By Justin Carter
Fighting Fire with Fire
There are some things that would be best for a show to just reveal up front, and others where the long con proves to be the smarter move. Westworld, for example, probably should have let some of its big reveals open up episodes before they actually hit, and I was admittedly thinking that Arrow could similarly have revealed that Adrian Chase was the Vigilante for a while now. Josh Segarra plays him so well, but he’s also leaning incredibly hard on the simmering rage thing, so much so it’s become relatively easy to spot the various connections, making the show’s refusal to say “this guy is the Vigilante!” a little annoying as we watched Segarra stare off in the distance with a burning intensity, yet again.
So imagine my surprise when it turns out that Chase is Prometheus! It was something that I had considered when he first showed up this season, but then all the Vigilante business took him out of the running for me. It’s a genuinely great reveal, considering that the show hasn’t really had those in some time — possibly since the Slade Wilson reveal back in season two.
Vigilante’s return is brought on by the public learning that Chase and Oliver covered up Malone’s death. That corruption doesn’t sit too well with him, and not even losing against Prometheus can stop him from making another attempt on Ollie’s life. It falls to the rest of the Team to do what they can, and Curtis steps up in a big way with his tech. His T-spheres help them find Vigilante before he can take a headshot at Oliver, and they also provide some humor at Curtis’ expense as everyone refers to them as “balls,” … and the jokes write themselves.
As for the whole threat of impeachment that Oliver’s facing? It doesn’t entirely feel like the big deal it should just yet, but that’s less through fault of writing and more to do with just how well the “Chase is Prometheus” thing works. Everyone’s confident that Ollie’s going to remain mayor, but it doesn’t stop Felicity and Thea from using the former’s Pandora flash drive to get some dirt on a councilor stuck on the fence. Getting Oliver’s girlfriend fired is nothing to how they contemplate leaking that the councilman’s wife killed herself, and it’s just the push that Thea needs to realize that maybe she’s gone too far with some of her recent actions. (She also suggests labeling Malone as a corrupt cop to justify the cover up of Malone’s death, which is bad, but also a completely valid option.)
Felicity, meanwhile, is going further and further down the rabbit hole that is Helix, officially signing on by episode’s end. Her justifications are the same as they have been since other members of the Team have learned about what that flash drive carries in it, with Diggle getting caught in the loop this week and trying to convince her to turn over a new leaf. Darkness runs in the team, she argues, but John says that playing with fire will just lead to her getting burned. At this point, the Helix thing is either going to be the main thrust of next season’s plot, or will be around for the remainder of the season just long enough for their intentions to turn out to be sinister. Maybe it’ll be enough to get Thea to don her own hood again.
Arrow has played around with the idea of Oliver getting shifted to the backside for the other characters to get the action-heavy plots, and that continues again. While he’s kicking ass and grabbing dirt on Gregor to avoid him and Anatoly getting killed by the Bratva in the flashbacks, the present day is a different story. He’s stuck to his mayoral clothes for the majority of the episode, and his most heroic moment comes yet again from his words rather than his actions. During the press conference where Vigilante tries to snipe him, he opts to declare the Green Arrow public enemy number one instead of pinning the cover up on Malone or Chase. It’s a ballsy move, and while the police have gone after Team Arrow before, Oliver also wasn’t spending half his time in a position of power. It’ll be interesting to see where things go from here, though it must be said that there will have to be some serious logic pulling to justify making Green Arrow a hero again by season’s end without people catching on that he and Oliver are the same person.
Now that Prometheus has been revealed, Arrow can get down to its endgame of Prometheus vs. Team Arrow. And of course, Chase decides to get the ball rolling by confronting Susan Williams, moments after she’s gotten back together with Oliver. Bad for her, but will hopefully make for an entertaining end run of episodes.
- Okay, so if Chase isn’t Vigilante, then….who the hell is Vigilante?
- Rene has been shot so many times, it’s a miracle that someone hasn’t just ordered him to put on a bulletproof vest. Seriously, why are you just going around in a jersey?
- Curtis is getting divorced! And it took me a moment to remember that he was still going through that.
Thea, given your history with your brother and limos, you made the right call in leaving.
- Oliver has to go to the hospital partway through the episode for a concussion, and it surprised me that they actually made him go to the hospital. Normally in situations like these, it’s just something that’s shrugged off.
- Why do the Bratva even bother holding meetings anymore when most to all of them just result in a shootout?
- Arrow comes back on the 15th. See you in two weeks!