ARROW Season 4×12, “Unchained” recap

4 Feb


Welcome back, Arrowheads! So far, we’ve had Felicity adjusting to life in a wheelchair, Thea trying to adjust to not killing people, and Ollie just trying to keep it all together. Easy to say when facing a foe like Damien Darhk, but at least it isn’t the League of Assassins. Speaking of which, how has Nyssa been faring after she ruined Malcolm’s Lazarus Pit trips permanently?

Shado Vision. In the flashbacks, Ollie is getting electro shocked by Reiter, but that ends when Reiter is killed by an arrow…fired by Shado? Well, yes, he’s hallucinating her because he’s still recovering from his injuries a while ago. Shado talks to Ollie about facing his darkness in order to conquer it, and starting by coming clean about one act he’s done. As he comes to in his cell, he finally tells Taiana about killing her brother, which she takes…well, she doesn’t seem completely pissed at him, so…good?

Escapees. at Nanda Parbat, a woman delivers a meal to Nyssa’s cell, which has the usual fixings: rice, a green pepper…with a knife inside of it! Nyssa and the woman giving her the meal kill their way out of the cells, and we see she still has League members loyal to her. Nyssa says they must hurry to hold the palace while Malcolm is gone, and also where the “Lotus” is. She’s told they found it somewhere in Japan.

Back in Star City, Team Arrow is chasing a rather skilled robber (who knows parkour…), and barely able to keep up with him. Thea actually corners the robber on the edge of a building roof, but before everyone else can get there, Thea starts getting woozy. Ollie grabs her to keep her from falling off the roof, and the robber escapes. But, there’s something weird about that robber, right? Something familiar…


“Man, things have changed. Felicity’s in a wheelchair, and Diggle’s wearing all leather now. And where’s the salmon ladder?”

Missing Piece. Felicity has something else to handle, mainly making her big presentation of Curtis’ new super battery, and her rehearsal is going badly. One of the big wigs is there, and can’t stress how important it is to nail this pitch, or the company could freefall. Well, Ollie visits Thea and finds Malcolm there too, with some bad news. Because she hasn’t quenched her bloodlust with more souls (or asked John Constantine to help correct that problem, like with Sara), her body is slowly dying. Then the whole Darhk thing where his touch curbed that is finally told to Ollie, which fat chance of asking Darhk to help there.

Before Ollie can dwell on that, Felicity rings him that the robber hit a lab not to far from where he is. Ollie heads over, sees the robber, and manages to catch him. He pulls off the robber’s mask, and…it’s Roy? Huh? Then, Roy breaks free from Ollie and escapes. What is going on?

Familiar Faces. So Team Arrow is back at the HQ, wondering why Roy would be committing all these robberies, and Ollie is distracted by texts by his campaign advisor. Well, he goes upstairs and talks to Alex, who has news of a new mayoral candidate about to break: a woman named Ruve Adams, who Ollie recognizes as Damien Darhk’s wife! He goes in Green Arrow garb to Ruve’s campaign headquarters, and instead of having a throw down fight, wants to talk with Darhk tomorrow night. About what? Oh, and Felicity has figured out what all those components Roy’s been stealing are for, and its a device that could destroy the Internet! Sure, fine, but you need a significant power source to do that, like say, Curtis’ new battery to work, and…oh. At Palmer Tech, Curtis gets to meet masked Roy, who wants the battery. The Team shows up, and Roy throws the battery out the window, which is picked up by a drone flying by. Felicity notices something wrong with Roy specifically, and tells him to shoot him with an arrow in the chest! Whoa, what?


“I am not Amanda Waller. You will find me harder to kill to avoid confusion with a Suicide Squad movie I’m supposed to be in.”

Meanwhile in Japan, Nyssa goes to a small temple and runs into a familiar face: Tatsu! She’s apparently now custodian of the “Lotus”, which Nyssa wants. They briefly fight, and considering how matched they are in skill, Nyssa suggests before they continue their fight to just say why she wants the “Lotus”, and why it involves Oliver Queen. Did he not bother to get his marriage to her annulled at the end of last season?

Meeting In The Oddest Situations. Back at Arrow HQ, the Team brings an unconscious Roy in, and Felicity assures them that no signal is going out. What signal, you mean? The signal coming from the transceiver on him and the camera contact lens in his eye! Felicity noticed the lens was miscolored from his baby blues, and knew he was being used. They revive Roy, who after being assured he’s safe, tells them what’s up. He was in hiding, but contacted by a man called The Calculator, who threatened to expose the obviously not dead Roy Harper (and essentially put Ollie and company at risk) if he didn’t do these thefts. So Roy just wanted to protect the Team, huh? Good guy. Since Roy is in town, he’s brought to see Thea, whose bed-ridden, but happy to see him. But she also has a violent reaction that reveals the fatal wound she got from Ra’s al Ghul, but that disappears.

