ARROW Season 5×05, “Human Target” recap

3 Nov

Welcome back, Arrowheads!  When last we left Team Arrow 2.0, Ollie took a brief vacation to go break Diggle out of military jail for a crime he didn’t commit.  However, this setup for  Arrow‘s version of The A-Team is not to be, as the rest of the Team gets into it with Tobias Church, and losing Wild Dog as his prisoner.  So will they find Wild Dog before he gets turned into hamburger by the punch happy Church?  Before we find out that…  

Brotherly Love.  In the flashbacks this episode, Ollie is finally given his Bratva membership card and he has a nice celebration party at a local bar.  But there, one of the Bratva bigwigs, Viktor, basically calls out Ollie as a faker, which Ollie could be less concerned about.  He just feels like he’s getting distracted from his mission to kill Kovar, and that distraction leads him into trouble when he tries to save a woman being hassled by some guys.  But its all a ploy by Viktor to have Ollie killed!  Then one of the guys kills his compatriots and tells Ollie to let his boss know “he’s expecting the rest of his payment”.  The mystery man walks away to reveal its a man under a mask (who we later learn is Christopher Chance, who we’ll see later), and Anatoly arrives to tell Ollie that retaliation against Viktor will have to be delayed for the moment.

Dog To Be Put Down.  In the present, Rene (Mr. Wild Dog) is still relatively okay after being beaten on by Church for a good day.  Church relays a story to Rene to let him know he’ll talk eventually, not because of the pain, but because of the fear of pain.  While Rene is left to contemplate that, Green Arrow and his Team are roughing up baddies to find out where Church is.  While the Team (which is minus the injured Curtis, is just Evelyn and Rory) is following a lead, Ollie is getting some mayoral news: there may be some new hirings for the ACU, and there’s a holdout on the city council who’s holding up Ollie’s low-income housing program.  Put some pins on those for later.

Evelyn and Rory find where Church has been beating Rene, but neither are there.  They got moved very recently, so Felicity performs some techno-voodoo and gets a lead on where Church may be.  That place is out in the woods, where Church is making Rene dig his own grave.  Ollie arrives to save Rene, but misses capturing Church.  That turns out to be worse news, because Rene reveals he thinks he may have revealed Green Arrow’s secret identity!  Dammit!

He just got shot in all of his vital organs. He’s had worse happen. He’ll be fine.

Storm Warning.  So Ollie, Felicity, and Diggle discuss what to do about Church now, since he’ll be gunning for Ollie and anyone in his circle.  Ollie wants Dig to debrief Rene to find out if he heard anything about Church’s plans, so Dig also suggests he can get a guy with “a special set of skills” to help out on this.  Its not going to be Liam Neeson on Dig’s speed dial, so get that out of your head.  And Diggle is going to have his own problems, since Rene would rather not reflect on the humiliation he just endured.

Ollie arrives at work to talk to the holdout councilman, Kullens, who just happens to have that pesky reporter Susan Williams there.  Kullens reinforces his stance against the plan, reflecting the last time the Queen clan made such a plan, it put up skyscrapers rather than housing.  Meanwhile, Church is met by Prometheus, who is there to punish Church for instigating the Green Arrow.  But Church has a new bodyguard in another voice modulated masked assassin, so Prometheus just gives him one last warning.  As for the assassin, Church has a special mission for him: kill the mayor of Star City!

Target: Oliver Queen!  The next morning, Ollie agrees to an off-camera interview with Susan, which Thea thinks is a bad idea, but he wants to try turning her into an ally rather than a nemesis for the mayor’s office.  He suggests that she is not giving him a chance to prove his worth to be a mayor, and offers if she gives him a month to do that and if he fails, she can go all out in attacking him.  She agrees, and gives him her private phone number.  Speaking of Ollie’s potential dating pool, Felicity just heard her man Billy is hired into the ACU, and oh yeah, why hasn’t she told Ollie about this relationship yet?

