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Arrow Recap: Oliver Finally Learns to Trust His New Team

by  in TV Reviews Comment
Arrow Recap: Oliver Finally Learns to Trust His New Team

Tonight’s episode of “Arrow” continued to showcase Oliver’s life on two fronts: his position as Mayor Queen and his job as the Green Arrow. In the Mayor’s office, Oliver had to deal with a wave a bad press that centered around his (or rather Thea’s) appointment of Quentin Lance to the position of Deputy Mayor. In the world of the Green Arrow, Oliver and Felicity continued to train the new team, while also attempting to track down the production of a new (worse than Vertigo) drug called Stardust. The episode also showcased what happened to Diggle after he was blackmailed last week by his commanding officer — and it revealed Diggle’s unhealthy mental state and pervasive guilt over the death of this brother Andy. A member of the Suicide Squad also returned tonight and a WWE wrestling star made a guest appearance as drug dealer Derek Sampson. Mister Terrific also got to suit up tonight, which was an awesome sight to behold.

Arrow vs. Stardust

stardust

This big bad this week was none other than Stephen Amell’s WWE rival Cody Rhodes AKA Stardust. Amell and Rhodes went head-to-head in the ring as wrestling opponents last year. Their rivalry has been going on for well over a year, and Rhodes’ guest appearance on “Arrow” this week was another way the pair could play up their rivalry. In real life, the two are actually close friends and have even used their rivalry to raise money for charity. It made sense then that the drug Rhodes’ character Sampson was producing this week was called Stardust. During a confrontation with Team Arrow’s Wild Dog, Sampson was thrown into a vat of Stardust. Believing he was dead, Wild Dog celebrated his win as a victory, despite going to attack Sampson alone. Unfortunately, Sampson was not killed by the chemical compounds and was instead made invincible, impervious to any pain in his body. Upon discovering his new powers, Sampson attempted to manufacture more chemicals so he could turn his entire drug dealing team into invincible men. Sampson was thwarted from doing so when all of Team Arrow — including Wild Dog, Mr. Terrific, Artemis, and Ragman — blew up his lab. Even though he couldn’t feel pain, Oliver knew he could slash all of Sampson’s tendons to render his limbs immobile. It would appear that Amell got the best of Rhodes again, which I’m sure we’ll see play out in the ring another day.

A Matter of Trust

wilddog

While Sampson provided the team with a bad guy to fight this week, their greatest problem was still each other. After the Green Arrow revealed himself to Evelyn, Rene, and Rory last week as Oliver Queen, the team was taking steps to trust him. Oliver was also learning how to trust this team, who at times he thought were ridiculous and not ready to fight in the field. Oliver allowed them to watch him interrogate a drug dealer, but when Rene/Wild Dog said that he had a lead on where the drugs were being manufactured, Oliver ignored him. It was this act of mistrust that led Wild Dog to take Sampson on alone. Throughout the episode, Felicity was the voice of reason in encouraging Oliver to trust his team — both teams — in the Arrow Cave and in the Mayor’s office. When Oliver finally decided to trust them, he let them see the Arrow Cave, in all its glory. Their mouths were agape and their hearts were inspired, as they stood in front of the costumes of the heroes that had gone before them — like Canary, Speedy, Arsenal, and Spartan. Curtis even got a uniform tonight, a fitting homage to a wrestling star who wore a jacket with the letters “Fair Play” on the sleeves. This was a clever way to incorporate Holt’s comic book history with original Mister Terrific, Terry Sloane.

Heavy is the Head That Wears the Crown

oliverthea

Back at the Mayor’s office, Oliver was dealing with the bad press over hiring Lance as his new Deputy Mayor. Thea attempted to clean up the damage by telling the press that hiring Lance was her idea, which led a member of the media declaring that Mayor Queen had no idea what was going on his own office. Oliver’s anger and mistrust of Thea’s decision led her to type up a letter of resignation, which stated that she was not qualified to help run Oliver’s office. Oliver countered her resignation, however, by addressing the press as a confident Mayor, who was willing to trust Lance as his Deputy and Thea as his Chief of Staff.

Bratva Means Brotherhood

flashbackoliver

Everything that was happening in the modern timeline was also mirrored in the flashbacks, with Oliver’s full initiation into the Bratva. While their methods were dark and extremely violent, the Bratva had a code of honor, a code that they were willing to apply to Oliver’s vendetta, if he agreed to join their ranks as a fellow brother. The rest of the episode also introduced a number of new developments, like Oliver meeting Billy Malone — a member of the Star City Police Department and Felicity’s boyfriend. Oliver also met new District Attorney Adian Chase, whose secret identity as “The Vigilante” will come into play in future episodes. Felicity also confessed to Rory/Ragman her involvement in the death of his family in Havenrock. Lastly, the episode caught up with John Diggle, whose false incarceration led him to encounter the ghost of Deadshot. These moments with Diggle and Deadshot provided an emotional landscape for Diggle to explore his shame and guilt over killing his brother Andy. When Lyla came to visit him, Diggle told her to leave him locked up because he deserved it. His guilt was too much to bear and Diggle couldn’t even see past Andy’s death to the hope of seeing his son, John Diggle Jr., again. In next week’s episode, Oliver will team up with Lyla to break Diggle out of military prison. With Oliver on this secret assignment, Felicity will be forced to decide if the new Team Arrow is ready to take on Tobias Church alone.

Starring Stephen Amell as the Emerald Archer, “Arrow” airs Wednesdays at 8 pm ET/PT on The CW. The series also stars Emily Bett Rickards, David Ramsey, John Barrowman, Willa Holland and more.

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