Arrow – S05E09 What We Leave Behind

After an amazing mid-season finale of Flash, I was excited to see what Arrow could toss up. I really loved the Arrow episode in the crossover last week so I was already in a positive place with the show. I’m not sure how much that impacted me this week but either way, I loved this episode.

I’m going to start with something small but it’s something I really loved in this episode and that was acknowledging the events that happened last week. From memory, we didn’t get much of that in the Flash, so to see the characters from Arrow, which for the most part is the most human and grounded show, acknowledge what had happened and Barry’s changes to the timeline was just a bit of attention to detail that I really liked sprinkled through this episode. My favourite reference to it was when they were discussing if Barry could just go back in time and stop Prometheus and Wild Dog answers that Diggle might end up with five kids.

We got a lot of Prometheus this episode and I loved it. I really like how we are starting to get deeper into who Prometheus actually is. Without going too much into it because I really have no idea who to place my bets on, I really like how they have started to head down a route who they think it is. Whether or not they keep to it, we will never know, but it is starting to give Prometheus a human side to him. What is making Prometheus such a good villain is that he is the perfect match up for Oliver. We’ve seen in hand to hand combat, they are pretty much equal. What makes Prometheus stand out though is his planning skills. I don’t think we have really gotten a villain that is so prepared and uses it’s opponents negative side against them. While Arrow is very much a series about physically dominating villains (apart from last season’s magic which eventually became useless and Darhk became a physical fighting villain), it’s nice to get a villain who what’s to play the mind games and use emotion to win out.

I absolutely loved the flashbacks this episode. I think the main reason for that is because we got to see flashbacks to what I think are background events in season 1. I don’t remember if those events were ever apart of the main story line, but judging by the appearance of Diggle and Oliver, I can only assume that these scenes were filmed now. I really loved how we jumped between the flashbacks and the presents days, and they acted as memories for Oliver rather than there own separate story line like they usually do. I loved the sequence when Oliver is going through the building and they keep flashing back to when he was last there and the fight sequences he had. I thought that was a really great concept and worked perfectly with this season’s overall theme of having to face the consequences for your past actions.

I think what made me enjoy this mid-season finale so much was how it contrasted to the finale for both The Flash and Supergirl. Both of them ended on positive notes, even though there is still trouble going on, they both sit in a comfortable place right now in their story lines. Arrow does not do that. We get to the end of this episode and everything has gone to hell. Curtis has been dumped, Felicity’s boyfriend has been killed and Diggle has been caught by the police. We are going to enter the second half of this season in a much different place to where we were prior to this episode.

There is of course one big talking point coming out of this mid-season finale, and that is the return of Laurel. This of course sends speculation treads wild on how it is possible and if it is really her.When Laurel was first killed, I believed that she was going to stay dead and even now I still believe the writers will stick to that. Personally I think it is Earth 2 Laurel. I’ll probably have to go through some previous scenes to look it over, but from physical appearance, this Laurel had a harder edge to her than what I remembered about Earth 1 Laurel. Earth 2 Laurel was that harder edged appearance through the way her hair was and the clothing and accessories she wore. I’m sure it will be one of the first things they address when the season resumes, but at the moment I’m not buying into it being our Laurel.

Overall, a fantastic episode. This episode has left us in a place that sets up so much for the season going forward and because of that makes me want to get to that point as soon as possible. This season on a whole has been fantastic and because of that, this was the mid-season finale that was earned.




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