Of all the DC superhero shows on right now, I think Arrow is actually having the best season right now. Seasons 3 and 4 were kind of disappointing, so it is nice to see the show having a resurgence this season. The show is getting back to being more grounded for the most part, which I appreciate.
In this mid-season premiere, titled “Who Are You” the episode begins with Oliver seeing Laurel in the Green Arrow HQ. She explains to him how she was saved by the Waverider crew from Legends of Tomorrow and brought here back to this time. Felicity walks in and sees Laurel and seems to find something off about her story of how she got here. Regardless, team Arrow has a reunion party for Laurel, where Felicity manages to swipe a drinking glass she used so she can test the DNA. Eventually, it is revealed that this is the Laurel from Earth 2, aka Black Siren. She was freed from her cell at Star Labs in Central City by Prometheus and brought here to Star City.
The rest of the episode is pretty much spent with Oliver trying to bring her back from the dark side, while Felicity repeatedly tries to tell Oliver that it isn’t going to happen. Naturally, Oliver doesn’t listen to her and things become unnecessarily difficult because of it. By the end of the episode, the team has once again allowed Prometheus to slip through their fingers and Felicity has an awesome moment where she punches Black Siren in the face. She is then transported to an Argus facility because Oliver wants to keep her close, just in case he can eventually reform her. There were a couple of moments in the episode where it seemed like maybe she was going to turn to the good side, but eventually revealed she was indeed unredeemable, which I am happy for. I would have been upset if they had been able to sway her from the evil path.
As far as the flashbacks in this episode, most of them were just spent watching Oliver get the shit beat out of him by the Bratva higher up that has partnered with Kovar. The scenes themselves were fine, but didn’t really have me jumping for joy or anything. That is, until the last flashback scene, where someone shows up and starts taking out some of the men holding Oliver captive. The person doing this killing is revealed to be… Talia Al Ghul! We finally get our first glimpse at Talia, short as it may be, and that scene has me excited to see more of her character in coming episodes.
There were a couple subplots in this episode of course. The main one dealing with Diggle being locked up again and trying to find a way to beat the charges he is being framed for. Oliver convinces the DA of Star City to take Diggle’s case and represent him so that maybe he can get a fair trial. However, Diggle tells the DA that he will be killed if the General who is framing him is allowed to take him into custody. By the end of the episode, the DA concocts a plan to have Diggle punch him in the face so that he can take him into custody himself. He then does so, buying time to figure out how to beat the trumped-up charges.
There is also a scene or two touching on the death of Felicity’s late boyfriend, but nothing big came of it in this episode. Curtis is also dealing with his feelings of not being as helpful to the team as he could be, since he seems to always be getting his ass kicked. Renee of all people is actually the one to help him realize that physical strength isn’t the best way for him to help, and also helps console him about his split with his husband.
At the end of the episode, we see a mysterious woman who seems to possibly be the new black canary taking out some guys in a bar who are harassing a woman. Who exactly she is or how she will play into the story is yet to be seen. Overall, this was a decent episode to start the back half of the season. I am fully on board with this season and can’t wait to see where we are going to go.