“Guilty” did a great job of blending past and present together in a fun way, as we learned that Ted Grant was the original Starling City vigilante before Ollie showed up. Unlike him though, Grant’s venture ended rather abruptly. But when someone with Ted’s pedigree (aka a boxing style) started killing gangsters, one had to wonder if he really stopped.
The true core of “Guilty” was about the relationships between Laurel, Grant, and Ollie. As Ollie didn’t like that Grant was training Laurel, especially when it was at her request. As season two noted, Ollie has a blindspot for Laurel, as his desire to keep him safe sometimes trumps his trust of her. That played in full as the episode went on, and it was really good stuff.
The parallels continued when we find out that Ted had an apprentice as well, one that went too far in an act of “justice” and caused Grant to hang up the vigilante act.
I found this story very true to what Ted Grant is as a character, both in the show and via his comic book counterpart. Ted really would’ve been a guy to fight dirtbags in the backstreets of his city. He’s very much like Batman in that regard (note: Wildcat is actually one of Batman’s trainers in the comics), but unlike Batman he knows when to hang it up. That didn’t stop him from trying to save the kids who needed him though, which is why he does his boxing clinic if you will. You can tell he does like helping people, including offering advice to both Laurel and Ollie when he felt they needed it. Good form Ted.
However, the other big storyline was the “did he/didn’t he?” question with Roy. Did he kill Sara? Or was this something else? This honestly could’ve gone either way in terms of believability and impact. I liked how they had Felicity show that it was indeed possible that Roy on a Mirakuru episode could’ve thrown the arrows hard enough to cause the injuries that killed Sara. Cause as we find out, the arrows were put into her with force that couldn’t have come from an average archer and bow. An interesting tidbit to note going forward…
It would’ve been very easy for Roy to hold onto this information until he was sure, but more interestingly he told Ollie and Laurel straight up, which shows how much he’s grown as a person since we first met him. He was willing to accept their judgement and the punishment that came with it. But it was still nice to hear him say the line, “Don’t abandon me.” to Ollie, as it was clear Ollie was thinking about it because of what Diggle had said about cutting him loose.
Thankfully, it wasn’t Roy who killed Sara. As we find out that his mind was remembering what happened in “Seeing Red” when he killed the police officers. It was good that he found out, as this will probably be something he uses to up his…Arsenal…in regards to motivation and redemption.
The flashbacks were again simple, as Ollie and Mateo tried to pick off a courier and his message for China White. This ended up with Katana (come on, just call her that, you know it’s going to happen!) helping Ollie with a memory exercise to find out where the message was dropped. We haven’t much of her since episode one of this season, so it was good for her to come back. It was also good to see her displeasure with the situation in regards to Ollie. If her origin goes the path its most likely heading, one has to wonder how these feelings will affect who she is.
My main problem with this episode was mostly in the flashbacks, as we’re no closer to finding out what the heck the point of this year of flashbacks is. By this time last year we already knew about Ivo and Sara and their need for the graves and Mirakuru. But we know China White is in the future (present), so the endgame can’t be her death. So was is it then?
Also, the Ollie/Laurel chatter hit some very worn upon points. Ollie cares for Laurel, he wants her safe, she’s her own woman, we’ve heard it all before. Hopefully with her now again defying him this will lead to some more fresh conversations.
In the end, “Guilty” was a very good episode that fleshed out a new character and set a couple duos up for some interesting storylines going down the road. And with an ending that promises something…lovely? The surprises might not be done just yet.
Oh yeah, and they finally used a boxing glove arrow!!! EPIC!!!