So, #MyNameIsOliverQueen’s third season has ended with a fittingly titled episode… My Name is Oliver Queen.
You’ve probably guessed by now, but I’ll say it anyway. Spoilers ahead.
CW’s Arrow has not been without its bumps, and this season it’s felt a little draggy at times when compared to the network’s other superhero title, The Flash (pun not really intended).
This finale also feels a little underwhelming, considering the season 1 finale involved a machine that could create earthquakes, while season 2 had super-soldiers running around causing havoc. Of course, Team Arrow had some added help in ex-Superman Ray Palmer, so maybe a bio-weapon wasn’t as scary this time around.
Still, there’s much to love about the finale, such as:
1) The Flash’s cameo
We knew from the promo trailer for this week’s episode that Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) would be making an appearance.
And what an appearance it was. It was brief, but filled with humour.
“You guys have a hot tub? Nice,” Barry remarks when he sees the Lazarus Pit before going to rescue Team Arrow, totally geeking out over the real dungeon then giving a non-facepalm facepalm when Feilicity calls him “Barry”.
“Thank you, Felicity, you just outed my secret identity to a supervillain,” he says before telling John Barrowman’s Malcolm Merlyn: “No offence.”
He then speeds off, being “overdue for a pointed conversation with Harrison Wells”, a nod to the events of this week’s The Flash, and allows Team Arrow to deal with the bio-weapon on their own.
Which is good. It would have been a little too convenient to have the Flash just mop things up because, you know, super speed.
The balance of humour and seriousness in his cameo was just excellent. Don’t you ever change, Barry Allen, because you’re awesome this way.
2) Hail H.I.V.E.
The DC equivalent of Marvel’s Hydra organisation, there have been mentions of H.I.V.E. throughout the season, as well as some of their actions, such as hiring Deadshot to kill John Diggle’s brother.
While we didn’t get a look at their leader Damien Darhk this time around, it’s likely that he’ll play a bigger role next season, considering the shake-up in the League of Assassins (which we’ll get to in a bit) and Darhk’s belief that he should be their leader.
Just like how Marvel is bringing more factions into play (Inhumans and all), it’s good to see DC’s TV universe expanding. After all, you can’t have a Justice League without some major villains to fight off!
3) “The city’s under attack? Must be May!”
Quentin Lance’s response to Laurel telling him Starling City is in danger is hilarious because of how Deadpool-esque it is.
The line is a reference to the airing date of Arrow‘s season finales, where Starling City has faced an earthquake machine, Slade Wilson’s mirakuru warriors, and now, a bio-weapon. Eventually, Laurel does manage to convince her father that there is real danger and gets the SCPD activated.
Let’s hope next May treats Starling City a little better.
4) Speedy/Red Arrow
It was pretty obvious when Roy Harper gave Thea Queen his hoodie that she’d be joining the league of extraordinary superheroes.
What was gold about this was when she brought up the name she thought she’d use: The Red Arrow (which in the comics is the name of Roy Harper’s character before he takes on Arsenal).
Oliver’s reply? “I think I already told them all to call you Speedy.”
Though the “Green” Arrow has not been taken…
5) Felicity saves the day
Of course, Oliver knew he wouldn’t die, because Harrison Wellsobard Thawne spoilered that for him in Rogue Air by telling him he lived to 86.
Still, for a moment, I did wonder if we were gonna have another one of those “Oliver has died, boohoo what do we do now” moment which drags on until next season.
Nope. A combination of bullet-proof League of Assassins armour (seriously though, those were sniper rounds) and Felicity Smoak flying around in the ATOM suit saves us and Oliver from that fate.
6) John Diggle’s secret identity?
As Diggle and Oliver struggle to repair their shattered bromance, Oliver tells Diggle that he should consider a way to hide his identity when he’s out there fighting crime, and it’s not the first time it’s been brought up this season.
While there was some speculation that Diggle’s full name is John Diggle Stewart (or something like that), there was that mention in this week’s episode of The Flash about a test pilot going missing at Ferris Air testing facility (a reference to the Green Lantern Hal Jordan).
Actor David Ramsey himself was coy about whether Diggle would take on the Lantern mantle, yet it seems quite likely that the producers have a role in mind for him.
So if “in brightest day/in blackest night” is not in Diggle’s immediate future, who else could he be?
