This week, the Arrow Round Table participants discuss "Identity."
Issues on the docket include the return of China White, the introduction of Bronze Tiger, when Oliver might choose a name for his new heroic persona and what Slade must be feeling about Oliver and Shado on the island.
Pull up a virtual chair and join staff writers Kate Brooks, Carla Day, Nick McHatton, Carissa Pavlica and guest Hank Otero from Hank's Entertainment Site for this vibrant discussion, while sharing in the conversation by dropping your thoughts in the comments.
What was your favorite scene/quote from the episode?
Kate: The first scene with Felicity when Oliver told her she was going to be her new secretary. "Would you like a cup of coffe?" and "No, that's not happening, ever!" We got some major sass from Felicity all episode but specifically in this scene. They're giving her so much more. I just love it.
Carla: The final scene when Laurel ambushed the Vigilante. I never saw that moment coming. I don't understand her train of thought of turning on him. It doesn't make any sense, so I can only attribute it to grief. The lack of logic in blaming him though provides the opportunity that he can turn her around.
Hank: That's easy, the Hood meeting up with Roy in the alleyway. The writers have done such an excellent job developing Roy Harper. Laurel Lance could really use a little love from them as well. What the heck is wrong with her this season? The creators of this show are going to have to work overtime to make me like Laurel Lance, even if she eventually becomes Black Canary.
Nick: I'm all in on that ending. I wasn't the biggest fan of Laurel going to work at the DA's office, but her set up of the vigilante was cunning and smart. A close second is Laurel's sweet and protective nature of Oliver when he never showed up to his party. If only she knew the real reason he didn't show...
Carissa: I loved Oliver, Felicity and Diggle going at it over their new identities. Especially when Diggle told Felicity she had it easy as Oliver's Gal Friday, since he was stuck as his black driver. His delivery during that moment was so perfect. It really put everything into perspective. I also dug Diggle's line to the bad guys, "Healthcare has enough problems without you punks."
How did you feel about China White and Bronze Tiger showing up?
Kate: I really enjoy having villains that give The Hood a run for his money. They challenge him.
Carla: I love that the show continues to bring China White back as a villain. I hope she's not in prison too long. With new villains showing up, a consistent foe provides continuity. The introduction of the Bronze Tiger was a bit of a let down. He wasn't horrible or anything, but not particularly memorable.
Hank: I always like it when the recurring baddies make an appearance. Bronze Tiger is a great character, I hope we see much more of him. This episode felt like a tease, as far as that character.
Nick: Their revisit didn't do much for me, just underused mostly. They didn't provide that much of an obstacle. Just mostly filler for Oliver to show his change of attitude in regards to justice.
Carissa: If it was my show, I wouldn't have brought in China so quickly after the reveal of Black Canary, given their ridiculously similar appearance. Additionally, Bronze Tiger was underutilized, so I assume we'll see him back again in the future, and he'll have to be introduced all over again. I thought it was a bit of a fail.
What did you think about The Hood's offer to Roy?
Kate: On one hand, I thought it was great that he told him to stop fighting, you know for Thea's behalf. But I also think that Roy can only stay out of the fight for so long.
Carla: It's perfect. It fulfills Roy's desire to work with him and keeps Roy from getting beat up on the street. Oliver is helping Roy and Thea at the same time. And, it brings Roy and Oliver one step closer to working together. And, the red arrow!! Awesome.
Hank: I agree with Kate, trying to keep Roy out of harm's way is the decent thing to do, but will he stick to the plan? Like I said, really enjoying Roy's storyline.
Nick: It's a very good first step, but I'm not picturing Roy going along with his predefined role for very long. I'm assuming he's going to veer off the tracks quickly and begin trying to be a hero again.
Carissa: It was nice of him to toss Roy a bone, but considering what Oliver has accomplished with Felicity in the field, he shouldn't have written him off as a desk jockey so easily. Roy really stepped up while Oliver was feeling sorry for himself on the island. Maybe a little superhero tryout wouldn't be such a bad idea. At least if he properly trained him he could feel comfortable knowing Thea's man was safe. Well, safer than he will be when he hits the streets alone again. Because he will. Oliver should know how hard it is to sit on the sidelines once you've tasted the success of a win. I know he'll come around eventually, I just hope it's not after Roy has been hurt or Thea has been taken hostage or something more serious, because they're a great couple.
Were you surprised The Hood didn't decide on a new name yet?
Kate: I think he needs to make more of a difference first, in his "new" ways before he can make that change.
Carla: In the final moment of the season premiere, Oliver selected a new name -- Arrow. It wasn't spoken, but implied when he held up his arrow and looked at it. Though, it was hilarious to hear China White call him "Emerald Archer." That's better than "The Hood," but not as awesome as "Arrow." At some point, it will be said out loud and it will be another memorable moment.
Hank: When he stared at that "green arrow" last episode, it reminded me of Malcolm Merlyn suggesting that as a name for the vigilante. Maybe Oliver still thinks the name is "lame"? He definitely needs to work at not killing for a bit longer, before taking on a new name. China White called him the "Emerald Archer" which was very cool. Who knows, maybe he will take on that name for a while?
Nick: I disagree Carla. The implication isn't that he's chosen the name "Arrow" now, but rather the show continuing a theme set up before: Oliver looking at his arrows for answers. Oliver views them as his greatest strength, and his best asset against adversity. There's a lot of maturity Oliver still needs to gain, both in being a hero and being Oliver Queen, before he can even don the pseudonym of Arrow, let alone Green Arrow, and he's simply not at the point this early in the season.
Carissa: I had totally forgotten about Malcolm suggesting the name Green Arrow and Oliver calling it lame. I wonder if he'll eventually assume the moniker to spite Malcolm in some way and prove he can be better than what Malcom believed him to be. I don't know in the comic lore if there was a single defining moment when he chose the name, or if there will be on the show, but it will be very symbolic when he uses it for the first time. After the cut shot in the premiere, I thought maybe they might discuss it, but what Nick said makes sense. He looks to his arrows for answers.
What do you think Slade is thinking on the island as he is there with Oliver, Shado and their new relationship?
Kate: At this point, I can't tell if he's jealous of their relationship because he has feelings for Shado, or maybe that they have each other and he has no one. He could also just be annoyed that these two young kids are going to compromise him getting off of that island. I think, whatever the situation may be, is going to lead to a lot of bitterness and tension.
Carla: I don't think he's jealous. His only reaction about it has been when it has put them at risk. Slade won't tolerate his life being put in danger because they act impulsively due to their relationship. Oliver has to keep his feelings in check or he'll face the wrath of Slade.
Hank: Well they're certainly making it seem like Slade is jealous. Could this Oliver/Shado relationship be what turns Slade into an enemy? I'm honestly not sure, but it's going to be interesting to watch the island stuff unfold this season.
Nick: I didn't see any jealously (yet). Right now I think Slade's primary concern is keeping both of them safe and useful, and they won't be either of those if they're making out behind a tree.
Carissa: Slade does seem jealous, but that doesn't mean he's jealous of the people involved, but that he doesn't have something like that of his own. After all, there are only three of them. Awkward! While I do think he'd prefer their head be in the game at all times, the look on his face when he walked upon them on the lake seemed a bit more personal in nature. Maybe he wonders how in the hell such a dufas can get the girl. On THAT island at THAT particular time, I'd be choosing Slade - and Oliver (and his hair) would be walking up on us in the lake. Just sayin.
Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer and critic for TV Fanatic. She's a member of the Critic's Choice Association, enjoys mentoring writers, cats, and passionately discussing the nuances of television and film. Follow her on Twitter and email her here at TV Fanatic.