Ollie’s still at HQ when Felicity manages to find a flaw in the Calculator’s tech she can use. She links it up, and gets to hear from the Calculator himself. He’s some guy in a weird tech hub, kind of like Felicity’s, which makes sense later, but anyhow, he assures her he’s not going to destroy the entire Internet, but take down a city. She realizes that is exactly what the bomb could do: destroy the power grid for everything in the city, causing who knows what kind and how many fatalities citywide. So, big trouble.

Calculus. Ollie goes to see Thea, and tells her about going to see Darhk to try and save her. But she refuses to let Ollie do that, knowing that negotiating with Darhk over her is not an option. Malcolm tells him the same thing, that even though both of them want her to live, that deal with Darhk should be her decision. Um, are Ollie and Malcolm finally learning to stop meddling with Thea’s life? Well, let’s ask that question later, but first…

Felicity thinks there’s a piece of tech Ray developed that can open any security encryption, and heads to Palmer Tech to get it. She finds it, and runs into Curtis, who is surprised to hear she might not do the presentation. He tells her the determined woman rolling through to find that tech is maybe the woman who should make that presentation. Good advice for you there, Felicity.

Run Like Hell. Felicity finds out what power grid in town would be the best place to activate that bomb, and the Team, with Roy back in his Arsenal garb, goes over there. Even Ollie does, intentionally blowing off his meeting with Darhk. They get there to find Calculator hired mercenaries to do the job and have to fight them. Meanwhile, Felicity and Calculator trade some quick conversation barbs at each other as she uses that tech she found to hack his system.

The Team discovers they can’t disarm the bomb, so to disable it before it activates, they have to blow it up, which, don’t ask how that makes any sense. But someone has to set it off, and Roy volunteers. As the rest of the Team gets out, Roy fires an arrow into the explosive chamber and runs out, just escaping the explosion. He says he misses this, and we all agree.


“You seem to be fitting in your old suit nicely, Roy.” “I’m trying to avoid breathing much. You shrunk this for Thea, didn’t you?”

It’s All About Family. Thanks to Felicity, any blackmail material on Roy has been erased from the Calculator’s network, so he’s free to start over again. But first, he stays in town long enough to say goodbye to Thea, where she tells him to move on and have a great life wherever he goes, and I start getting the sniffles. Anyway, Felicity is making her presentation to the Palmer Tech board and is killing it, much to the joy of Ollie, and…what’s The Calculator doing in that audience? Well, we find out when Ollie leaves to see Thea, and The Calculator says hello to Felicity, and Felicity says, “Dad?” THE CALCULATOR IS FELICITY’S DAD! Oh, this may be an awkward reunion in the making.

Ollie arrives at Thea’s to be told she’s in the hospital, in a coma. Her condition has gotten worse, and by medical standards, unrecoverable. Ollie is there at her bedside, telling her not to die, when Nyssa shows up. She says she knows what has happened to Thea, and that a rare mystical flower known as the “Lotus” can cure her. And Nyssa will give it to Ollie on one specific condition: he has to kill Malcolm Merlyn!

Well, too bad, Nyssa, because its not like Ollie would ever consider murdering a man who killed a lot of Star City residents including his own son, killed Sara and manipulated Thea, just to save Thea’s life…oh wait. Um, maybe I shouldn’t have made the pro-“kill Malcolm” argument right there. Well, its not like next episode Ollie will do that. You know what? Let’s just get to the notes, okay?

–Comic book connections: yes, the Calculator is a DCU villain, but is not Felicity Smoak’s dad there.

–That was a cool image of Roy zip lining away from that explosion.

–Laurel suggests Roy might be a shapeshifter disguising himself as Roy. A delusional thing to say back in season one, but with so many metahuman encounters of late, at least is an option now to consider.

–Felicity saying “pwned” is somehow an awkward fit for her.

–Curtis throws one of those “terrific” metal balls at him, and it doesn’t work. Better luck next time on those.

–“I know this hasn’t been my thing for a while, but that’s not good, right?”

–“Oh, then I think you might have to hurt me, then.”

–“That’s his superpower. Guilt Arrow.”

–“Its where I live, and where I feed my addiction to cute kitten videos.”

–“This is what happens when villains name themselves.”

That’s it for now, but come back next week for the recap of “Sins of the Father”…

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