There is another John in the DC lineup, a certain John Henry Irons, AKA Steel. Ray Palmer’s around to help with some power armour, not to mention S.T.A.R. Labs….
Alternatively, there’s also John Jones, AKA J’onn J’onzz the Martian Manhunter, but that would take some really creative liberties with the character’s back-story.
Or CW may surprise us yet again.
7) The ATOM’s origin continues
While messing around with his ATOM suit and nanotech, Ray Palmer blows the top floor of his building to bits.
Don’t worry, we’re sure he survived. After all, Brandon Routh is set to appear on CW’s next superhero outing, Legends of Tomorrow.
This just sets up his ability to shrink nicely, something which we haven’t seen in the Arrowverse as yet.
Unfortunately, he no longer has Felicity Smoak in his court, so I might have to rethink that Atom/Ant-Man showdown…
8) Kneel before Merlyn Al Ghul
Okay, who saw that coming? The entire season (apart from making Thea kill Sara Lance), Malcolm Merlyn has been a pretty decent, perhaps even likeable “I’m just protecting my daughter” character…
And now he’s the new R’as Al Ghul. And he made Nyssa kneel before him right after she said she would seek justice for Sara. They even managed to fulfil the prophecy that the man who survived the blade of R’as Al Ghul would be the next R’as (by saying Merlyn was tortured by R’as’ sword).
First, I’d like to question Oliver’s thinking. Specifically, if he even was thinking when he gave Merlyn command of the League. Of Assassins.
That being said, Oliver did seem to extend Merlyn an olive branch, telling him that whether they would be enemies depended on what actions Merlyn would take next.
While it seems easy to think he’ll revert to being evil mastermind and all, there is still the issue that Damien Darhk has it in for the League, and Nyssa’s thirst for vengeance.
And while I know Merlyn is the Arrow’s eternal nemesis in the comics, the Arrowverse did make Huntress more of a villain, so there may be some precedence for a bit of a role-reversal here (I really want Captain Jack Harkness to be the good guy again).
9) Olicity ships off on a road trip, finally
Amid all the chaos, it’s nice to see the main character get a little happy ending for once.
At the end of last season, we were all fooled into thinking Oliver’s declaration of love for Felicity was a ruse to trick Deathstroke into not kidnapping Laurel…
And turns out the producers are huge Olicity shippers as well. And also teases. There were a few Barricity moments, and of course Raylicity won for a while, but Oliver and Felicity ended the season leaving Starling City together.
We know their vacation probably won’t last more than a year, but it’s still nice to think that they have a moment of happiness.
Interestingly, we also learnt in this episode that Hong Kong was not the final destination for boyband Oliver Queen, who tells Tatsu he can’t go back to Starling City just yet.
Again, the parallels with past and present present (two presents in a row!) themselves nicely – boyband Oliver feels the need to find himself and be alone for a while, while #MyNameIsOliverQueen has realised who he needs to be to be with Felicity.
10) KATANA LIVES!
This one was, admittedly, a bit of a surprise for me. After killing her one-time husband Maseo last week, it seemed like Tatsu Yamashiro would be on a kamikaze mission to honour the memory of the family she’s lost.
Fortunately, near the start of the episode, she says she’s going back to a life of solitude, presumably to the monastery in Kumamoto, where she originally headed after the events in Hong Kong. And that’s awesome, not only because Kumamoto’s mascot is Kumamon (thanks, Last Week Tonight).
Honestly, after the events involving the Arrowverse’s Floyd Lawton/Deadshot, who died this season after it was announced that Will Smith would be taking the role of the assassin in the Suicide Squad movie, I wondered if the TV shows would lose more characters as DC prepared to combat Marvel’s Cinematic Universe juggernaut.
That wasn’t helped by seeing Karen Fukuhara’s Katana in the Suicide Squad group shot released a while ago. Thankfully, that wasn’t the case.
Knowing that Rila Fukushima’s Katana survives in the Arrowverse is of some comfort, because she’s been excellent all season, and I’d love to see her again in the future Justice League, which will probably not be called the Justice League, but you get what I mean.
All right, so that’s a wrap, folks. We still have next week’s The Flash finale to look forward to, which may or may not include a few of these possible scenarios.
What did you think of the Arrow season 3 finale? What were some of the highlights of the season for you? Let us know in the comments below!