Arrow-City of Blood


By Ashley Binion (@ashleybinion)

In “Seeing Red,” the heroes suffered a crushing defeat and “City of Blood” didn’t hesitate to show the emotional side of loss and heartbreak.

Warning: Spoilers ahead.

Fundamentally, Arrow is a series that prides itself on its action sequences. In any given episode, there are typically about three action sequences. For a series, it takes real guts to step away from a formula that is proven and effective. Arrow took a big step back from its action sequences, only having one in the episode, and transformed itself into this well-made, character-driven drama. The gamble paid off and showed that Arrow is much more than a fun action and superhero show; it has heart.

Not only did the series shy away from action, Oliver wasn’t seen on screen until 15 minutes into the episode. Very few shows would keep their lead actor off the screen for the first third of an episode. Oliver being absent spoke volumes. It showed how devastated and broken our hero is.

Stephen Amell was exceptional in this episode. He tends to play the character as closed-off with a dash of hope for himself and his city, which is typically seen through his body language (the stiff and non-moving arms anyone?). But, in this episode Amell played him without that sense of hope and fight, and instead he created a distraught and dejected version of the hero that was compelling to watch.

The line about “being a hero is having to die so others could live” is such a red herring. I feel like we should be starting a death pool. Even though Moira died in “Seeing Red,” there has to be another death on the horizon. And are we to believe now that Moira was a hero? After all she did to the city and her children, including even trying to make up for it by running for mayor. But really, Oliver shouldn’t put too much weight on that saying, considering it came from Ivo.

My one problem with this episode was Laurel inserting herself into Team Arrow. She just appeared in the Foundry and started acting like she was a part of the team. She’s not; at least not yet. It made me so proud when Ollie told Laurel that it started with the three of them (him, Digg, and Felicity) and it was time they got back to that. Team Arrow has gotten out of control with how many people hang out down in the Foundry. Going back to the core three – not really by choice as Sara left and Roy is too crazy to function – was a touching sentiment.

Felicity and Diggle interrogating Blood’s bodyguard was so entertaining. Much like the bodyguard sitting in the chair, I thought, “Here we go; Digg is going to beat this dude up.” But nope, sweet Felicity steps in and gets the information they needed in her unorthodox way. “Hi, I’ll be your interrogator.” Classic.

It looks like Oliver is still keeping things from Digg and Felicity. Having another lair that no one else knows about was a double-take moment. It makes sense to have another place lined up in case the Foundry was compromised, but keeping it from those two? Not cool. Now that Verdant is being shut down, it looks like this second location will get some action.

Poor orphan Thea. She’s going through something terrible with losing her mother, job, boyfriend, and home. It can only go up from here. The scene where her brother was telling her goodbye was so sincere and moving. Thea really is the best of the Queens. Her only real problem shown on screen was her bout with Vertigo in the first season. Besides that, she has been the one with the most light and the purest heart.

I don’t know if I’m just starting to see things, but it looked like Laurel was wearing an Aquaman necklace during her scene in Blood’s office.

Did you like this emotional episode as much as I did?

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

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