Arrow – S05E16 Checkmate

After last episode’s reveal that Adrian Chase was Prometheus, I was so excited to be jumping back into this show after a week off. I liked how they last week was the week off because this week starts to kick of the home straight for this season.

I can see already that this review is going to be slightly more towards the negative side. While I still really liked this episode overall and my overall rating is still high, this is an episode for me that should of been a 10/10, but it wasn’t.

I’ll start by talking about Prometheus. While I liked the reveal and I’m really liking Chase as Prometheus, I had a few problems this episode that I thought built from last week. First of all, personally I wanted a whole episode where us as the audience knew Chase was Prometheus. Although we got half of an episode of it last week, I would of liked to see more of it. By having more time like that we could view Chase in a different light before he starts to get all the attention from the team. I thought the Flash did a really good job of that in their first two seasons where we find out who the villain is, and then we get to see the villain in action while our hero is completely unaware.

Sticking to the point of viewing Chase in a different light, I felt like they have been a little to on the nose with the way Chase has acted since the reveal. I noticed this last episode and again this week, but just his general behaviour during his job as DA has had a massive shift from how he was before hand. While this episode was a little more logical because whenever we saw him, it was usually with someone who knew the truth, but even scenes such as his speech had a dark, un-Chase like tone to it.

Moving onto Felicity, I’m liking how they are giving her something to do that isn’t Oliver related. I really like when we learn more back story from our characters and I’m liking how they have turned a bit of her back story into a story arc of this season. While I’m not sure where it is heading in the long run, for the meantime it is at least enjoyable and it serves as a good plot device to get information that is going to future the story.

Touching on the flashbacks, while I’m not hating them, I am slowly starting to lose interest into them. Even though Talia had a big part in this episode, which I will touch on later, I feel like the Bratva story is winding down to a close. If this was an episode where not much happened, I probably would be more harsh on the flashbacks, but because there was enough happening in the present day story, I could give them a pass. Hopefully the flashbacks step up a bit in the next few weeks. Maybe turning their attention onto Oliver returning to the island for the last third of the episodes would build well towards him getting off.

A massive positive for this episode was Talia. I really like when they cross the flashbacks with the modern day story and this episode did that really well. I loved when she was in the flashbacks and I thought she did a great job in the present story. While her role was quite small, I like that it seems as though she is hanging around for a while because it means we will get so much more of her. As someone who is a big fan of Nyssa and for the most part enjoyed when Ras was around in season 3, it’s great to be getting another Al Ghul in this story because I always enjoy when one is around.

Overall, I said a lot of negatives about this episode, however I still thought it was really solid. It might of been the case of expectations verses reality, but I expected this episode to be a bit bigger than what we actually got. There was still plenty of positives however and I am liking how they have started to build towards the end of the season.

8.5/10

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