It could have been worse. And I think I needed it to be worse. As Arrow wrapped up its second season, the pieces were in place for widespread tragedy to hit Oliver Queen, and when the dust finally settled, not much changed. The episode was very well done, and the action was intense and well choreographed. I wanted more change, and even a death or two. My feelings aside, this was a great ending and it set up some very interesting dynamics next season, including a fresh side story (no more island — at least for a while?) and with The Flash heading to the network, two-parters and cross promotion can — and should — run rampant. Oh, it’s going to be fun.
For now, here are the 6 Qs of the last Arrow of the season.
1. What is it?
The Arrow Season Two finale, titled ‘Unthinkable.’
2. Who’s in it?
Stephen Amell stars as Oliver Queen/Arrow; Katie Cassidy as Laurel Lance; David Ramsey as John Diggle; Emily Bett Rickards as Felicity Smoak; Colton Haynes as Roy Harper; Manu Bennett as Slade Wilson; Willa Holland as Thea Queen. Guest starring this week are Summer Glau as Isabel Rochev/Ravager; Caity Lotz as Sara; Katrina Law as Nyssa al Ghul; Celina Jade as Shado; Audrey Marie Anderson as Lyla Michaels; Michael Rowe as Deadshot; David Nykl as Anatoly Knyazev; Cynthia Addai-Robinson as Amanda Waller; and John Barrowman as Malcolm Merlyn.
3. Who made it?
‘Unthinkable’ was written by Marc Guggenheim & Andrew Kreisberg, based off a story by Greg Berlanti. The episode was directed by John Behring.
4. What is it about? (**spoilers galore**)
The episode opens at the clock tower with Oliver (Amell) essentially thinking about his own “Previously on Arrow.” Diggle (Ramsey) snaps him out of it and he admits that the cure didn’t work. An alarm goes off and Felicity (Rickards) says that she rigged the clock tower in case Slade’s men showed up and they have shown up. Roy (Haynes) wakes up off the table and is now human again. A battle breaks out and Team Arrow vacates the clock tower just as ARGUS launches an airship assault killing all of Slade’s men and destroying the clock tower. Diggle sees Lyla (Anderson) in the helicopter.
Back at the foundry, Ollie tells his team to load up any and all arrows with the cure, and Diggle begs Lyla to go back to ARGUS and stop Waller from launching the drone strike. Oliver still thinks he can stop Slade without killing anyone.
At SCPD, Quentin (Blackthorne) rallies his cops to war as Laurel (Cassidy) looks on. Quentin makes a nice speech about being heroes and saving the city. Laurel goes to find Sara (Lotz) who is meeting someone in the precinct hallway, telling them that Laurel cannot be a part of this. The mysterious person shoots Laurel with a tranquilizer dart.
At the foundry, Roy asks Felicity about what happened when he went into the rage and she tells him nothing. Diggle admits that they need a whole army to distribute the cure and Sara appears with Nyssa al Ghul (Law) who brought an army. Oliver and Sara don’t see eye to eye, and Sara admits that she offered herself for Nyssa’s help — meaning that she will leave after the battle. Oliver pushes the whole “no kill” thing. Nyssa tells Oliver that Slade is using Queen Consolidated as his base of operations and Oliver makes sure Roy can fight, and then he gives him a mask.
Team Arrow and Friends invades QC, and they begin “curing” Slade’s army. A fight breaks out in the boardroom between Slade (Bennett), Ravager (Glau) and Team Arrow. Slade watches his army cured, dodging it himself due to his body armor and he escapes. Ravager is cured, captured, and unmasked. Oliver demands that Sara not kill her, but Nyssa does it anyway, snapping her neck. Oliver wonders if using the League is a big mistake.
At SCPD, Quentin finds Laurel in the hallway as another of Slade’s Soldiers attacks, throwing Quentin around like he’s nothing. The soldier takes Laurel (of course) and leaves Quentin beaten and broken.
At ARGUS, Waller (Addai-Robinson) launches the drone.
At QC, Quentin catches up to Team Arrow and Friends and tells them that Slade took Laurel. Felicity announces that the drone has been launched, and Nyssa informs Arrow that Slade’s Army is making for the tunnel out of the city. Quentin begs Arrow to do whatever it takes — even killing — to save Laurel. Felicity plays good angel and talks Oliver down from the killing ledge. She tells Oliver to think like Slade and beat him at his own game.
Oliver takes Felicity to Stately Queen Manor and tells her to stay there until the battle is over. He admits that he loves her and that she has to remain there, as Slade wants to kill the woman Oliver loves most.
At ARGUS, Diggle and Lyla break in and free Floyd “Deadshot” Lawton and the rest of the Suicide Squad to help convince Waller to stand down. Diggle warns Deadshot to not kill.
In the tunnel, Team Arrow and Friends confront Slade’s Army and a huge battle commences. It is one of the best fight scenes of the series.
Diggle and Lyla storm the ARGUS command center and put Waller under gunpoint, demanding that she call the strike off. Waller tells Diggle that Lyla is pregnant.
