The last time the Suicide Squad made an appearance, I was bored out of my mind. Thankfully, Suicidal Tendencies was an entertaining adventure with the gang of misfits. In fact, even Cupid, (whom I loathed in Draw Back Your Bow) was tolerable. Her obsessiveness with Deadshot was actually sort of amusing, and provided some levity in the midst of all the darkness. That bleakness came in the form of flashbacks to Floyd’s past. While the traumatized-soldier theme was conveyed, those scenes were far too heavy-handed for my taste. Did we really need to see Floyd wave that beer bottle around and hear his wife explicitly state his trauma? It all felt terribly forced. On the bright side, Floyd’s sacrifice was a poignant end to his story, and I bought that he really wanted to get Diggle and Lyla safely back to their baby girl. Let’s see if its revealed that he survived the explosion (I highly doubt they killed him off for good).
Surprisingly, Suicidal Tendencies was a pretty good hour for Ray Palmer. I haven’t been too fond of Brandon Routh’s character this season, but the CGI used to bring The Atom to life during his face-off with the Arrow was almost at blockbuster standards. His crusade provided a stark contrast to Ollie, and further illuminated our hero’s isolation as the entire city began to turn against him (thanks to Ra’s Al Ghul’s efforts).
In addition, the ending effectively escalated the stakes in a thrilling manner with Maseo of all people assassinating the mayor and targeting Felicity. The sound of the arrow releasing at the end was a perfect note to bookend the hour on. Here’s hoping the rest of the season keeps up this urgent momentum; last season managed to craft an exciting narrative so I do pray that can be replicated as we head into the final stretch.
Bits & Arrows
– I enjoyed the time spent at the wedding in the teaser. Arrow is often such a darkly-lit show so it’s a treat to see so much vibrancy. And how was gorgeous did Katie Cassidy look in that orange dress? Hubba Hubba.
– Ray as the minister was very funny. Even funnier? I think Brandon Routh had pink eye this week.
– Super cool fight scene: Arrow fighting off League assassins dressed in Arrow garb. Epic!
– Ollie sure sounded like a crybaby when he screamed at Felicity: “When were you going to tell me this?” Chill dude.
– I’m sure all the Olicity shippers loved the duo’s scenes this week. I quite liked Oliver drawing parallels between himself and Ray, and finally proclaiming to the wannabe hero that Felicity “chose him”. Ouch.
– The evil Senator with Presidential dreams was way too cartoon-ish.
– Powerful moment with Diggle seeing his brother’s name on Deadshot’s body and still deciding to patch him up. Growth!
– I really like Audrey Anderson (who plays Lyla). She had a beautifully performed scene where she asked Diggle why they were even on the filed risking their lives. She’s going to die isn’t she? I just can’t see a happy ending for her and Diggle. Plus the latter needs a thrilling subplot.
– For the first time in a long time, we got another mention of the HIVE, the organisation that recruited Floyd in prison and assigned him Diggle’s brother as a target.
– Who on the writing team thought that “love is a bullet in the brain” was a good line? Because they used it twice in one episode. TWICE! Major cringe.
– Great touch with Oliver malfunctioning Ray’s suit. But did he seriously just walk away at the end there and leave Roy out sprawled all over the floor? Huge oversight there writers! I’m shocked no one on the crew noticed!
– I laughed when Cupid cried out like she had just lost the love of her life after Floyd sacrificed himself.
– So Diggle isn’t leaving Team Arrow anymore?
– No Nyssa and barely any Laurel this week. Not okay! At least the latter got to be vague with Ollie about her cast and “trainer”, and she tried her best to dissuade Ray at the police station (even though he knew her identity).
Diggle: Nice to meet you. Ray Palmer. (whispering into his ear) John Diggle. You hurt her, they’ll never find your body.
Felicity: No sign of evil Arrow.
Diggle: I’m not you, Lawton.
Deadshot: I wasn’t always me, either.
Roy: Wait, Ray built a super suit? That’s kind of awesome. (Oliver looks at him) And reckless.
Oliver: Super Suit.
Ray: I prefer “The Atom.” You know, I have to admit, I was a little surprised to find you on my calendar this morning. Find the place all right?
Oliver: Laurel Lance called me.
Ray: Yeah, the Black Canary. She tried to shut me up, but it’s not going to work.
Oliver: I didn’t kill those people.
Ray: Yeah, that’s what Felicity said. An impersonator, right? [Chuckles] I hate when that happens.
Oliver: Yeah, your new boyfriend is stubborn. Once he’s made his mind up, that’s the end of it.
Felicity: Sound like anybody we know?
Not the most game-changing episode, but still a solid hour of Arrow that effectively juggled a multitude of storylines.