver and kill the air traffic controller before he killed Oliver. After verifying the island’s identity via a quote from ‘The Odyssey’ to the supply plane’s pilot, Wilson tells Oliver he can’t wait to get off the island so he can call in an airstrike and rain hellfire on the island.
Oliver is not comfortable with this as that means killing Yao Fei. There’s a loyalty to the man that Oliver feels and he’s determine not to leave the island without the man who saved him. Wilson tells him that if he’s not back by the time the supply plane lands then he’ll leave without him.
Oliver heads back to the camp to save his friend but he refuses to leave. Just as Yao Fei explains why he can’t leave the island, Fyers and Deathstroke come in. Thinking fast, Yao Fei knocks Oliver out cold.
Fyers is done playing and thinks it’s high time Oliver dies now. He sets him up against Deathstroke and as the Masked Australian beats him up, Oliver taunts him with the knowledge about his personal life prior to joining Fyers.
But just before the final death stroke (see what I did there?), explosions go off around the camp allowing Oliver to run and hide. It’s Wilson! Now it’s his turn for revenge and the two Aussies go for a beat down.
However, Wilson has righteous anger on his side and manages to kill Deathstroke with a sword into the eye socket. (Is he really dead? After all, part of Deathstroke’s appearance in the comics is a patch over one eye.) Just as we think all is done, Wilson gets shot by Fyers. Oliver manages to grab Wilson and together they head to the air strip, but it’s too late. They watch as the plane flies overhead knowing they missed their window of opportunity to leave the island.
But Wilson has a few things up his sleeve and tells Oliver that he’s seen a change in him and they have to make sure they don’t die on the island. He informs Oliver that someone is paying Fyers to be on this island and that Yao Fei is a key to this person’s plan.
Speaking of this mysterious person, Fyers gets a call from his boss that they are close to the end and they can’t afford complications. Fyers assures him that he has Yao Fei under control and with that, allows the Asian five minutes with the hostage. We see it’s his daughter, Shado, (who will be important in an upcoming episode) and he hugs her telling her this nightmare will soon be over.
Back at the Arrow lair, Oliver finally wakes up and sees Diggle and Felicity looking at him anxiously. He smirks and comments how cool he didn’t die again. Felicity is proving her worth and not only upgraded the liar’s computer system but also hacked into the police crime lab and ordered the blood evidence sample taken at Queen Consolidated destroyed. Oliver officially extends an invitation to join the Arrow team but she declines stating she only want to help find Walter and then go back to her boring IT girl life. (Which we all know that’s not true as Emily Bett Rickards has just been upgraded to series regular for Season 2!)
Diggle is still convinced Moira is involved in something nefarious but Oliver refuses to listen and tells him she’s is off limits. So Diggle poses the million dollar question: does Oliver really believe Moira is innocent or just can’t face the fact that she’s guilty.
‘Arrow’ seems to be getting better as each week passes and while this episode wasn’t the genre-actor-palooza like last episode, it provided some great background on all the characters we’ve come to know this season.
We finally find out what compels Diggle to help Oliver and see the turning point when Oliver stops being the spoiled rich playboy and becomes the self-assured competent man. Felicity will be a nice added touch to the team and was simply delightful calling Diggle out on their lame attempts to hide their true purpose of her researches. As she says, “I’m blond but not that blond”
Most importantly, this episode gave a chance for Stephen Amell to shine and show more emotion than the stoic Oliver we see week after week. That scene where he almost broke down when he heard Laurel’s voice on the phone was heart wrenching as well as the conflict he had while watching his mother beg for her life as he aims an arrow at her heart.
The flashbacks are now getting more interesting and the stories more involved and while the series may have had a slow start, it looks like they’ve finally got their groove leading up to what I hope will be an exciting season finale.
What did you think of this week’s episode? Let me know in the comments below!