After a brief break, where we got to chew on a bunch of cliffhangers (are Ollie and Sara practicing safe sex? Does Laurel have unlimited glassware? Does Thea get her business acumen from her horrible mother or Merlyn, her horrible father?), ARROW was back up to its usual bag of tricks this week.
Two thugs break into a corporate building, getting instructions from T Bag (Robert Knepper) from PRISON BREAK. They steal some briefcases, don’t listen to T Bag, and almost get caught because of it. Lance is there, of course, and might have caught the thieves if there wasn’t a conveniently placed protest nearby (it was all part of the plan). But they escape, and we learn who it was they stole from: KORD ENTERPRISES, which means we’re one step closer to THIS happening (the incomparable Blue Beetle), and hopefully, THIS. But probably not this (I get it).
Now that Sara is a full-fledged, card-carrying member of Team Arrow, she gets to join in the reindeer games, which means hitting each other with sticks while shirtless. Diggle, Ollie and Sara “spar,” while Felicity watches on, jealous, feeling left out because she’s unfortunately wearing a shirt. Diggle gets Sara in the face with his stick/staff (ha!), and the action mercifully stops for some medical attention. The trio then share the stories behind their various scars, or their literal war stories in the case of Diggle. If you think bullet wounds are funny, you’ll love this scene. Felicity brags about her wisdom teeth scars, which Sara (and the world) finds adorable.
Apparently Oliver’s throwing a come-back-from-the-dead party for Sara, a Queen family tradition, and it’s funny because it’s true (or Wilson’s gospel truth). Also, more disturbingly, is that Oliver and Sara are out in the open about their relationship, showing some T&A to TA (Team Arrow, keep up), which means Felicity has to watch this drivel just like us. Sadface.
The nameless (one of them might’ve been referred to as Rorshach, but not the cool one) heavies return to William Tockman with the goods. Meet Clock King, the newest entrant in Arrow’s rogues gallery. He likes clocks, is smart, good with computers, and was blessed with the last name of TOCKman. He also doesn’t take kindly to people ignoring his orders, so he shoots the offending tertiary character, and moves forward with his plan, now that he has…the Skeleton Key (which likely isn’t the DVD to this awful Kate Hudson movie)!
At the party, Sin rushes to hug Sara, before realizing they have to cover up their prior relationship to Roy and Thea (why? No one can figure out secret identities on this show without incontrovertible/truth-staring-at-your-face anyhow). Sin has the perfect excuse for their loving embrace: she’s a big fan of people coming back from the dead. She likely loves comic books. And zombies. Soap operas, too. Perfectly understandable stance.
Lance apologizes to Ollie for the hatred and resentment he held toward him. “You’re not a killer,” he says, which is funny because it’s not true. Lance arrived at the party with Dinah (Alex Kingston), seeming pretty chummy. Are they back together? No: he gets a call, and has a case in the Glades. Typical Quentin. Ollie and Sara leave the party immediately thereafter, which isn’t suspicious at all, since Ollie’s hosting the party and Sara is the guest of honor. If anyone had casually mentioned to Lance that Ollie had left with Sara the party early, the truth would’ve finally become clear. Instead, he’s not suspicious when his daughter shows up with a guy who looks a lot like Oliver. We learn that the Skeleton Key is a device that can be modified to open any bank vault, a piece of technology that Queen Consolidated abandoned when they learned of its naughty implications. Ted Kord didn’t have those qualms, which benefits the Clock King.
Felicity tries to train and work out. Sara walks in and teaches her how to punch, which isn’t as hot as it sounds.
Quentin drops by Laurel’s apartment, who of course is drinking wine. He wants to organize a family dinner, one that Laurel will actually come to (she skipped the party). The idea of her parents getting back together gets her PARENT TRAP juices flowing, but she clearly didn’t get the message of that movie: you need to work WITH your sister to revive a marriage. She decides to host a dinner at her place, which makes Quentin super happy. For a few seconds.
Back at the Black Island, Ollie, Slade and Sara deliberate over escape plans. Then, an airplane flies overhead. The power of positive thinking can only get you so far, because then it turns into an episode of LOST, and the plane crashes immediately, nearly killing the pilot.
Clock King and his henchman start the robberies. The Arrow and Canary are there to stop them…but the Clock King has plotted a bus and train collision…and the Arrow “can’t be in two places at once.” Considering he’s monitoring the whole situation (and manages to hack Felicity’s computer), it’s a stupid thing to say, since Ollie and Sara merely split up (it’s almost as if she was made a regular just so the Clock King could say that line and for it NOT be true). Is he blind? Ollie stops a speeding bus, which wouldn’t have known to brake in front of an oncoming train without the Arrow’s help. I’m not sure if Sara captured the money or stopped the henchman, because it wasn’t very compelling, and the Clock King overshadowed it all through his hacking prowess.
