TV Review: Arrow - Season 3 Episode 19 "Broken Arrow"
Join us each week as we review the latest episode of ARROW. Warning: the following review contains major spoilers for the newest episode of the show.
Episode 19: "Broken Arrow"
Synopsis: Lance continues his mission to take down the Arrow so Felicity orders Oliver to keep a low profile. However, when a meta-human named Jake Simmons, who kills people with blasts of energy and plasma, starts terrorizing Starling City, Oliver is forced to ask Ray for help. The unlikely duo is forced to team up to save the city.
In Starling City: You would think that an episode that features the first metahuman in Starling City would be the central focus of the episode, but this week's chapter of the Oliver Queen saga is actually the final appearance for a major character. After almost two seasons, Roy Harper bids farewell to Team Arrow and leaves a gaping would for the heroes to recover from.
On the most recent episode of The Flash, Barry teamed up with Ray Palmer to battle a villain without powers, but tonight he teamed with Oliver to battle one with super abilities. Jake Simmons, played by the great Doug Jones, arrives from Central City during Captain Lance's crusade against Oliver Queen that resulted in Roy Harper turning himself in as the Arrow. Since Oliver cannot fight crime while under investigation, Felicity convinces him to enlist Ray's help. Ray is all too eager to team up despite over-estimating his suit's abilities.
Both Arrow and The Flash have been featuring a lot of Ray Palmer and his A.T.O.M. suit as The CW prepares to spin-off the character into his own series. While The Flash helped him formulate a power source for his suit, Oliver's training as Arrow helps teach Ray how to not rely on his intellect but trust his instincts. But, this comes at the worst time as Captain Lance tears apart every aspect of Oliver's life. He discovers the Arrow Cave, searches Thea's apartment, and threatens Oliver even though his superiors question whether it is a personal vendetta or not.
Roy is prepared for his fate, still never having recovered from the guilt he felt over killing a police officer while under the influence of Mirakuru. He is finally at peace even though Oliver, Thea, and even Captain Lance can see he is afraid. He fends off attacks from inmates at Iron Heights Prison who assume he is the Arrow. Oliver wants badly to break out his protege and friend, but everyone tells him they need him on the street and to let Roy do what he feels he needs to. It takes yet another heartfelt conversation with Felicity for Oliver to trust his friends and let them help him, but you can sense the weight of R'as Al Ghul's offer is pressing down on him.
While Felicity goes to a power station to help Ray, the Jake Simmons takes her prisoner which forces Oliver and Ray to team up. Using a neural link, Oliver controls Ray in the suit to fight Simmons but the connection is severed. Oliver coaches Ray into fighting for himself and, for the first time, we see the true potential within Ray Palmer to be a superhero.
All seems to be in order when the worst happens. During a hallway transfer at the prison, a guard stabs Roy, killing him. Lance tells Oliver it was his fault and Thea is crushed, but Oliver still blames himself. At the destroyed Arrow Cave, Oliver laments that he could have done more when Felicity and Diggle reveal their big secret plan: Roy isn't dead! Roy planned it from the beginning and used an A.R.G.U.S. contact to fake his death to clear Oliver and "kill" the Arrow. When Oliver asks what this means for Roy Harper, he bids farewell to his friends and Starling City. Before he goes, Roy thanks Oliver and he in return thanks his friend and sidekick before Roy drives off into the night.
Ray Takes Simmons to S.T.A.R. Labs to be locked when they realize he was in Opal City the night of the particle accelerator explosion which raises the question: how can he exist? Back in Starling, Thea is confronted by R'as Al Ghul in her apartment. The two fight and R'as stabs Thea through the chest with his sword, seemingly killing her.
Flashbacks: In Hong Kong, Oliver hides out with Maseo and Tatsu and formulates a plan to break into A.R.G.U.S. to find out Amanda Waller's plan. Maseo provides Oliver with stolen keycards but when he enters the base, he is surprised to find Waller injured and claiming to be a prisoner of General Shreve. Waller says he plans to release the Omega to frame China as a military and economic threat. Oliver and Maseo discuss plans to try and escape Hong Kong, but decide instead to steal the Omega vaccine that Shreve had developed. Oliver gives the antidote to Maseo and his family and says he will go to stop Shreve. They of course refuse and say they will help him.
Review: Wow, a hell of a lot happpened during this episode. The development of Ray Palmer as The A.T.O.M. is in full force, the first meta-human not from Central City is revealed, the Hong Kong flashbacks enter their endgame, and two characters meet their "end". While Thea is teased as being resurrected using a Lazarus Pool in the teaser for next week's episode, this is definitely the end for Colton Haynes as Roy Harper. The actor did not renew his contract, so unless he comes back in later seasons, Arsenal is gone for good. While I am not sold at how Oliver Queen can operate as the Arrow going forward, the stakes are the highest they have been on this show in a loing time. What comes next is anybody's guess, but with a fourth season already coming, the promise that Arrow will be a very different show next season is starting to come together.
Next on ARROW: "The Fallen" airs April 22nd: Ra's al Ghul finally makes Oliver an offer he can't refuse. The team joins Oliver on his journey to Nanda Parbat where a heartbroken Felicity decides to take matters into her own hands.