Diggle and Ollie are running out of people they can trust!
Mike’s Review: My interest in the character subplots carry me through the weaker episodes, and this was no exception. I enjoyed the sparring between Oliver and Diggle, though his refusal to view his mother objectively was uncharacteristic of our hero; this is the same man who has full knowledge of his father‘s criminal corruption. The ‘Cyrus Vanch’ character is the latest villain-of-the-week whose goons are disposed of in the usual Arrow-fashion (see Commando with Arnold Schwarzenegger for reference).
One odd trend is the show’s over dependence on one specific comic book series for so many of its story lines. The TV show ‘Arrow’ appears to be stealing its entire supporting cast dynamic from the Stan Lee-scripted Spider-Man stories of the 1960s! In both, the lead character (Green Arrow/Spider-Man) has an ex-girlfriend (Laurel Lance/Gwen Stacey) that goes on to date his best friend (Tommy Merlyn/Harry Osborn) whose father is revealed to be his main antagonist (Merlyn/Green Goblin). Laurel’s father is a cop in Starling City, while Gwen’s father is an ex-cop in New York. Further, both GA and Spidey lose their father/father figure during their ‘origin’, leaving mother/Aunt May to raise them.
If the writers decide to follow things through, we should expect Laurel to die at the hands of Malcolm Merlyn, followed by the death of Merlyn himself. Then, Tommy Merlyn will take up the mantle of his father, becoming the new ‘Merlyn’. Sometime before that Det. Quentin Lance will die at the hands of some other villain and reveal that he knew that Oliver Queen was ‘The Hood’ all along.
This could just be coincidence, but the similarities are astonishing. If Green Arrow ends up sprouting four extra arms, you’ll know that we’re on to something.
Mike’s Rating: 3/5
Jolie’s Review: Stephen Amell and David Ramsey (Oliver and Diggle) continue to be the strongest actors on the show, and their characters are STILL the only reason why I continue to watch every week. The plot that has carried the duo this far in the series –the list of names and seeking vengeance, remains strong and continues to thicken, while the motivations that carry the Lance family is something I can do without. In most every episode, the two plots become intertwined, almost as though the ‘Oliver’ plot supports the ‘Laurel’ plot, while it gasps for air, which causes problems because the show already has a subplot that is INFINITELY BETTER! The one I’m referring to involves LOST-LIKE flashbacks to the island which serve as background for Oliver’s character development.
The involvement of Thea’s character in Laurel’s plot only weakens it for me; The Count is behind bars and the threat of drugs is gone so Thea’s new raison d’être is to BOTHER Laurel in the DA’s office?!? Fine. As long as she’s not brooding and seething around the Queen mansion anymore.
The actual narrative of this episode was pretty clean; everything was cut together nicely and the storylines –albeit numerous, were not confusing. Though, like many CW shows ARROW is jammed with minor characters who the writers, for some reason, feel the need to write into the story, even though it’s not necessary. I could stand to see Tommy’s character sit out a few rounds for once… doesn’t he have a nightclub he’s trying to build? Having him suddenly appear while Laurel is being ‘fake’ taken hostage by ‘The Hood’ only makes him just another character that hates ‘The Hood’ for no great reason. Like Thea’s character, those writers have decided to pair Tommy up with a member of the Lance family, which I’m hoping is a set-up for some greater purpose. Don’t think I haven’t noticed the word ‘Speedy’, Oliver’s nickname for Thea, cross his lips more in these last few episodes. The payoff I’m hoping for here is that ‘Speedy’ becomes ‘The Hoods’ sidekick, like the Speedy in the comic book, though what their plans for Tommy are, I have no idea and can’t even begin to speculate.
Two more qualms I have with things that actually happened in the episode: Diggles voice recorder and Malcolm Merlyn’s Security Guard. I’ll tackle the latter first. How come the guard didn’t alert Merlyn to the suspicious behaviour of Moira Queen’s driver? Smokers who are watching will understand the need for a quick dart but, and let’s put ourselves in the security guard’s shoes here. Moira’s driver who is already probably in or around her car (OUTSIDE), enters an office building, gets into an elevator, gets out on a higher level, sneaks into a broom closet –which SHARES a wall with your bosses sham office, AND THEN lights up a cigarette. It makes no sense. Or maybe he is just like most security guards in television and film, clueless.
The recorder. Diggle records everything he hears through the adjoining wall right before he’s almost busted by the afore mentioned, clueless security guard. So, the recorder. The same recorder he used to capture everything that we were able to hear, crystal clear audio, becomes a static-y, garble mess in its playback to Oliver. Not to mention the portions where Merlyn speaks are magically, no longer audible.
Am I being too picky? 😀
Jolie’s Rating: 3/5
Overall rating : 6/10
What did you think of last night’s episode? Let us know in the comments below!