Arrow Season 2 Episode 17 – TV Review
The ultimate showdown between Black Canary and The Huntress.
Which is brief and disappointing.
So it’s slightly better than sex.
TL;DR Helena’s back in town, but doesn’t do much; Laurel is managing to stay sober; she also gets her prosecutor job back; Roy dumps Thea for her own protection; flashback Sarah is forced to sacrifice a minor character to save Oliver from Slade’s torture.
I don’t know, Sarah. If you could have been there to see Slade prodding a shirtless Oliver, would you have really wanted it to stop?
So thank goodness, we’re done with all that Suicide Squad nonsense. Back to the action in Starling City, Oliver apparently doesn’t have enough woman drama to deal with, so Helena “The Huntress” Bertinelli is back in town. Her dad’s been arrested and his trial is news, so she’s come home to murder him. After a botched trap to catch her is implemented by the SWAT team, Helena takes a court house full of people hostage, including Laurel. Sarah pops in to rescue her sister (in Black Canary garb), and she and Helena fight a bit. Oliver and Quentin manage to arrange a trade: Helena brings Laurel, they bring Frank Bertinelli. Things get messy when the SWAT commander arrives, and Frank is killed in the crossfire while Sarah defeats Helena. Helena is upset to find her father’s death brings her no peace. Aww. Meanwhile, Oliver forces an emotionally unstable Roy to break up with Thea for her own safety. Thea doesn’t take it lightly. Meanwhile, Laurel is offered her old job back by Adam, but it’s just a sham for the Helena trap. Laurel doesn’t let it get her down, though, and uses that knowledge to blackmail the District Attorney into actually getting her job back. And the island flashbacks show Slade forcing Sarah to hand over Henrich, an escaped prisoner who might be able to fix the ship’s engine, in exchange for Oliver’s safety.
Ah, taking a page from the TVD “horrible things are okay as long as they’re not happening to my friends” handbook.
Poor Jessica De Gouw. I’ll still hold out hope that Dracula gets renewed, but I’m prepared for the worst.
Hopefully something comes up, because rehashing this Helena drama isn’t good for anybody.
Why I hate this episode:
The whole Helena thing is very “been there, done that.” She has nothing new or interesting to say or do. “Oh wow, I still want to kill my dad. I’m still a bit amoral, don’cha know?” We know, honey.
I think the attraction to her return was for her to face off against Sarah. But their 2 battles are pretty short, and their motivation to fight each other doesn’t stretch beyond “you’re a woman who is also in the area near Oliver, therefore we must battle now.”
Thea swerves between being cool-headed and being a whackjob. When Roy first tries to break up with her, she brushes him off. Like, you know, whatever. Then she sees him barely pecking a waitress on the lips (and she admits to Oliver that she knew it was only to push her away), and she chucks a sad and runs off bawling. So are you stable or not?
Adam gives Laurel her job back just to be a part of the trap. I assume he did this so he wouldn’t have to put himself in danger. And Laurel could have been killed, as Helena is shown to have no qualms about killing hostages. What a fucking’ dick. And I don’t mean this in a sexist, chauvanistic, women-must-be-coddled way. But, like, Laurel used to be your friend and shit, and you just throw her to a trigger happy lunatic? Fuck you, dude.
Sarah has a voice modifier akin to Oliver’s so Laurel won’t recognise her voice in Canary mode. It sounds ridiculous.
Sarah throws an episode-long tantrum because Oliver wants to protect both her and Helena. She more or less would prefer him to choose which one he would rather see live more. Maybe he wants both of you to live, huh? Just a thought, Sarah.
Oh, and flashback Slade tattoos Oliver with the same back tattoo that Shadow had. As a permanent reminder of what Oliver did blah blah blah angst angst angst. I wish Shadow had a tramp stamp, instead. That would look hot as hell on Oliver.
But it’s not all bad:
Flashback Slade gets to play with Oliver while he’s all tied and up and ab-tacularly shirtless. With Sarah’s cleavage in the mix, Arrow is the shining example of equal opportunity perving.
While they are shortlived, Helena and Sarah’s fights are a lot of fun. The first, in the court house, ends with Helena throwing Sarah out of a window. The second, at the botched handover, ends with Sarah in prime position for a neck snap. Laurel butts in and, having bonded with Black Canary earlier, pleads with her not to be a killer. She obliges.
Helena is pissed off that she wasn’t the one who ended her father’s life (thanks, inaccurate SWAT commander. Good work, there). Later, when in custody, she admits to Oliver that his death hasn’t made her feel any different, and all she is now is alone. Oliver, to his credit, does his best to console her. Threesome, Sarah?
Laurel and Black Canary get some time to bond together while they’re hiding out inside the court house. Canary convinces Laurel not to resort to booze to calm her nerves. I’m still confused as to how Laurel couldn’t figure out her own sister was sitting right next to her, but I have faith the reveal is not too far off.
Best line of the episode goes to Thea, who is matter of fact with Oliver as to what happened with Roy:
Oliver: “What happened?”
Thea: “I caught him with some slut.”
Thea ironically claims that Oliver is the only person in the world who isn’t lying to her. I lol’d.
The episode ends with Thea, having taken a walk to clear her head, getting offered a ride by Slade. I hope he does a better job of kidnapping Thea than he did with Diggle.
Laurel’s quick-fire blackmail to get her job back was pretty impressive.
Flashback Sarah keeps the melodrama to a minimum with her Henrich decision. Good.
Helena teases Laurel about Tommy, but seems genuinely shocked and sympathetic to find out he died. So she’s not a complete monster. She just really, really hates her dad.
Ordinarly I’d come down pretty hard on someone with daddy issues. But when your issue amounts to “All I want to do is kill him because he wronged me; wangst be gone,” then I’m on board, baby.
Oh, and Roy gets shot through the hand by a car thief that Helena used as a decoy to distract the Super Friends. It’s a miracle he’s been pumped with Mirakuru.