Arrow is winding down for the season, and so the show has to have its token “it’s done, I’m hanging it all up” episode. This one felt slightly more serious about that proposition, but not as serious enough to, you know, follow through on that promise.
1. So…the world’s most powerful hacking agency can just be rolled up on?
I’ve talked about Helix being a hilarious take on what hackers would be like from people who probably couldn’t install a new hard drive. The fact that there’s a hacking office to begin with is like thinking that ISIS has a lease on a 15,000 square foot, commercially zoned building where their HR is based, where there’s a break room with danish and K-cups. The fact that it looks like Hackers is charming, but also really dumb.
And this week the dumbness just grew and grew, as from looking at an IRC window (lol) Curtis figured out what/where Helix is located. Now, he is Mister Terrific, and he is a genius, but he’s also just to the left of Lou Costello on the bumbling scale – do we really think he could track a covert agency in an afternoon?
Next episode (which is almost a month away) seems to be very Felicity-heavy, and will deal with Helix in greater detail, so I’ll hold off on some of my comments until then.
2. Most banal flashback yet
Just a question for you, my friends: has there every been a less consequential 8 minutes of television than the flashbacks from this episode? I think color bars playing a high pitch squeal offer more insight to the world than these flashbacks did. It showed that Russia doesn’t have great health care, and that Oliver will be missed when he leaves. Why is any of that important?
I really hope that next season just drops this shitty contrivance and lets the show spend all of its time in the present, where things actually matter.
3. So, the Bratva can’t kill Chase…but the team can kill the Bratva?
There is some serious hypocrisy in the way that Team Arrow thinks. They are vehemently against letting the Bratva kill Chase, yet Diggle and Dinah shoot Bratva agents at point blank range to save hostages. I’m not saying that these situations are exactly the same, but there is never a drop of concern for all the goons they shoot and (presumably) kill, and taking down a big bad.
I know I’ve pointed this out before, but this week’s episode really put a spotlight on this. Chase killed, just this week, two people directly. On top of that, think of all the Bratva members that died due to Oliver calling them in, and then rescinding that call. Chase, conservatively, caused 5 deaths and 15 critical injuries this week.
I totally understand why Ollie + co. don’t want blood on their hands – I totally get that. But then, why not have Dinah use her siren scream instead of shooting dudes? There’s something intrinsic in Ollie’s billionaire upbringing to only think about the boss, instead of the subordinates. This is Trump’s America, played out on television.
4. What an ending!
For a show that rarely uses licensed music, using the Rascals’ “It’s a Beautiful Morning” for the chilling scene of Chase driving away from the scene of his most recent murders was amazingly effective. Chase is one of the coldest characters ever on the show, and the scene illustrated that perfectly. This might be the best way an episode of Arrow ever wrapped up.
5. Does Arrow need Oliver anymore?
So this week, Ollie didn’t do much vigilante stuff, and yet the team was incredibly effective. There was the silly conversation among the b-squad about who the ‘new’ Felicity and Diggle are, but the more telling question is, does the team still need Ollie?
Sure, he’s the most experienced and best archer, and he’s a good motivator and leader, but let’s get real here: Diggle was in the army, and could clearly lead a battalion. Curtis and Felicity are the best tech minds this side of S.T.A.R. Labs. Rene and Dinah are formidable physical threats. Sure, they lose something without Ollie but, unlike in years past, they could still be an effective team without him.Continued below
Of course, that will never happen, but it is interesting to see just how much these folks have grown since earlier in the season. The team is working – and that’s part of the reason that the show is working right now.