Arrow Season 5 Episode 4 – TV Review
Ragman just isn’t the same without the rags.
It’d be like the Green Arrow not wearing green. Unthinkable!
TL;DR Oliver and Lyla jailbreak Diggle; the recruits get mixed results when taking on BB-2 and his gang; Felicity makes things alright with Ragman; flashback Oliver shows more badassery, but not much forward momentum; Wild Dog ends up kidnapped.
It’s not an episode of Arrow Season 5 without a Wild Dog fuck up.
So this week sees Oliver focusing on rescuing Diggle from his isolated, dull subplot. He and Lyla face a little resistance (mainly from a judgemental Felicity), but they do manage to spring Diggle and hole him up at the abandoned HIVE base for now. Meanwhile, BB-2 starts getting a little more proactive, enacting a scheme to steal a bunch of weapons from a police evidence lockup, then besiege the Anti Crime Unit. With Oliver out of town, it’s up to Felicity to rally the recruits to save the day. This includes grovelling to Ragman to come back to the team, because they’re pretty useless without him. BB-2 and his gang are mostly thwarted when it’s all over, but Curtis ends up with a throwing knife in the back, and Wild Dog is abducted and tortured by BB-2. Oops. Meanwhile, Adrian Chase gains some respect for vigilantes after they save his life; Quentin is doing an okay job as Deputy Mayor; and flashback Oliver passes another Bratva test Anatoly sets for him. He purposely gets arrested so he can question some guy who works for the big gangster who Oliver wants to kill. Once Oliver gets what he needs, he straight-up murders the dude, and isn’t as bothered about that as he thinks he ought to be.
The soulless killer awakens.
It’s another respectable episode of Arrow this week, I’m relieved to report. Even when Felicity gets called up to bat, the show doesn’t treat her with the absurd reverence it used to. It’s refreshing.
Bit disappointed that Ragman has forgiven her so easily, though. I wouldn’t have minded if she’d felt shittier for a few more episodes.
Why I hate this episode:
I guess I’m just shocked that anything involving Felicity, after the most recent seasons, could be handled with any semblance of sensibility. Ragman, despite Felicity’s presence reminding him constantly of Havenrock’s obliteration, puts his hangups aside for the good of the team, and the city. It’s madness, I tell you!
Felicity still has trouble selling the deep, emotional moments, too. But that’s no surprise.
BB-2 is fun and nasty, but with Prometheus still lurking around, I’m not particularly invested in him and his gang garbage. BB-2 just feels like a distraction so the season can tread water until Prometheus gets more active.
Ragman is a lot of fun, but he’s starting to feel way overpowered. This episode he stands in front of a bomb to blast a hole through a wall to get the ACU people to safety. Adrian is like “Shit, bro, that’s gonna kill us all.” But nah, Ragman just rag flurries around it and everything’s fine. He also does the same thing when shielding our heroes from a hail of gunfire. He just puts his back to the bullets and whips his rags. Never mind the fact that it can survive a nuke. Why do we even need the other recruits, again?
Oh, and Ragman also happens to be a sculptor. Because the one box he hadn’t ticked off was Tortured Artist. He really is too good to be true.
But it’s not all bad:
Ragman is the most useful of the recruits. Curtis can’t go five minutes without taking a knife to the back, and Wild Dog is, well, Wild Dog. And Artemis seems to be a solid supporting player, but I think Arrow keeps forgetting she exists. So go on, then, Ragman. Do it all. Somebody has to.
Speaking of trying to do it all, that’s what Felicity attempts this episode. And fails at almost every turn. Firstly, she objects to Oliver and Lyla’s plan to rescue Diggle because he’s said he doesn’t want to be saved, and Felicity thinks they should respect his wishes. As it turns out, Diggle is totally fine with being saved. So shoosh, Felicity.
In fact, Oliver tells her just that. He’s pretty much like “Nah, bitch. You fix your shit with Ragman, I’ll go save my best friend.”
Felicity then sends the recruits out to join Oliver on the Diggle rescue mission. But Oliver beats them the fuck up and leaves them in the dust. I relish Felicity’s incompetence.
Not even Lyla can show Felicity any sister solidarity, and it warms my heart. Lyla gets the best line of the episode when talking to Oliver about Felicity’s objection: “Is she going to be a problem?” Vicious.
The rescue of Diggle isn’t that pulse-pounding, but the big finish is Lyla snagging Oliver and Diggle with a cable on a plane she’s flying overhead so they can escape the guards that have surrounded them. Wtf? I love it.
Curtis does two things well this episode: he can work the hell out of a roundhouse kick; and he gets gravely wounded. Both things make me happy.
Flashback Oliver breaking that guy’s neck in jail like it ain’t no thang was awesome.
Oh, and Season 5 appears to be the season of turning your back to explosions. Even when they’re only centimetres from you. Cool.