Welcome back, Arrow-heads! What you should know before we start: in the island flashbacks, Ollie wants to find that super serum stuff to save Slade’s life. In the present, Moira has been found not guilty of conspiring with the dead Malcolm Merlyn, who we find out after the verdict, is not dead at all. Besides helping keep Moira out of the gas chamber, Malcolm has something else to discuss with Moira, like their lovespawn Thea! So, let’s get down to it…
Knock, knock. We start off at one of the Queen Consolidated labs, where security hears a knock at their door…their heavily fortified door. The door falls off, and some mystery man kills the guards with superhuman strength. The next day, Ollie and gang get walked through what happened by Quentin, and it seems the only thing stolen was a centrifuge. And then, an unexpected visitor shows up: a forensic investigator from Central City, Barry Allen, seems to believe based on the evidence that one person was behind the guards’ deaths AND taking the rather heavy centrifuge. Also, Felicity really seems to dig Barry. Awwww.
Something From The Past. Thanks to Felicity discovering some camera footage outside the labs, we see that Barry was right about one man carrying that huge centrifuge, and that bothers Ollie for a reason he keeps to himself. Also, Felicity is getting really chummy with Barry, so much so that she asks Barry to stay around to help find this mystery man, which makes Ollie think something is up with Barry. But he’s distracted by the mystery man hitting a blood bank and taking off with a truck of blood. He intercepts the masked man in a high speed chase, and before he’s tossed off the moving truck, Ollie stabs the man with an arrow. He brings that bloodied and severely bent arrowhead to be examined, and Diggle asks what he knows about this. Which brings us to…
The Sub. In the island flashbacks, we see our quartet of Ollie, Sara, Shado, and barbequed Slade heading off to the sunken sub to find the super serum. Shado asks who Sara is, and has to hear an awkward explanation which kind of goes like this: “you know that woman I loved before sleeping with you? That’s her sister, and I was sleeping with her on that boat that sunk and brought me here. So, we’re cool, right?” While Shado sucks up the possible vomit she had in her after hearing that, they find the sub. There, they find the serum, but no sedative, which would help Slade survive the process. It also becomes clear Ivo has discovered the sub, and before Ivo can get to them, Slade agrees to get the serum put into him, sedative or not. Then he seems to die from the serum, with blood coming out from his eyes and all (sound familiar yet?). And then Ivo’s men surround Ollie and company. Well, that little field trip went well.
The Blood Doesn’t Lie. Ollie mentions to Diggle and Felicity that this sounds exactly like the serum he found on the island, except Ivo’s dead and he destroyed the last of it. So, who’s using it? Well, that seems to be Brother Blood, who’s been using it for his serum, which reveals that lucky guy who survived the procedure last episode as our mystery man. He needs the blood and the centrifuge to make a lot more of the serum for his big plan. And it also involves an old buddy of Sin, who asks Roy for help finding him. Well they find him, OD’d like the other poor saps who have taken Brother Blood’s serum, and Roy presents that evidence to Arrow. Well, Arrow tells him to stop following this case, and when Roy tells him he’s going to keep looking into this, partnership or not, Arrow reminds him who orders who around by putting an arrow through Roy’s leg. Ouch.
Barry’s story. Ollie finds out Barry is lying about who he is, and decides to bring up that in front of Felicity. Barry Allen, forensic investigator is more like Barry Allen, forensic assistant whose superiors don’t know is in Starling City. There we hear Barry’s sob story about how as a kid, someone broke into their house like a tornado and killed his mother and how his father got sent to prison for it. He just wants to investigate weird phenomena to find out the truth about what happened to his family. After Barry decides to scuttle off in shame, Felicity gives Ollie the stink eye about doing that. Someone’s Ollie shrine is getting put in the garbage, isn’t it, Felicity?
The Queen Returns Home. While this is going on, Moira is trying to adjust to being a free woman again, and having Malcolm drop by unannounced demanding she tell Thea about who her real dad is or else. And then, there’s the whole returning to look in on Queen Consolidated, which Isabel tells Ollie is a bad idea to bring her back into the company. Moira may have been proven innocent in front of a jury, but not in the court of public opinion, and that becomes clear when Moira’s “out of jail” party brings little to no one to party, save the Queen kids and their inner circle. While the party and that icy reception from Isabel are lingering, Moira talks to some mystery guy. What we discover later, when Malcolm comes back threatening her to tell Thea the truth, is Moira has no intention of doing so. You see that mystery guy is someone who knows Ra’s al Ghul, and thanks to Malcolm boasting about the details of how he came back, she now knows that and let Ra’s know that too. It looks like Ra’s never approved of this whole Undertaking of Malcolm’s, and thanks to Malcolm coming back, Ra’s can now get his League to put Malcolm in the ground permanently. Malcolm leaves with the threat this isn’t over between him and Moira, but let’s shelve that for a more pressing issue.
“Please save my friend.” While Felicity’s still upset with Ollie, he does try to fix things by inviting Barry to the party, thus both Barry and Felicity are happy. Well, at least as happy as they can be until Barry’s superiors call him back to Central City immediately. Meanwhile, Felicity traces Blood’s henchman to an ARGUS supply shelter, and Ollie goes there, even after being warned not to fight him, because this guy is next to unstoppable. At the ARGUS shelter, Ollie fights the guy and summarily gets the crap kicked out of him. Felicity and Diggle get there to recover Ollie, who also has some unknown stuff in big syringes stuck to him that is probably now in his bloodstream. Diggle thinks about calling 911 to save him, but Felicity has another idea, which is to nab Barry on his way home, bring him to the Arrow cellar, and ask him to help save Ollie. Good one, Felicity, for waiting until the second date with Barry to make things awkward.
–Comic book connections: Well, Barry Allen is a familiar name in the DC universe for obvious reasons (and for that pilot to be filmed later this season). Also, its nice to see some playfulness around how the Flash is created with that scene of him around those chemicals and that reaction to the storm nearby. Plus, that story about what happened to his parents does point to another speedster that I’m sure if the Flash series gets picked up will reveal to be…well, we’ll see. And Nanda Parbat is another holdover from the comics, in that it is a mystical place of healing, although its connection to Ra’s al Ghul here is still unclear.
–Look, no one believes Slade is dead, right? I mean, Sara did ask at one point this season how he was doing, after all.
–Hey, that particle accelerator at STAR labs is about to be started up. Too bad Barry will miss it, since he’s stuck in a basement being asked to help that cute girl he really likes by keeping her boss from dying.
–When Moira mentions Ollie “has poor judgment in character” to Isabel, Moira meant him sleeping with Isabel, didn’t she? Good. Glad we cleared that up.
–Somehow I have a feeling Malcolm is not going to disappear anytime soon from this show, even with the threat of the League of Assassins coming for him.
–No Laurel this week, which means she might be updating her resume after failing to convict Moira, which she’s fine with, but career wise, probably not so much.
–Barry, you have no idea how much Ollie knows about breaking necks.
–Did you do something to your hair?” “Yes, I shampooed it without eight women and a guard watching.”
–“Why couldn’t you have been marooned on Aruba?”
–“Felicity? They will card him at the bar.”
So what did you think of this episode? Leave your comments and theories below and see you next time for the last Arrow episode of 2013, “Three Ghosts”…