Legion contributor Andrea Levine is recapping and reviewing Arrow for us this season. Follow her on Twitter @wysefyre!
There’s a new vigilante in town, and he has the ingenious name of The Vigilante. Lousy name, but amazing tech and abilities. Using infrared, Vigilante is able to quickly and brutally take out his targets, while protecting victims (for the most part). We learn this as he destroys several men trying to make a human trafficking deal. The female victim survives, the sellers do not. They are strung up and left for the SCPD.
Oliver and Team Arrow work like crazy to figure out who Vigilante is, but they have no real leads. Vigilante reappears when he goes after the Spooky Gang, a gang of bank robbers who wear creepy masks to hide their identities, as they try and break into Star City National Bank. They get away from the Vigilante, but one man left is behind severely injured. He gives Team Arrow the Vigilante’s name. So now they know who they’re dealing with.
Felicity digs into the background of the Spooky Gang. It’s led by an Eric Dunn. He was supposed to be in jail, but made parole. Now, it looks like he’s rounded up another crew. Team Arrow hits the streets, unmasked, and starts asking for Dunn’s whereabouts. They don’t find Dunn, but after a little (a lot) of intimidation, a former associate gives up how Dunn operates. Team Arrow uses this information to locate the Spooky Gang’s next target. A female is apprehended but Dunn gets away.
The arrested female gets interrogated by DA Adrian. He tries very hard to be scary and intimidating. It works for the female, who gives up a potential location for Dunn, but to the audience, it just looks like bad acting. However, keep an eye on Adrian. I think they’re setting him up to be a little unhinged.
Oliver and Adrian discuss getting warrants for Dunn’s location, the Papp Motel. It’ll take a few hours. Oliver gathers Team Arrow because he doubts the Vigilante will wait. And he’s right. He get to Dunn a few minutes before the Vigilante does. Vigilante unleashes a spray of bullets. Oliver uses a bulletproof net, ejected from an arrow, to save them, but many civilians are hurt.
They put Dunn in protective custody, and decide to try and lure the Vigilante out.They fake a bank robbery. There, Vigilante gets the drop on Evelyn and Curtis, who are in the van, while the rest, including Felicity, pretend to hit up the bank. Vigilante takes Curtis hostage, and demands to meet with Oliver. Oliver obliges. Vigilante has no issues with Oliver, but once Oliver tells him to stand down, Oliver has to decide whether he’s with Vigilante or against him. I think you can guess how that went. Oliver and Vigilante fight. Oliver is able to use an arrow to secure Vigilante to a column. He goes to remove Vigilante’s helmet, but it’s rigged to set off a localized explosive or flashbang. In the confusion, Vigilante gets away, and Curtis is left a bit more battered and bruised. I hope Curtis isn’t going to be made to be the guy who always gets caught on the show. Seems like a waste of a good character. We’ll have to learn Vigilante’s identity another time.
Meanwhile, Quentin decides to resign as Deputy Mayor. He lied to Thea about trying to get sober. Again. Thea’s very disappointed, but Quentin is family, so she goes over to his apartment to talk to him. That’s where she finds out he’s been having blackouts and losing time. He also shows Thea the throwing star. He had a friend at SCPD run an analysis on it and it is one of Prometheus’. He doesn’t believe he’s Prometheus, but he knows he’s being targeted and putting everyone around him at risk.
Thea appreciates what he’s doing, but she’s not letting him off the hook that easily. She takes him to rehab. Her old rehab. She understands why Quentin has been struggling, but now it’s time for him to face his demons, grieve properly, and get better. When he comes out, his job will be waiting for him. Quentin is terrified, but he goes.
Thea goes to Oliver and lets him know what’s happening. She also fills him in on the throwing star. They speculate if Quentin was chosen because Prometheus knows who he is.
Vigilante ends with Evelyn meeting someone on a rooftop. She turns around, tells the person not to worry, no one knows, and it’s revealed she’s talking to Prometheus, because, of course she is.
