Arrow S:04 E:20

Episode Title: Genesis
Originally Aired: May 4, 2016

If it weren’t for a very surprising and unexpected resolution to the Diggle brothers’ storyline, this week’s show would have been an outright mess. That’s bound to happen when the emphasis shifts to a pair of unwelcome tropes and the unneeded return of the nearly series’ crippling Olicity.

Let’s start with the good. The Diggle subplot had a sudden and largely shocking conclusion as Diggle killed Andy. Diggle kept holding on to a fading glimmer of hope that he’d be able to save his brainwashed/twisted brother, but there would be no Darth Vader redemption for Andy. Hopefully in the remaining few episodes, the writers will touch on exactly what made Andy so committed to Damien Darhk’s cause even at the cost of his family.
Andy lured Diggle on a sprawling chase through Star City in a complicated scheme to locate Lyla, who was in constant movement on a mobile headquarters aboard a flatbed truck. Smart way to stay on the move. Lyla warned Diggle he was being so consumed with Andy that he wasn’t thinking straight and was acting like the man she divorced. We haven’t seen this more reckless side of Diggle and it was good to see how strongly Laurel’s death affected him.

While Green Arrow tangled with Darhk, Diggle went after Andy with the intent to bring him to justice. Andy wouldn’t cooperate though as he continued to goad Diggle by saying eventually he’d track down and kill Lyla and Sara. Realizing there was no saving Andy and not wanting to see his failure to act result in another loved ones’ death, Diggle shot and killed his baby brother.

arrow genesis - andy and hive troops.jpgInterestingly, he lied to Lyla about how it occurred, which I’m guessing was to spare Lyla from hearing the threats on their daughter. Darhk did accomplish his goal – grabbing access codes to nuclear devices, which he plans to use to wipe out the population. Good thing he’s got a HIVE shaped dome at the ocean floor to observe the chaos.
For some reason, when confronted with the weirdest bed and breakfast ever, the battle-trained death-dealing Thea resorted to frantically running around HIVE’s last resort on Earth. Maybe that would have been understandable if she immediately fled upon being drugged, but Thea came across real goofy here.

After a welcome reprieve from Oliver/Felicity romantic tension/drama, the writers fell back on to it this week as Felicity accompanied Oliver to learn magic defense spells from an ally of John Constantine. It was a major bummer Constantine himself couldn’t appear and his replacement barely seemed interested. Felicity was back to cracking jokes and being the annoying ray of sunlight in Arrow’s otherwise bleak universe, which feels much more appropriate considering everyone else is still grieving for Laurel.

Despite failing his Yoda lesson, Oliver is able to counter Darhk’s magic by focusing on things that give him hope and light namely Felicity. Will this finally bring these two crazy kids back together after mere weeks apart? Green Arrow was a better character being the CW version of Batman, not this lovelorn guy who needs an army to help him accomplish what he used to do alone.

Knowing Darhk’s endgame and with another Team Arrow member unable to assist, it’s down to the three originals to stop HIVE. Hopefully this old school approach will result in an enjoyable home stretch.

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