There is only one more episode of Arrow this season and a greater plan has been set into motion. Through deception and desperation, the most unlikely of alliances has formed. Though is everything that follows going according to plan or horribly wrong. Here’s everything you need to know about this week’s Arrow before we take on the Season 3 finale.
The Meaning Behind “This Is Your Sword” :
There’s a chance that if you were wondering about why this episode is called “This Is Your Sword”, you were going about it all wrong. Unlike other episodes where the title points to a certain phrase or theme, this episode actually falls under a different rule – something a little more fun. You see the penultimate (second to last) episode of every season of Arrow is named after a Bruce Springsteen song. “Darkness on the Edge of Town” and “Streets on Fire” all followed this formate, and now so does “This Is Your Sword”.
Though there actually is a little bit of reasoning as to WHY this specific song title was chosen. Sure we see Katana return – in full costume – with her sword and Ras al Ghul has a preference for using swords, but it’s actually the lyrics of the song itself that paint a picture of what’s going on right now.
In the days of despair you can grow hard,
Till you close your mind and empty your heart
If you find yourself staring in the abyss
Hold tight to your loved ones and remember this
These lyrics basically sum up Oliver Queen’s whole plan and mentality – which I’ll get to in the next second. Oliver Queen knew he was backed against a wall and Ras was going to win, so he had to “empty his heart” and pretend to turn on those he loved. We all saw the torture that Oliver went through as part of his ‘training to become Ras’, but during his time “staring in the abyss” he held on to his loved ones and remembered who he was. As the song also says, he will “Hold tight to [his] promise, stay righteous, [and] stay strong”.
It’s All Part Of The Plan:
Just as last week’s episode set-up was meant to show us that Oliver was gone and has no hesitation in killing his friends, this weeks opening showed that he was indeed in control. As Ras explained that Maseo’s gift to him was the Alpha Omega virus, we see Oliver’s eyes snap open in disbelief. Though if this wasn’t enough confirmation that our Oliver – that’s right Felicty, OUR Oliver – when we saw him meeting with Malcolm all began to make sense.
This is why Malcolm supported Thea leaving Starling a few minutes earlier. He knew from the start what was coming, but sadly they didn’t expect it to happen this fast. Initially Malcolm assumed that the transformation would take a few months and Oliver could use that time to start dismantling the League from the inside. Well their schedule is moved up and Oliver needs his friends to come in and stop the virus attack.
Of course this all turns out to be a trap set by Ras who wanted to find who was the traitor in their midst. What follows was some quick thinking on Tatsu’s part because by blaming it on Maseo – who is now dead – it pairs well with how he betrayed Ras barely 2 episodes ago. Though just as Ras seems to buy this lie, Malcolm seemingly gives Oliver up. This leads Ras to force Oliver’s hand and kill them with the Alpha Omega virus. Betrayal or not?
Well considering how much they’ve been focusing on redeeming Malcolm as well as the moment he saved Laurel knowing she wouldn’t do the same, I don’t think Malcolm was betraying. Additionally, we have to realize that all of this was an elaborate plan concocted by Malcolm and Oliver while Thea was in the hospital. As Malcolm once told Oliver, only the pupil has the chance to defeat the master. This means that the plan to make Oliver the pupil of Ras is still foremost. So why turn Oliver over then?
Well we won’t know that till next episode, but we can be sure that it was all a part of the plan. Considering the virus caused fever and internal bleeding – and we see none from Team Arrow – it seems like that was just knock out gas. Could Oliver have swapped the vials? Then again, perhaps The Flash arrives with the cure – since STAR Labs mad a cure for things last time. Whatever way they get out of it, everything is still working according to plan, and Ras thinks the competition is dead – making next week the perfect episode to spring the trap.
When Ras questioned Oliver on his loyalties, Oliver said that if this was all a lie to what ends would he be lying? There is nothing left for him in Starling. The Arrow is gone and his friends hate him. This was of course a good way to convince Ras that he’s faithful, but we have to remember that he WILL face those challenges when he returns. He’s played with everyone’s emotions so much this second half of the season and betrayed their trust quite a bit. Just like when Arrow returned after the midseason trilogy, Oliver is going to have to get used to a very new team dynamic.
Rapid Fire – Easter Eggs, Quotes & More:
- By now we should know that Atom is getting his own spinoff series, much like The Flash last season, and this episode began setting the groundwork for that as Palmer began the process of turning over the company. This is the first step for him leaving as well as Oliver getting his company back.
- With Roy giving Thea the Arsenal costume back, it’s hard to know if she will take the costume OR if she will make her own.
- Maseo’s death certainly brought about tears, but it was also oddly peaceful as he has now been freed from his prison. I wish he could have recovered and gone back to his old ways, but as Tatsu said, he’s been gone and alone too long.
- Is it just me, or does anyone else cringe every time Felicity says “MY Oliver”? Seriously, calm down with the Olicity stuff.
- In other news, Laurel is really kicking tail with her new Canary Cry now. Also she took on multiple League Assassins. Can we finally start giving her some due respect fans cause she’s more than earned it.
- Just like how the gang member lead Diggle and Laurel to their base, Oliver and Maseo led Shrieve’s men to their hideout in the flashbacks.
- Regarding Nyssa bearing Oliver’s child, “And you will have no more say in it than your mother did”… Well Ras certain wins the father of the year award (yes, sarcasm)
- “So now Malcolm really can summon us, I really don’t like the idea that he can summon us” – One of my favorite Felicity quotes this episode
- “He’s a mass murdered who has lied to us so many times it should be a drinking game” – The other favorite Felicity quote of this episode.
- Nyssa’s mother is named Amina Raatko
- Oliver’s new name upon marriage Ibn al Xu’ffasch – Son of the Demon, but in the comics that name was used on the child of Bruce Wayne and Talia al Ghul (son of the bat)
- When Felicity threw her tablet like a throwing star, does that hint that she has some skilled blood in her OR did that really just “make no sense” lol
In next week’s finale we will see the final battle against Ras as well as the Flash come to Starling to help. Whether the crossover planned for The Flash will take place before or after this battle remains to be seen. Either way, it’s going to be a fun week of shows. So stay tuned!