ARROW Season 7×01, “Inmate 4587” recap

16 Oct

Welcome back from the summer break, Arrowheads! As you might recall from the end of last season, Team Arrow took some serious crippling blows in the battle against bad guy Ricardo Diaz. They lost Quentin Lance (sniff), and in order to protect all of them from prosecution by the FBI, Ollie made a deal to turn himself in as the Green Arrow! But we still got Diaz out there somewhere, and Oliver Queen in prison as a publicly outed vigilante. So how do we come back from all of that? Well, read on…

Day In, Day Out. Five months later, we join inmate Slabside Prison inmate number 4587, ahem, I mean Oliver Queen, as we see what his usual day involves: waking up, getting a friendly greeting by a not so friendly guard, exercising, showering, getting meals (sometimes being made smaller by other inmates like Bronze Tiger picking pieces off the plate to intimidate him), and just kicking back in his cell until the next day. Also, there are those occasional nightmares of Felicity and William being chased and killed by a vengeful Ricardo Diaz, but those can’t happen all the time. I’m sure he has other less horrible dreams, but for now, that’s where he stands. Oh, and he’s got a solid beard now, so that’s going for him.

One day in the prison yard, some inmate named Stanley introduces himself to Ollie, and asks for protection from some of the less noble inmates in Slabside. Ollie refuses, as he wants to just play a model inmate and serve his time, and maybe it’ll help in getting him out of prison early. Later that day, as a prison fight starts up in the galley, he gets met by three familiar faces in the Arrow villains club: Bronze Tiger, Brick, and Sampson. During a scuffle between the three guys, Ollie sneaks a prison blade into Tiger’s shirt, and once the guards break things up, they find it and send Tiger into “the hole” (solitary confinement, I mean).

He gets a visit from Diggle, who’s still at ARGUS, and still looking for Diaz, with no such luck. We learn Felicity and William are in ARGUS witness protection, but okay so far, however it’s clear that Diggle is worried about Ollie playing the docile prisoner thing. He knows Ollie is not the guy who can just stand by if something bad happens, and prison is just a constant stream of bad. So now to the question you want to not ask: how is everyone else in Star City?

“Sorry, I was supposed to facing you. I’m kind of new at this.”

Where Star City Stands. We briefly check in on Felicity, who is working as a coffee bar barista (surprise!) in another town, before seeing where the city is at. The police receive a gift wrapped bad guy, courtesy of someone who is moving and dressing suspiciously like the Green Arrow! Well, he’s in prison, so who is our mystery wannabe, exactly? Well whoever he is, new District Attorney Laurel Lance (yes, the alternate world Laurel Lance from last season, which is the biggest “huh?” of the episode) assures the public this vigilante who is NOT Oliver Queen will be found and brought to justice.

Dinah, who’s now the Chief of Star City’s police, has that as a problem to worry about, so naturally she visits her old teammate Rene, who is running a gym for at risk kids in his neighborhood. He actually saw this Faux Arrow running around earlier, helping him and a fellow student out when Rene was trying to keep said fellow student from buying an illegal handgun from shady guys who haven’t forgotten about Wild Dog. He can see this new archer might be needed right now in the city, even though the city (like Dinah) has to enforce a zero tolerance policy against vigilantes, basically sidelining the former Team as part of their plea agreement.

Rene’s got no clue as to who our newest mystery archer is, so he suggests getting in touch with the old teammates. That involves going to ARGUS to catch up with Diggle and the new head of ARGUS research and development, Curtis! That perp brought in by the Faux Arrow earlier happens to be a black market arms dealer (which explains why he was there at that scene with Rene and that gun dealer), and he’s looking to offload all his supply quickly. As to who this Faux Arrow is, no one is really sure who, even though with the exception of Rene, would like to see this Faux Arrow put away quickly lest it bring heat on them.

The New Green Arrow In Town. In Slabside, Brick and Sampson pay a visit to Ollie’s cell, and make the kindly offer to fill in for Tiger in their three man crew, lest something bad happen to Felicity and William. Later on in the galley, Ollie politely declines the offer. Unfortunately, Stanley happens to be there when Ollie says “no”, and Brick and Sampson beat Stanley to a pulp to make their point. Ollie doesn’t stop this, but he does feel bad enough to check in on the hurt Stanley later. Stanley pretty much calls Ollie a coward for not stepping in, and he’s right about that.