Oliver, looking properly worked over, is seated across from Kovar for dinner. Kovar thinks Oliver could use a break from all the torture and encourages him to eat. Kovar is fascinated by Oliver. How he disappeared, how he came to Russia, how he became Bratva. All the dirt. You see, even though he was tortured and beaten for a week, Oliver never gave up any information. He only occasionally screamed out Taiana’s name.
At this point, a woman comes in with a flower arrangement. She and Kovar flirt a little and she goes on her way. Her name is Galina. She came to Kovar about a year ago, when her kids went missing. Kovar gave her a job. Her kids were Vlad and Taiana.
This gets Oliver’s attention. He chooses to believe Kovar is a monster, because Taiana said so, but according to Kovar, truth is a matter of perspective. The world is more complex. He insinuates the Bratva is only using Oliver to get to Kovar, but for a business deal. He also informs Oliver that the man he killed in the prison gave him the information to a black market site, which the Bratva now controls. Oliver doesn’t believe this. When Kovar get close, he stabs him in the hand and takes him hostage.
Kovar’s men let Oliver through, but that’s only because there are even more men outside the room. Oliver is stuck. Being Oliver, he throws down a challenge to Kovar, who accepts the challenge and proceeds to beat the snot out of Oliver. Oliver gets a few punches in, but he’s too weak and battered to make a real stand. Just when it looks like Kovar is going to deliver the final blow, Bratva leader, Ishmael Gregor arrives, saves Oliver, and confirms a deal is in place with Kovar. Kovar gloats and Oliver is left in disbelief.
Other points of interest
~ Curtis mentions Paul! He talks about stealing the Spooky gang’s mask idea for next Halloween. Morbid but cute.
~ We got to see how everyone trains, and Curtis is still determined to do the salmon ladder. One day, Curtis. One day.
~ Oliver and Susan Williams go out for a drink. Oliver called her to City Hall to ask her to not report on Vigilante’s body trail yet, and she agreed. Then she said he looked like hell and she was willing to be a friend. He goes, after some gentle ribbing from Team Arrow, and learns Susan places a mean game of pool, gets some decent advice from her about doing things the right way instead of the quick way, and then has to leave. But later, after everything, she stops by City Hall (one of the guys on his detail told her Olive was leaving), he thanks her, and they ditch the detail so Oliver can buy her a drink. And here is the beginning of Oliver’s rebound which will undoubtedly end poorly.
~ What kind of name is “Spooky Gang”? Someone get Cisco on the phone, STAT!
~ Diggle spends the episode going stir-crazy. He’s doing nothing but training and fighting, but he’s missing his family. Turns out it’s John, Jr.’s second birthday and Diggle has missed it. Rene surprises him by getting in touch with Lyla, and she brings JJ to Diggle. It’s heartwarming and bittersweet. JJ’s adorable, but I still miss Sara. Curse you, Barry!
Why am I not surprised Evelyn is working with Prometheus? Could it be because she’s a barely developed character, so if the writers decide to write her off, the audience won’t care as much? Is she going to turn evil? Unless they are going to pull some kind of double agent ploy, I don’t want to see this story. It’s been established that Evelyn doesn’t approve of Oliver’s serial killing ways. Does she really blame him that much for her parents’ death she would turn against those principles? Or is she just an amazing actress who is all about killing at as first resort instead of last? She’s an underdeveloped character. This does not make her more interesting. It’s just… lame.
You know who’s finally more interesting? Thea. Having her hang up Speedy was one of the best decisions the writers could have made. She has been allowed to grow outside of the Green Arrow. Yes, she works for Oliver, but she’s the one more or less holding City Hall together. Not only that, but her relationship with Quentin is great to watch. There’s real development. She’s being his rock as he falls apart. It’s both a father/daughter relationship as well as one of friends. I finally really like Thea. It only took five seasons.
I get the writers are going backwards in order to move Oliver forwards, but it’s beginning to feel a little repetitive. Vigilante is who Oliver used to be (but a little better). Oliver has to question himself and his methods. All good stuff, but it’s the same theme over and over again. I want there to be more movement, more growth. There’s so much potential being wasted. I’m actually sad we lost Tobias Church so quickly. He was ruthless and brutal and it was fun to see him and Oliver go toe-to-toe. I want more of that. How about you?