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Arrow: Next of Kin

“I asked the best man I know to help. His name is John Diggle and he is the Green Arrow.”

I’m having a heck of a week, plus I’m really just filling in until the right person is found to do these reviews… so this review’s just going to hit the high points of this episode. Luckily, there are quite a few good moments that are enjoyable.

Diggle can fly! Well, with some help from Dinah’s canary cry. It’s still cool, though. I’m pretty sure that the owner of the car he crashed into – they probably didn’t enjoy their smashed windshield. We also got a Thea mention, which’s nice. She will make a good aunt, so let’s hope she awakens from her coma, soon.

Mayor Oliver’s still trying hard to connect with his son, but the kid doesn’t seem to appreciate his efforts, all that much. You know who he does appreciate? Felicity, that’s who. She’s smart, not bad to look at, and much better at finding ways to get through to William then Oliver is. Bonus – now that Oliver sees how good she is with his son, he’s willing to accelerate their relationship and Felicity seems to agree, wholeheartedly. I like seeing Oliver and Felicity happy, so I’m good with this development.

Diggle’s having a hard time in his new role – he’s freezing up in the field and having doubts about his leadership skills. I thought it was a little amusing that near the end of the episode – Rene (who’s been hard on him) is suddenly fine with Diggle’s leadership. I mean, really, when asked to make a decision about what to do in the climatic showdown with the bad guys, Diggle says, “Handle the gas!” as he leaves to chase after Reynolds. Of course, the team jumps into action and does just that, but if I had been on the team I would have been a trifle perplexed by that command. Handle it with what, now? Oh, well. I’m not a vigilante, which’s probably a good thing.

That last fight is made interesting by the flashes of light and the team’s “dorky ass glasses” according to Rene. There’s slo-mo and the best fight scene shot from inside a car since Supernatural’s “Baby” episode. I usually don’t enjoy the fighting scenes much, but that car fight is cool as we see everything happen through the windows and inside the car. Knives are coming through the roof and I actually rewatched it again – it's a fun scene. That’s pretty rare for me; so good job Arrow production team!

Of course, not all is going well. Diggle’s using some mysterious fluid to control his tremors. Uh oh.


I love the part where Diggle’s in that truck cab listening to the driver’s weird folk music.

It’s nice that Oliver’s being so supportive and giving Diggle “brooding” lessons. I like the way that Oliver’s letting Diggle find his own way instead of lecturing him in the Way of the Arrow, or something. It’s also nice that Oliver finally remembered that Diggle has a family, too.

Felicity said that school changed her life. That’s sad when you think of how she grew up with a self-centered mom. It probably wasn’t until Felicity went to school that she received the attention and praise that she craved. Plus, she’s super smart, so that helps.

Diggle gets a new weapon that shoots arrows crossbow style. Diggle’s very proud of himself as he shoots all the apples... er, tennis balls?

It’s funny that Felicity’s giving Oliver a hard time about his errant school years. She points out that at least he has amazing abs. Yes, he does.

Ms. Watson’s still after Oliver and now he’s got to deal with a city referendum about stopping vigilantes. I agree that the police need to do their jobs, but does that mean that everyone else has to be hurt when they can’t help in time?


Oliver: “I thought, maybe, you could use a late afternoon snack.”
Felicity: “Who are you, my mother? I mean, that’s not even accurate, my mother rarely remembered to pick me up from school, let alone make me a snack.” Poor little Felicity.

Oliver: “Anything I can do to help?”
William: “Do you know quadratic equations?”
Oliver: “Wow! Um, those sound vaguely familiar; then again I wasn’t the most enthusiastic math student, so…”
William: “I really shouldn’t be talking to anyone who can’t help me right now.” Ouch!

Felicity: “Lucky for you and for him, you are looking at Nevada’s three-time State Mathletics Champion.”
Oliver: “Only three times?”
Felicity: “Yeah, they wouldn’t let freshmen enter – it was an ordeal, I got over it, but it still kind of hurts.”

Felicity: “Oh, a new tradition for a new era – I like that.” (Champagne’s being poured)
Curtis: “To go with our new Team Arrow victory dance.”
Dinah: “I didn’t know we had an old one.”
Diggle: “We don’t, never will. Things won’t be changing around here that much.” Darn, I wanted to see that dance.

Overall, there’s enough goodness here to enjoy the episode and William’s even somewhat interesting, this time. I’d rather have Oliver as the Green Arrow, but I’m still enjoying this show.

Four out of five Mathletics Champion trophies.


  1. This whole Diggle crisis of leadership thing is pretty perplexing to me. He always seemed to be fine with leadership skills before. The team also used to be a little more independent-minded, too. It's very weird that they had to stand around and wait for the most basic of order from Diggle before they could move an inch. "Ah, look, eveyrone's dead because you didn't TELL us to save them."

    When Diggle does come through, it's almost laughable. "Handle it?" How are those instructions and/or leadership skills that the team has been waiting for?? I would have to call uneven writing/characterization on this one.

  2. Deborah, thanks for all your comments. Diggle as the Arrow isn't working for me at all and I did laugh out loud when there was that dramatic pause as the team is waiting for Diggle to take command and all be said was "handle the gas." I wasn't a fan of this ep, but the next one I like better.

  3. I really like Diggle but I'm not enjoying him as Green Arrow. Green Arrow is an extension of Oliver's personality and Oliver and Diggle are fundamentally two different people. I do like that Dinah is to Diggle what Diggle is to Oliver. That's entertaining to watch. I like getting to see Oliver developed as a character outside of his role as Green Arrow. It's fun to see him problem shoot when it requires talking and emotion and arrows and punching aren't an option. But I miss him being hypercompetent in the suit. I hope we get him back soon and let Diggle go back to being the best wingman ever.

  4. I thought that those "flashbangs" were reporposed T-spheres, but it turns out those were just villians of the week without any connections to Black Siren's mysterious benefactor.


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