What makes a hero? Arrow aired its sixth episode tonight. “Legacies” was absolutely necessary in that it pressured the Green Arrow to define his boundaries as a vigilante. We’ve gotten to know what drives Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell), but what about his alter ego? Can the two have different missions as the same hero? Throughout the season we’ve seen Arrow take down crook after crook, and so we say, “he’s a super hero.” Yet, Oliver Queen has only been fulfilling his father’s dying wish. Where does Arrow’s heart lie?
The episode opened with a bank robbery. Two goons in masks stamped with playing card symbols (cool, guys.) hit up a bank loaded with bystanders. Immediately, I thought to myself, “that one woman on the ground next to the off-duty cop is so obnoxious it hurts.” As it turned out, there was a reason behind that. First, she ended up getting the cop shot, and a clever maneuver by the duo hold up the bank led right to their escape. Once free of the police force covering the grounds, the two were revealed to be father and son.
Back in Arrow’s secret lair, Ollie worked hard at draining Diggle (David Ramsey) in the art of fighting with two big sticks. Nice tactic; switching up swing speeds to confuse opponents. Oliver’s next target of choice was a tycoon who ran power and water supplies in poor areas. Apparently, this guy liked to jack up the prices of energy when people needed it most. “Winter is coming,” said Arrow Stark. Diggle’s feelings were more along the lines of, “in, like, another whole season.” True; why focus on someone who wasn’t going to strike for another couple of months? Oliver was dead set on following his father’s plan. Diggle was more concerned with rescuing the people in need at the moment. Oliver felt that street criminals were just the symptom, not the disease. He got a little caught off guard when Diggle refered to him as a “hero.” Really, Oliver? You’re running around town in a Robin hood costume complete with face paint. Your signature weapon of choice is a bow and arrow. A superhero declaration shocked you? Oh, wait; No tights.
Time for this week’s mini-episode of Cave Life! The flashback segment opened with Oliver struggling to survive, famished within the caved in cave. Burning pages from his father’s book to stay warm, he quickly found himself hallucinating. Father Queen! It’s been quite a while. We haven’t seen Oliver’s father up and about since… he died. Ghost Dad offered Oliver a gun to take the easy way out. “One bullet left! Want to make my death meaningless?” said the father. “Sure, thanks!” Not so fast, though. Later, we’d see the repercussions of Ollie’s hasty decision.
Laurel’s (Katie Cassidy) legal clinic lost a huge donor. Her and her buddy Jo (Annie Ilonzeh) racked their brains to figure out how to salvage their sinking ship (too soon?). Tommy Merlyn (Colin Donnell) showed up just in time to annoy everyone with promises of private jets and, well, jet setting. Is this getting to know the real Tommy? Needless to say, Tommy’s ploy to win a date with Laurel went down in flames, so he ran to Thea (Willa Holland) for some lady advice. Thea’s advice; Impress her by doing something she likes to do. Normally, that advice would have been a no-brainer but to Tommy it was golden. Unfortunately, the “Thank you, Thea. You’re amazing,” moment struck Thea hard. She assumed he was talking about her. Actually, I don’t think this is the worst idea for a couple.
Oliver’s awesome (not) mother Moira (Suzanna Thompson) insisted that Oliver and Thea attend brunch with a longtime family friend and her absolutely heinous son, Carter Bowen chess champion. Carter Bowen is allegedly a golden child. Even throwback party boy Ollie would be more tolerable than him, as we learned later on.
Diggle called Oliver with some urgent news that the man Oliver was intent on bagging next had attempted suicide, most likely out of fear of Arrow. Oliver lapped up that complimentary scheme in a hot minute, making his way down to the hospital in a flash. It was indeed a scheme, though. Diggle actually wrangled Oliver in an attempt to introduce him to Officer Washington’s wife. Washington was the cop who ended up injured in the episode’s opening robbery. After hearing the woman shower him with gratitude for paying to have her husband moved to a better location, Oliver felt the need to get on the case of the robberies. Oh, Diggle. So proud.
Nearly immediately, Oliver and Diggle were back in the lair going over surveillance tapes of the robbery and subsequently, catching a glimpse of a class ring on one of the culprits. Banking on the fact that the police would have caught that as a piece of evidence, Oliver snuck into police headquarters to snoop as Arrow. Using his super sleuth skills, Arrow managed to download more information and pegged the crimes on a family! That’s right, an entire family went off the grid, along with Kyle the gun-happy son. Another revelation; his mother was the woman working the job from the inside out. I knew she was too obnoxious to be true!
Tommy decided the best way to get back in Laurel’s pants, as she put it, was to throw a benefit for her clinic. Laurel originally turned down the billionaire’s offer but decided to play dumb after Jo egged her on. Seriously, don’t feel bad for a billionaire, Laurel. Use him! After a little time spent together, though, things changed. Amidst picking out cake flavors, Laurel got a little inside info on Tommy. Why the sudden change in heart regarding their relationship? Why now? Tommy told a story of a one-night stand that ended abruptly when he realized he’d been with the girl before but couldn’t remember a thing about her. Then, he got to reminiscing about the “mornings after” with Laurel and realized it was something different. “Carrot cake,” commanded Laurel in a tone that said, “I’ll give you a shot.”
Brunch with Carter Bowen absolutely sucked. Am I the only one who thought Oliver’s crack was kind of funny and clever? Carter touted that he was about to be the “next Dr. Oz.”
