Arrow – S7 Ep17 – Inheritance Review

We’re back in the present day this week and after Laurel’s discovery that Emiko was responsible for Ricardo Diaz’ firey end we are about to delve deeper into her history.

Flashbacks give us insight into Emiko’s relationship with her father, Robert Queen. This means we also get to see Jamey Sheridan back on our screen. Being abandoned by him and kicked out of the luxurious accommodation I’m assuming her kept them in, she turns to a life of petty crime and crosses paths with Dante. He trains her, becomes a father figure to her and fuels her hatred towards her real Dad. Hatred that has some huge consequences.

You have to feel sorry for Laurel. She’s spent the entire season trying to prove herself to the people around her and live up to the goodness Quentin saw in her. She’s worked hard at leaving her Black Siren ways behind her and has been living a lawful life as Star City’s DA. If only the others would see this and give her a break. Apart from Felicity, they all seem to be on her case and she feels pressure from Oliver and Dinah this week which clearly pushes her to breaking point. When she reveals her Emiko discovery to Oliver he simply doesn’t believe her. He’s actually quite rude and seems to have forgotten the big part she played in having him released from Slabside. Emiko adds fuel to the fire and I’m guessing it won’t be long until we hear from Black Siren again. Katie Cassidy was excellent in this episode and I’d say season 7 has been a real high for her.

When Oliver confronts his sister she tells him how she’s stuck with Dante with no way of escaping his evil clutches. This isn’t quite the truth. In fact by the end of the episode we see just how far from the truth this is and suddenly the excitement of Oliver reconnecting with a long lost family member isn’t quite the celebration it started off as. We’re also seeing the beginnings of Felicity’s Archer programme coming to the attention of the wrong people.

We haven’t really had the presence of a big bad this season, it hasn’t actually needed it. But with the revelations and story progression this week it looks like it’s all about to kick off!

Arrow – S7 Ep16 – Star City 2040 Review

The flash forwards have been a huge success during season 7 but to have a whole episode set in the future could have been a bit risky. For me, this episode totally worked and was a thoroughly enjoyable watch.

Stephen Amell tweeted that he’d handed the keys to Katherine McNamara this week, and she really was the driving force as Mia Smoak. We are given a glimpse into her childhood, of being hidden away by her parents who fear for her safety incase her identity was ever revealed. She spends years training to be a fighter and it was awesome to see Nyssa as her teacher, even if she was only on screen for a minimal amount of time. She stumbles upon a big secret Felicity has been keeping from her, and feeling completely betrayed by her mother she leaves home in search of the truth in Star City. This brings us up to date with the main story running through the time jump.

The betrayal she feels gives us a big insight into why Mia behaves as she does. Feeling that her life was surrounded by lies means that she finds it hard to trust people. When she discovers that Connor has too been hiding something from her she’s pretty angry. I mean, there are times where she makes Oliver look like Mickey Mouse. Maybe a bit of an over reaction, but in context you can see why, plus Agent Hawke has been keeping a very big secret. Her relationship with William is really developing nicely though and she even shows that she cares for him in her desire to keep him safe. I love watching their relationship develop. There were points of the episode that felt like a new show was being set up revolving around Mia, William and Connor. This really would feel like a natural progression once Arrow ends and those three characters would be a great replacement for OTA who we all love. Forget Oliver’s impressive salmon ladder skills, Mia can do handstand push ups AND she’s pretty nifty with a bow and arrow.

There were great moments where we see these great characters come together as a new version of Team Arrow. Roy, Zoe and Dinah join our newbies in their search of Felicity and it was heart warming to see her reunited with her friends, and most importantly – her kids! We even got to see them in action as they try to stop the dastardly head honcho of evil company Galaxy One, Kevin Dale. He’s not stupid though and he’s got big plans for his mission to wipe out vigilantes. Dinah is always a hit and it’s so much fun to see Roy back in action, even if he does get carried away. I’m hoping we get to see more of Zoe’s incarnation of the canary at some point, as well as seeing more about her relationship with Rene. It’s hard to imagine what made Rene turn his back on his friends when he seems to be the one who holds them all together.

I must mention that I totally appreciated Connor’s Spiderman quote. People struggle to see that we can all enjoy Marvel and DC equally … you don’t have to pick one over the other people!!! It was nicely placed and wasn’t made into a huge deal. The episode wraps up with another big revelation. The state of Star City in 2040 is all Felicity’s fault. The paranoia she felt after her experiences with Ricardo Diaz prompted her to give birth to the Archer programme which is now being used to destroy everything. Well done Felicity!

