Arrow’s back – and there’s plenty of trouble afoot.
When we left Team Arrow, they were less of a team and more of two sets of trios – the original Team Arrow, and The Newcomers. After Oliver (Stephen Amell) put his new teammates under surveillance, and it was revealed that Rene (Rick Gonzalez) was the team member poised to testify that Oliver was the Green Arrow, the team was splintered, divided in anger and distrust. When we return this week with “Divided”…well, not much has changed.
With John (David Ramsey) still out of action, Oliver is intent on going it alone. The problem? He doesn’t realise that Big Bad Cayden James (Michael Emerson) has put together his own team – a kind of Injustice League or Revengers – made up of everyone the Green Arrow has recently crossed. Black Siren (Katie Cassidy), Ricardo Diaz (Kirk Acevedo), Vigilante Vince (Johann Urb), Anatoly (David Nykl) and the rest of the Bratva, and Cayden’s right-hand man, Boots (Tobias Jelinek) are all part of this crime squad who have their sights firmly set on the take-down of the Green Arrow and Star City itself – probably. It’s actually a little difficult to understand exactly what Cayden is trying to do here. But, whatever it is, it’s going to be big, and may well be an event to top the Season 5 finale.
“Divided” brings back a familiar name to the show, if not the character we would associate it with, as we’re introduced to Jerry Bertanelli (Louis Ferreira), cousin of Season 1’s Huntress, and the next guy on Cayden James’ list of people he needs things from. Not a man who is comfortable in the “family business” Jerry is more than ready to hand over his assets in order to protect his daughter – until Oliver convinces him to help the Green Arrow take down Cayden’s operations. Bad move for everyone, really.
But, an excellent chance for Arrow to show off the incredible stunt choreography which is already present in 6B, as “Divided” sees the Green Arrow fighting alone but pulling off some of the most impressive stunts to date – in particular, his entrances and exits, which are first class.
Elsewhere, this week reunites one of the show’s best pairings, Thea (Willa Holland) and Quentin (Paul Blackthorne). Still not showing any signs of the fact she’s been in a coma for the past six months, Thea is looking for a job at the Mayor’s office, and luckily, Quentin has just fired Rene for helping the FBI’s case against Oliver…clearly not seeing that it looks very suspicious, and definitely doesn’t help prove Oliver’s innocence. After Black Siren showed another side of herself, having let a kidnapped Quentin go, he is struggling with the idea that this version of his daughter is so different from the girl he raised, and is hoping that there is some faint glimmer of his Laurel there. Thea, however, is firm in reminding him that this Laurel isn’t his daughter, and she does not believe that Laurel will change. While their scenes don’t do much for the episode, it is nice to have Thea back, and especially alongside her proxy-dad Quentin.
More problems arise for Team Arrow this week, as Felicity (Emily Bett Rickards) discovers a bug in the Arrow Cave, leading them to realise that all of their conversations and movements have been monitored for past few months – meaning, amongst other things, that all secret identities have been compromised. However, when she, Oliver and John, choose to wait before telling Rene, Curtis (Echo Kellum) and Dinah (Juliana Harkavy), it further proves that there are trust issues in the team.
And with Team Arrow seeming to be irrevocably divided, how long will it be before Cayden James’ plans are realised?
A strong return for Arrow after a somewhat disappointing midseason finale, this season’s big bad team are giving Prometheus a run for his money. While the action is high, however, the story leaves a little to be desired, as spending more time with Cayden’s rag-tag gang of baddies means other characters are sidelined.