'Arrow' Recap: Those Closest to Oliver Hurt Him the Most

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Arrow Recap: Trust
Arrow: Stephen Amell David Ramsey
Oliver and Dig Battle it Out Over Trust Read More »

On this episode of The CW's Arrow, Oliver (Stephen Amell) finds himself pitted against a new enemy that has just arrived in the city, as well as a couple people that he knows a little too well. In the end, it may be those closest to him that hurt him the most.

Warning: Spoilers ahead if you haven't seen Wednesday's episode "Betrayal"

I know I normally have a list of things I loved, things I found so-so and even, on occasion, things that I found no that good. This review will be a little different, because honestly I can't think of one thing that I didn't love about this episode. First of all there was the villain, Vanch (David Anders). Once again, they gave us a villain with the personality and wit to stand up to Oliver. It doesn't hurt that this particular villain was played by the same guy who I adore on Once Upon a Time, but I digress.

Next there was the story of Quentin's Quentin (Paul Blackthorne) betrayal of Laurel (Katie Cassidy) by using her for bait to capture the man he still insists on calling the vigilante. Seems like everyone in the city has accepted the fact that The Hood is a good guy. But as Laurel rightly pointed out, her dad is just looking for someone to blame for the deaths of the people that he loved. When she is then kidnapped by Vanch, I was very happy to see that Quentin was smart enough to call in the The Hood (aka Oliver) for help. It makes me wonder if the two of them can enjoy a truce of sorts now.

Then there was the story of Diggle Dig (David Ramsey) doing his best throughout the episode to convince Oliver that Moira (Susanna Thompson) was up to no good. I know he's had a rough time of it and just wants to have some semblance of a normal life, but after a while even I wanted to slap him silly for not seeing the truth. Dig following Moira around - even going so far as to have her bugged so that Oliver could listen to her conversation with Malcolm (John Barrowman) - that was fantastic. The final scene, where Oliver descends upon his mother's office and delivers to her the same speech he gives to all the bad guys in his city blew me away and I can't wait to see how that's going to continue in the next episode. Watch it again above.

Even the flashbacks to Lost island (sorry, that's what I'm calling it in my head now - I keep waiting for a polar bear to show up) were great. Oliver goes where Yao Fei (Byron Mann) sent him, apparently to get some training from Slade (Manu Bennett). Now, we're finally starting to see Oliver changing, seeing the first inklings of who he was going to become. All this time, I assumed that Yao Fei trained him but it looks like it was Slade. Nice twist, that.

Buzz Moments

OMG!: Oliver blasting his way into his mother's office.

Thank you, TV gods.: Quentin calling Oliver for help when Laurel was kidnapped.

Awk-ward: The moment Laurel discovered that her father had been using her as bait.

Hotness: Oliver systematically taking down every bit of security that Vanch had, even as Vanch was describing it.

Fab-u-lous: Vanch's I-just-got-out-of-prison/rockstar outfit in his first scene. Loved it.

Can. Not. Wait.: For the opening scene of next week's episode, to see Moira's response to having The Hood bust into her office.

Celebuzz Meter (1-10): 10. An episode that I loved from beginning to end? Oh yes, that gets a 10 for sure.

What do you think is going to happen when Oliver, as Arrow, confronts his own mother about all the things she's been doing? What did you think of Vanch as the baddie-of-the-week?

-- Michelle Carlbert

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