I hope you had a nice holiday and good New Year. I’ve spent most of the past month trying to thaw out from frigid temperatures, but I’ve managed to warm my hands up from the sub-zero weather and bring this column to you…
Not a bad episode to come back to after the hiatus—although, I had something in mind that I was really hoping would happen, but didn’t. I’ll get to that a bit later.
First things first: Quentin, give it up the daughter stuff, man. Enough already. Thea, or someone, needs to just dish out some tough love and snap this dude out of it.
I did really like the idea of Oliver teaming up with Jerry Bertinelli. I was super bummed when they killed him off. I liked his character and was hoping he’d be around for a couple episodes. (Anyone who calls Cayden James “some dweeb with glasses” is okay in my book.) Jerry had good charisma and I was looking forward to them playing it out a bit with team Ollie and Jerry working together to snuff out a common enemy. I mean, think about it, Ollie already walks that line—often overstepping it—between good/moral hero and being the same or worse than the people he hunts. It would have been interesting to see him working with the Bertinelli crime syndicate, which seemed like it’s much cooler than the Russian gang angle—just my opinion.
Perhaps we should talk about the main point of tonight’s episode, though. That being the creation of what I’m calling “Team Teenage Angst”—the angsty, knee-jerk response by three people who feel they’ve somehow been wronged by their boss.
Last column, I talked about Ollie’s flaw as a leader to recognize that the sensitive nature of his operation has considerable consequences to the team members involved and that he should see it from their level. The problem I have with Dinah, Curtis and Rene is that there’s just no pleasing them. They’re mad that Ollie kept tabs on them and how he conducted himself at times. The irony is that they were doing the exact same thing to people of Star City, government entities, etc., etc. But, when Ollie (who is their boss, mind you) wants to make sure they’re not compromising the whole operation, they get all up-in-arms and like that kid in your neighborhood, take their ball and go home.
I mentioned there’s no pleasing them. A perfect example of this was tonight when Ollie, John and Felicity reached out to them (twice!) to try and bury the hatchet and move on. Instead, they chose to focus on the fact that it took Ollie 24 hours to inform them that they had learned Cayden had planted a camera and was spying on the team. They were still upset even after Ollie explained that that the reason they waited to tell them was because they wanted to be certain they had all the facts and info straight and had the kinks worked out before telling them. That seems reasonable, right? Why risk opening up a can of worms when you don’t have all the facts straight yet.
Nope. Not going to work with these cats.
Let’s face it; it’s very rare that the grass is actually greener on the other side. I think Rene, Dinah and Curtis will find out real quick that it’s hard to operate without a leader, which is something you need whether you like it or not. Yes, I question Ollie’s leadership qualities in certain situations, but when it comes to being in the field, he’s clearly the decision maker and guy calling the shots. No way Rene is leadership material. The guy is a loose cannon who reacts without thinking. Curtis is about as wishy-washy as they come and lacks the ability to execute. Dinah probably possesses the best leader attributes out of the three, but she makes questionable choices when it comes to associates and I’m not sure if she’ll actually ever step up. So, while it seems great now because everything is so fresh and they have that sick new lair (conveniently left over by Helix and one in which the city doesn’t know about?), I predict a big rift coming soon...
This actually brings me to a point I made earlier and said I would touch again. I was really hoping with the team splitting that we would be introduced to some new faces tonight. I thought for sure Ollie would recruit some new heroes to combat the mounting villain threat. But it’s a long season, so here’s hoping that’s on the agenda at some point!
Until next time!
Matt Ross covers Arrow as a part of the #DCTV Couch Club. Catch new episodes of Arrow Thursdays at 9 p.m. (8 p.m. CST) on The CW.