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Greetings, Arrow Squad! In the hopes that you’ve neither abandoned us, nor the show, the hosting trio is back with another installment of the podcast. In this episode we cover Arrow Season 4 Episode 17 “Beacon of Hope” which originally aired on Wednesday March 30, 2016. This episode of Arrow featured special guest star Emily Kinney, a.k.a. Brie Larvan, a.k.a. Bug-Eyed Bandit! Brie Larvan first appeared on Season 1 Episode 18 of The Flash, when Felicity and Ray (in his Atom suit) showed up in Central City to get a little advice from S.T.A.R. Labs. If you were wondering about Brie’s comment: “You never forget the hacker who put you in prison,” then this episode of The Flash is the one you want to check out.
Beacon of Hope
There was no shortage to references to this week’s episode title. Even within the divided group, there was a champion for being a beacon of hope to Star City. After an upsetting episode in the week prior, I was happy to see the characters digging their hands in and finding level ground once again. Tracking the reactions and responses of our Arrow Squad community over the past two seasons, it seems very evident that they’ve been shaking things up and we’ve simply been waiting for the dust to settle. Attribute it to lack of attention to the show, to lack of direction for the character, or to whatever you want, I’m not afraid to say that Arrow will never “go back” to what we got out of season 2. Like life itself, this show is evolving and unless I can find a way to evolve with it, I’m never going to have fun watching this show again. And I don’t want that!
The shift in Arrow definitely came in season 3. There was a different air about the show after defeating Slade Wilson, after Oliver began responding to Felicity’s not-so-subtle urging to change his manner of dealing with criminals, and especially after the fall-out with Ra’s Al Ghul. Oliver’s mission changed from righting the wrongs of his father to becoming a symbol of hope for the city, which naturally means giving the people a reason to root for the masked vigilante.
As disappointing as it is to see Felicity’s character respond more strongly to the lie he told rather than to the overall change Oliver’s character has gone through in the last 3.5 seasons, this episode did help me see one of the fundamental differences between the former lovers’ personalities. While it made sense, Felicity was a great Overwatch; but her draw to the whole ordeal was more to Oliver than it was to the life in general. She liked helping people, and when she convinced Oliver to return to Star City it was as much because she was going stir crazy as it was wanting to fulfill a purpose. But when she and Oliver split, it was like…her future goggles cleared away the smoak and she saw a world of opportunity.
I don’t know what the end game is, here, but I wouldn’t mind seeing Felicity take Palmer Tech in a direction that can supplement the work Team Arrow does. While Green Arrow, Spartan and Black Canary keep the streets safe, Felicity uses Palmer Tech to draw people back in and make it a city where people want to live and thrive. A city has to have life from multiple angles, and perhaps working alongside one another, if not necessarily together, is a good direction to take these characters.
At their core, Oliver and Felicity look at the world in a much different way. Perhaps the writers wrote them into a relationship because it was what the fans wanted, but also wanted to demonstrate how sometimes even the things we want in life aren’t always the best things for us. Sometimes we don’t realize it until we’re totally immersed. But we can all pick ourselves up and find purpose again, we just need to believe in ourselves and surround ourselves with others who believe in us as well.
Links Mentioned In This Episode
Season 4 Episode 18 “Eleven-Fifty-Nine”
** Arrow will be taking yet another hiatus the two weeks following April 6.
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