Ensemble shows are a tricky thing. Arrow has fleshed out its cast exponentially since the early days, so it was sort of ordained that somebody would get the short shrift, and this season that straw’s been thrown to Laurel. I don’t like at all that she’s been left permanently adrift since Tommy’s death, and plotless of late, and last week’s episode was on the heavy-handed side as it threw her a story bone but also weighted her down with a full-blown pill and booze problem that left her rudderless as nobody believed her about Blood.
Everything comes to a head when Laurel’s visit to see Blood’s mother is followed soon after by her death from a “heart attack,” although we know Blood had her killed. The near-exposure puts him at odds with Slade, who gives him an ultimatum to clean up the loose ends or he’ll do it for him. So Blood’s answer is to have Laurel’s apartment raided and her stash discovered, which gets her arrested. It’s Oliver who (even though he doubts her, too, dammit) comes through for her when Quentin is just devastated that she’s seemingly inherited his addictions.
Soon after Oliver takes her home, and before we get any sort of real heart-to-heart, Blood’s team knocks him out and Laurel is damsel-in-distressed again until Oliver saves her as the Hood. Then, to add insult to injury, her boss shows up and fires her.
After all that goes down, Blood’s all smug until Slade takes out a team of Blood’s bodyguards and associates and warns Blood that he’s next if he doesn’t get his act together.
Meanwhile Roy still keeps changing (in tandem with flashbacks to Slade on the island that also take a moment to float the idea that Sarah liked Oliver first and Laurel knew and made a play for him before Sarah could) and he confesses the serum injection to Sin. When he puts a man in the hospital and accidentally knocks Sin to the ground, he realizes he’s out of control. Thea finally tells Oliver she’s worried that Roy isn’t himself so Oliver checks in on him and sets the gears in motion to teach him to manage his transition.
So, I think Laurel’s had enough, and I don’t know what they have planned, but I hope Katie Cassidy still likes going to work every day, and that there is something better coming down the pike for Laurel when Blood is revealed (and that it doesn’t involve them killing her off — I know nothing; I’m just thinking they’ve written her into a corner). Regardless, Cassidy was fantastic last week — I was exhausted for her when the episode ended. I love when they put her in quiet moments opposite Amell and Blackthorne. Let’s see more of that, please.
Tonight, Roy becomes Robin to Oliver’s Batman (I think). Here’s a sneak peek at “Tremors.”
Photo courtesy of Jack Rowand/The CW.