ARROW Season 8×10, “Fadeout” (SERIES FINALE) recap

1 Feb

Welcome back, Arrowheads, for the last time! This short season has been one long goodbye for Oliver Queen, as he’s said goodbye to friends and family, all while preparing for the Crisis that would threaten the entire multiverse. Well, the Crisis has come and passed, and Ollie is dead, having created a new universe for all his loved ones that is slightly different than the one his extended family remembers. And while we have seen how this new universe has affected other heroes, we only know about the future of Star City, being at peace for decades after Ollie’s passing. But what about our present? What has been changed, and what is next for everyone who knows Oliver Queen now?

A Different World. We learn almost immediately how the world has changed for the people in Ollie’s orbit: mainly that Ollie has saved his mom, Moira, from being killed by Slade Wilson/Deathstroke! In fact, as we learn throughout the episode, Ollie brought back quite a number of people that have died since the show began, like Quentin Lance, Tommy Merlyn, and his half-sister Emiko! Mind you, he didn’t bring back his father, his Earth’s Laurel, or the mother of William while he was giving birth to this new universe, but nevermind all that. The point is, the world as we knew it isn’t the same anymore.

It’s been a month since Ollie died, and as Diggle and Rene lament during some quiet time, Star City has changed too. Crime is virtually non-existent, Rene is going to become mayor after Quentin leaves office (told you things changed), Dinah is finding herself captaining a peace time city, Evil Laurel is living with the knowledge her surrogate dad is alive again with her in the place of her real daughter, and Diggle is not sure how to move on. All he knows is he has a feeling things aren’t done yet for Team Arrow. But first, we have to gather everyone for Ollie’s funeral…

One last time in the Bunker together. Again.

 

Funeral Arrangements. We get a brief glimpse into 2040 as Sara comes to collect Mia to see the big funeral planned for her dad in the present. As members of Team Arrow last and present start trickling in for Ollie’s big memorial and funeral, we get lots of reflections from our group. Roy (with new cyborg arm!) wonders what he’ll tell Thea since he left her so abruptly the last time he saw her. Mia is scared to meet Felicity in the present, even though everyone’s not sure she’ll show up at all, and still haunted by the kidnapping of William in the future we saw last episode.

Well, before we can linger on that William kidnapping, the computer in the Arrow Bunker gets an alert that present day William has now been kidnapped too! He just has the worst luck!

All Hands on Deck (One Last Time). Our Team gathers up in the Bunker, with Thea, Lyla, Curtis, and even Rory the Ragman, all there to find young William. And then, Felicity shows up, and things get awkward for a minute before she uses her tech skills to get a lead on several places William might be. Everyone breaks into groups, and we get some chats during their respective searches. Lyla and Diggle contemplate how Ollie made their family whole again, Roy basically apologizes to Thea and asks to marry her, Rene is contemplating life not being Wild Dog anymore with Rory the Ragman, and Mia runs solo, and stumbles into young William being lead to the roof of a building by some guy. He doesn’t look familiar to Mia (and us, for that matter), so she confronts this guy and asks who he is? Well, sit back for a second, because it’s flashback time!

Ah, the Arrow Basement. The good ol’ moldy smelly days.

 

Echo Of The Past. We flashback to the first year of Ollie’s mission in then Starling City, as Diggle is there hearing about Ollie’s next target on his father’s list: a human trafficker named John Byrne. Ollie is pretty okay with killing Byrne, but Diggle argues that maybe Ollie doesn’t have to do that, but instead bring him in to the authorities. As we discover, that talk from Diggle lingers in Ollie’s head, even as he fights his way through what seems to be an endless supply of goons, and confronts Byrne. Instead of killing Byrne, he leaves him to the police to face justice, seeing that maybe Diggle is right about not needing to lose your soul to fight crime in their city. So guess who our mystery William-napper is?

It’s Byrne, fresh out of his stint in Iron Heights, washed up, desperate, and looking to hurt the man who put him in prison by throwing William off a rooftop to his death. He’s almost willing to let Mia kill him as some sort of release from it all. Mia is ready to grant him that wish when she accepts that if her dad thought this guy might be worth redeeming by facing justice, she can let him live too…albeit by facing charges for William’s kidnapping. With William saved and Byrne going back to jail, it’s time for the Team to rest.