I don’t expect for every single event from the 20 years between time periods to be filled in for us BUT I would love to know more about how Nyssa ended up teaching Mia. I want to know about their relationship. As I mentioned, we need some more context for the change in Rene and it would be great to see Diggle at some point. Most of all though I would like to know WHAT THE HELL HAS HAPPENED TO OLIVER????? Because no one is saying a thing right now.

Arrow – S7 Ep15 – Training Day Review

Before I start I guess I have to address the announcement Stephen Amell made last week that Arrow will end after season 8, which will comprise of 10 episodes. This show means a lot to me for several reasons and I’ll be extremely sad to say goodbye to it. Having said that it’s always good for a show to end on a high, before people get bored of it. Yes I’m absolutely gutted, yes I’m going to miss it immensely but we still have 17 episodes left and I am betting that it’s going to go out with a bang!

I must say that again, there was a real classic Arrow feel this week. The episode starts off with Oliver and the team training with SCPD. They struggle to make a smooth transition from vigilante to using their skills to fit in with a more lawful approach to crime fighting. Oliver doesn’t appear to enjoy sharing control and gets frustrated that his voice isn’t heard. There’s almost been a gear change in Arrow recently. Felicity has returned to the bubbly, chirpy, bumbling geeky girl that viewers first took to. I love this Felicity. I love her getting excited over hacking into various IT systems and talking to the others about tech stuff they don’t understand. I also love having Diggle back where he belongs, by Oliver’s side as part of the team. Whilst it was nice to see him grow as a character as part of ARGUS it’s just not the same when he’s kept separate. OTA are the heart of the show. Their relationship is what drew us in and I’m so glad to be seeing more of this again. We also got THE line this week … hearing Oliver command “you have failed this city” just always brings a smile to my face.

There’s some great moments with Dinah throughout the episode as she discovers that she’s lost her canary cry. When all hell breaks loose and she’s forced to take a side, she picks her role at SCPD over her place in Team Arrow due to feeling useless. Juliana Harkavy was superb this week. I felt my heart breaking into tiny pieces as she struggled to come to terms with the result of her injury. Finally opening up to Rene she realises that there’s more to being the canary than just her cry. She’s integral, she’s important and most of all she’s badass. There’s a scene towards the end where she arrests someone after beating the crap out of them as Black Canary. This is nothing short of erotic. 😆 Rene really is shaping up to be the glue holding the team together.

We are taken to a refurbished and replenished Arrow bunker which inspires the gang to find a way to keep their identity whilst still a part of SCPD. We’ve had members of the team come and go but the current line up just works so well. Seeing Oliver, Diggle, Rene and Dinah working together in their costumes with Felicity in their ear again was such a joy. Laurel is kept busy when she’s called to visit Ben Turner in prison. Arranging for him to meet his son, Connor, leads her to discovering who killed Ricardo Diaz (I still don’t believe he’s dead). Erm … Connor Hawke is Bronze Tiger’s son!!!!!!! A huge reveal just quietly slid into the episode and there has to be more to unravel from this. Maybe we will meet Ben in the flash forwards?

Speaking of the future, Mia and William get round to playing Felicity’s tape. I am really enjoying watching these two and I’m left desperate to find out more from them each episode. On the tape, Felicity tells them that they had been kept apart to protect them and in no uncertain terms also instructs them to leave Star City and not to try to find her. Are they going to listen? Don’t be stupid!

This episode made me smile. Even though there were sad moments with Dinah it felt like we spend the last 40 minutes or so watching this fantastic team re-group and re-focus. This show is flipping awesome!!!

Arrow – S7 Ep14 – Brothers and Sisters Review

Arrow is back with a bang and we have lots of welcome action from the Ghost Initiative. I’ve been anticipating seeing them fight together properly for weeks and we get a bit of that before it’s all ruthlessly ripped away from us. On paper Ricardo Diaz, Cupid, Kane Wolfman and China White stand as a formidable force when united, but Lyla and Diggle clearly have a hard task in getting them to play nicely with each other. Their first mission doesn’t go as planned either and Lyla finds herself faced with being forced out of ARGUS for taking a chance on them. We finally get to meet Dante in this episode and he’s pretty nifty with a knife or two. He’s like a martial arts master. And he has a surprising link to Oliver.

Oliver makes a big effort to establish a relationship with his estranged sister, Emiko. Rene might need to drop the Wild Dog get up and change career as he hands out some very good advice to the both of them throughout the episode. Emiko eventually lets Oliver in and discusses her mission with him. I found myself giggling as they bickered just as any brother and sister do and hearing Emiko tell Oliver to stop touching her stuff took me right back to one of the many scraps I had with my sister as a kid. We see them out on the field together and along with their interactions this week, I really noticed how much Oliver has changed as a character. Ever since he dropped the mask he’s just chill! He willingly takes a back seat in many situations now, he allows people to make decisions and take actions he doesn’t agree with and most of all, he’s become quite reflective and he freely apologises for his mistakes!!!

