When you look at a TV show you make your judgement based on the entire thing. Arrow’s sophomore year was one of the strongest outings for a comic book TV show ever. To date it is my favorite. I am amazed at the fact that there will be a spin-off based on The Flash and that this TV world is growing. My concerns? That it will remain within itself. It’ll be super cool to see crossovers take place between these characters, I mean that teaser trailer was enough to make any fanboy/fangirl go crazy, but I really want this all to be a part of something bigger. The show itself is so big, and the season finale was on an action movie scale! “Unthinkable”, just like the entire season, was a thrill-ride from start to finish.
Picking up where left week left off, the city is in trouble as Deathstroke’s army of Mirakuru enhanced thugs are tearing things up! Mayor Blood is dead, and there seems to be no real leadership! Amanda Waller is outside Starling City blocking all escape routes and threatening the level the city! What a day to be the hero of Starling City! So much has happened in Oliver’s life, that he is having a hard time deciding what to truly do about Slade. Everyone keeps telling him that Slade has to die for what he has done and they use the “he killed your mother” card to try to push Oliver into doing “what’s necessary”.
But they have the cure right? Why does anyone have to die?! We find out right away that the cure works and Roy is up and about, ready to help his friends. Roy is now powerless, but Oliver tells him that he needs him, as he hands Roy his own mask! So now that he is officially part of the team, it’s time to go mess the other part of his life even more. Roy calls Thea and they meet up. She’s afraid of him but he convinces her that all of that is behind him. They make a plan to run away but Roy’s phone goes off and it’s the Arrow, so now he has to go. Lies, you know Thea loves them. Well Roy runs off to be hero but Thea discovers his training bow. Thea fresh off almost killing her father, she shot him but don’t worry he’s actually proud of her for doing it, Merlyn actually tells her that Tommy was weak for not killing him. So Merlyn wants Thea to go with him, even telling her that Roy is just like all of the other liars in her life. Not believing Merlyn she runs off to see him. So now that she has discovered Roy’s secret, aka lie, Thea decides to give it s shot with her Dad. Looks like we may have an evil Speedy on the way!
Alright let’s talk about Sara and how she has returned to help. Of course her leaving was to go get some backup, and backup she has broughten..? Anyways Nyssa Al Ghul returns this week and she brings along some LOA ninjas. Hesitant to let them “join” the team, Oliver tells her that they will be doing things HIS way. Well that doesn’t last long into the first battle. After an awesome street fight scene in which all of our heroes are beating up and curing all of the Deathstrokes they take on, they finally confront Deathstroke. He gets away but Isabel Rochev, now also a Mirakuru junkie, puts up a good fight but she is defeated. The Arrow wants to spare her but Nyssa has other plans, she executes her! This becomes a challenge to Oliver, and then when Detective Lance tells him that killing Slade is necessary, and that he condones the action, it gets even worse! What to do.. Well Sara has sold her soul back to the League for them to help, so matter what happens she’s leaving Starling City.
The biggest twist of the night is how Team Arrow is able to get close enough to defeat Deathstroke. The problem is that shooting him with arrows and whatnot isn’t working because it cannot penetrate his armor. So Oliver gets cleaver. Earlier in the episode a Deathstroke stormed the police headquarters, beat up Detective Lance and kidnapped Laurel. Taking Oliver’s true love is Slade’s only way to get back at him for the death of Shado. Oliver takes Felicity to the mansion. He tells her that she has to stay there because it’s the only place she will be safe. He then goes on to tell her that she is there for her own protection because Slade didn’t kidnap the right woman. He tells her that he loves her, but then he says “do you understand”. When he asks that, he has already handed her a syringe with the cure. This is all off camera. Yes!,Remember that Slade had bugged the entire Queen mansion earlier in the season? Ok I appreciate this plan and all, but you are dropping a huge bomb on her, then basically reversing it, and then asking her to risk her life?! Poor Felicity. But Slade buys it hook, line, and sinker. He kidnaps Felicity, Oliver and company go to confront him and we have the showdown of the century on our hands.
A couple of other things are going on at the same time. Diggle and Lyla, who showed up during the epic opening sequence, are on their way to stop Waller from blowing up the city. First on their agenda, release the Suicide Squad! So now they have the guns, so its time to confront Waller. Of course this ends up being a stand-off, and its up to Oliver to stop Slade now.
Only from the outside as viewers are we able to see how mad Slade has become. His hallucinations of Shado are pushing him to the limit and he is on a killing spree. I really like the part of the episode where Oliver reminds him of how Shado really was and that she would be disgusted by the things that Slade has done in her name. This is all enough of a distraction that Felicity is able to stab Slade with the cure! Now it’s time for a fair fight! In an epic showdown, which is cut perfectly with scenes from the past of their final battle on a recently destroyed AMAZO. I really like seeing both versions of Slade and Oliver fighting, in the past he is so powerful and now he has lost that strength. Just like the past Oliver is able to defeat Slade, but his actions changed. In the past we learn exactly how Slade lost his eye, he gets stabbed through it! Oliver is unable to confirm his kill because the AMAZO finally breaks apart and sinks. Back in the present, with Slade defeated Oliver gets on the horn with Waller and tells her that it is over. He has saved the city and he didn’t have to kill to do it. Slade is locked away in a Super Max, I love that they used that term. If you remember back, Super Max was the name of a movie that was going to feature Green Arrow, I thought it was a nice nod. But ironic part of all this is that the prison is on, well under, the island that Oliver was stuck on. Now I have questions about ARGUS’s involvement overall! Especially now that we know Amanda Waller had a bigger part in Oliver’s past than we realized. After the AMAZO exploded Oliver was sure he was dead, but he wakes up in a hospital room. Where is he? Hong Kong! Who saved him? Waller! I can’t wait for next year’s flashback scenes!! Things SEEM to end ok for the Lance family, Sarah is off with the League but before she leaves she gives Laurel her jacket. Are we going to see Laurel take on the mantle? We are left with a huge cliffhanger regarding Detective Lance. He collapses and everyone realizes that he was injured way worse when he took on the Deathstroke that kidnapped Laurel, than they had originally suspected! Will he make it? Tune in next season! ;) Detective Lance became a better character this season as well, it’s always better to be more like Jim Gordon.
From start to finish this season has been about the “evolution” of the Arrow. How he went from a masked vigilante to a hero that didn’t fail his city. With the addition of The Flash to this universe next season, it will be really interesting to see how “big” this show gets. I’m not talking popularity-wise, I am talking scope. I was taken back this week by how big the scenes felt and how fast the action was. The pacing was spot-on and it wrapped things up nicely. Oliver’s family has fallen apart but his other family is only getting stronger. Just seeing the guy on The Flash preview gave me goosebumps, just wait until they team up! This just in, John Barrowman will become a regular next season, awesomesauce!
Arrow Season 2: A
Arrow returns this fall at 8pmEST on The CW!