Arrow: Streets of Fire
By:Ashley Binion (@ashleybinion)
Whew. Just watching “Streets of Fire” was exhausting. The pace of the episode could only be described as frantic. Everyone, hold onto your quivers because this ride just got bumpy.
Warning: Spoilers ahead.
Even though these last three episodes of season two have been aired separately, the trio could have easily been viewed as a two and a half hour movie. That’s how seamless the storyline has been so far. “City of Blood” ended abruptly on the cliffhanger of Oliver and Laurel getting trapped in rubble and “Streets of Fire” ended as Thea shot a gun.
Just as expected, Malcolm returned alive and well. My only problem with his return is that John Barrowman was so underutilized. If you’re going to have Malcolm make his dastardly return, make it count. I felt a little cheated for him to only share scenes with his daughter and no one else. Thea’s reaction to his return felt like a genuine response. Not only did she think he was dead, she had a right to not want him in her life. When he was around, he wasn’t a good dude.
Felicity was made of win this entire episode, from hitting Isabel with the van to her pep talk with Oliver. Just for a second I thought a kiss was going to happen between the two in the clock tower, but then a hug. Still, I will take a hug. Olicity has been firing on all cylinders in both “City of Blood” and “Streets of Fire.”
Laurel has had a major personality transplant in the last couple of episodes of season, but in a good way. And, it looks like she might become the new district attorney. (R.I.P Kate Spencer.) It’s about time Katie Cassidy gets some good material to work with. Laurel’s scenes with Sara were dynamite in this episode. On many occasions, Oliver has tried to tell Sara that she’s now a hero, but she has pushed his sentiment away, claiming that she’s only a murderer. But, one conversation with Laurel and she goes and saves a kid from a burning building. It felt rushed, but now at least she’s known as The Canary to the citizens of Starling City.
Finally, I get to refer to Papa Lance as Detective Lance. It took him the entire season, but he finally got that detective shield back.
The thing I love about Slade and Isabel’s destruction of Starling City is that their motives have been clear: pure revenge. Other villains, namely Malcolm and Blood, did their deeds to better the city. It was an attempt to blur the lines between hero and villain and make them redeemable. In his current state of crazy, if there’s one thing Slade isn’t, it’s redeemable. He has gone as far as to demolish an entire city to take down one person.
And what is with Isabel actively trying to kill Felicity? It’s not like there has been any reason for her to want to kill her. I mean, it’s Felicity, she can do no wrong. How dare you try to kill her. But Isabel did kill Blood, so she at least got one kill in for the episode.
Blood’s death wasn’t surprising at all. Once he “redeemed” himself by giving the cure to Oliver he was no longer relevant. Even to the end, he was so delusional to think that the citizens of Starling City would continue to let him be mayor. Oliver’s disbelief at his statement mirrored my own.
I was so ecstatic that the season one catch phrase, “You have failed this city” finally came back around, but this time Oliver was using it on himself. I really missed the then-vigilante’s slogan, so to hear it being used again was a nice callback to the first season.
The island flashbacks dragged down the episode. Usually, the island stuff is a nice change of pace, but when there is so much going on in Starling City I hate leaving it to see a shaggy-haired Oliver.
Rating: 4.5 out of 5