If you haven’t checked out my recap of last week’s episode of Arrow, “The Magician“, be sure to do that. If you aren’t caught up on Arrow, then holy crap, spoiler alert. There is a doozy of a spoiler to talk about, so be warned. This week we got a peek into Felicity Smoak’s life pre-Queen Consolidated, and it turns out that while she was in college, Felicity was a dark and broody hacker who, along with her boyfriend and her boyfriend’s buddy, created a super-virus capable of destroying even the most intricate and highly guarded systems. I’ll be honest, the fact that Felicity was once a Goth hacker, or “hacktavist” as she called it, was not at all surprising to me. The fact that she created a giant super-virus? Also not terribly surprised. After all, she’s been calling herself a hacker for some time now.
Sure, she’s using her powers for good with Team Arrow, but who hasn’t done stuff they regretted in college? Dating the wrong guy, spent too long on the wrong major, or hacked into the United States government in an Robin Hood-esque attempt to eradicate the nation’s student loan debt? Youth…
In this week’s episode, Felicity’s super-virus is used by an unnamed hacker to hold Starling City hostage via cyber attacks. Felicity owns up to the virus being her creation, and says the hacker behind the cyber attacks must be her college ex’s friend, Myron. She promises that her ex, Cooper cannot be the one behind the attacks. At this stage of the episode we’ve seen a few flashbacks which told us Cooper was arrested after the attempt to wipe out all US student loan debt. So Felicity’s present vagueness regarding Cooper’s inability to be behind the Starling City cyber attacks made me think two things:
1. He died in prison.
2. He didn’t actually die in prison, and is behind the attacks.
But I digress…
This episode also introduced us to Felicity’s mother, Donna.
Turns out Felicity was raised by a ditzy, flashy-dressing, cleavage-baring type woman. While Mama Smoak was portrayed as “dumb”, I really think her intellect is really more on par with “normal” since they were pitting her intelligence against her daughter’s. So while Mama Smoak was initially brought on as a stereotypical “dumb, buxom blonde” we do get glimpses into her character that prove she is incredibly strong, she’ll do anything she has to for her family, and she loves her daughter deeply.
Of course, Felicity and her mother are two highly different individuals, which causes a bit of tension between the two.
Felicity ultimately realizes that her mother’s sudden trip to Starling City was a setup. Someone wanted Felicity’s mother to be in the same room as Felicity. Just as Felicity realizes this, they are kidnapped and taken to a bunker where the hackers are held up. The leader of the hackers, “Brother Eye”. Turns out, Brother Eye is actually–gasp–Cooper!
I’m shocked! You mean…
…to tell me…
…someone thought to be dead…
Okay, so if we didn’t already, Arrow loves to use the “surprise, I’m not really dead” thing a LOT.
Anyway, it turns out the NSA faked Cooper’s death, and instead enlisted him to secretly help them monitor threats. When Cooper finally got out, he was heartbroken to find his first love totally selling out, working a steady 8-5 at a giant corporation. Realizing she’s left her hacktavist days behind her, he sets Felicity’s mother up with a trip to Starling, kidnaps both of them, and threatens Felicity’s mother to force Felicity into helping his cause. Of course, because Felicity is brilliant, she’s able to digitally send up red sparks, get Ollie’s attention, and get rescued.
The moral of the story?
The episode also shows us a bit more of Laurel’s training. She is still working hard at the gym, but apart from getting what is most likely a super intense workout, her actual fighting skills aren’t really improving.
Though she still hasn’t told her father about Sara’s death, she decides to tell her trainer what is going on. He says he finally knows the best way to train her, and I continue wondering WHEN WILL SHE BECOME THE CANARY?!?!?
Now, for the huge, huge, HUGE spoiler I mentioned at the start of the episode? Which, if for some reason you’ve been reading this, aren’t caught up, and don’t want to hear the big spoiler, TURN BACK NOW!
Roy has been having trouble sleeping. He’s been having really, really awful dreams. In the last minute or so of the episode, we got to see what specific dream been keeping old Roy up:
This is just a dream, right? Did Roy really kill Sara? Did he do it because he had some residual Mirakuru in him–makes me wonder seeing how he hurled the arrows at Sara rather than using a bow like a normal human. Is this dream even a real thing? Is his subconscious playing games wit him? Is someone else playing games with his subconscious? Most importantly: how can they think ending an episode like this is okay when we have to wait an entire week for answers?!?
What did you think of the episode? What’s your take on Roy’s dreams? Let me know in the comments, and check out the trailer for next week’s episode below!