After a disappointing return last week, I was eager for Arrow to get back to what has made Season 04 so compelling, consistent storytelling with good character moments. And despite some awkward spots, “Beacon of Hope” did exactly that.
First, the bad stuff…FELICITY’S MOTHER!!!! OH MY GOSH!!!!! How does she manage to get more and more annoying with every appearance? That entrance scene alone was grating, then later on when she tries to convince Felicity to talk with Oliver…WHILE THEY’RE STILL ON THE RUN!!!!…was facepalm worthy.
Thankfully, she only lasted like half the episode, and we didn’t see her again. Now, onto the good stuff.
Technically, this was the Arrow debut of Bree Larvan, as she arrived first on Flash last season during “All-Star Team Up”. You could argue that this round was even more intense than her first appearance, as she not only held a building hostage, but her “bees” were much more vicious this go round.
I’m really glad the writers added new twists to Bree and her swarm, as a repeat of Flash would’ve been a waste. The big surprise for me was when they came together to form BeeMan! (“this is why we let Cisco pick the names)”.
What also worked in “Beacon of Hope’s” favor was the divide in the team. Thea and Felicity were trapped in the building, while Ollie, Laurel, Diggle, and Lance had to figure out what to do alone…until Curtis came along!
This may have been an inevitable moment, but it really worked well, as Curtis showed off his geekiness to an extreme as he tried to comprehend everything that was going on. He’s still a ways away from Mr. Terrific, but it’s a start.
I did like how Curtis “excitability” triggered some rage within Ollie, who is still in pain after losing Felicity. It was also interesting that Laurel was the one who helped bring him back to where he needed to be. On one hand, I am happy that they’re still friends to a powerful level, but on the other, I still feel its inevitable that him and Laurel end up back together. If for no other reason than comic continuity of sorts. This may lead to that.
Then there’s Damien Darhk, who got his just desserts in that the HIVE dumped him once his powers were gone and his prison sentence is all but confirmed. It made it all the sweeter that Merlyn was the one who delivered the message. But then to add Murmur back into the mix, and have Darhk all but coerce him into saving his life, and possible getting him out of jail, was brilliant. And that ending with the “Ace in the hole”? Wow…
The flashbacks did a decent job this week, as we saw the Baron reaping the rewards of his sacrifice. I still have no idea how this connects to the present, so hopefully that’ll clear up really quick.
“Beacon of Hope” did a good job getting things back into a groove, and did a surprisingly fun job forwarding the plot. I look forward to seeing how this all plays out.