Arrow: Irreconcilable Differences

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Didn’t we just do a Thanksgiving episode? Shouldn’t it be cold or something?

Given that at the end of the big crossover, Felicity and Oliver got married, the title “Irreconcilable Differences” was a bit troubling. I admit, I was wondering if this was going to be the shortest hero marriage ever. Instead, well… you’ll see. The voice over is back to the old one of Oliver as Green Arrow.

The show opens at a reception/party for the happy couple. Amusingly, William and Thea are about the same height, which we see as they argue a bit over him getting to try a sip of wine. After a few random scenes, Felicity makes a big, and surprising, entrance, accompanied by her mother, Donna, and father, Noah. I admit, I wasn’t expecting to see Noah again, this world’s version of the Calculator, and essentially Felicity’s opposite number. Rene, Curtis, and Dinah are enjoying the open bar, although Curtis is moping about his wedding and divorce. Dinah says life with one person is boring and unrealistic, then leaves after getting a text. Rene and Curtis watch her go and agree she’s been acting strange lately.

Quentin turns up and does something very sweet for Oliver. Curtis is still drinking, and manages to catch Felicity’s bouquet. Later, he babbles a somewhat incoherent speech, until, with some great team work, Rene takes the mic and Diggle takes his drink. Rene then gives a really nice little speech. Thea dances with Rene, although she’s a bit distracted and says she was hoping to see someone. That could be her missing boyfriend Roy Harper (rumored to return later this season) or her father Malcolm, who was killed off screen then possibly brought back in the same way. After a somewhat awkward scene between Donna, Noah, and Quentin, Lance gets a call and finds Oliver with some disturbing news. According to Oliver’s attorney Jean Loring, someone is turning against Oliver and testifying for FBI fanatic Samanda Watson. And it’s someone on the team.

Adjourning to the Lair, Oliver can’t believe this is happening. They talk briefly about Evelyn Sharp, but it’s not her. Diggle joins Oliver and Felicity, who are not spending this party night like they hoped to. Felicity starts running surveillance on Curtis, Rene, and Dinah. Oliver is positive it’s one of those three.

Rene brings a very drunk Curtis back to his place, which Curtis calls the Dog House. Curtis babbles a lot, and Rene is remarkably patient. Curtis wonders if life would be simpler without Team Arrow, and Rene agrees it would. Curtis finally passes out, giving Rene some peace.

Dinah meets up with Vince, the civilian identity of the Vigilante, and her former partner and lover both. They argue about methods and innocents being harmed Vigilante’s way versus what Team Arrow is doing. Dinah warns him that he needs to stop what he’s doing, and that if she sees him again, she’s not going to let him get away.

Quentin escorts Thea home, over her protests. Unfortunately, Black Siren is there and says Caden James wants a word with Quentin. Thea tries to resist, but her time in a coma, and retirement before that, don’t have her in the shape she used to be in as Speedy.

The surveillance has already turned up a few surprises, and Oliver and Felicity try to determine what to do about Dinah meeting with Vince/Vigilante. Diggle arrives and tries to defend her to them. Thea staggers in, telling them about Quentin being taken and with a cell phone that was left for her. James calls and demands they steal something for him from ARGUS or he’ll kill Lance. Oliver plans out what to do next, and says he’s not using Dinah until they know where her loyalties are.

The team does a very Mission Impossible-style raid at ARGUS and manages to steal James’ toy. Dinah comes in as they’re gearing down and wonders what’s been going on without her. Oliver confronts her about meeting Vigilante, and she’s upset about being spied on. Understandable, but not quite the point. Tempers flare, Dinah quits, and the others realize they, too, have been under Watchtower’s eye. Then one of them finally admits to being the informant.
They had an understandable reason, but Oliver’s not in the mood to listen and throws them out.

There’s an odd scene with Quentin and Black Siren. They go over the similarities and differences in their lives. Quentin actually seems to be getting through to her a bit. Caden James comes in, essentially to remind them that if Green Arrow doesn’t honor their deal, she’s supposed to kill Quentin.

While a portion of the team debate food choices and what to do next, Oliver gets a visit from Thea, who is also worried about Quentin. Thea makes a pitch for Oliver to forgive the informant, which he isn’t really interested in. She does convince him he needs the whole team to get Quentin back.

The team meets up for the exchange, and everyone’s on edge. Green Arrow goes to meet James for the handoff, while the others are supposed to be backing him up. As James dictates terms, and things go back and forth, Wild Dog and Mr. Terrific get bored and wander off to find Quentin against orders. James somehow knows the device has been rigged just by looking at it, which doesn’t make a lot of sense. A major fight breaks out with all sorts of surprises. I will say I like Oliver’s latest upgrade to his bow. Finally, due to another surprise from somebody, they manage to get Quentin to safety, although Caden James gets away. Again.

The debriefing from the mission goes really, really badly. Oliver reads them the riot act for not following orders, and Wild Dog isn’t going to listen to him. Finally, after a lot of bickering, Wild Dog, Black Canary, and Mr. Terrific all quit. Dinah goes back to Vince, and Rene finally gets some time with his daughter. Oliver, Felicity, and Diggle debate what to do next, and things are looking bad for the team. This means it’s essentially Oliver in the field, Felicity on tech, and Diggle on the injured list.

The final scene is one surprise after another. We learn how James is staying one step ahead of the team. Then, one by one, they bring out what could be a minor version of the Injustice League, or in this case, Team Anti-Arrow I guess. Oliver and whoever is left by his side are going to have a rough time after the season break.

What I liked: The reception was good. I really was touched by what Quentin did for Oliver there, and enjoyed everyone getting to have some fun for once. While she was talked about, Agent Watson didn’t show up, and I’m always glad to see that happen. The team at the end looks very formidable.

What I didn’t: Black Siren trounced Thea way too easy, even with all the excuses. The team breaking up seemed a bit forced to me. I’m really sick of everyone seeming to get to know everything about Team Arrow at any given point. Enough already.

On another note, as I write this, I’ve just learned that DC Comics management has gone back on themselves once again. The showrunners have recently been quoted as saying that, due to plans for the movies, they are once again no longer allowed to use Deathstroke, so we likely won’t be seeing him anytime soon. While I think the decision to separate the movies and tv shows is foolish, the constant back and forth about what the tv shows can and can not do is worse. Make up your mind, DC.

The episode was decent, if not great. I’ll give it a 3 out of 5. We’ll see what chaos ensues when they come back from winter break.

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