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TV Review: Arrow - Season 5 Episode 17 "Kapiushon"

03.23.2017

Episode 17: "Kapiushon"

Synopsis: Prometheus goes to great lengths to break Oliver. Meanwhile, in the flashbacks, Anatoly becomes worried about Oliver’s increasingly violent tendencies, which come to a head in a brutal confrontation.

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Review: Anyone who loves the flashbacks on each episode of Arrow were probably thrilled with tonight's hour which flipped the formula and dedicated almost all of the story to Oliver's adventures in Russia, bringing to a climax his quest to aveng Taiana and kill Konstantin Kovar. The contemporary setting focused on Adrian Chase torturing Oliver and finally answered the big question as to why he has been after Oliver. Well, at least part of that is revealed. It also is worth noting that this is by far the best episode of the season and one of the best in the series run and no one is more surprised than I am that the flashbacks were pretty damn entertaining this week as they gave us our look at the genesis of the Green Arrow and how he went from tortured soul to vigilante killer. It also represents one of the best acted episodes by Stephen Amell and the great Josh Segarra.

The bulk of the episode focused on Oliver and the Bratva finally taking down Kovar. With Grigor dead, Oliver and Anatoly discover that Anatoly will take over as head of the Bratva which also means he must take over the deal with Kovar. Oliver wants the man dead more than anything to fulfill the promise he made back on Lian Yu. That means that he will do whatever is necessary, even if it means killing in cold blood. Murder was never an issue for Oliver in the early seasons of this series and this episode provides an explanation as to why. It is also vital to Prometheus' mission to destroy Oliver which is a much more personal vendetta than any other villain in past years.

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When trying to intercept a shipment of sarin gas that Kovar is after, Oliver and the Bratva take one of Kovar's men prisoner. Oliver proceeds to torture the man to death and then continues to dice him up even after his last breath. Anatoly is disturbed by the monster Oliver is becoming but he swears that he doesn't kill because he likes it. The torture does produce the intel the Bratva were looking for which was that Kovar plans to kill government officials in attendance at his new casino and take over Russia himself. Using Taiana's mother as an access point, Oliver and the Bratva make their way into the building to try and stop Kovar. It soon becomes evident that the Bratva have been tricked and Kovar plans to gas them along with the government representatives. Enraged at Kovar killing Taiana's mother, Oliver stops the gas leak and proceeds to fight Kovar and seemingly kills him.

With Kovar dead, Oliver plans to leave Russia but not before getting his tattoo marking him as a Bratva captain. As he prepares to move on, we see Malcolm Merlyn, whom had been dealing with Kovar earlier in the hour, who helps save Kovar from death. It was a nice nod to the setup for Merlyn's actions in the first season but also makes me wonder how they are going to stretch these flashbacks for the rest of the season. This would have been a perfect finale for the storyline this year but I guess they either need filler for the rest of the season or something significant is still coming. The momentum came to a nice close this week so the writers better have something substantial on the way. 

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Meanwhile in the torture scenes, Adrian Chase does everything he can to cause pain to Oliver. From waterboarding to getting shot with arrows, Chase demands that Oliver reveal his big secret. He even goes as far as to bring Evelyn in and snap her neck as motivation for Oliver to tell Adrian that he doesn't kill because he has to but rather he does it because he likes how it feels. After the emotionally draining reveal, Evelyn reveals that she is still alive and part of Chase's plan. Chase then vows that it isn't over yet, burns off Oliver's Bratva tattoo, and sets him free. At the cave, Diggle, Curtis, and Felicity are franctically trying to find Oliver when the broken man comes walking through the door. They promise to bring Chase to justice, but Oliver pronounces that he is ending his time as Green Arrow and shutting the entire team down. It is a stunning cliffhanger and clearly one that will not stick for very long.

I have to give it to Arrow this week: they managed to make a dramatic episode that could have been a total bust. The flashbacks on Arrow have rarely worked better than they did tonight and that could be due to the fact that they were all used in a single hour rather than peppered over multiple episodes. Stephen Amell was damn good in both his proto-Arrow scenes and his tortured moments. Amell has sometimes come off as wooden or stiff on the show, but the guttural moments when he reveals his "secret" were hard to not feel strongly about. Josh Segarra also proved again why his performance this season has catapulted him to one of the best villains this show has ever seen and Prometheus is not even done yet. I am afraid at what else he may have planned for Oliver Queen, but after tonight, I want to kill him as much as Oliver does. One of the best hours this season and on the entire series run.

Next on ARROW: "Disbanded" airs March 29th - Diggle and Felicity are shocked by Oliver's decision to call on the Bratva to help take down Prometheus. Concerned the Bratva may overstep, Diggle has a hard conversation with Oliver about what happens if things go south. Meanwhile, Felicity learns something shocking at Helix.

Source: JoBlo.com

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