Arrow: So It Begins

Felicity: "And so it begins. Who knew Prometheus was a Babylon 5 fan boy."

While Oliver is finally learning something from the lessons he's learned in the last few episodes, which will hopefully guide him to become the man he should be, the rest of his team learn about the man he used to be.

A lot happened in this episode, and I should probably start with that final reveal. I'm very upset about the idea of Quentin being the big bad. Is Prometheus a second personality? Is it something else, a case of pure revenge? Either way, it is yet again another example of how the Arrow writing team loves to make poor Quentin into an adversary for Oliver. First, it was a personal grudge as a father, then one against the Arrow as a cop, and now it is as a murdering psychopath.

I do have to admit as a phantom of Oliver's past, Prometheus is pretty effective. Dredging up the list, using the arrowheads found at crime scenes as material for his throwing stars, every element of this alter ego is carefully crafted. The costume is a scarred, twisted version of the Arrow suit. The systematic way he is going about taunting and antagonizing Oliver is scarily intimate, fueled on hate and rage.

Except, Quentin does have a case here. Even though he is doing the same kind of things Oliver was, the actual point he's trying to make is a valid one. Oliver is a killer, and no matter what he does to redeem himself, it won't change that fact. A fact that nearly ripped the new team apart. All of the recruits handled the news a bit differently, but none of them shrugged it off as acceptable.


Curtis used humor to deflect the issue. Wild Dog and Rory brought up the secret-keeping again, and how they were almost considered to be a second team, not worthy of being in the loop. But the focus was on Evelyn and the more personal reasons she was upset by Oliver's continued deception. He had convinced her not to take revenge for her parents, and then brought her into the fold to focus that grief and anger into something positive by becoming Artemis. In a lot of ways, his lie was a betrayal of that.

Which brings up the theme of the hour, secrets and lies and the way they stack together to make a shaky house of cards. Tell one lie, even a white lie, and it can lead to more lies to cover up the first. Again and again they pile up, until the truth that was originally covered over with that first lie crumbles from the weight of it all, and the cards collapse into a pile of chaos and emotional misery. Oliver has built this new life as the Green Arrow on a very shaky foundation of lies, starting with that list and the fact he wasn't on Lian Yu for all five years. One thing seems clear: this season is going to create the small tremor that is going to make all those lies fall down around him.

Bits:

I really hope there weren't any passengers on the train that blew up.

Besides suffering even more character assassination, how did Quentin learn all those moves? Was that where he disappeared to after Laurel's death?

For most of the episode, I thought Felicity's new boyfriend was Prometheus.

Flashback:

Most of this flashback dealt with Oliver learning how to make a bomb from Anatoly, and then getting sent on a mission to get close to Kovar who openly declared war on the Bratva. Except things didn't go as planned when Kovar showed up and introduced himself to Oliver. Dolph Lundgren, whose acting has definitely improved, makes for an adequately intimidating figure. He's articulate, arrogant and powerful, all the earmarks of a good final challenge for Oliver before he goes back to Lian Yu one final time before returning to America.

Quotes:

Bratva Thug: "You play--what's American term--douche, very well."

Felicity: "The throwing star killings? Kinda hard to miss, although apparently this guy didn't. Ooh, that was unexpectedly morbid."

Thea: "The second 'A' stands for anonymous, right?"

Oliver: "I know you're all upset with me, so thank you for showing up despite that."
Curtis: "Well, we were afraid you would kill us if we didn't... too soon?"

While this was a good episode, that final reveal left a sour taste in my mouth.

2 1/2 out of 4 Twisted Personalities

J.D. Balthazar is a confirmed nerd who loves most things sci-fi or fantasy-related.

3 comments:

rebecca_s921 said...

I thought Quentin might've been set up; an alcoholic with poor memory or druged when Prometheus needed to be out and about.

Patryk said...

Yeah for me Quentin looked just as suprised as we did with the wound and the throwing star.

Billie Doux said...

Yes, I agree that Quentin looked too confused by the star and the wound to be aware of what is happening to him. At the same time, J.D., you're so right that this type of revenge is just too intimate, so -- some sort of mystical split personality?

I really liked the arrow tricks in this one: the softballs pinned to the wall, the arrow that went into the guy's gun barrel, the parachute. I also liked Felicity's boyfriend's reaction to her confession that she knows Green Arrow. :)