Back in Star City, Dinah is planning to move in on that arms dealer’s big deal as soon as Curtis finds out where, and Rene stops by to tell her to not take down the Faux Arrow. The fact is neither of them know what the Faux Arrow’s intentions are, but it doesn’t matter because he needs to be caught. Dinah and the cops go to the big deal, and wait as it goes down (apparently you can be paid in cryptocurrency now) for Faux Arrow to show up, and show up he does. Faux Arrow grabs that cryptocurrency USB stick full of hundreds of thousands of ill-gained dollars, and is about to end the arms dealer when the police swarm him. But then, a flash bang grenade goes off, giving Faux Arrow the opportunity to escape. While the police chase Faux Arrow down, Dinah sees Rene in his old Wild Dog costume, being he set up that diversion for Faux Arrow. Oh boy.

The next day at Rene’s gym, he tells everyone he got a donation that will help get better supplies to use, which is funny, because Dinah stops by to let Rene know that him and quite a few struggling places in the Glades got sizable donations that couldn’t possibly be from that stolen cryptocurrency. Clearly. Dinah is also there to warn Rene that if he suits up again, she’ll bring him in. As for the Faux Arrow who made those donations? Well, he’s prepping his stuff when last we see him, and like Ollie when he started, he’s got a list of people he’s marking off. I wonder who else is on it?

Wait, so Diggle visits Ollie, but New Team Arrow doesn’t? You know what, I’m not defending that, screw those guys.

Inside and Outside Confrontations. What happens next is intercut, so let’s stick to what happens with Felicity first. She wakes up in her ARGUS security locked apartment with William to discover someone has broken in, and it’s Ricardo Diaz! He’s there just to kill Felicity to punish Ollie, but oddly, not William. William flees after helping Felicity get the jump on the obviously not quite back to full strength after what happened last season, but he’s still tough enough to daze Felicity. He says she’s going to suffer for that, and then we cut to…

Ollie is taking a shower, when several men attack him. He almost takes them down, naked and everything, until he gets knocked down by a bigger henchman. That big henchman let’s Ollie know that Diaz found Felicity, and has killed her. Wait, what?!

“You should have killed me.” Ollie tries to ask to make a phone call to confirm what he was told, but that request is declined, also because he has a visitor…in Felicity. She is bruised up, but she says Diaz fled as her ARGUS protection showed up, but she is fed up with running away. She is sending William to a boarding school in Cambridge in secret, but she is staying to help take down Diaz once and for all. When she gets back to ARGUS, she tells William about what she is planning to do, and gives him something to let him know she’ll be coming back: that little arrowhead of reconnection Ollie gave to Thea way back when, that now Felicity is giving to William.

Back at Slabside, Ollie is spurred on by Felicity’s ordeal that he goes to the prison yard, and in short order, beats up Brick and then really goes to town on that big henchman. Ollie’s message is pretty clear: Diaz messed up.

Going Back To The Beginning. Through all this episode, we see flashes of a young man in his late teens, on a boat, headed towards the island of Lian Yu. He’s being dropped off there, because he’s looking for someone. After a while, he finds someone alright, and it looks like…Roy Harper? Roy here looks like he’s made the island a permanent residence like Ollie once did, and asks who this kid is. The teen says Oliver Queen is his dad, because as he reveals the little arrowhead he was given, he’s an older William! Yep, we aren’t seeing something in the past, we’re seeing something from the future!

So what is happening here? And why is William referring to his dad in the past tense? Or maybe the questions we should ask are: who is the Faux Arrow? How is Ollie going to get out of prison? Well, maybe we’ll get some answers next week.

“Make fun of my WWE appearances again, punk!”

–Comic book connections: the coffee shop is one that is connected to Green Lantern lore, as it’s a place frequented at one point by Green Lantern Kyle Rayner.

–Ollie has a book of The Count of Monte Cristo, which yes, has a prison escape. He also uses it to beat people senseless, so there’s a valid argument for owning physical media.

–Right now, I’m suspicious of so much this season. Do I believe Diaz really left after the way we left that confrontation? Do I think Stanley is not the innocent inmate he claims he is? Why is Roy on Lian Yu in the future, anyway?

–No one is called “hoss”. Yay!

–Curtis still has his cop boyfriend, so not everything’s so bad.

–“…the benefits are, well, that they’re actual ‘benefits’…”

–“‘Gross’ builds character.”

–“Saving the world, one espresso at a time.”

That’s it for now, but come back next week for the recap of “The Longbow Hunters”…

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