Arrow – Keep Your Enemies Closer

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by Ashley Binion (@ashleybinion)


It’s Diggle time! The series stepped out of the Starling City setting for the first time and traveled to Russia to fight against an old foe.

Warning: Spoilers ahead.

So far in the second season, Diggle hasn’t gotten much action. This episode rectified that and put him front and center. In season one Deadshot was Diggle’s main adversary, since the hit man killed his brother. And he was back to haunt Diggle, but before he left, he told him that he received the kill order from H.I.V.E.
Also, Summer Glau’s Isabel Rochev was heavily featured. Her character is becoming jarring. In the first few episodes she was Isabel the hardnosed boss, but then her character took a different direction in this episode and was softer. It seems as if the writers are trying to make her more likeable before she ultimately becomes a villain as the comic storyline would suggest.

Anatoli Knyazev, aka the KGBeast, was back in this episode, both in island flashbacks and in the present day. In the present day storyline, it seems as if Ollie and Anatoli survived the Amazo with a strong friendship. It will be exciting to see that play out in the flashbacks.

Look at that, Shado and Slade are alive and cuddling. After a couple episodes of them being largely MIA, it was reassuring to see how they are faring on the island after the explosions. But, they won’t be alone for long considering Dr. Ivo and Co. now know where they are thanks to Sara’s betrayal. Thankfully she continues to pop up during the island flashbacks even though she has temporarily left the present day Starling City storyline.

More DC elements were infused into the overall narrative with the introduction of Amanda Waller and the supervillian group called H.I.V.E. For those who don’t know, Amanda Waller has an association with the Suicide Squad and her leadership of Checkmate as the White Queen. The casting was somewhat off, but Arrow is on the CW so as expected, everyone on the series is to be good looking.

H.I.V.E stands for Hierarchy of International Vengeance and Extermination and three of its members are none other than Deathstroke, Talia al Ghul, and in the Teen Titans’ TV series Brother Blood. Coincidence? I think not.

Alright, enough is enough. I need to let my Olicity (Oliver and Felicity) fangirl flag fly. After that episode how can you not be rooting for them to get together? Within one episode the pair can go from witty and playful to absolutely heartbreaking. Both the characters and the audience know how Felicity feels toward Ollie, but this was probably the first time Ollie has shown any real affection toward the blonde IT genius. Essentially he admitted that he cares for her but is avoiding having a relationship because of the life he leads. You just can’t deny that chemistry.

Guess who wasn’t in this week’s episode? Yep, Laurel. And, she wasn’t missed at all. It was sad to only see Lance once in the episode considering how much he has been rocking it lately. But, with the departure of Sara, it wouldn’t be surprising to see him put on the back burner for a while.

Roy and Thea’s romance and Moira’s trial were the low moments of the episode. The trial storyline continues to bore and is becoming a nuisance.

The writers continue to set up and tease the upcoming arrival of The Flash. Once again, Felicity and Ollie were watching the news about S.T.A.R Labs’ Particle Accelerator and on channel 52 no less, (wink, wink).

What did you think of the introduction of Waller and H.I.V.E? Why do you think H.I.V.E would want Diggle’s brother assassinated? Do you think the Olicity ship is on the distant horizon?

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars


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