Welcome back, Arrowheads! It’s a big “Everyone’s Coming Back From The Dead Party” this season. Sara came back a while ago, and guess who came back from the dead (well, he was declared legally dead, so that counts)? Ray Palmer, who spent months playing Ant-Man. I suppose at this rate Moira Queen will rise from her grave before Tommy Merlyn does. However, we got some other things to deal with: like fighting HIVE and Diggle finding out the truth that his brother may have had a really shady past before he got killed. If there was only some way to solve Dig’s unresolved issues while tying into the Everyone’s Coming Back From The Dead Party. Hmmm…
Queen of Punishment. The flashback this week has Ollie accusing Conklin of pushing that prisoner to attack him, but Conklin throws back that the prisoner, Vlad, probably tried to get payback for Ollie killing his sister. You know, Taiana, the woman Ollie saved from death? Yee-yah. Reiter gets to hear both men’s arguments, and to settle things, he holds a odd thing of incense to both men, and after asking a question, finds Conklin did set up that attack. The punishment for this? Conklin getting lashes by a whip-wielding Ollie.
Afterwards, Ollie sees Taiana and let’s her know her brother’s dead, and, um, doesn’t say anything about how he was involved, because he does not remember the last time he withheld that kind of info (he’s on the same island that mistake happened!). But he needs her help to find out what on the island is Reiter looking for. So moving on…
Money To Burn. A money truck heading into Star City is hit by HIVE agents, with Team Arrow arriving to stop things. Besides Thea having a moment where her bloodlust almost kicks in, HIVE torches the money, which we discover was federal relief meant to revitalize the city. At Arrow HQ, Thea asks the question I’m sure should be asked on every villain every season, “why is Darhk trying to destroy the city”? Well the working theory is so Darhk can take control of it and make it his own personal HIVE city, which at least is better than “I must destroy this city because I’m evil” plan of seasons past. Meanwhile, Felicity decides to enlist help from Ray to find out the origin of the cyanide tooth they got episodes ago. Around this point, Dig tells Ollie about that file revealing his dead brother was a bad guy.
Meanwhile, Alex is a bit skeptical about a revitalization project Ollie wants to back for his campaign, but let’s take a raincheck on that because Felicity has an idea on how to find out more about that tooth. Also, who is Thea ignoring calls from on her cell phone?
The Tooth/Truth Revealed. The Team is sent to find out more about the cyanide, made at an laboratory that the Team gets to break into. They run into HIVE agents, and Diggle knocks out one, hoping to get an ID on him. And it’s…Diggle’s clearly not dead brother, Andy! Dig gets distracted by the shock of seeing his brother alive and Andy gets away, which is a surprise for everyone else later at the pow-wow at Arrow HQ. While everyone else is thinking Andy alive is great news, Diggle is pissed, because his brother has been believed to be dead for eight years and left his family behind. That seems irredeemable to Diggle, but give him time. He’s got a lot to mull over.
At Darhk’s office, Quentin drops by to talk to Damien, who would like to remind him about that coincidental last visit leading to a meet with the Green Arrow last episode. So Quentin might be on thin ice, but daddy Lance still gets a glance at some papers on Darhk’s desk.
Contending With Strangers. Thea gets an unwelcome visit from daddy Malcolm, who thinks that bloodlust of hers is coming back. He offers a solution: “Here’s some info on a pedophile, so clearly you can kill him, right?” Jeez, Malcolm, when you try to do a nice thing, you suck at it. She declines, not wanting to kill more people in the immediate future.
Ollie gets to hobnob at a charity fundraiser for the local cops, and gets some info from Quentin to a harbor post where Darhk and maybe Andy might be. Also Ollie gets a visit…from Damien Darhk. Darhk’s pitch of assistance for that revitalization project is less “that’s a cause worth putting money into” and more like “join me and dispose of this project, or face the consequences”. While we hang out with the socialites, Laurel tries to let Diggle look on the bright side of things, that his brother is still alive, and say, wasn’t resurrected as a crazy person in a wacky resurrection pit. Well, you tried to help, Laurel.
Control. Thea is having a date with Alex that seems to be going well, until he has to leave to take a call, and a sleazeball starts hitting in her. Apparently being told to go away doesn’t work on this guy, so she makes it more clear by beating him senseless in the restaurant! Alex comes back before things get fatal, and his return seems to calm her down. Hopefully this won’t show up on her Tinder profile.
