Saturday, May 6, 2017

Arrow: "Underneath" (5/3)

Hooray for metaphors indeed!
As expected, this was a "use being trapped to work out the larger issues of the season" episode, and by and larged, it worked pretty well. Or as well as it could under the circumstances.

As mentioned in otherrecent episodes about this season, the big running theme throughout the season had been exampining and re-examining the morality/ethics of the actions of Oliver and the rest of Team Arrow over the years. The only problem with that is that the moral compass of Arrow over five seasons has been all over the place, so any examining of it is just going to reveal a lot of contradiction and hypocrisy.

Some of that, to this episode's credit, is addressed. Especially when it comes to Diggle and Lyla. Equating what Diggle does for Team Arrow with what Lyla does as the hed of a shadow government agency isn't the strongerst argument, especially when Team Arrow has made plenty uf use of ARGUS' extrajudicial resources o several other occasions, but it at least hints at the complexity and contradiction.

Felicity and Oliver's trust issues are similarly complex, similarly contradictory due to inconsistencies in the writing over hte past year, similarly handled about as well as they could be given the circumstances. The only problem is that the flashback-heavy rekindling of the Oliver-Felicity relationship throws even more cold water on the already anemic Felicity-Billy relationship, the end of which supposedly drove Felicity to EXTREME MEASURES.

At least, compared to last week, the answer of "who's right" boils down to "both and neither and fuck it we're doing the best we can and vigilanting is hard", which would be a nice new thesis statement for this part of the show going forward as opposed to the usual WB tropes of ANGST AND SECRETS AND GUILT.

Plot-wise, Chase is going after Oliver's Secret Son, which is a shame, because I enjoyed not thinking about the Oliver's Secret Son plot almost as much as the show enjoyed not bringing it up.

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