Oliver: “Why would they make you a wizard?”
As if reading In Touch magazine to stay in the know would have made him seem so much cooler to these people. Oliver got to leave early, thank God. Diggle called with a tip regarding the next robbery.
Arrow showed up at the scene, which was already being bombarded by a sloppy police team. Had it not been for Arrow, the family of bank robbers may have escaped with the loot. Arrow’s special netting arrows seemed to secure the dough, although the family did escape. That night, the family met unmasked on the riverbank. Apparently, they’re looking to get out of the business. The catch; they have to be set for life first. At least, according to Kyle, who seems to be the loose cannon what with all the gunfire and such. The rest of the family just wants to steal like normal people. Everyone wants to move to Mexico. Derrick, the father, agreed to do one more robbery for Kyle’s sake, as if being “set for life” is expected and deserved at such a young age. That’s kind of preposterous entirely.
Felicity (Emily Bett Rickards) helped Oliver do a little digging on the family patriarch. As the story goes, he worked for Oliver’s father before being unjustly laid off when Mr. Queen decided to outsource work to China for cheap. Fired without a severance, the man lost his house. Familiar with a popular hangout for the factory workers in The Glades, Oliver headed down in an attempt to meet up with the guy. It was a long shot, but it worked! Of course, it did…
At the bar, Oliver spoke one on one with Derrick. Apologizing for his father’s awful mistreatment of his employees and offering him an answer. He offered Derrick a legitimate job at another Queen company, but the man turned it down. Declining due to pride, he threw Oliver’s charity back in his face. Yet, he did so understandably. Oliver left him his “card” in case he changed his mind. In actuality, it ended up being a tracking device.
Diggle never wanted to give the man a second shot to begin with, as innocent people have been hurt and the family has been at their game for five years. Hearing a conversation between the husband and wife through the device, Oliver jumped on board as well. Derrick still decided to go ahead with the final robbery to please his son.
It wouldn’t be an episode of Arrow without a big finale-party scene! Tommy’s charity event rounded up the entire cast, as expected. The Queens were invited because their checkbooks are loaded, although Thea showed up ready to claim her own prize. After Tommy thanked her for helping him bag Laurel, Thea started hitting the booze hard. I feel you, Thea. Chug! Carter Bowen also showed up, bragging about how he was gearing up to open a free clinic in The Glades.
Oliver ran straight into his mother, who was as awful as ever. Moira criticized him for walking out on brunch with people no one should ever have to interact with, let alone eat with. He was delivered home to her as her miracle child and he couldn’t even do brunch. Not even brunch?! She called out Oliver for never keeping his promises and even went as far as to essentially deliver this little gem:
Moira: “Why even bother coming home?”
Knowing all that is going on behind the scenes with her involvement in the boat accident, I found myself fuming over that dig. From a dig to Diggle we went, though, as another tip off for the final robbery sent Oliver into hot water with his mom once again.
I didn’t believe for a second that Kyle would have been able to parry so well with Arrow during that final fight sequence. Yet, I did feel for his father when he took a bullet for his son. A cop got involved, to Arrow’s dismay, and ended things for Derrick.
Derrick’s final pleas to let Kyle go brought back memories of Oliver’s hallucinations on the island. Oliver pulled the imaginary trigger, only to realize there were no bullets. It was just a test, and he failed miserably. An empty gun for an empty sacrifice, thanks to Oliver. The embarrassment was enough to kick Oliver back to reality, though. As he continued burning pages in the cave to keep warm, he realized that the book was heat activated! I hadn’t realized it was blank this whole time… With the names of his father’s targets revealed, Oliver cracked the puzzle and promised to right his father’s wrongs.
Meanwhile, Laurel danced the night away with Carter. Tommy diagnosed him as a tool. Drunken Thea reared her ugly head again to do what she does best. She hung all over Tommy, who rejected her immediately, before bluntly calling him out for fawning over a girl who doesn’t want him. It was Tommy who sat with her while she puked in the dumpsters outside, in the end. Laurel came out to check on them and admitted to only dancing with jackass Carter for his giant donation. Before hopping in his car to drive Thea home, Laurel made sure he knew she “owed him a dance.” With a little kiss, Tommy Merlyn lives to fawn another day. Wow, Laurel really knows how to jump right from one guy to another depending on the episode, huh? Eh, I like her.
In a moment that reminded me of Good Will Hunting, Diggle pleaded with Oliver in the lair.
Diggle: “It’s not your fault. Oliver… It’s not your fault.”
Reasoning that his father would be proud of how he cared for the people of the city, Diggle proved his point. Oliver seemed sold on the concept, especially because Officer Washington recovered.
The episode closed with Oliver making up with his mother by taking her to the best diner ever. Even after forcing her to eat a burger with her hands, she still forgave him for ditching her time and time again. She was sorry for the way she treated him, as well, and reminded him of how close they used to be. Do we forgive her for the behind the scenes drama because she ate a burger with her hands? Not yet, but I’m hoping there is more to her side of the story.
What did you all think of the episode? Did you enjoy watching Arrow discover who he truly is as a hero? What’s going on with Moira? Do you ship Tommy/ Laurel or Tommy/ Thea? Is there any hope for Oliver and Laurel at this point? How good did those burgers look?