As the old saying goes, “the calm always comes before the storm”; and considering last night’s episode of Arrow was entitled the calm, the show perfectly followed that style. Trouble is coming to Starling City and after two terrorist attacks in as many years, we have to wonder what new threat will arise. Though thankfully, new heroes have risen too. So let’s suit up and take a closer look at this Season 3 premier.
As the episode begins, we find that despite Oliver Queen being poor, homeless and fighting to regain control of Queen Consolidated, everything else is going excellently. Team Arrow is a well-oiled machine now that Roy has joined in full and they have some newly upgraded tech. Additionally, Oliver and Felicity finally went on a date together and it was as adorable as we’d always hoped it’d be. Beyond that, the Arrow and Laurel are working together to put criminals away; and the police department has now officially recognized The Arrow as a hero. It seems like crime and corruption in the city is about to finally fade away; but as good as things might be, a few drops of rain begin to fall.
As the episode progresses, cracks start to form in this perfect picture: Oliver pushing Diggle away due to impending fatherhood, Thea being ‘away’ yet not being specific or sending any photos to show what she’s doing, Captain Lance putting himself in danger, Oliver realize he and Felicity can’t work, etc. Though one of the biggest complications comes when businessman Ray Palmer hacks Queen Consolidated and is making a huge push to steal Oliver’s company away. It’s almost all downhill from here.
As Oliver and Roy break up Zytle’s gang and disarm and explosive, it seems like things might clear up and go back to being happy when Sarah returns. We refuses to say why she’s in town; but it appears to be a mission for the League of Assassins. At the very least, it’s not a pleasure visit; and is absolutely there for something. Sadly, that something led to her shocking death.
Sarah Lance/Black Canary’s Death (Part 1) – Who Did It?
Judging from the Black tipped arrows, it appears as though the Dark Archer – Malcolm Merlyn – has returned. Though this explanation might be too easy. Maybe it’s because I remember him as the traitorous Agent Shaw from Chuck; but I do not trust Ray Palmer one bit and feel like he might somehow be connected here. Either way, it’s almost certain that this Assassins was a member of the League of Assassins at some point or another. This could also explain how Sarah knew him – as we heard her recognize him and thus be taken off guard.
Sarah Lance/Black Canary’s Death (Part 1) – What Happens Next?
Sarah’s death will clearly have emotional repercussions for Oliver, Laurel, Captain Lance and even Felicity a bit. Though there is another repercussion that would spell the worst repercussion of them all. If we remember Season 2, Sarah and Nyssa al Ghul were lovers and Nyssa went to some extreme means to bring her back. So when Nyssa finds out about Sarah’s death, there will be hell to pay.
Worse still is if her father Ra’s al Ghul gets involved. His daughter was able to convince him to let Sarah go and break the code. So if Nyssa talks her father into burning a path of destruction through Starling City to find a killer, you can be sure he’ll do anything for his daughter. We don’t know how Oliver knows of Ra’s al Ghul – perhaps this will be explained this season – but we do know that his reputation as being an unstoppable force is well known.
Fear the Past/ Fear Yourself:
As one of the most recurrent ‘nemeses’ in this series, it was important for this season to start off with the return of Vertigo in some shape or form. Though this time it had an added fear bonus – *refrains from making any Scarecrow comments*. Though a strange thing happened once Oliver was hit with the fear dart, he saw . . . himself?
For a long time Oliver has struggled with who he is. Is he Oliver Queen and is the Arrow his mask, or is he the Arrow and Oliver Queen is his mask? This ultimately leads to his and Felicity’s fast break up; but you have to wonder if there is more to it. Is he afraid of himself; or is he afraid to let himself be normal? Well this season’s flashbacks might just shed some light onto that case.
While at dinner with Felicity, he talks about how he used to see people as either threats or targets; but that’s not exactly how Lian Yu was – where people were either friend or foe. It seems as though Oliver might be talking about his time in Hong Kong where he found himself forced into the employ or A.R.G.U.S. by Amanda Waller. What happens here and why he he was recruited will be explored this season; but if Waller is willing to massacre the family of one of her best agents just to keep Oliver in line, then you can be sure this could very well lead to the side of Oliver that he is afraid to face.
This Season is sure to be an emotional rollercoaster – especially the next one dealing with the immediate fallout from Sarah’s death. Additionally, we can expect a few Flash/Arrow crossovers, so I can’t wait to see those. Will Oliver Queen ever be happy? What does A.R.G.U.S.’s past have to do with his present? And HOW was he able to afford such a super high tech folding bow. This and more will be answered this season!