Oliver pretending to become the next Ra’s al Gul to destroy the League of Assassins from within and trusting Malcolm Merlyn – what could possibly go wrong? We’ve been working up to this episode this entire season – so let’s have it! Let’s see what they cooked up for us this time. (And please be patient with our reviews, we’ve never really done anything like this and are still learning. If anyone has any tips, do feel free to tell us, we’re always open to suggestions).
It starts off with Diggle, Felicity, Ray, Laurel and Malcolm waking up in the dungeon in Nanda Parbat. Yay, we get a relief in the first few seconds – they’re not dead! So Oliver really is faking wanting to become the next Ra’s al Gul. But he still messed up big time with Diggle, kidnapping his wife and leaving his daughter alone, which causes some drama, of course. Wouldn’t be fun if it didn’t, would it? They’re rescued by Barry, so there’s another yay: we get a full 30 seconds of the Flash, he says his two funny lines and then leaves them to save their city. Thanks, Barry. Big help. That talk with Wells really could have waited for another day or so.
Anyway, next thing we see is Ra’s on a plane to Starling City with Oliver and his new wife, Nyssa (that was a weird story line. Not sure why there did that whole wedding thing – is it going to come back next season? Or were they just stalling? Throwing stones in “Olicity”’s way? Who knows). One of the engines catches on fire, and Oliver finally reveals himself to Ra’s, saying that he never intended on becoming Ra’s al Gul, and that he would stop Ra’s from destroying Starling City with the Alpha and Omega bioweapon. Oliver and Nyssa fight Ra’s, but he escapes with the Alpha and Omega, saying only that he will release it through four vessels, and that he cannot be stopped – he’s a super-villain, so of course he’s going to say that. I was a tiny bit disappointed by that line, it was a bit cheap and cheesy.
So now, Oliver has to ask his old team for help, which, it turns out, isn’t quite as easy as he imagined. They don’t trust him anymore, which is not surprising given his fairly convincing performance for Ra’s. But of course they help him, because there’s a freaking bioweapon being released on the city.
They try to figure out how Ra’s is going to release said weapon, and they do when Laurel and Nyssa, with the help of Thea, who is now wearing Roy’s/Arsenal’s suit, kill one member of the League of Assassins: Ra’s infected his men to spread the virus, which is pretty bad.
In the meantime, Oliver goes to face Ra’s. They fight on the city dam – that was one really good fight scene. Sword fights are so much more exciting than people shooting each other with guns (or arrows), and the stunt coordinator(s) on this show is/are doing an amazing job. They make the fights look real – at least I think so, but, granted, I have never actually seen a sword fight in real life – and the characters look badass, and what more could we ask for? It’s a show about superheroes and supervillains. There has to be a couple of badass people in there. And there is, which is great.
Where was I… Ah, yes, Ra’s and Oliver are fighting on the dam. But then the Starling City Police Department show up with Captain Lance, and they have orders to shoot and kill should they have a clear shot of either one of them. Captain Lance calls Felicity to warn her about Oliver possibly getting killed by his men, and she tries to convince Ray to take the suit and rescue Oliver; but Ray refuses, saying that he has to save the entire city with the antidote he’s working on, rather than just one man.
It cuts back to the fight, where it looks like Ra’s is winning. Oliver is on his knees, weaponless; but he then disarms Ra’s and kills him, and that’s that. The end.
No, I’m kidding. He kills Ra’s, who, with his last breaths, says that he chose his heir well, and hands Oliver his ring. Then he dies, and Oliver gets shot by the police. We see him fall down the dam – another one of those falls. It’s almost getting lame.
BUT there comes the Atom, saving Oliver. Only it’s not Ray in the suit but Felicity, and she gets Oliver to safety. He’s not even hurt, despite getting shot multiple times, because apparently, the League’s armor or whatever is bulletproof. Comes in handy when you’re part of something called the League of Assassins, I guess. You never know the people you might meet in that line of work.
Be that as it may, Ray develops a cure for the virus, and the city is saved. Oliver then makes this big speech about how grateful he is, and how they’re all heroes, and that he has to leave the city because he can’t go back to being the Arrow, and he can’t really stay as Oliver Queen, either, because everyone now knows his secret identity, and he’s still wanted for murder, I think. So he says his goodbyes, telling everyone – everyone being Laurel, Thea (who seems to have joined Team Arrow and thinks about calling herself the “Red Arrow” as a tribute to her brother), Diggle and possibly Ray – that he’s leaving the city in good hands. He tries to make up with Diggle, and they kind of settle for something; not quite sure what, though. I don’t think Diggle is going to forgive Oliver anytime soon, but I think at least he’s not angry anymore. Or not holding a grudge.
After that, Oliver goes to Malcolm, giving him Ra’s al Gul’s ring – and so Malcolm becomes the new Ra’s.
And then we see Oliver and Felicity ride off into the sunset – literally – together, with Oliver saying that he’s happy.
The last thing we see, though, is Ray, at Palmer Technology, still working on his suit. He tries out a new modification that is, apparently, meant to make him small, but it fails. And then the whole floor of the building blows up. And we cut to credits. The hell?!
So yeah, it was quite the eventful episode. And it was very different from the last two season finales. For starters, the city is not on fire like at the end of season 1. And Oliver seems genuinely happy – which we, as viewers, should probably not trust. I don’t think the guy is getting an actual happy ending any time soon.
I also noticed that the pace of this episode was a little different. A lot of stuff happened at the same time, and they tried to wrap up the Ra’s story arc so fast that it almost seemed rushed; which is weird, because we’ve been heading there almost this entire season. But it felt a little like they were trying to give us a good ending and keep the dark tone of the show at the same time, and I guess that was a weird combination.
So it wasn’t my favorite episode of the show, but it was a good one. And, like I said, it was different from what we usually get. It wrapped up a couple of story arcs (the Hong-Kong arc in the flashbacks was wrapped up, although that, too, seemed too fast; so quick that it isn’t even really worth mentioning. It simply ends with everyone going their separate ways after Akio’s death, and after Oliver tortures the man responsible for the virus outbreak), and opened up a couple of new ones as well. Malcolm being the new Ra’s al Gul is going to come and bite their asses, I’m sure. Thea joining the team is going to get interesting. And I’d like to see how they’re going to bring Oliver and Felicity back to Starling City, now that they’ve officially left it. And what happened to Ray? Did he blow up with his suit and his lab?
All in all, you’re in for a treat with this season finale. It’s just not your typical Arrow-episode, although that’s not a bad thing! It ended on a happy note for a change. It definitely gets at least an acceptable, if not an exceeded expectation from me.