Moving On. At the Bunker, everyone meets up to relax after things. They then see a surprising news report of Mia’s rescue of William that maybe reassures Ollie’s kid that maybe she has what it takes to be the Green Arrow after all. The next day, Evil Laurel talks to Quentin about how guilty she feels his Laurel wasn’t returned in all of this universe building, but he tells her she deserves to be here now. Awww, Daddy Lance knows what to say in situations like this.

Later in the Bunker, Diggle, Dinah and Rene tell each other of what they are going to do now that it seems they can move on. Diggle is taking his family to a job in Metropolis, Dinah is leaving the police to go on the road to dispense justice, and Rene is going to become mayor soon. With all that, they close up the Bunker for the last time, again.

Respect.

Memorial. We get to a nighttime memorial scene, as Quentin gives a speech to our cast and onlookers, then unveils a statue of the Green Arrow we have already seen in the future. As the next day happens, we see all of Ollie’s family and friends (even Barry Allen, Kara Danvers, and the al Ghul sisters) meet for Ollie’s funeral. While there, we see people meeting and bonding over their connection to Ollie. Moira takes Emiko into the family, Tommy is humbled to see Evil Laurel because she is literally the doppelgänger of his wife (yeah, Laurel married Tommy!), and Talia al Ghul meets Nyssa’s former “Beloved”, Sara. Diggle gives a moving speech about how knowing Ollie has opened them all up to a larger universe and to maybe a greater purpose. A worthy tribute from Ollie’s brother.

Unending Mission. We get a montage during Diggle’s funeral speech that shows where our core group is now. Rene in a mayoral campaign that we know will be successful in the future, Dinah getting a motorcycle to go on the road (until she ends up dropped in the future for some reason), Thea accepting Roy’s proposal for marriage, Mia taking a time portal back to her present, and Diggle packing up things for Metropolis. But before that, a rock from the sky crashes right near him, and inside is an alien container that is emanating a green glow…oooooohhhhhh. We then cut back to 2040 to the end of last season, when the Monitor took older Felicity away to see Ollie, to a place she could never come back from.

She finds herself in Moira’s old office, looking almost exactly as she did when we first saw her. Ollie appears, and they hug, but she can’t help during this beautiful reunion but note how wherever they are is odd, as its the first place they met. Of course, Ollie points out it isn’t the place he first met her (remember the very brief trip back to Starling City in the flashbacks during that time he was supposed to be dead?), but hey, they have all the time they need to talk about that.

The End.

Sniff. Olicity forever.

 

–Comic book connections: John Byrne is a reference to the legendary comic book artist and writer. And in one of the most bizarre connections to the multiverse, Thea and Roy pass by the Van Wayne building, which is a reference to the brief and late DC-adjacent comedy show Powerless.

–It’s clear the MVP of this final episode is Diggle, and the possibility he might be the Green Lantern in that final tease is so perfect. Hey, there’s a Superman show coming next season, so…do I smell future team-up? Fingers crossed.

–Can we just say how great that flashback fight with Ollie and ALL THE GOONS was? Director James Bamford has been the stunt supervisor and occasional director for this show for years, and this is one big send off for one of the best parts of Arrow: the stuntwork. Also, it’s nice to remember the era where Ollie was just murking people left and right.

–It is bizarre that adult William doesn’t get to be un-kidnapped to go to the funeral, but I get it, you have to have something to hook the spin-off on, if it gets picked up. Fingers crossed there, too.

–I get a nice chuckle realizing how little anyone notes that Roy has a cyborg arm now after he lost it on Lian Yu earlier this season. OllieSpectre couldn’t hook a friend back up with a real arm?

–Anatoly showed up for the funeral! Anatoly, man!

–Apparently vodka isn’t for everyone. Except Evil Laurel. She can down the stuff like water.

–Rene’s excuse for Diggle conquering the salmon ladder: “That’s because your arms are the size of telephone poles.”

–“Well, I just found out there was a reality where I died, so that’s the curve I’m grading on these days.”

–“I plan on getting as drunk as humanly possible.”

–“I was his brother, and Oliver Queen was mine.”

–“I’m gonna miss this place.” “We all will.”

That’s it, and man, it’s been a pleasure to recap Arrow for you all. I’ve been doing this since the start of season two, and what an awesome, intense, and occasionally bumpy journey it has been. I’ll still be keeping eyes on the Arrowverse regularly here at NerdLush with the DC Recap Round-Up, and as for whatever spin-off may come directly from Arrow? We’ll see.

And with that, I leave you and these recaps of Arrow with the thing you know we didn’t see in the series finale that you definitely wanted: Deathstroke breaking it down!

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