Arrow: “The Undertaking” Season 1 Episode 21 Review

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This episode answered several major questions we’ve had for a long time. Where did the list come from? What is Moira’s involvement in her husband’s death? What is Walter’s status? Just what is Merlyn planning in the Glades?

The Undertaking was pivotal to wrapping up this season’s various stories.

With Diggle gone, Oliver and Felicity finally get a lead on Walter’s whereabouts, the reason Felicity joined the team to start with. Felicity wants to get in the field for this one.

They have to infiltrate an underground casino. It felt like a scene from a James Bond movie, as Oliver directed Felicity through a tiny headset in her ear. But she gets found out, so Oliver has to go in guns, er, bow a blazin’. It was an awesome sequence, and lead to the belief that Walter was dead.

When Oliver informs his mother, she pays Malcolm Merlyn a visit. He shows her that Walter is in fact alive, with Oliver listening in. And boy does he get angry. Now he knows his mother is in on everything.

Guys, I know action isn’t the most important thing about TV, but the hallway scene…was…awesome. Arrow has been let loose and on a rampage there are few who stand a chance.

Flashbacks to the company’s past before the island took the place of the island this week. Merlyn and Oliver’s father had some intense interactions. Turns out Merlyn wants to destroy the Glades. Is it the most exciting plan? Not necessarily, but the character drama has escalated so high that a villain’s plan doesn’t really matter as much.

The flashbacks also lent a quick look at Oliver and Laurel as a couple. The scenes of them in the present were much stronger. Particularly the bar scene early on with the coffee and Oliver quoting Casablanca. 

Also, now Laurel knows that Oliver loves him, thanks to Tommy.

The episode ended with one last flashback, and some major character moments. Watching the Queens Gambit taking off for the fateful voyage that would land Oliver on the island had a respectable chill.

Then, finally, Oliver tells Laurel what Tommy said is true. He goes to Diggle’s apartment to tell him about his mother and Merlyn’s partnership.

Now, the board is set for the end of the season. Those trucks coming into Starling City doesn’t bode well for the Glades. Laurel knows how Oliver feels. Most importantly, Arrow continues to be a ton of fun. With the stakes at an all time high, I can’t wait to see what happens next. Grade: A-

By Matt Dougherty

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