Our friends in the future are reeling from Mia’s big announcement from the previous episode. We learn here that no one else knew Oliver and Felicity had another child (Dinah and Roy are just as shocked as we were). Connor proves himself trustworthy too as he lets slip that he’s known all along due to his father’s instructions to keep an eye on her. William wants to get to know Mia and manages to convince her to work with him and the others. Mia believes that Felicity is still alive. We also find out here that William never heard from his parents once he went to live with his Grandparents. We know this isn’t true due to seeing Oliver filling his mailbox up with voicemails at the beginning of the episode. I’m interested to find out what happened exactly. Actually I’m desperate to know what happened to Oliver full stop. Mia definitely has her mother’s smarts though and thanks to some mad skills with a Rubik’s cube, discovers a huge clue which will help them going forward.

There were some quality OTA moments in this episode which were great to have. Diggle really came through for his friends and actually the whole episode had a real classic Arrow feel to it. I guess there are two major events this week. Felicity tells Oliver that she’s pregnant and as you’d expect, he’s very happy. Actually I must also add here that we continued to witness the evolution of Evil Laurel. She really showed true friendship towards Felicity after guessing her baby secret and even brought her supplies to make sure she’s taking care of herself. I’m not sure I can even bring myself to speak about the other. After being taken back to Slabside for spoiling Lyla and Diggle’s mission, Diaz is paid a visit by someone who sets his cell on fire. We are left watching the legendary character running around, set alight. My bet is on Laurel. She wanted revenge and as the DA she would have easy access to his cell. I don’t know if Kirk Acevedo has left the show – in fact he put out a tweet teasing the character’s fate, confirming neither outcome. I can only say I hope not. Ricardo Diaz is fantastic and we need him. It always feels like there’s so much more evilness bubbling away it surprises me that he didn’t have one last attempt at killing everyone. He’d surely have a much bigger exit so I’m 99% sure he’ll be back. No one can keep the dragon down.

Arrow – S7 Ep13 – Star City Slayer Review

I don’t even know where to start. This was an INCREDIBLE episode!

With the majority of the team receiving death threats via post it notes now, the storyline of the Star City Slayer is about to be wrapped up and it gets extremely creepy. I mentioned last week that was great to see Team Arrow back working together and we get that again this week but in a different capacity. They work together at SCPD in their newly appointed roles to work out the culprit of some recent murders which leads them to find their stalker.

Diggle, Dinah, Curtis and Rene end up at a house which can only be described as a house of horrors. Decorated with freaky statues, toys and blood stains all over the walls, half the team find a Slabside uniform and Dinah makes the connection between him being responsible for the murders their investigating and their stalker by discovering his photo gallery and his desire to look out for Oliver. She pays the price for her snooping by having her throat slit by their stalker. He’s revealed to be none other than Oliver’s prison buddy, Stanley Dover. We all knew there was more to Stanley and have been waiting for him to pop up again somewhere down the line. Brendan Fletcher plays the role fantastically, giving us the perfect amount of crazy.

He makes a quick getaway and shows up at Oliver’s home, interrupting their family dinner, paralysing them by exposing them to a gas through their vents. Again, Brendan is fantastic here as he delves into his past and reveals that he killed his parents and eventually his brother too. He turns from wanting to protect Oliver and his family from the people around them who he is convinced are trying to cause them harm, to finding them ungrateful and begins to threaten them. So much for Felicity’s home security system! Stanley gets a little knife happy but Oliver manages to save the day just in time. Phew!

There are two farewells this week too 😦 Curtis decides to take up a new job offer in DC, turning down the offer of a promotion at ARGUS due to not agreeing with their ethics. I’m really going to miss Echo Kellum as Curtis. He’s added so much comedic relief to the show during some of its darkest times and has been a TERRIFIC addition to the cast. At least the role has been left open though so there’s still the opportunity to turn up in the future. Also, after displaying some impressive teenage angst, William makes the choice to go and live with his Grandparents in Central City.

Now there’s some HUGE reveals in 2038. Roy, Dinah, Big William and Big Zoe find themselves at the Arrow bunker and are unexpectedly met by Mia and Connor. It’s not long before Dinah recognises Connor …. John Diggle’s son! There’s a great fight between them all here too and I loved seeing Colton Haynes back in battle. Perhaps the biggest jaw dropping moment this week comes right at the end after we see Felicity discover that she’s pregnant in the present day, Mia reveals that she is in fact William’s sister …

… Say hello to Mia Smoak!!! I wonder if she can complete a Rubik’s cube as quick as her Mum?

I was never a fan of the flashbacks but these flash forwards are insanely awesome!!!!!