I've finally figured out the overarching theme of Arrow.
In "Betrayal," Detective Lance threw everything on the line, including the life of his daughter, to get to the vigilante known as The Hood. We'll have Green Arrow canon characters swinging in and out of the series, but it appears none will stick while the main offensive is Lance vs. Arrow. Oh, please let me be wrong.
What an incredible waste of the otherwise talented David Anders. They could have used anyone in the role of Cyrus Vanch to kidnap Laurel and get situation with her father thrust to the forefront for her. His appearance really served no other purpose. The entire part consisted of him eating cereal while watching television and generally being an annoying nuisance.
He was never a true threat, not even to Laurel. He had to take her down with a taser for goodness sakes, after his entire team of ruffians was thwarted by her hand-to-hand combat skills.
After all his posturing, when Laurel's life was on the line, good ole Detective Lance realized he couldn't trust a single soul in his coveted police department to help him save her life. Who did he call? The Hood. The person he hated the most was the person he chose to save she who was most precious to him. While it could have been a nice moment if I'd given it a thought, I was more angry at his arrogance at taking the attitude of a vigilante himself when he wanted to hurt the man who had taken Laurel.
Is Det. Lance really so blinded by hatred, as Laurel mentioned to him (and was noted in the Arrow quotes) that he could not see the similarities between what he was feeling in that moment and what he had been chasing in The Hood? If something doesn't turn around in his behavior after what he experienced in this episode, then Det. Lance is being written as a petty, sad little man.
Thankfully, that was not the only story of interest for the week. After it was revealed to Oliver last week in "Vertigo" that Walter had given the exact same book to Felicity to research that Oliver had been using as his guide to right the wrongs of Starling City for his father - and that it belonged to his mother - poor Ollie was a bit conflicted.
Oliver's immediate reaction was to trust Moira. Frankly, his implicit trust of her surprises me. I've never understood what has driven him to have so much faith in her, but after this week, that has certainly been lost. It wasn't that long ago in "Trust but Verify" that Oliver needed to remind Diggle about the perils of trusting someone based on a past relationship with them instead of their merits. It would have done him good to circle around to his own advice, because not doing so left him stunned and hurt.
The first red flag should have been when Moira so quickly tossed the second copy of the book into the fireplace, but Oliver somehow saw some good in her decision to do so. Diggle wisely remembered all that Oliver had taught him and diligently kept up with Mrs. Queen, even taking on light chauffeur duties to get as close to her as possible.
He finally hit pay dirt when she met with Malcolm and he recorded their conversation about the compromised yacht, that she had it hidden in a warehouse and chattered about something called the "Undertaking."
It was enough to spur Arrow into action. Oliver needed to have a chat with his mom, but The Hood showed up to her office instead,. Through the window. "Moira Queen, you have failed this city." Fade to black, we have to wait to see what happens next. Now that's the kind of stuff I want to see.
Some final thoughts:
- Detective Lance, I'm over your arrogance and ignorance. Catch a real criminal.
- Did anyone else notice that Malcolm's voice was altered on the recording Diggle made, but Moira's was just....Moira's? What was up with that?
- Laurel finally showed some of what I expect will earn her the Black Canary costume. If the only thing that can keep her down is a taser? Damn....
- I totally missed the island tie-in this week. Was it really that boring?
- Cyrus Vanch - about a 3 on the frightening criminal scale. AND he chewed with his mouth open. Such a disappointment.
- Did you catch Arrow/The Hood talking like Oliver when he was saying goodbye to Laurel? When she catches on, will she become the Canary?
- Loved Oliver telling Tommy how wrong it was that he was letting Laurel cavort with The Hood since he's dangerous.
Now it's you're turn. How did this week stack up against the rest of Arrow Season 1 so far? Hit the comments!
Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer and critic for TV Fanatic. She's a member of the Critic's Choice Association, enjoys mentoring writers, cats, and passionately discussing the nuances of television and film. