If you ever been to Vancouver or are likely to want to visit, BC Place (home to CFL’s BC Lions and MLS’ Vancouver Whitecaps) featured very prominently throughout the first episode of season 3. Gate H acted the part of the Starling City Courthouse where Laurel helped put away a Vince Stillgrave that we saw Team Arrow take down in the opening moments of the episode.
In that opening we see Roy in full Arsenal costume totally part of Team Arrow and was an asset in taking down Stillgrave and his illegal shipment of RPGs. Oh and Oliver’s catch phrase “[insert name] you have failed this city” has returned.
When Team Arrow return to the Arrow Cave, every pats each other on the back and Oliver notices that Felicity has brought in a fern. Felicity quips that it is brighten up the place since Oliver now sleeps at the Foundry. Throughout their banter the two are all touchy feely, all of which did not go unnoticed by Roy and Diggle. When Oliver gets a text from Thea claiming she is on the Malfi Coast, this upsets Roy and he goes off on patrol. Felicity also leaves as she has to be at her new job early the next day.
Before Diggle leaves back Layla, Oliver gives Diggle a necklace for the baby that he made out of arrow heads. Oliver is happy that Diggle has someone in his life and Diggle says he can have that too. Oliver states his track record of girlfriends from one joining the League of Assassins (Sara) to one shooting another (Helena and that lady cop from season one that I can’t remember her name).
Back to the courthouse, outside is the newly promoted to captain, Lance, who now walks with a cane, holding a press conference where he thanks Arrow for being the hero of Starling City and he won’t go chasing him anymore so he has formally disbanded the anti-vigilante task force that was supposed to bring him in. Vancouver filming fun fact: Lance’s speech was filmed not too far from Terry Fox Plaza.
Oliver is on hand to listen to this (a gift from Laurel) and he is truly touched by what he hears. Also listening to this is Stillgraves’ associates wondering what are the next steps. A man, Werner (Peter Stromare) emerges from the shadows and announces he wants to lead the group. But Stillgrave’s men object to Werner claim despite him saying that he should lead because he brought a new form of Vertigo back on the streets of Starling City. Werner in facts injects one of the henchmen with the new Vertigo that make him hallucinate his worst fears and he easily takes him down. This gets people to get on Werner’s side and his first act of business is to take down the Arrow.
Later on, as Oliver and Felicity make their way back to the Arrow Cave via the now defunct Verdant entrance, Oliver takes Diggle’s words to heart and asks Felicity out for dinner and of course Felicity being Felicity answers the only way she knows how: awkwardly.
That night, Team Arrow is on the chase of Stillgrave’s associates and Oliver requires Felicity’s help, who happens to be at her new job as a sales associate at Tech Village, a Best Buy type store. Felicity ducks in the back and manages to help guide Team Arrow to where the henchmen have gone while at the same time, Oliver is firming up their dinner plans. Italian is the setting of their first dinner date. Also on the hunt of Stillgrave’s is Lance, who is supposed to be on desk duty and not in the field. I think it was Lance who managed to take down one of the henchmen but I think it was Arrow. Regardless the henchmen is down and Arrow rushes off. Lance asks if he has a hot date or something. When Oliver hears this, he walks away with a smile.
Elsewhere in Starling City, Layla went into false labour and we see the parents to be in quite the panic.
Back at Tech Village, Felicity helps a really good looking customer (Superman Returns’ Brandon Routh) by offering him better tech advice on how to hack something than the router he wanted to buy. This is their meet-cute. We all know that Routh is playing Ray Palmer so lets start calling him that. Palmer tells Felicity that he knows someone who would like to offer her a job as it seems that he knows who Felicity is. After Felicity gives Palmer her tech advice, we then switch to Olicity’s date.
We see Oliver zipline in and quickly changing from Arrow to Oliver Queen. Oliver places his outfit in a vent and proceeds to meet Felicity at their table. Both are quite nervous at this next step in their relationship. By the way, Felicity looks stunning in her dress and Oliver ever handsome. Felicity is quite hilarious here as she comments several times how she has seen Oliver shirtless.
Oliver tells Felicity something she doesn’t know and that he wasn’t always on the island for 5 years but for a time was in Hong Kong. He says his experience on the island and his time away made him not trust people anymore. Oliver recalls his very first meeting of Felicity (season 1’s “Lone Gunmen”) and when he saw her, it was the first time he saw a person.
Hong Kong Flashback
We see Oliver running around the streets of Hong Kong with Maseo Yamashiro (Karl Yune) giving chase. Oliver makes it to an Internet cafe and tries to email his mom letting him now that he is alive and in Hong Kong but before he can press send, Maseo shoots the computer.
Back in captivity, Waller wonders how many times Oliver can escape before he finally accepts her job offer. Oliver says he will keep on escaping so he can go home. Waller tells Maseo that he has to be the one to convince him.
Oliver awakens in the home of Maseo with his wife, Tatsu watching over him. When Oliver tries to leave, Maseo tells him that he can’t because Waller has threatened his family, which includes his son, unless Oliver joins Waller’s team.
Back to the present, as Oliver and Felicity are conversing, up on a near by rooftop is Werner and his men. They’ve tracked the Arrow to the very restaurant that Oliver and Felicity are at and fire a rocket into the restaurant. The powers that be weren’t kidding when they said the date would be explosive.
In the aftermath, Oliver takes Felicity to the Arrow Cave; she looks bad but is just out cold. Roy then notices that Oliver’s costume had a GPS tracking device and that is how they knew he was there. Oliver then calls Lance to get this help in tracking Stillgrave’s men. As he goes to leave, Oliver tells Diggle he blames his lost of focus of why he didn’t notice the tracking device on him.
