Us Olicity shippers have had to endure a lot of angst, and after a little reprieve in last week’s episode, the angst returned in full force in “Suicidal Tendencies.” But then we got this…
…and it reminded me that everything will work out in the end…eventually.
“Suicidal Tendencies” had everything one could want: a Dyla wedding, Olicity eyesex, Suicide Squad, Olicity angst, Deadshot, Oliver owning Ray’s ass. And then it had something one would not want: Ray Palmer.
Overall, I enjoyed the episode. What’s not to love about Diggle, Dyla, the Suicide Squad, Deadshot, Cupid, and of course Olicity? But there were parts that really irked me, including the pacing of the episode. There was so much that the writers tried to cram in in just 45 minutes, that it resulted in Diggle and Lyla’s wedding lasting just four minutes. Four freaking minutes. They deserved better than that.
Also, if I already didn’t heavily dislike (translation: hate) Ray Palmer then this episode sealed the deal. It felt like the writers forced Oliver and Felicity to prop up Ray’s character for no reason whatsoever. And they deserve better than that. (Also, what was with Ray’s severe case of pink eye? I couldn’t stop staring.) But those things aside, this was a good episode that really hit me emotionally (I’m looking at you, Floyd Lawton).
Three paragraphs in and I can already tell this recap is a hot mess of rambling. Just call me Felicity Smoak. Let me try to get on track…
In “Suicidal Tendencies,” there were two distinct story lines: the Suicide Squad and the Arrow vs. the Atom. But both of those story lines could be broken up into subplots, which were heavy with emotion and left me emotionally compromised. Arrow is at its best when it’s making you feel. And they certainly accomplished that on multiple levels.
The Man We Call Deadshot
Heading into this episode I believed the Suicide Squad portion of this episode would be mostly about Diggle. And it was, to an extent. But it also served as background into Floyd Lawton. We got to see flashbacks to Floyd before he was Deadshot.
Deadshot has grown to be a character that I really like. I understand that he’s not a perfect character — that he’s killed, including Diggle’s brother Andy — but after the Suicide Squad episode last season and getting that small glimpse into his past (and his daughter, Zoey), you sensed that Lawton was once an honorable man that went astray. Villains aren’t born evil. They’re created.
So getting to see into Lawton’s past was very telling. Almost immediately I understood part of why Deadshot is the way he is: he was in the army. Being in the military changes you, and for some people it ruins them mentally. And we got to see that heartbreaking side of Lawton as he struggled with PTSD, yelling at his young daughter and threatening his wife with a gun.
Eventually we get a shot of Lawton in prison and a mysterious woman approaches. No, it’s not Amanda Waller. It’s someone from H.I.V.E. That’s right, H.I.V.E. And the woman says their organization is in need of his services…and is willing to pay handsomely for them. Lawton’s first target? Andrew Diggle. Dude, I cannot wait for this storyline to unfold with John Diggle next season!
The Suicide Squad Rides Again
So what was the occasion that so cruelly interrupted Diggle and Lyla’s honeymoon before it even began? Apparently, Amanda Waller needed to send the Suicide Squad and Lyla to Kasnia to rescue a senator. But it turns out the senator set this whole thing up so he could play hero and eventually be President of the United States. Um…okay. But now the hostages are witnesses, so Diggle, Lyla, Deadshot and Cupid have written their death warrants.
So the Suicide Squad has to find a way to save the lives of those innocents, as well as their own. Turns out the senator has a bomb rigged to blow and that puts everyone in danger.
There’s a really great scene between Diggle and Lyla as the two hash out how they’re risking their daughter becoming an orphan. How they always fly in a separate plane so as to not endanger they both die. They’re doubting that they can live this life of danger and still have a family. They’ll ultimately agree that they can’t keep putting their family in danger. Lyla resigns from A.R.G.U.S. and Diggle initially insists he leave Team Arrow. But I don’t see that happening (it’s all about the spoilers, man).
Deadshot interjects on that previous conversation in Kasnia and plays the role of Oliver Queen, insisting that, no, you can’t live this life and still have a family. But you know what, he’s wrong. Both him and Oliver are wrong.
