“I’m sorry, but I have failed this city.”
Last time we saw Arrow, Ricardo Diaz (Kirk Acevedo) had just revealed to Cayden James (Michael Emerson) that he was the mastermind behind his son’s death – before promptly stabbing Cayden in the neck. However, this week, features absolutely no Diaz, and there’s no need really, as Team Arrow and Team Canary are more than capable of tearing each other apart on their own.
Following the death of Cayden James, all eyes are on Oliver (Stephen Amell) as the mayor, when the city finds that the $70million the master hacker extorted from them, is yet to be returned. Backed into a corner, Oliver vows that the money will be back in the city’s account in the next 48 hours – the problem being, Cayden’s bank account has been emptied, by none other than Black Siren (Katie Cassidy) in one of her many disguises. God only knows where she’s keeping all these wigs.
However, Oliver isn’t the only one trying to track Laurel down. Still out for blood over the death of Vince (Johann Urb), Dinah (Juliana Harkavy) is following close behind on the trail of Oliver’s investigation, eager to be the first to get to the woman responsible for her heartache. We know, however, that Laurel hasn’t simply disappeared. Following the fight with Dinah, that left a bullet in her side, Laurel was dragged away to safety by her pseudo-dad Quentin (Paul Blackthorne), who is eager to uncover a part of his daughter within her doppelgänger. But, when Oliver broaches the subject of hunting down Black Siren to retrieve the stolen cash, Quentin jumps in to offer himself as bait to lure her in, and shows us all what a truly horrific liar he is at the same time.
With the group at odds, Dinah wants her side to be the first group to track down their missing songbird, and when Curtis (Echo Kellum) pulls out a convenient new invention that allows them to see Black Siren’s movements in the area she was last seen, they find tyre tracks from the vehicle that took her away. Though in doing this search, Dinah leaves behind a footprint that Team Arrow mistake as evidence of her being the one to take Laurel. So, Oliver and company show up at the Helix base in full costume – why they do this doesn’t really make sense, as Dinah, Curtis and Rene (Rick Gonzalez) already know who they are – and they demand that Dinah give them Laurel.
In an act that goes way beyond anything Oliver has done before, he points an arrow at Rene’s throat, as John (David Ramsey) shoots smoke at Dinah and Curtis so they can search the place – of course, turning up nothing, as Laurel isn’t there, which Oliver would have known if he had noticed that Quentin was obviously lying about Laurel whereabouts, like his sister did. Yes, Thea (Willa Holland) takes it upon herself to follow Quentin to a cabin in the woods, she discovers him nursing an injured Laurel inside, and immediately calls her brother to alert him of the situation.
And all comes to a head when the two teams face each other in a fight that will likely ensure that the team is severed for the foreseeable future. With Oliver and team trying to help Laurel get away from Dinah in exchange for the return of the $70million, they must fight against a vengeful Dinah and her teammates who seek to stop Laurel from leaving Star City without punishment. However, past arguments come to the forefront again, and the team’s fighting becomes less about Laurel and more about the spying and suspicion that led them to where they are, coming to blows with people they once called friends.
The fight leaves one member in critical condition, and sees Laurel escape with the money, but the real damage comes in the form of Dinah’s team permanently severing ties with their former compatriots. Oliver’s priorities in the recent weeks have left Rene, Dinah and Curtis unsure of whether they can trust him, and it seems that Oliver’s side feel the same way. Though the this begs the question – how will the two teams go forward? Can there be two vigilante teams working in the same city, or will Star City’s heroes spend too much time fighting amongst themselves to save anyone else?
Elsewhere, trouble is on the horizon for Oliver, and Diaz has people inside the police force, ready to build a case that will destroy Star City’s mayor, and Laurel makes a decision that will likely have serious ructions for Oliver, Quentin, and the rest of the vigilantes.
A great return to form for Arrow, as the tension between the two vigilante teams makes for some excellent action sequences, and a brilliant dynamic which drives the story forward. With the two teams torn apart, it seems that Ricardo Diaz’s plan is working perfectly, and should he try to take Star City now, there wouldn’t be enough to oppose him. Next week sees the return of Colton Haynes’ Roy Harper, but what will this mean for the remainder of the season?
Rating: 9 out of 10