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Arrow: Damaged

Dig: "Okay, how am I supposed to track him?"
Oliver: "Well, you know us millionaire vigilantes. We do love our toys."

I asked for a bit more depth, and we got it. We also got quite a bit more information about Ollie's stay on the mysterious island which now has a name -- Lian Yu, which means "Purgatory" in Mandarin. With island scenes reminiscent of a certain island drama plus a stint in Purgatory, why do I get the sudden feeling that Arrow wants to be both Supernatural and Lost? I guess it's good they're aiming high, though. Pun intended.

Deathstroke seems menacing at least, with all his blades, torture, and intense combat with Oliver's mentor. Deathstroke's master Edward was also appropriately creepy. With the formal introduction of these villains, Lian-yu is starting to be worth the time spent in flashback. I just wish they could do more with that wig on Oliver because it's so obviously not his hair. I do like Oliver's mentor as well; he had some fun lines. I wonder how long he'll be a continuing character before getting killed off.

Speaking of continuing characters, I was getting the impression that Walter would die soon, and I'm starting to like him. I wonder if his exit to Melbourne will be a long one? I'm hoping with this separation between Walter and Moira and her threatening Jack Harkness, it might mean that Walter will live for a while longer. There definitely seems to be a larger conspiracy going on, and Moira showed some character by standing up to her apparent master. Enough that I actually started to like her a little, too.

I'm really glad they started to build the relationship between Dig and Oliver by establishing that trust is an absolute requirement. And I loved Dig going through the Arrow cave, and wearing the suit (I thought he pulled it off rather well). With Dig donning the Arrow costume, and Oliver's mentor on the island wearing it, too, that makes three people in a green hood so far. I wonder how many there will be by the end of the series... maybe I'll keep a running tally.

Even though the plot was a bit stock, I thought they did just enough so that it wasn't quite predictable. Unfortunately Oliver's plan was a little too convoluted, even if it made some sense on a logical level. I am glad they addressed this particular problem sooner rather than later. It created some much needed distance between Oliver and Arrow so that people wouldn't automatically connect the dots about his identity. Unfortunately, he wasn't quite convincing enough to dissuade everyone's suspicions, especially Thea and Quentin.

Laurel and Quentin continue to be my favorite characters with their constant bickering, yet their antagonism is so clearly based on a mutual affection. I truly hope the producers continue to build on their relationship. Speaking of relationships with Laurel (I'm batting a thousand segues today), the kiss was pretty cool, as was Laurel's reaction upon finding out that Oliver was tortured on the island. But her stating unequivocally that nothing could happen between them was just cliched and frustrating.


Thea doesn't seem convinced that Oliver was being honest with her about the arrowhead he gave her... from a gift shop in Beijing. It would interesting if she figured out his secret instead of being told.

The commandos on the island felt like extras from Lost.

So Detective Lance just decided that the polygraph was unacceptable, or did he remember the field trip to the prison too?  Speaking of which, what kind of school has field trips to prisons?

Oliver's birthday is May 16th, he was born in 1985... so he's officially 27 years old.

No real Tommy scenes again. I think he was at the party, though.


Oliver: "What does that mean?"
Mentor: "You will die badly."

Thea: "It's an arrowhead."
Oliver: "Thea, I bought that at the gift shop in the Beijing airport. Now I'm sort of happy I didn't buy you the shot glass with the panda on it, 'cause then you'd be worried I was Panda-man."

Dig: "If you think this is what prison is like, you're in for a rude awakening."

Dig: "Now you might have gotten used to lying to everyone else in your life, but I'm the one guy you don't lie to."

Each episode seems to be an slight improvement over the previous one, and that's the kind of progress I like. Maybe there's hope for this show to become excellent down the line.

3 out of 4 Men in green hoods.

Samantha M. Quinn spends most of her time in front of a computer typing away at one thing or another; when she has free time, she enjoys pretty much anything science fiction or fantasy-related.


  1. The episode was decent enough in its execution, more important were the character moments. I'm liking Walter more and more, and I'm glad Moira's starting to show some spine. And I enjoyed the moments with Ollie and Laurel, and her acknowledging that whatever else he may have done, Oliver went through a terrible ordeal on that island. She's been treating him like he was stranded at a motel unable to get a flight home for five years.

    I think it's a race now to see who figures out Oliver's secret(God I hate calling it that, too many flashbacks of Smallville and Clark talking about "my secret"), Laurel or Thea. Personally, I think they should save the Laurel reveal for a later season(but definitely not as long as it took for either Lana or Lois on Smallville, PLEASE). I think having Thea know would be far more interesting at this point. You've got the family issues, with Daddy Queen's "list" and such, and I just really like the dynamic between Oliver and Thea. The two actors play well together.

    I do have to say how grateful I am that this episode addressed something that many superhero stories wait far too long to touch on, and that's Oliver being under suspicion about being "The Hood". Waiting too long to tell this story just makes the supporting characters look dumb, and having Oliver unprepared for it would make HIM look dumb. But he knew it would happen and had a plan. Maybe not the SMARTEST plan, but he had one. Kudos, writers.

  2. I agree with everything you said, J.D. (and you too, Patrick). The show is slowly improving and I'm starting to like some of the characters. Dig might be my favorite.

    Arrow needs to be more than the dark Smallville, though. It's still way too easy to compare the two shows. Guess we'll see.

  3. Very happy with this episode! Although I totally saw coming the resolution to Ollie's arrest, using Dig as a decoy. What I hadn't foreseen was that Oliver himself would have planned it all (including letting himself be caught on camera with the green hood) so as to "get it over with", the suspicious coïncidence of his return and "the Hood's" appearance. Smart of him!

