This week we learn that secrets have consequences. Well duh!
I know this is kind of repetitive, but why is Thea still in the dark? Roy had a point, and Oliver was wrong. She might not be 'safer' knowing the truth and having to lie about Oliver's secret. But in a very real way she's just as much in danger not knowing. Also, one of Thea's defining characteristics is honesty. Ever since she hit rock bottom last season, and rebuilt her life, she has been all about living above board. She's based a lot of her personal sense of self around her family, and her trust in her family. How is she going to deal knowing about one of the big secrets they've been hiding from her? More to the point, if she had known the truth, she wouldn't have just gotten into Slade's car. Or maybe Roy wouldn't have had to break up with her, and she wouldn't have been in that situation to begin with. Ugh!
So, I really liked this one. There was a ton going on, and most of it was compelling. Slade is a formidable adversary, because for all his physicality he's shown he is also remarkably adept at subterfuge and plotting. From his very public kidnapping of Thea, to his almost comical reveal to Laurel about Oliver, Slade has every move very carefully mapped out. At times he makes Malcolm Merlyn look like he wasn't trying hard enough (ooh, I'm gonna destroy the Glades... so last year).
I'm a little disappointed that Roy split so quickly and easily, and even ended up leaving Starling City. However, given his character arc so far, I'm not that surprised. He really needs to do some soul searching, but with the Mirakuru in his system can he even do that? Slade is clearly no better off than he was on the island. He might be more controlled, but he's still seeing hallucinations of Shado everywhere.
Actually, I really like the whole hallucination thing. It's a fun way to bring back the actress, while giving her something different to do as well. Wouldn't it be fun if one of the final scenes of the season is of Shado showing up in Starling? Anyway, the big reveal that Isabel is working with Slade was telegraphed, but still effective. It was so clear that she was a bad guy, that perhaps it's not fair to judge Oliver. He tends to be narrow of focus, especially where his family is concerned. Not seeing her betrayal coming is definitely in character for Oliver.
We're also in the final stretch of episodes, so the villains have to score some wins to legitimize their threat. Yet what really stood out to me was the fun parallel between Slade, Isabel, and Blood arguing while Felicity and Diggle were extremely loyal to Oliver, twice. It illustrates the differences between a villain group based on a mutual desire for power, versus a hero group based on mutual respect and friendship. That being said, Slade and company are turning into a really great big bad. Kudos to the show runners for this season's arc so far.
Much like in Starling City, Sara continues to be a wildcard. She was pretty cold and scary when she rigged Hendrix with explosives. But at least Oliver is no longer on the boat of torture. He even stood up to Slade to keep him from shooting Sara like Ivo shot Shado. It's interesting, each little segment of the Island story almost always changes things completely. Now we have Oliver, Sara, Anatoli, and Ivo stuck together and Slade is on the Amazo. That's not a scenerio I would've predicted at the beginning of the season. I wonder how long Ivo is gonna live now that he's surrounded by people he tortured?
Blood was basically confessing to Laurel about Thea without confessing anything.
Moira obviously thought it was Malcolm that took Thea, so of course Oliver forgave her for her lies finally.
I almost screamed at the screen nooooo! Don't make Isabel CEO! She'll screw you over big time, Oliver!
Continuity shout out goes to the League of Assassin poison Sara used on Slade.
I wonder where the plot involving Quentin getting arrested is going?
Anatoli: "Just wondering. When did you become so scary?"
Felicity: "The NSA is right. It's a lot easier when you don't need a warrant."
Roy: "I just can't stop thinking, what's the worst that could happen if I just told her the truth."
Felicity: "Well, I told a guy the truth and he got struck by lightning. To be fair, probably won't happen again. Statistically."
Oliver: "Try again. This time... aim."
Felicity: "Do you remember where you put your business suit? Or do you keep it in a cool glass case too?"
Anatoli: "This is not personal. Well, maybe a little."
Moira: "And how is Ms. Rochev these days? Still angry that Dorothy dropped a house on her sister?"
Isabel: "I routinely bump all appointments thirty minutes in anticipation of you being late."
Oliver: "Good policy."
I thought this was another excellent episode.
4 out of 4 Arrows of Snake Venom
J.D. Balthazar is a confirmed nerd who loves most things sci-fi or fantasy-related. He reviews Arrow, The Originals and Farscape and cool new movies that strike his fancy.