In the tunnel, Slade calls Arrow and tells him that he has the “one Oliver loves,” and reveals that he has Felicity.
Arrow meets Slade face to face, with Slade using Felicity as a human shield. Oliver tells Slade that Shado would be ashamed of him for what he has done. Oliver also admits that he has learned the final lesson from Slade: to distract his enemy enough to able to use what’s right in front of him as a weapon, as Felicity injects Slade with the cure.
Sara appears and saves Laurel and Arrow demands that she get both girls out of there as he and Slade are about to settle things once and for all. This fight is intercut with the fight scenes from the island flashback and it works very well.
Slade and Oliver end up on the roof as the drone flies by. Slade tells Ollie that he will have to kill him, because he will not stop and that Ollie will have to become a murderer. They continue to fight and Ollie shoots bolo arrows, securing Slade to a concrete pillar. He calls Waller and tells her that Slade has been captured.
Waller calls the strike off.
Sara and Nyssa board a ship to go back to Nanda Parbat and Quentin and Laurel go to say goodbye. Sara gives Laurel her Canary jacket. Sara waves goodbye as Quentin tells Laurel not to get any ideas about the jacket. Then he begins to spit up blood and he collapses on the deck, presumably from his internal injuries suffered at SCPD. Laurel calls 911 for help.
Slade wakes up in a cell and sees Oliver watching him. Slade tells Oliver that he will fail, because he just can’t do what needs to be done. Oliver tells him that he was able to stop Slade without killing, and he says that Slade helped him become a hero. Slade once again promises to destroy Oliver and that he keeps his promises, as Oliver climbs a ladder out of the cell. He seals the door behind him, and we see that cell is back on Lian Yu. Diggle and Felicity are waiting and Oliver and Felicity have a moment to clear up the ruse. Oliver offers to fly them all back, and Felicity asks how Ollie learned to fly a plane while on the island. This leads into the final flashback of the season (see below).
The side story this week once again revolves around Thea. She did in fact shoot Malcolm (Barrowman) at the end of last week’s episode, but the Dark Archer stands up and shows her that he wears Kevlar body armor. He applauds her for having the intestinal fortitude to pull the trigger, and laments that not even Tommy could do that when he had his chance last season.
Malcolm continues to try and reason with his daughter, but she’ll have nothing to do with it. Roy calls Thea before heading off to battle with the Arrow and apologizes for everything and asks that she meet him at his place in the Glades. Malcolm promises Thea that no matter what, he will always be watching her.
Thea goes to Roy’s place and he meets her there. They have a moment and then he gets a text from Felicity telling him it’s time and that they need him. Roy tells Thea to pack a bag and that they’ll both get out of Starling City forever once he returns. Thea begs him not to go but he does, knowing the battle that Oliver is fighting.
Thea begins to pack a bag and finds a bundle under Roy’s bed that contains a bow and a quiver of arrows.
When the battle ends, Roy goes home to find the bow and quiver on his bed and a letter from Thea telling him that she is sick of all the secrets and lies and that she is going away forever.
The last we see her, she climbs into a limousine and sitting across from her is her proud father. The limo drives off into the night.
On the island, Ollie and Sara face Slade, who is injecting random prisoners with mirakuru to try and make them like him (for some reason). The twisted ghost of Shado (Jade) tells Slade to kill Oliver and to stop playing games. Slade decides that she is right and he slides on the mercenary mask. Just as he is about to end Oliver Queen, Anatoly (Nykl) launches the torpedo at the Amazo and all hell breaks loose.
Sara is sucked out of the hole, which tends to happen when she’s on boats, apparently, and Ollie and Slade battle one on one. As the Amazo sinks, debris falls, pinning Slade. Ollie, in a rage, cannot kill his “brother,” and Slade goads him, telling Ollie that he will keep his promise and he will kill Oliver’s sister, mother, girlfriend and Ollie rams an arrow into Slade’s eye. A blast knocks Oliver into the water as the ocean forever claims the Amazo.
Ollie wakes up some time later in a bed. A group of triads come in and flash their weapons. Ollie is then introduced to Amanda Waller, who welcomes him to Hong Kong and they climb into a car and drive away.
5. Any revelations, tie-ins, easter eggs, etc.? (**SPOILER!**)
Various uses of “52,” which is becoming a weekly game of “can you find them all?” Roy gets his mask.
6. Will we watch next week?
No. This season finale wasn’t as powerful as last season, and the promise of death hung over many different characters, but honestly, the writers seemed to chicken out when it came time to put up or shut up. Sara and Nyssa are sailing back to Nanda Parbat, Laurel got a new jacket, Digg and Lyla are pregnant, and Slade Wilson is in an ARGUS cell back on the island — which I assume will be explained soon. Oh, and Quentin collapsed on the dock after saying goodbye to Sara due to internal injuries suffered at the police station.
On a good note, the Slade storyline is resolved, and Ollie is more focused now to rebuild his life and to get his family business back. Bring on Season Three. Until then, have a great summer!