TV review Arrow Due Process

“The hardest thing to do is be a hero when no one expects you to be.”

 One would think that the bad guy wanting to destroy a city would be old hat by now and that writers would veer away from that particular trope. Fear not fans of potential city-wide destruction; Arrow revisits that well-worn dramatic point as Diaz’s plan to run Oliver comes to light while the Earth-2 Laurel continues the good fight for Oliver while Felicity drifts closer towards the dark side.

Phew, that’s a lot of stuff to unpack. Thankfully, for the second week in a row, Arrow does a pretty decent job in making things interesting, even if it’s only the last moments of a particular storyline.

Laurel’s redemption arc has been one of the best character developments in the series to date.

To get it out of the way, following Oliver’s prison scenes were the most boring aspects of “Due Process”. There was nothing of interest that occurred between him and the ‘triplets’ (Brick, Sampson, and Turner) though his two conversations with Laurel was a reminder of just how full of himself Oliver can get. Yes, he has no reason to trust her but his attitude came off as holier-than-thou, and Laurel’s retort during her second visit put Oliver back in his place. “Everyone has good and bad inside of them,” she tells him, “and you can’t put people in one box or the other.” It’s a sentiment Oliver should understand and, after his suspicions of his prison pal Stanley are raised, more on the nose than ever.

A close second to the peek into Slabside was revisiting the flash forward. William and Roy, now partnered with Dinah and Zoe, track down Felicity’s old lab where they discover plans to level all of Star City. It’s apropos considering that, in the present, Diaz is trying to do the same thing. But it’s not the plans and a potentially chaos-loving Felicity that drew the most attention; rather Roy telling Dinah about “The Mark of Four”…whatever it is, the two of them think it best to keep the information quiet. How that relates to the Green Arrow and the future state of Star City remains to be seen.

Team Arrow, together again, sans the bitterness and backstabbing. I dig it!

Speaking of Diaz, it was good to see Team Arrow working together again, despite the logic behind said teamwork being fantastically dubious. With some help from Anatoly, Felicity’s dogged determination, and another appearance by the current Green Arrow (it’s gotta be Roy, right?), the gang takes down Diaz and Laurel gets the chip they need to free Oliver from prison. Felicity’s change has been a major plotline this season as Diaz’s effect on her life has made the loveable hacker into a woman on a mission who is teetering that line, willing to do (almost) whatever it takes to bring Diaz down for good. This was present a couple weeks ago when Laurel of all people had to slow Felicity from torturing the Silencer. It’s also a reminder on how far she’s come these seven years and the continued strengthening of her character will make even Felicity-haters take note.

It wouldn’t be complete without pointing that the big melee between Team Arrow and Diaz and crew was probably the best choreography this season. Sharp, crisp, and not overly sold, the combat was great. And how about Diggle channeling his inner John Wick with some seriously smooth gunplay. The action has only helped maintain the rise in quality these last two weeks and, based on how events are unfolding, it’s only a matter of time before Oliver’s free and Diaz is rotting in a federal prison.

Then, and only then, will we finally be introduced to season seven’s real big bad.

Arrow – “Due Process”