Team Arrow have a lot to deal with in this episode and although not much actually happens in terms of physical events, friendships are tested, secrets are revealed and magic is brought to fore and the realism of Arrow that we have been used is well and truly being challenged by the more comic book aspects of the show. Here’s our recap and review of episode 5!
The focus this week is on Sara. At the end of the last episode she had escaped from where Laurel had her chained up. We see her this week roaming the streets apparently indiscriminately killing people.
Initially it seems like Sara is carrying on her vigilante ways as she saves a young woman from being assaulted by two men, but there is something about the way that she looks at the girl that is a bit off, oh and she is talking in some middle-eastern language.
Later, when Team Arrow respond to a report of someone going nuts in a club, Oliver sees Sara! After Sara escaped, Oliver confronts Laurel and Thea and figures out that their trip to the ‘Spa’ was just a cover. He blames Laurel for the deaths Sara has caused because she was messing with powers she didn’t understand by bringing Sara back. Sara’s attacks seem random until Felicity and Oliver figure out that she is attacking people who look like Thea. Thea is the one who killed her so she is out for revenge!
It’s soon after this that Sara finds Thea in Laurel’s apartment! What results is one of the best fights that Thea has been involved in. Even though she is beaten hands-down it is a brutal fight with each combatant holding nothing back! Thea only manages to escape by mis-directing Sara but she is badly wounded and ends up in hospital.
There is no rest for the wicked as Sara finds Thea again in her hospital room and tries to choke her, prevented only by Oliver and Laurel bursting into the room causing her to flee. This leads the Team to the realisation that Sara can somehow sense where Thea is, probably because they both spent time in the Lazarus pit. Even though Sara’s body has returned her soul has not.
To restore her soul Team Arrow must go to the other side….but they will need some help. I can’t talk about what happens next without mentioning the flashbacks in this week’s episode.
Conklin confronts Oliver with the surveillance gear that he found in the last episode. Oliver of course denies that it’s his so Conklin takes him to Reiter. Unfortunately, Reiter is busy interrogating someone, none other than John Constantine (Matt Ryan).
I knew Constantine would be making a brief appearance in the show but I didn’t expect him to show up in the flashbacks. To prove his loyalty, Reiter tasks Oliver with finding some landmarks that Constantine is looking for, but before they can leave, Constantine chants his way out of some handcuffs, steals a gun and forces Oliver to escape with him.
Oliver agrees to shows Constantine the locations and they both tell the other that they aren’t bad people. Constantine even says that he is on the side of the Angels! Other chant opens a trap door in the floor and the two descent into a secret chamber.
Constantine says that the island is a magical place and will always draw people who crave power, he is there to prevent such people from getting their hands on certain things. Oliver shows that he too can get out of handcuffs when Constantine cuffs him to a wall and goes on ahead only for Oliver to quickly catch up. Constantine retrieves a golden staff from a plinth activating a trap which Oliver saves him from.
The staff is something called the Orb of Horace and in thanks to Oliver, Constantine offers to take him off the island but he refuses saying he can’t leave these people he to suffer. So instead Constantine uses a chant to remove a tattoo from his own arm and puts it on Oliver’s stomach.
He only states that it is a kind of insurance and he will know when the right time to use it is. One notable thing about this moment is that the way in which Constantine removes the tattoo is very similar to a ritual we saw Damian Darhk do earlier in the season.
Now that we know Oliver knew Constantine in the past and knew the kind of things he could do, it was not surprising that he called J.C. for help with Sara. Using Thea as bait, the team capture Sara, although Laurel copies her father from the previous episode and almost shoots her before Oliver takes her down with a tranquilizer arrow.
In the Arrow cave, Constantine and the Team carry out a ritual which will attempt to restore Sara’s soul.
Lance turns up to witness the event and Constantine sends himself, Oliver and Laurel over to the “other side” to save her soul. Finding themselves in a maze-like room Constantine enchants his lighter to show them the way. They find Sara being held by some weird looking hands, in the Lazarus pit.
