This season, man… It’s something special.
We keep waiting for Arrow to have an episode that doesn’t seem to increase the stakes or take the action to an exciting new level and you know what? We’re still waiting. All season long, Arrow has been wowing us with impressive storytelling and edge-of-your seat suspense, and tonight’s must-see new episode, “Suicide Squad,” is no exception. You’re not going to want to miss this one, and as we’ve done a few times this season, we thought we’d give you an idea of some cool stuff to watch for.
The Suicide Squad (It’s Right There in the Title)
Okay, we know we’re stating the extremely obvious with this first one, but it’s still worth calling out because if the prospect of seeing the Suicide Squad brought to gritty, dangerous life on the small screen doesn’t excite you, then we’re not really sure what you’re doing here.
And man, is it perfect. It’s all here. Amanda Waller, exploding implants, chaos, mayhem and impossible missions. If you’re a fan of the Squad, even if you don’t regularly watch Arrow, you’re going to want to catch this episode. It’s fairly stand-alone and doesn’t require much foreknowledge of the events that have taken place prior to it. Which is not to say that there’s not stuff here to reward regular viewers. For example…
Flashbacks Into Diggle’s Past
This season, Arrow has occasionally offered flashbacks into the lives of characters other than Oliver Queen, and “Suicide Squad” is one of these episodes. We give the island a break for a week and instead see some of what went down while John Diggle was serving in Afghanistan. It’s actually a storyline that Diggle referenced earlier in the show and along with tying in directly to the Suicide Squad’s mission, it sheds some light on Diggle as a character, his relationship with Lyla and even allows the producers to bring back actor Ben Browder as Ted Gaynor (from Season 1’s “Trust But Verify”).
Antiheroes (and Who Doesn’t Love Antiheroes?)
One of the things that makes this episode so much fun for DC Comics fans is that it doesn’t feel like other Arrow episodes. In fact, this feels like it could be an episode of an eventual Suicide Squad show. By making Diggle the main character for an episode, there’s less of an emphasis on Oliver’s mission and instead the focus shifts to ARGUS and the Squad. This changes the whole tone of the show for an episode, and it’s clear the writers had a blast with it. As you know, these characters aren’t heroes. They may be (very arguably) working for the greater good, but they’re not there by choice, and that’s all reflected in the script. As a result, we feel this is going to be an episode that fans go back and rewatch over and over again years down the line.
Of course, we don’t want you to think that the episode ignores Oliver’s story entirely. Absolutely not.
An Increasingly Desperate Arrow
After the events of the previous episode, “The Promise,” Oliver’s on the hunt for Slade Wilson, and it’s not going well (and if you’ve seen “The Promise,” you can probably guess why). Desperate to keep his friends and family safe and to put a stop to this circle of events that he feels responsible for, Oliver resorts to tactics he usually would avoid—such as using a gun. It’s a smaller scene near the beginning of the episode, but it has a pretty big impact simply because we’re not used to seeing it. We’ll avoid spoiling the ultimate lengths to which Oliver goes to track down Slade, but it’s probably fair to assume that there are going to be repercussions for it later.
Squad-Themed Easter Eggs
While almost every episode of Arrow features an easter egg or two of some sort, in tonight’s episode, the easter eggs take on a Suicide Squad theme. Considering the episode, it’s only natural that some of the action would take place in the “Ostrander Suite” of a luxury hotel. But the egg that will have fans talking (and in fact, already DOES have fans talking and speculating a little too wildly) involves a certain former psychiatrist who is a member of the current Suicide Squad.
Hmm... Who could THAT be?
Those are the easter eggs we spotted. Maybe you can find more. Let us know in the comments below. Or just let us know what you thought of this episode. As always, we’d love to hear your opinion!
Also, for more on Arrow and tonight's episode, be sure to watch the latest episode of DC All Access!