Ollie heads over to Diggle’s place, where Dig has been talking to Lyla about whether to tell Andy’s family about Andy being alive. But Ollie is there to tell him about that harbor HIVE meets at, and Diggle wants this to be just the two of them on this. So they go to the harbor and watch what seems to be a HIVE initiation ceremony, with Damien in handing his “volunteers” some candies that make them susceptible to Darhk’s orders. The duo ends up in a fight with a lot of HIVE agents, and barely get away from the melee.
Reflections on Life After Death. After Felicity patches up another Ollie injury, Diggle’s more convinced Andy’s a bad guy that needs to be stopped. But Ollie’s argument to save Andy despite that is being shot down, and moreso in light of hearing Ollie might considering allying with Darhk in order to get closer to destroying HIVE. Ollie wants to believe they don’t have to go dark to face the darkness of HIVE, but Diggle reminds him that type of plan is what lead to season three, and no one wants that again, do they? “Instead of fighting Darhk in the shadows, fight him in the light of day,” Diggle suggests.
Felicity decided to leave that conversation early and see Ray at her loft, still working away on that tooth. He’s not interested in announcing he’s back from the dead yet, and considering what he’s seen happen in his absence, he’s not sure he wants to now. But nevermind that, because he found the tooth had water treated and used in one place: an defunct asylum. When everyone at Arrow HQ hears this (and the fact there’s way too many HIVE guys to fight), everyone but Diggle is down with Ollie’s plan to snatch up Andy. C’mon, Dig, help out your brainwashed bro!
To Save A Brother. The rest of Team Arrow get some groovy cameras that can see through those HIVE-standard ski masks so they find Andy and head into the asylum. It’s not long before HIVE guys start attacking them, and Thea ends up fighting Andy. After knocking him out and getting Laurel to lift him away (really, not gonna help her out with that weight, Thea?), Thea runs into Darhk, who pulls that Shaq Khan fatality on her…which doesn’t work. All it seems to do is give Darhk a weird indigestion, apparently.
Even Ray in his ATOM suit comes in to help, and as Ollie seems to be facing death again, Dig arrives to save his brother…the green one. Aww.
Light Against The Darhk. Thea arrives home to find Malcolm waiting, and Thea tells him that murder may not be necessary. Damien’s fatality move seems to have quelled her bloodlust, and before it fades away, asks Malcolm’s help in finding out how Darhk did that. At the HQ, Ray announces he’a going to wait a bit before announcing his return from the dead and reassess his life, maybe in a spinoff show or something. And Diggle thanks everyone for trying to save his brother even when he didn’t want to. Speaking of Andy, he’s locked up in the HQ, and when Diggle presents that file of evil deeds to Andy to ask if its true, Andy flat out says, “Yeah, pretty much all of it”. Maybe Thanksgiving break will make Andy happier to see his bro.
The next afternoon, at the setting of Ollie’s big centerpiece to his revitalization project, an old industrial district, Ollie makes a public speech. Thea apologizes to Alex about almost ending his date with her being locked up for assault (apparently NO ONE wanted to press charges!) and Ollie makes a pledge to his audience, which includes Darhk, that he will fight to save Star City to the last.
So that’s the episode, and um, Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! The week afterwards, its a superhero bonanza! Well, part two of it on Arrow, anyway…
–Comic book connections: Andy Diggle is a shout out to the writer of the same name, who was the writer of the clearly Arrow inspiring miniseries Green Arrow: Year One.
–Lots of solid action and punching this episode, which shouldn’t be an absolute shock since the show’s stunt coordinator was behind the director’s chair on this one.
–So my theory on Andy being the mystery HIVE guy who didn’t kill Diggle a few episodes back turned out to be correct, and thanks to the recap for acknowledging that connection.
–See, if Laurel only waited to resurrect Sara, they could have put her in one of those prison cells in Arrow HQ. By the way, how long until that lock-up goes wrong?
–So what did Darhk mean there’s worse he could do to Quentin than hurt his daughters? I have a feeling I know the answer to that.
–“Dead relatives are in my wheelhouse.”
–“I’m just getting used to my newfound sense of freedom…and height.”
–“This is better than your usual nights–dressing in leather and tying people up.”
–“Maybe they’re just playing Bingo.” “Let’s not assume that.” “Deadly Bingo?”
That’s it for now, but feel free to leave your comments below and come back in TWO weeks for the second half of the Arrow/Flash crossover (the first half will be on my A&V Stimuli website) “Legends of Yesterday”…