When they approach they are confronted by some guards who Constantine holds up while the other two retrieve Sara from the pit. Sara is saved! her soul is restored and they are back in the real world. Before he leaves, Constantine gives Oliver a warning about Darhk. He will make the things in the other world look like a walk in the park! How powerful is Darhk?!
While all this was going on, every member of Team Arrow was dealing with a whole mess of other issues.
Oliver is still running for Mayor and his new political strategist advises him to distance himself from Laurel as the media will use his history with her, and what happened on The Queen’s Gambit to destroy his campaign.
Oliver is reluctant to do this because Laurel is such a big part of his life. But when he finds out that Sara is alive and that Thea and Laurel have lied to him Oliver is pissed and it gets even worse when he finds out how Thea’s bloodlust was calmed. All of this results in Oliver and Laurel shouting it out. Laurel calls him a hypocrite for not telling them about him using the pit to save Thea and then getting angry about Sara. For some reason Laurel turns this into Oliver not seeing her as an equal.
This is a bit of a jump and I think it’s just a way for the writers to quickly get Oliver to start training her when their trust is restored. After the business in the other world, Oliver tells Thea that he isn’t angry at her for keeping secrets, and stands up to his political strategist by saying he will not distance himself from Laurel.
Lance has properly become the double agent that Oliver asked him to be. Damain Darhk tells him to plug a device into one of the city’s servers but does not say why. Lance takes this straight to Oliver and the team decide to go through with it to find out what the thing does.
Diggle and Lance go to the server and plug the device in and it starts deleting personal data from the system. There are a lot of names and Diggle sees one that is surprising…his brother Andrew Diggle. Before he can find any more info, Lance has to hit him over the head and pretend to arrest him as some security guards turn up.
Lance then goes to Darhk to ask what he made him do, and asks about Diggle’s brother. It is revealed that Andrew Diggle wasn’t the pure person John thought he was. He was involved in some serious criminal activity when he was serving in the army and got on the wrong side of HIVE which is why he was killed.
Diggle is shaken by the news and can’t believe it. What will he do with this information? Will it break him like Oliver’s betrayal did?
The geek team have a couple of scenes together! Felicity and Curtis Holt are working to clear up the message that Ray left.
After doing some work on it they can clearly hear it and find out that Ray is alive!!! This part of the story has been dragged out a bit but it looks like we will finally get Ray Palmer back soon.
Across Flash and Arrow, Legends of Tomorrow characters are being brought into the fold and we almost have the whole team!
Here’s this weeks interesting snippets:
- Damian Darhk is still using that weird looking totem, but this time we get a good look at the blade he uses too.
- We get to see some Canary on Canary combat!
- Even in her rage-filled state, Sara is really stealthy. She manages to sneak into Thea’s hospital room while Laurel and Oliver are standing right outside the room!
- Oliver gets a reminder that he is not in charge of the team, Diggle is!
- It sounds like Constantine says Panchetta in one of his chants!
- The guy that Constantine kills in the other world looks very much like R’as Al Ghul.
- In a blink and you miss it moment (which I did) Curtis is wearing a jacket made famous by his comic persona Mr Terrific. The sleeves have Fair Play written on them, and his gym bag even have the initials F.P. on them!
Probably the weakest episode of the season so far. The Constantine cameo was a good idea, but unfortunately it was very clear why that series got cancelled. Matt Ryan is a fair actor but his portrayal is off and doesn’t fit with the tone of Arrow.
I’m glad they didn’t drag Sara’s restoration out too long and we got to see some interesting conversations between Oliver and Laurel. It looks like Laurel will start getting some real training from Oliver, maybe this will stop her whining for a while!
How long Sara will be around as part of the team remains to be unseen and whether she is truly back to herself is a mystery. I’m hoping to see Sara kicking ass again and I would also still like to see Damian Darhk actually do something! Enough of him just being a vague threat in the background! All his scenes so far have been him verbally threatening people and the occasional magical display, but nothing major. Neal McDonagh is an amazing actor and need to be given the freedom to show it!
What did you think of the episode? Let us know in the comments below.