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‘Arrow’ recap: 7×04 “Level Two”

Oliver Queen cracks under drug-induced torture

Arrow recap: Season 7, Episode 4, “Level Two”, Aired Nov. 5, 2018

I noticed the colors in this episode. How the red, orange, and yellow hues laced our beloved characters and paired nicely with their own rage and rebellion. Oliver and Felicity were drinking their own particular brand of fiery red wine while everyone else was telling them to slow down and get some food in their stomachs.

In the darkest of blues and grays, we also heard the forbidden, and factually inaccurate words, “Felicity Smoak is dead” in her abandoned technological empire twenty years in the future.

But we have remained calm, our torches and pitch-forks have rightfully stayed under our beds, and the monster that lives there is only slightly revealing in this nightmare scenario. Our auras might be off-kilter, but I promise, it will be sorted out and the immortal words “Felicity Smoak lives” will liven up Star City’s apocalyptic future and will remove any storm cloud thats followed you ever since.

Oliver gets tortured. Must be Monday.

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At first we’re tricked into believing that these are “therapy” sessions. But it turns out Dr. Parker has a separate agenda and wants to “reboot” him for reasons which I’m sure have something to do with making Oliver into a weapon of some kind. His prison journey is looking like a mix between Al Sah-Him meets Kapiushon, and I’m not mad about it. However, let’s not have any “new” revelations with this torture that he has already had with said previous tortures. Okay? Cool.

When Dr. Parker brings up where it all began—on the life raft with Robert Queen and his bodyguard, Hackett—we get to see good character development from Oliver. He doesn’t excuse his father’s actions, doesn’t diminish the burden he laid on Oliver; he just reiterates that Robert did the best he could under life threatening circumstances.

Oliver has had his fair share of torture, and he wears the bravest of faces, but Dr. Parker is keeping our sweet bean in there with no food or water. This is when we become the angry mob, ladies and gentlemen. He’s also injecting him with some sort of drug that lowers his inhibitions, causing him to willingly answer questions, and also to hallucinate a what-if scenario with him and William on the life raft.

I think I cried enough tears that allowed them to stay afloat during this scene. It was played out similarly to the one we see in the pilot. However, Oliver is not telling his son to “right his wrongs” or to “survive.” Oliver is telling William that he’s destined for great things and to live. Then he shoots himself in the head like Robert did. At this point, I can’t see through the tears. It’s been an absolute joy seeing Oliver Queen’s growth over the last seven seasons. I’m a proud mama.

But alas, it looks like Dr. Parker’s drug works when he asks Oliver’s name and he responds, “Inmate 4587.”

Felicity and Black Siren… Buddy cop movie?

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Felicity is all about doing whatever it takes to get Diaz. This is nothing new, but Black Siren and Rene caution her from stepping too far off the line. They both have good points in not wanting her to torture Silencer for Diaz’s location, but can we not act like Felicity is this fragile creature that’s never made a morally questionable decision? Or isn’t ever an advocate of violence when she deems it necessary?

I’m not saying I’m pro-torture, even though I’m loving Felicity’s arc right now, but she isn’t this tiny little lamb that needs to be sheltered. She’s a lion hear her roar.

Felicity doesn’t torture Silencer, she uses her techy skills and puts a tracker in Silencer’s belt and lets her escape. See? Felicity can be ruthless and a tech genius all in one breath.

To Vigilante or not to Vigilante

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Dinah is reconciling two parts of herself. A part of her wants to use her canary cry to fight all the baddies, and another part wants to use her gun and badge. Rene really wants to throw his hockey mask back on. Seeing this new Green Arrow isn’t helping with his vigilante-withdrawals.

Also, there’s these criminals that are setting stuff on fire for reasons that apparently have nothing to do with Diaz. When they set a building on fire with Zoe trapped inside one of the rooms, new GA saves her.

To repay her (because we all know new GA is a woman), Rene lets her escape. Therefore, Dinah arrests Rene. Diggle comes by to talk “the good ‘ol days” of being a vigilante as well as the bad ones, and makes her think about how Quentin was still a good cop who worked with whoever he thought could help this city. So, she subsequently decides to release Rene from custody.

When the arsonists start a fire in a movie theatre, new GA saves their butts, so Dinah is inclined to let her go and vigilante another day.

What is this apocalyptic hellscape you call Star City?!

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Firstly, Smoak Tech will rise! Let’s let the vitamin D of that sunshine of a fact soak in before we venture into the future.

Okay, all done. Roy and William head to Smoak Tech and future-Dinah gives us an info dump about how there’s a wall built between The Glades and the rest of Star City.

I’m very confused. It seems like William knows nothing about nothing, and I just don’t know how. I do not buy that Oliver and Felicity just abandoned him. All they want is to give him his best chance (as they say on Once Upon a Time). I’m very worried these flash-forwards will write themselves into a corner that they can’t walk back. Also, Felicity Smoak isn’t dead, Dinah. I scoff at how little I’m worried about that.

But lets talk about the other Canary, shall we? Zoe will become a Canary along side Dinah. I actually love the passing of the torches theme throughout Arrow. Particularly with the Canaries—we’ve had Sara, Laurel, Dinah, (Black Siren kind of) and now Zoe. We first saw the idea of legacy with Robert and Oliver, and the passing of sins between parent and child. Then again with the idea of The Green Arrow being a symbol and one person last season with Diggle and Oliver.

I personally like the idea of the hero mantles traveling through each generation. It has a down side as well as a good, however, it gives the show a longevity that we all can look forward to.

You can enjoy all new episodes of ArrowMondays at 8 PM on The CW.

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Lynsey Neill

From as long as I can remember I've been obsessed with stories. Who doesn't love superpowers and magic? Follow along with me if you're a fan of... really anything. Everyone is welcome.

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