First of all, I was happy to see Oliver not jump back into the Arrow suit right away. I know, it’s only one episode but the way this show goes about storylines sometimes I was waiting for a quick thirty-second speech and then poof, Oliver is all green and arrow like again. That’s not to say ‘Next of Kin’ didn’t have any of those Arrow moments but this week was at least a step in the right direction in terms of story, setup and new bad guy reveals.
I am enjoying watching Team Arrow struggle a bit, not only without Oliver but with Diggle in command. We all know all is not right with Diggle, especially with how the episode ended but you want to cheer for him, you want him to succeed, even though it seems more and more likely something bad is going to happen here. It was great to see Rene step up, just like Dinah did last week (and continued to do this week). It shows that there is more of a team feel going on here, that members won’t take any poor excuses as it’s their ass on the line and they need to know they can count on someone watching their back. I thought Oliver might jump back in the saddle after his talk with Rene but thankfully that didn’t happen. Of course, things aren’t all rosy so this is not going to end well.
Oliver also looked very dumb and very human as the dad, spitting out ridiculous bits of advice to his son in terms of homework when of course, he rarely was interested himself. Enter Felicity, super smart, great with math, good with kids and still has the hots for dad. Look, Oliver and Felicity getting back together in inevitable so everyone should come to terms with that now and move on. However, how the show deals with it is another matter altogether. Oliver now has a son, so they can’t really bring in Felicity and then have them break up again unless they really want to crush poor William. Maybe they will just be ‘friends with benefits’, who knows?
It was nice to hear Thea acknowledged this week, on a couple of occasions, which leads me to think she will be returning sooner than later. Does this mean Roy will be stopping by to see her at the hospital or has that ship sailed? Seriously, I keep expecting Malcolm to show up but then I remember that he’s ‘dead’.
I’m really not sold on this whole FBI investigation. It seems more of a stop-gap while we wait for the real bad guys to show up. Of course, if the investigation is still going on then, that could be a real pain in the ass for Team Arrow to try and navigate around, Oliver or no Oliver. FBI Agent Watson seems to be pretty determined to shut down the vigilante problem and Oliver isn’t fooling her for a second with the ole’ Green Arrow bait and switch.
In any event, Arrow made some great strides this week to at least look like it knows what it’s doing. With all the little plot arcs going on now, I guess we’ll know soon enough.
Three and a half stars out of five
- Team Arrow's struggles without Oliver seem real
- Oliver's learning curve as a dad also comes off as real
- FBI storyline is getting old fast