Arrow: “The Offer” Season 3 Episode 16 Review

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The differences between The Flash and Arrow may have never been more apparent than this week. The Flash featured a powerful, weather-controlling metahuman while Arrow featured a murderer that has sown his own mouth shut.

Neither avenue is better than the other, but it certainly creates a very different vibe for the two shows. Granted, this week’s Arrow also featured water that can heal you and keep you alive for generations. That’s right, “The Offer” delivered the Lazarus Pit in all of its glory, except the actual name.

Arrow is smartly choosing to stick to the comic books to tell the story of Ra’s al Ghul’s villainy. Replace Oliver Queen with Bruce Wayne and you’ve got pretty much a direct adaptation. Having proven himself, Oliver is offered the role as the Demon’s Head. He can become Ra’s al Ghul and expand his jurisdiction well beyond Starling City. Ra’s makes a pretty solid case for it too.

Returning to Starling City, “The Offer” becomes about Oliver figuring out why he shouldn’t take the mantle. That’s being made only more difficult by Detective Lance’s denouncement of the Arrow. The superhero is back to being the vigilante. With the opinion of the Arrow plummeting, Oliver’s wrestling with the idea of leading the League of Assassins feels justified. Naturally, it’s Felicity that reels him in.

“The Offer” was actually a great Olicity episode. Stephen Amell and Emily Bett Rickards played off each other perfectly as Felicity said everything Oliver needed to hear and left him alone precisely when she needed to. While Oliver’s realization of why he still dons the hood didn’t feel the most genuine, it was serviceable enough that the character actually arced.

Arrow is certainly on the right path to do justice to the classic Ra’s al Ghul story. Maseo’s warning was clearly not in vain, as Ra’s donned the hood just to murder criminals to make a point. How far will Oliver be pushed? Season three still has seven episodes left, which is a lot of time to find out. But if the end of the season is early as strong as the previous two, there’s reason to be excited. Grade: B+

 

Some Other Notes:

– Nyssa’s role in this episode was really cool. In the classic story, her role is Talia al Ghul, who refers to Batman as her “beloved.” So having Nyssa disappointed that her father won’t let her take the mantle is a cool diversion, especially if she’s going to give Laurel’s superheroics a much-needed boost.

– Anyone else sensing some big Olicity moments brewing for the end of the season?

– Oliver thinking about how his role as the Arrow will eventually end was pretty foreboding. Not just for the end of the season, but the series as a whole. How does this story laced in tragedy end? More tragedy? Granted, this is a very successful CW show. If it’s anything like Supernatural, we’ll be watching until at least the end of the decade.

– Rumors are abound that a major cast member is going to die by season’s end. My bets are on Thea, Merlyn, or Detective Lance.

– Suicide Squad next week!

 

By Matt Dougherty

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