Arrow Season 2 Episode 16 – TV Review
Is Arrow doing another spin-off, apart from The Flash?
Because this Suicide Squad stuff feels a lot like a shitty backdoor pilot.
She’s losing her edge.
So yeah, most of the episode focuses on Diggle as Amanda Waller calls him in to join Lyla in leading the Suicide Squad on some random mission. The Squad consists of Deadshot, Bronze Tiger (Wolverine wannabe. You remember) and some other guy who dies early on, so who cares. They’re going after a reformed-but-not terrorist who Lyla and Diggle once encountered during their time in the army. Amanda turns out to be a hard taskmaster, and expects the Suicide Squad to operate like its name suggests. Diggle and Lyla help save a death-wishing Deadshot and complete the mission. Diggle is disgusted by Amanda, though, and he fucks off. Meanwhile, Oliver is stressing about Slade’s impending assault on his friends and family. Sarah manages to get him to stop being such a little bitch. Even Laurel gives him her support in his relationship with her sister.
Sadly, that support is not via a three-way.
Really, there’s not much to say about this episode. It’s the Diggle and Suicide Squad show, with Oliver’s angst being mere background noise.
Just a bit boring, you know?
Why I hate this episode:
Diggle and Lyla don’t make for the most exciting main characters. There’s a reason why he’s the chauffeur sidekick, and why’s she’s the ex-wife of the chauffeur sidekick.
The Suicide Squad’s mission is frustratingly arbitrary. When back in Starling City you’ve got bloody Slade threatening to off everyone Oliver cares about, it’s hard to give a shit about Diggle and Lyla gallavanting around some fictional European country. Arrow’s already milked everything it can out of the relationship between Diggle and Deadshot, too, so that has that warmed-up, leftovers feel to it. Dull dull dull.
Deadshot trying to be a martyr was contrived as hell. He also has a daughter who he gives all his profits to. Isn’t being a murderous sniper badass enough for you, bro? Do you need all the tragedy as well?
Sober Laurel is boring Laurel. Couldn’t we have at least enjoyed a few more boozy bitch-outs?
Oliver is still having dreams of Shadow being an accusing pest. Fuck off.
Didn’t Diggle get captured by Slade last episode? Because nobody mentions it this week. Unless I’m just going crazy.
I know Amanda Waller is no hero, but does she need to level a mansion full of people, and her own operatives, to take out the nerve agent? Couldn’t she just, like, wait until the party is over, then blow it up?
And wouldn’t blowing up vats and vats of highly potent nerve gas send it billowing out into the surrounding area?
The terrorist guy gets flippantly killed by Bronze Tiger when he attacks Lyla because she and Diggle ruined his party. So much for any tension.
Oh, and I personally couldn’t give 2 shits about Lyla and Diggle being in love or whatever. I get enough of that schmaltzy rubbish from every other character on this show.
But it’s not all bad:
Amanda’s psychopathic disregard for anyone’s safety is a delight. Almost Katherine Pierce levels of selfishness. And like I said, her insistence on bombing the mansion immediately, instead of waiting for a more opportune time, makes me think she’s just a trollzy bitch. Which is all I really want.
She kills the random 3rd member of the Suicide Squad by exploding a device that all the members have inside their heads. He went off-mission, so she took him out. She’s the boss, baby.
Diggle and the Squad, after fleeing the mansion, realise Amanda’s bombing drone is targeting Deadshots’s device, which somewhat explains why she wanted to blow up the mansion while they were still there. It’s not like she couldn’t have just used the mansion’s co-ordinates, though. Anyway, to evade the explosive doom, Lyla removes the device and tosses it. Amanda resolves later to have the new devices attached to the Suicide Squad’s spines from now on, to prevent that happening again. Lovely.
Slade taunts Oliver by showing he’s 1000 steps ahead of him. After Oliver uses duress to leverage assistance from that Russian gang he knows, Slade murders them and puts them on display for Oliver to find. It’s a real “fuck you” that I can get behind.
Oliver finds Laurel’s endorsement of his relationship with Sarah a bit uncomfortable, and he gets the best line of the episode for this: “I think I preferred it when we were all lying to each other.” It is the only way to keep conflict in a show, after all.
Oliver is determined to kill Slade. Good.
At the end of the episode, Oliver swallows his hatred of Amanda and goes to her for help with Slade. She says he might be the one ARGUS has been tracking, who they call Deathstroke. Indeed, he is.
In the Afghanistan flashbacks, Diggle has to kill an enemy soldier when the unit, including the terrorist (posing as a civilian) comes under fire. The enemy soldier turns out to be a child. And I am a proponent of child characters getting killed. Now all I have to do is give Henry Mills a gun and send him over to Starling City for a while. Diggle can take care of the rest.
The terorrist turns out to be the mystery buyer of the earthquake machine from a few episodes ago.
Oh, and I will give Diggle and Lyla a pat on the back for having to carry an unimpressive, tangential filler episode all on their own. It’s a tough job, but somebody’s gotta do it.