We have yet another good villain in Dodger (James Callis from Battlestar Galactica). Unfortunately, he's yet another villain of the week... sigh. At least the episode was a good one, which continues the trend of quality episodes.
Dodger was a pretty cool villain, and totally different from the Count. He reminded me of the Riddler, without, you know, the riddles. He's a thief that doesn't like to kill unless he's betrayed, he avoids the law at all costs, and he can sure dodge well -- he even managed to evade one of Oliver's arrows. ( I guess that's why they call him "Dodger".) Let's hope he's reoccurring, because he was far more fun than some of the other bad guys that have popped up this season. There was also a small Battlestar Galactica reunion between Callis and Rekha Sharma (Claire Abbott) who played a second fence for Dodger's stolen diamond.
The team is already butting heads, since Felicity won't just lie down and let Oliver be a vigilante. It's like Dig finally has an ally in the whole "you can be so much more" side of the argument against Oliver. Friction in the group is a good thing, though. The team gelled later on in the episode, and Felicity even shed her geek-girl ensemble so she could dazzle us with her drop dead gorgeous undercover look. Seriously, I had no idea she cleaned up that well. I think her addition to the Arrow gang is a good thing.
New character Roy Harper says his mom is a Vertigo addict, which may or may not be true. Either way, it was a good enough story that Thea dropped the charges against him. That was the somewhat convincing side of his introduction story. The beginning where he stole Thea's purse and then she managed to track him down with nothing more than a wallet chain for a lead was a little farfetched, unless the writers are establishing that Thea is a good investigator. At least the two characters had a bit of chemistry. Roy Harper is played by Teen Wolf alum Colton Haynes, and the character is the real name of Green Arrow's sidekick Speedy in the comics. I'm not sure where they're going with his character, but I'm all in favor of anything that gives Thea more to do.
The other two relationships that started in this episode had their ups and downs, too. Oliver asked McKenna out, and their first date was a total bust. Then he went back to apologize and McKenna got a spot on the task force. I wonder if Quentin only asked her because she said she was dating Oliver? With McKenna now hunting Oliver, things might prove awkward as they go forward with their relationship.
On a brighter note, Dig finally asked Charlie out. Sure, they had some emotional issues to sort through, but they ended with a very nice kiss.
I absolutely loved Felicity locking the door on Oliver.
Moira hired China White to kill Malcolm Merlyn, which probably means we'll have some actual movement on this character, finally. Was it just me or did China White's wig look a lot better?
Not much on the Island this week. Slade's sick from an injury, so Oliver goes and finds those magical herbs and encounters someone tied up in Yao Fei's cave. This is the first time he doesn't do the moral thing; he acts out of survival when he finds a guy there bound and beat up.
Frank, Moira's old friend and ally, is played by same actor who portrayed the accountant from The Dark Knight. He even gave off a similar vibe.
The Glades "Undertaking" plot was originally intended to fix that part of the city, now it is going to "Lay it to waste".
Oliver steals a bike while wearing a tux... very James Bond. The following car chase was pretty decent, especially for television.
Dodger: "Why are you doing this? I'm exactly like you, I only steal from the rich."
Arrow: "I'm not Robin Hood."
Felicity: "I got an idea."
Felicity: "Your crush object with a badge said they were working with Interpol?"
Felicity: "Why don't I work up a little tech, you just distract her with a little flirty-flirt, slip said tech onto her phone, turn it into a micro-transmitter, and bloop, we'll learn everything she knows."
Oliver: "Hmmm. It's not how I typically get my information."
Felicity: "How do you typically do it?"
Oliver: "I find the person, and then I put the fear of god into them until they talk. But we can try it your way."
Slade: "You're not gonna last an hour out there."
Oliver: "Well I guess you better hope I get back in forty-five minutes, then."
Another solid episode, and three indicates a pattern. Perhaps this uptick in quality is here to stay.
3 out of 4 Giant Ass Diamonds.