Arrow -- "Penance" -- Image AR504b_0170b.jpg -- Pictured (L-R): Stephen Amell as Oliver Queen and David Ramsey as John Diggle -- Photo: Dean Buscher/The CW -- © 2016 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
ReviewsTelevision & Film

Recap: ARROW Needs to Pay Penance for This Dumb Episode


Episode 504 “Penance”
Written by Brian Ford Sullivan & Oscar Balderrama
Directed by Dermott Downs

[photos: The CW]


I debated whether or not to even bother with a recap this week, because it’s such a stupid episode. But in the interest of completeness…

From The Incredibles:

“Mister Sansweet didn’t ask to be saved. Mister Sansweet didn’t want to be saved.”


The only bright spot in this episode was Felicity (Emily Bett Rickards) and Rory (Joe Dinicol), where they figure out how to muddle through the fact that each of them reminds the other of a terrible terrible thing. Rory offers to keep Felicity from beating herself up, and Felicity helps remind Rory that he’s fighting in honor of his father.

Other than that, it’s a dumb episode.

Team Arrow 2.0 foils a robbery where some punks are stealing Kord Industries tech. Wild Dog (Rick Gonzalez) blows the op, spoiling it for Artemis (Madison McLaughlin), who was supposed to take the shot. In the ensuing fight, Mr. Terrific (Echo Kellum) gets his bell rung pretty good, and it’s only the fact that Green Arrow (Stephen Amell) is baby sitting do they recover the tech.

Which happens to be low-ball, off-the-shelf computer chip hardware that you can buy anywhere. Why steal it? Because Tobias Church (Chad L. Coleman) has rigged it to explode from within the SCPD’s evidence storage room, blowing a hole in the side of the building and giving them access to the Amertek weapons cache stored there. In the process, Quentin (Paul Blackthorne) and District Attorney Adrian Chase (Josh Segarra) get slightly injured.

Now Church has big guns.

The reason all of this has gone down is because Oliver went with Lyla (Audrey Marie Anderson) to break John (David Ramsey) out of a high-security military prison using just them. Oliver infiltrates inside while Lyla cracks the computers and security systems from a “borrowed” C-130 that she just happens to know how to fly and just happens to have at the ready.

I’m sorry. John Diggle didn’t want to be rescued. Now he’s not only a wanted felon, but he’s a wanted felon on the run from the United States military. I have no idea what knowledge of military operations Brian Ford Sullivan & Oscar Balderrama may or may not have, but I’m pretty sure this particular scenario not only violates the laws of logic, but also the laws of physics, the laws of time, the laws of nature, the laws of the U.S., probably the Military Code of Conduct, and the laws of entropy.

It was a dumb, stupid plot.  And it brings me one step closer to deciding that Arrow has outlived its usefulness as a launchpad for other shows.



Arrow airs Wednesday nights at 8/7c on The CW.


Jason P. Hunt

Jason P. Hunt (founder/EIC) is the author of the sci-fi novella "The Hero At the End Of His Rope". His short film "Species Felis Dominarus" was a finalist in the Sci Fi Channel's 2007 Exposure competition.

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