Arrow manages to track down Werner who introduces himself as Vertigo and drugs Oliver who’s worst fears is apparently himself and we see some nice directing as we see Oliver fighting Oliver. When it looks like Werner is going to win, Lance comes on the scene and starts shooting at him. Unfortunately, Lance grasps his chest and collapses. Oliver then gets Felicity to call an ambulance.
At the hospital, Laurel is none to pleased that Lance is out in the field. Lance defends himself saying he only knows how to be cop and if he isn’t a cop, what is he. Laurel tells him that he is a dad and that she needs her dad. Hopefully, this will be a wakeup call for Lance to stay out of trouble.
Back at the Arrow Cave, Roy volunteers to do some surveillance work on Werner to see what he is up to. When Diggle wants to go out as Roy’s backup, Oliver says that Diggle should just go back to Lyla as Roy can handle this alone. And Felicity seems to be okay.
The next morning, Oliver and Felicity have arrived at Queen Consolidated, ready to make his pitch to the board so he can get back his company. But one of the board members says there is another player in the mix and it happens to be Ray Palmer, the customer that Felicity helped and who Ray clearly makes their acquaintance known.
We see Oliver give an impassioned speech about why he should lead QC then it is Ray’s turn who displays the dismal numbers QC had under Oliver’s leadership, numbers that Ray got from QC servers. Oliver asks Felicity how Palmer got those numbers and Felicity tells Oliver the advice she gave Palmer.
Palmer continues on saying that QC can’t survive in Starling City because it is sick and people don’t want to live there anymore because of two terrorists attack in the two years. Palmer doesn’t blame people and that he thinks he can help it be reborn to something new. In fact, Palmer renames Starling City Star City (which is the actual name of Green Arrow’s home in the comics).
As Felicity and Oliver leaves QC, which is another part of BC Place Stadium, not too far from Gate H (where Starling City Courthouse was). In fact, you also see my office in the background. Sorry got sidetracked there. Oliver tells Felicity that he thought he could be Oliver and the Arrow but he realizes he was wrong and shares what he saw while on the influence of Vertigo. Felicity doesn’t believe that. Oliver is unconvinced.
Back at the Arrow Cave, Roy has discovered that Werner wants to be the top crime dog and wants to take out the top crime bosses in Starling City. Felicity has discovered that they are all in the same spot. Roy realizes they are all at the heavyweight boxing fight (which happens to be taking place at BC Place). Oliver and Roy suit up and Diggle wants to know his assignment but Oliver tells him that he is out because he will soon be a father. Diggle protests and saying Oliver has known that he is going to be a father for five months and wonders what has changed. Oliver gives his reasons that his risks can’t be Diggle’s. Diggle says he has spent two years of his life for his crusade and if it wasn’t for him, Oliver would be dead by now. Oliver says that it is because it is crusade that it is decision. And listening to all of this is Felicity who looks as if she has heard her parents arguing.
Arrow and Arsenal arrive at the boxing match and find the bomb that is counting down from 5 minutes. Arrow gives chase to Werner’s men and Arsenal takes care of the bomb thanks to Felicity. Lending a helping hand to Arrow is Canary and the two of them do take care of Werner and his men. Werner does warn Arrow though (who fought through the affects of Vertigo) that he may be taken down but someone else will take up Vertigo again.
Sara tells Oliver that heard over Felicity’s frequency that there was some trouble brewing and came to help. Sara also tells Oliver that they are more than their masks, that they need people in their lives. This reminded me of the little speech that Kara gave Lois in Smallville season 10’s “Supergirl” that even heroes need someone to come home to.
Later on, Felicity is at the Starling City hospital on her way to the maternity ward but Palmer is there and apologies to Felicity for what he did but still wants to offer her a job as apparently someone hacked into his computer and phone and left an audio clip of a porcupine farting on it and he needs someone like her to fix it. Felicity warns Palmer to stay away or his tablet will suffer the same fate. I am really liking these two together as they have such fun banter. I hope that Palmer is a hit with fans that he might become a series regular.
Felicity is at the hospital because Lyla has given birth to a girl and she coos over the baby. Oliver comes to visit too and Diggle apologizes and says that he was right that looking at his daughter his priorities have changed.
Oliver and Felicity then have the talk, a talk that Felicity doesn’t want to have. Oliver tells Felicity that he can’t pursue a relationship with her as he can’t be Oliver and the Arrow. For now, he will just be the Arrow. Felicity is in denial and tells Oliver to tell her that he doesn’t love her. Oliver then gives Felicity a bittersweet kiss and can’t tell her that he doesn’t love her. And so ends Olicity before it got a chance to start.
Oliver then receives a call from Barry Allen who tells him that he woke up and needs to talk to him. Oliver agrees to meet Barry and we see that meeting in the Pilot to The Flash.
Laurel and Sara meet on a rooftop with Sara asking Laurel not to tell their dad that she is back. Laurel then receives a call from her boss about the men that the Arrow caught and she needs to go and prosecute. Sara is proud of Laurel saving the world. As Laurel is down below, Sara back in her Canary gear, turns around and notices someone, who promptly shoots Sara in the stomach with three arrows and she tumbles to the ground and dies in her sister’s arms. And I scream you killed Sara!!!!! That is such a shame as I really liked Caity Lotz but I did predict that she would get killed but I thought it would be in season 2. But I hear that Sara will be back for at least two more episodes. And it seems this will be the push that will get Laurel to become the Black Canary.
What was missing in this episode is Malcolm Merlyn and where is Thea? But we have 22 more episodes left to find that out and then some.