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TV REVIEWS: FTN Reviews Arrow Season 7 Episode 7: The Slabside Redemption

November 27th, 2018 by Todd Black Comments

We all knew eventually that Oliver Queen would get out of prison. The only question was would it be with a bang, or a whimper. Barry Allen’s time in prison most definitely ended with a whimper, and it did so in half the time that Arrow did with its first half of the season. So I’m happy to say that “The Slabside Redemption” was most definitely a fitting end to the story arc.

We knew Ricardo Diaz was coming, we just didn’t know how big he was going to get in his quest to kill Oliver Queen. Sure, we knew that he was going to let the prisoners loose, but was that it? Oh no, it was not. This was arguably Ricardo Diaz at his most dangerous, because unlike in Season 6, he was completely unhinged here. Not angry, unhinged. He wanted Oliver to suffer, and nothing else. And he would do it too.

Hearing him rally the inmates to get the riot inmates was fun, and then to see him go postal on people, including Oliver, was really great.

But what I don’t think anyone expected was the team-up between Arrow and Bronze Tiger. This might be confusing to some, but in the comics, Bronze Tiger is one of Batman’s greatest allies, and friends, and so it was cool seeing him embrace his hero side in order to help Queen, and himself. I don’t know if this will lead to anything long-term, but for now, it was appreciated.

The fight choreography for this episode was very good, including a lovely dual-layer fight scene that featured Oliver in one spot, and Turner in another fighting off inmates in their own styles. I wish they kept this “Daredevil-style” one-camera shot more often, especially in the final fights with Diaz, but I guess it was too much to hope for.

The ending was very powerful, as we saw Oliver put Diaz in the cell that Diaz ironically put him in. Even though he wanted to kill him, badly, he couldn’t, he knew it wasn’t right. That death would be too easy a punishment for what he did. And, it also gives him a chance to return should a new story arise.

Unfortunately, “The Slabside Redemption” had one major flaw: Stanley. Dear gosh, I want him dead. Just when you thought that his murderous turn would lead to something good, we get instead a sniveling psycho who is basically a fanboy of Arrow and wants to be like him, and be Oliver’s “best friend”. It was annoying, and pathetic, and then somehow this idiot kills Brick? You know, the guy with the unbreakable skin? How does that work?

Hopefully, this goes somewhere meaningful, because if he turns into the new “big bad”, I’m going to be so disappointed.

Thankfully though, Oliver is out, and Felicity and Diggle were there to meet him as he got out in a great shot (that’ll anger Olicity haters, but whatever). And now…life goes on…but how? That’s the intriguing part.

“The Slabside Redemption” was a very good ending to the prison arc, and no matter what happens the rest of the season, I’m glad that the Arrow team committed to this storyline inside and out.

4.5 out of 5 nerds

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Todd Black is reader of comics, a watch of TV (a LOT of TV), and a writer of many different mediums. He's written teleplays, fan-fictions, and currently writes a comic book called Guardians (guardians-comic.com). He dreams of working at Nintendo, writing a SHAZAM! TV series, and working on Guardians for a very long time!