This ultimately sets up one of the most heartbreaking scenes in the episode when Deadshot sacrifices himself to ensure that Diggle and Lyla get home to their daughter. And what can I say about Diggle and Lawton’s relationship. They’re not friends, but they have a mutual understanding and seem to genuinely care about the other. (I’m not crying, you’re crying).
Deadshot remains in his location, shooting down enemies to help the hostages and Diggle, Lyla and Cupid escape safely. Just as the bomb is about to blow, Deadshot pulls out a photo of his daughter and wife and quite frankly I’m sobbing. And then the bomb explodes. As do my tears.
It’s amazing how the writers can take a character that we all hated and make him one that we loved; but most importantly, an honorable one. In all honesty, I don’t believe Deadshot is dead. This is Arrow, we’re talking about. Unless I see a body, I don’t believe anything. Here’s hoping because this is one character that I sinceriously love. (How is it that a murderer like Deadshot is more likable and honorable than a supposed “hero” like Ray Palmer?)
Robocop/ Poor Man’s Iron Man/Atom
This week also served up what was hyped as an epic showdown between the Arrow and the Atom. In all honesty, it fell way short of that hype. Mainly because there’s no way I’ll ever believe that Ray Palmer can best Oliver Queen. It’s just not believable. At all. Also, Ray basically electrocuted Roy, tried to electrocute Oliver and all it took for Oliver to take him down was an arrow to his battery pack and a kick to the chest.
So what led us here? That’d be Ray’s belief that the Arrow is a villain and not the hero that he truly is. He’s still on edge about the whole Mirakuru army attack that killed his fiancée, which is understandable, but it turned into this whole vendetta on taking down an innocent man who’s done nothing but save this city.
Ray said he hated the Arrow because he brought danger to the city, but in all honesty, what makes Ray any better than Oliver? Ray is an untrained hothead who flies around in a supersuit and puts the city — and himself — in danger. Let’s not forget that he electrocuted Roy (which btw, is Roy okay? He has to be, right? We’d have heard about that).
There was also an undertone in regards to Felicity (see below section). Both are men that want to help Starling City. And both are men that care deeply (and one that loves) Felicity Smoak. One of them knows Felicity best, do I need to spell it out for you who that is? (O-L-I-V-E-R)
After Oliver beats Ray’s ass, he aims an arrow at him to show that he’s won. Ray taunts him by saving, “So, kill me. Go ahead. Show Felicity the kind of man you really are.” Oliver lowers his bow: “I have nothing to prove to her.”
In the end, Oliver proves to Ray that he’s not a killer (duh) and encourages Ray to trust Felicity. Because if there’s anyone that knows Felicity best, it’s Oliver. That’s basically what this episode proved tonight.
Oliver and Felicity Finally Talk About Their Feelings
If there’s one thing that this episode proved it’s that EVERYONE knows that Oliver and Felicity are in love with each other. Including Ray Palmer. I mean, it’s hard not to feel bad for the guy when he flat out asks his (girlfriend?) if she has feelings for Oliver and she says “yes” without hesitation. Like, I hate the guy, but then I feel so bad for him that I start to laugh. Don’t worry, folks, this Raylicity crap will be over soon. Mama Smoak is coming to town next week to help her baby girl realize her true feelings.
This season, Oliver and Felicity have had a ton of angst, but the thing is that they never talked about it. And that hindered their relationship. While there was angst in bulk in this episode, Oliver and Felicity FINALLY discussed their feelings.
While I wouldn’t say that Oliver was Team Raylicity at the wedding, Oliver told Felicity that he wanted her to live a normal life. Translation: He wants her to live a life where a vigilante isn’t putting her life in danger. So while Oliver wasn’t particularly happy with Felicity being with Ray, he understood it and was somewhat okay with it because Ray was a “normal guy.”
