Previously on Arrow, “Checkmate”
Arrow, this week, was a truly unique outing, taking place almost entirely in Oliver’s Russian flashbacks. Given that the flashbacks have long been the weakest part of what is a show with plenty of weak parts, the episode was surprisingly effective, finally delving into why Oliver was so quick to return to killing.
“Kapiushon” was an episode that focused almost entirely on Oliver, and in the absence of the rest of Team Arrow, Stephen Amell really stepped up to the plate. I’m normally neither here nor there on his skill as an actor, but watching him get broken down by Chase until he finally admitted his love of killing was a gripping performance.
Anatoly really is a great character, bringing a sense of desperately needed humor to the proceedings. Also, a handy rule of thumb is if a Russian mob boss is telling you that you’re too violent then you should probably take a good hard look at yourself.
As much as I applaud the show’s willingness to experiment, I have to admit I felt a sense of dread as the flashbacks just kept going. Given that I’ve pretty well ignored their existence for the past few seasons I had to keep reminding myself to pay attention so that I had something to write about.
I know that they’re making a point about the darkness inside him, but did we really need to see Oliver skin a dude for information, and then keep going after he was dead for practice. There are only so many lines an antihero can cross before they’re just the villain, and I’m pretty sure skinning people for fun is one of them.
Quote of the Week
Anatoly to Oliver– “You and joking were not exactly made for each other.”
Starring: Stephen Amell, David Ramsey, Willa Holland, Emily Bett Rickards, Paul Blackthorn, Echo Kellum