    LOVED the line "us rich vigilantes love our toys"! Such a wink at Batman! :p

    Also loved Laurel finally realising that Oliver went through hell on that island. About time!

    They're definitely moving along at a faster pace than Smallville which is good.

  4. I agree with everything all of you have said. I do appreciate that the story is moving along more quickly than Smallville, which could be glacial at times. And, the characters are really beginning to come into their own.

    J.D. -- you are so right about the stupid "nothing can happen between us" line. Every time I hear something like that, I roll my eyes. But, especially after a kiss like that. Wow!

  5. I think there is some nice chhemistry between the leads, but the writers need to lean to finese the dialogue a bit. I also wish they wouldn't go to the cliche bin quite so often, I feel like half the time they are using stock dialogue like an overused sound effect.

    Still, the show is getting better consistantly, and I like most of the characters now, so I'm hoping for good things soon!

  6. "Deathstroke's master Edward was also appropriately creepy." Okay, I'm not going to lie J.D., I have loved all of your reviews so far, they've all been so spot on, but that sentence right there just made me cringe. I absolutely LOVE Deathstroke (when I saw that glimpse of his mask in the pilot I screamed), so it crushes my soul to see you call Edward his master. Slade is a hired gun, the best one in the entire DC Universe in fact, and HE chooses which jobs he will and will not take; calling Edward his master is like calling a person's mother their owner. To Slade, Edward is nothing more than a cash flow. However, I won't pick on you about this too much more, as the show itself did things to Deathstroke that I cannot unsee (a prime example being that they didn't even bother covering up the actor's right eye, which at this point in the presumed timeline Slade would have already had shot out by his then-wife by now).

    On another note, I really hope the writers have Laurel become Black Canary later on in the series, but I have to wonder if she'll have her Canary Scream? I hope she does, but if memory serves me correctly, she's had that power since childhood, and so far she's showed no signs of it. Maybe the writers are just going to give her Scream a different origin story? I really can't tell at this point.

    Loving Thea so far, though she breaks my heart with her problems and how she "deals" with them. In my opinion, the writers really have done a good job doing up the tragic-teenager archetype for her -- I mean, losing your brother and father when you're only twelve, crushing on your dead brother's best friend who has a thing for said brother's girlfriend, mom marrying dead father's best friend -- it's all just a convoluted one-way ticket to hell. However, she is also clever enough to know that something's up with Oliver and, dispite her problems, she comes with quite the voice of reason for him. I personally hope she either discovers his secret (before Laurel) or already has and is just waiting for him to tell her himself. Her character design definitely took a lot of thought, and I like it.

    Dig needs to take his shirt off already, though. Actually, seeing him train with Ollie was quite nice, but I bet it'd be nicer if they were both shirtless. Mmm, shirtless, well-built men...I can't say no to that.

    Great review J.D., like the all the rest have been.

  7. Boredom,

    I wanted to thank you for that lovely, and well thought out comment. Before the Helena episodes, I intentionally avoided almost all the comic book lore involving Green Arrow so that I wouldn't be spoiled for any future plot developments. I'm still trying to keep that information as limited as possible, but some research has been required since there is so much history around the character of Oliver Queen.

    Deathstroke is a villain I know pretty much nothing about. So I do apologize for getting any character specific information wrong. That being said, I did collect JLA for a while, and I too am interested about Canary and how literal they are going to be with her powers. Or if they will bring them in those powers at all. There was some noise made before the show aired that they weren't going to do superpowers. Something about keeping the show grounded, unlike Smallville. I'm not sure how I feel about that, but we'll see.

    Again thank you for your comment.


  8. Alright, I have a confession to make.

    This show so far has John Barrowman, and I know Colton Haynes is coming. Also, Grant Gustin (who managed to produce some incredibly fun scenes next to Chris Colfer on Glee's seriously boring third season) has scored the role of The Flash and will appear on season 2. I'm a sucker for actors I like, and when Grant was signed, I wanted to give this show a try, even if it looked kind on unappealing.

    So far, I've seen up to this episode, and I've been struggling. So, honest question, does it get any better? Are there any episodes I should just altogether ignore?

    My favorite supernatural/superhero shows are things like Buffy and Supernatural. I like fun and real feeling angst, and so far this show just feels like a bunch of pretty people being far too boring and far too serious for my liking. I do have some hopes for Felicity, and for the Dig/Ollie relationship to be explored and made the kind of bromance I enjoy. So, any help?

  9. Okay, at where you are in the show I was ready to give up myself. You don't really care about the characters and nothing seems to be important (i.e. villain of the week). Fairly soon that all changes.

    Diggle is a great character and very important as the season progresses. Oliver improves dramatically and is now one of my favorite characters. Tommy and Moira have arcs that turn them into characters I care about. Thea and Laurel struggle a bit, but I like them both. Two Island characters are introduced that change things up, and let Island stuff really take off and become compelling. And the overall arc for the season was very well done (even if some of it was a touch cliche).

    As for skipping episodes, you're getting close to the point where everything becomes important to the plot. Year's End (Episode 9) is pivotal, and the back end of the season ramps up to some pretty insane stuff.

    I hope that helps Bea.

    Oh, one more thing. Felicity is my favorite character. I don't want to spoil you, but if you like her I'm sure you'll be pleased by the direction her character goes.

  10. It does help, thank you!

    I'm willing to give shows a try, even if they have sketchy begginings (see above: my love for Buffy), so I guess I'll give it another chance. You telling me that Oliver improves makes me hopeful, because I hate not caring for the main character.

    I'll keep you updated on my love or lack of thereof for this series.

    Thanks again!


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