That all changed when Oliver learned that Ray wore a super suit and was trying to save the city. This was the first time that they really discussed their relationship; where Oliver finally opened up about why we can’t be with Felicity. He’s not okay with Felicity being with Ray now that he’s the Atom. Translation: Oliver is not okay with Felicity being with Ray now that he’s flying around Starling City as a poor man’s Iron Man putting her and the city in danger.
Oliver basically harkened back to what he told her earlier: He just wants her to be happy with a normal life; a normal guy; someone who won’t risk her life. But Oliver will soon realize that that’s not what’s important here. What’s important is living your life to its fullest RIGHT NOW because no one is promised tomorrow, whether or not they’re in a relationship with a superhero or an accountant.
The good news is, Oliver and Felicity are finally talking about their feelings. This will ultimately lead to them coming back together, realizing what they both truly want (to be with each other), and they will fight for it. Both of them.
Now, as far as the ending of that episode. If there’s something I learned it’s that being the mayor of Starling City will only lead to your imminent death, which was proven when Maseo shot and killed the mayor with an arrow through the heart. Then we get a shot of Maseo aiming an arrow at Felicity. What happened to him? I understand that he’s loyal to Ra’s, but what happened to Maseo the man? WE WERE ROOTING FOR YOU, MASEO!
But because I’m an expert when it comes to spoilers, I know that Felicity won’t be hurt here. Apparently it’s Ray that is critically injured. Nice try, Arrow, with your fancy angles and attempted cliffhanger. Maybe next time…
What’s On Our Minds…
1. This Episode Showed Why Oliver/Felicity Work and Why Felicity/Ray Doesn’t Work
This episode showed the juxtaposition between two relationships: Oliver and Felicity & Felicity and Ray. One of them is not like the other. One is based on foundation, trust, understanding, love. The other is merely two weeks old and consists of a lot of finger pointing on the Iron Man-wanabee’s account. While Oliver and Felicity were at odds for a good portion of the episode, they still never waved in terms of supporting the other (see above gifs). They know each other better than anyone.
Then on the other side you had Ray yelling at Felicity, saying he can’t trust her, when she tells him that Oliver is not a killer. I’m disappointed that Felicity was the one to reach out to him and not vice versa there at the end. After Ray flat out accused her of being dishonest and not being able to trust her, I’d have thought it’d take some serious apologizing on Ray’s part. But have no fear, this Raylicity ship is fastly approaching its destination in the form of an iceberg.
2. DEADSHOT BETTER NOT BE DEAD
I don’t believe it. I refuse to. No body, no death. That’s the rule of Arrow and television in general. Plus, Deadshot is one of my favorite guest characters and there’s so much to explore with the whole Diggle and H.I.V.E. storyline.
3. Diggle and Lyla Deserved a Wedding Longer Than 4 Minutes
Look, I understand TV time, I do. But come onnnn. Diggle and Lyla’s wedding was barely a blip on the radar of this episode. They don’t normally get a lot of screen time. This was their moment. And it barely got recognition. I wanted more (and someone other than Ray officiating).
4. I’m Totally Shipping Deadshot and Cupid
What can I say, you don’t choose the ship. The ship chooses you. She’s insane, and he’s crazy. I loved everything about these two, the banter, the humor, Deadshot saving Cupid, and Cupid’s reaction to Deadshot’s death* (*because I don’t believe he’s dead)
5. Diggle is Not Leaving Team Arrow
It’s just not gonna happen, okay? I refuse to accept it. Plus, we’ve all (well, some of us) seen spoilers and behind the scenes pictures that suggest otherwise. Just saying.
6. Ray is Gonna Get Himself and Other People Killed
Ray is a walking time bomb. He’s dangerous. Why doesn’t he seem to understand that? Ray has even less training than Laurel, which makes him incredibly problematic and dangerous to himself and those around him. Including Felicity. So to quote Diggle, “If you hurt her, they’ll never find your body.”
6. I’ve Missed Shirtless Oliver Like You’ve No Idea
The gifs speak for themselves.
NEXT TIME ON “ARROW”
Episode 1×18 “Public Enemy”
Wednesday, April 1, 8/7c on The CW
Arrow airs Wednesdays at 8/7c on The CW.