Throughout the episode, relations are frosty between Moira and Ollie, and they don’t call her Speedy for nothing: Thea can spot it a mile away. She approaches Oliver, wondering what’s up. He lies unconvincingly, and Thea retorts: “You’re lucky your life doesn’t revolve around lying.” Hardy har har, ARROW.
Felicity can’t fight, and the Clock King beats her at her own game: hacktastic computer skillz. Using the Skeleton Key, he undermines the Arrow lair’s computer system, and essentially makes it commit suicide, destroying everything. This obviously makes Felicity feel even more helpless, and frustrated with the new status quo. It also doesn’t help that Sara has apparently learned everything on the island, including biology, genetics and using a microscope (don’t ask me why she was using it, I was too busy laughing). The island is better, cheaper and more dangerous than college. I’m going to have all my kids marooned there, since there’s clearly no danger of any of them dying. And they’d get a back-from-the-dead party on the Queen’s dime!
Ollie’s fool proof plan to capture the Clock King is to liquidate
500800,000 shares of stock from Queen Consolidated to use as bait, a move that would likely torpedo the company’s business standing, perturb stockholders and be a BIG AS #%%# maneuver. It would also likely draw the ire of Isabel Rochev, if she still existed after this happened. But they haven’t done this yet! Anyhow, whatever, they go forward with that plan, while Sara comes up with an even dumber one: bringing Oliver along to what was so obviously a family dinner.
That won’t end well. And it doesn’t: Quentin’s (hilariously) forgotten how to use an oven, Dinah is seeing someone (probably someone evil), and Laurel realizes that Sara and Ollie are boinking again. Laurel goes ballistic again, and storms out of her own apartment. That’s when this episode goes from wholly mediocre to AWESOME, and necessary.
The dying pilot on the island has a daughter with no one to take care of her. It’s obvious that his daughter is Sin (did her Dad name her that?), and it’s kinda wonderful, because this can happen:
Sin and Sara’s relationship might be the best thing about Sara’s character, and I hope there’s more to come other than adorable embraces, though those can stay.
Diggle confronts Felicity, consoling her while also calling her “irreplaceable.” This would’ve been a good time for him to calmly mention that Sara’s addition really has made HIM the expendable one, if he wasn’t already, since Felicity has gone out on more missions than Diggle has this season. That’s why the Suicide Squad needs to happen.
For a moment, I almost thought the two would kiss, but even CW draws the line somewhere. See:
Back at Laurel’s apartment, Oliver drops knowledge on our least favorite character, finally lecturing, confronting and yelling at her for blaming everyone but herself. He’s loved her half his life (the other half he was porking her sister?), but is “done” running after her now. Harsh. But it’s exactly what Laurel needed to hear to shake her out of the doldrums. She goes to AA with her Dad, she hashes it out with her sister, and it’s a pair of really touching scenes, and cathartic for the audience to quit wasting so much energy hating on Laurel.
There’s also the matter of the Clock King, who Felicity foolishly takes on her own, plopping herself into the line of fire and the vault where they’ll be coming to steal it. It’s stupid, but Felicity gets a free pass for everything, and I got it. Thankfully, Diggle, Sara and Ollie catch up to her before the Clock King does. Even so, Felicity manages to save the day, taking a bullet for Sara (getting that illustrious scar), saving Sara’s life and using the Clock King’s technology against him, capturing the Mr. Freeze wannabe who was stealing money for his dying wife.
This all necessitates painkillers for Felicity, and as we find out, that’s the greatest thing in the world. We can look over the fact that ARROW wants us to judge Laurel harshly for her self-medication, but make light of Felicity when she’s screwed up on pain med’s, because this scene is everything. She’s clearly proud of her scar, but also cutely expresses her frustration to Oliver, upset that she’s not his girl (not his girl girl, mind you) anymore:
I was “Awwww”-ing the entire scene, and this last bit made me have to change the sheets:
But this episode isn’t over yet, as ARROW is the best at giving us an LOTR-style 13 endings every week. Sara’s the new bartender at Verdant, a skill she learned at college when she was underage, and not on the island. So that’s kinda nice/convenient.
But the real WOMP moment of the episode comes in the final moments. Ollie’s lured home by a 911 text from Thea, but it’s just Speedy playing tricks. The games aren’t funny when we see who Moira is meeting with.
FINALLY. Oh baby.
GIF’s come from the lovely Queens Arrow tumblr.