Ollie and Thea schedule another meeting with Kullens, where they met his defense of a non-vote with their own facts.  Like say, he agreed to that plan decades ago and has supported another high-rise building project right where Ollie wants his low-income housing, so maybe change your vote, huh?  Ollie may be a bad mayor, but he knows a bit about extortion.  As Ollie and Thea are leaving City Hall, Church’s assassin pops out of nowhere and puts a few bullets into Ollie’s chest!  Hey, Ollie got run through with a sword and left for dead, so he should be fine, right?

Felicity sucks at being a Human Target. Also she sucks at playing Face/Off.

The Decoy.  Cut to Quentin giving a press conference that Oliver Queen was killed…which Ollie and company are watching from the Arrow Cave!  Then, “Ollie” enters, blood soaked suit and all, and revealed to be Christopher Chance, the Human Target!  Diggle called him in to play Ollie for that day, and Chance rigged it so “Ollie” would appear to have been killed, and Church could move forward with his plan.  Talking to Chance, Ollie inadvertently learns from the philosophical loner that Felicity has a boyfriend.  He visits her and asks her about it, and she admits she didn’t want to say anything about it because she wasn’t sure what it was yet.  Suuuuuuure.

Meantime, Dig convinces Rene to do some meditation to jog his memory.  Rene remembers something Church says about The Trust, which is relayed to Ollie and the rest of the Team.  Its a coded message about a meeting of The Trust’s head honchos at a local airfield.  So everyone, Dig and Rene included, get suited up to crash Church’s party.

Trust Breaking.  At the airfield, Church is pitching his plan to the five crime bosses to consolidate their resources and turn Star City into a hub for criminals.  Good thing Green Arrow’s dead–OOPS!–him and the Team arrive to take down the crime bosses!  Even a masked Chance gets to join in the fun and take down Church’s masked assassin.  Finally, Ollie faces off against Church, and without distraction, Church stands no chance and is taken down by Ollie.  But Church tells him that some guy called Prometheus is coming for Team Arrow 2.0, so hey, thanks for the heads up, Tobias.

Church: “So Prometheus, I got me tons of goons and my own ninja hitman. What are you gonna do?”

Prometheus: “KILL YOU.”

Dawn Before The Darkness.  Ollie holds a big press conference the next day to say he faked his death to entrap Church and the five crime bosses of neighboring cities, and his low-income housing project has been cleared to go.  After saying goodbye to Chance, Ollie has another chat with Felicity where he says he’s cool with her going out with someone else.  Well thank goodness for that.  But some bad news is happening unbeknownst to Ollie, Susan is meeting with some shady contact who informs her about Chance’s involvement in this thing, and gives her a picture of Ollie…in that bar in Russia from six years ago!  Oh this might be a big thread being pulled out of Ollie’s big lie about being lost on Lian Yu!

Church is being taken away to Iron Heights by a police convoy, that gets immediately attacked by Prometheus.  Church knows who’s coming for him, and when Prometheus comes into the police van, Church offers a secret for his life: that the Green Arrow is Oliver Queen (which Prometheus there seems unmoved by hearing).  Prometheus pays Church back by throwing a shrunken into Church’s neck, killing him!

RIP Tobias Church.  You got killed by Malcolm Merlyn, I mean, Prometheus!

–Comic book connections: Christopher Chance, The Human Target was created by Len Wein and Carmine Infantino, and has been brought back in several series since his creation in the 1970’s.  He has been adapted for TV before also, in a pilot in the 90’s and in a show several years ago that lasted two seasons.

–Speaking of Chance, I really didn’t even register the actor was the same guy who played the super drug taking cop from Marvel’s Jessica Jones.

–There’s some nice directorial flourishes here, like the blurry choppy POV of Rene getting beaten and those close-ups of Church, who seems legit scared about his fateful final meeting with Prometheus.

–Diggle has a kind of new helmet for his Spartan get up.  Good on him to get an upgrade.

–“You’re a lot cuter than the green guy.”

–“You’re the new kids on the block?”  “More like the Backstreet Boys.”

–“It turns out that if you ingest small amounts of poison over a long period of time, you can develop an immunity.”

–“Spartan is such a badass.”  “The baddest.”

That’s it for now, but comment below and come back next week for the recap of “So It Begins”…

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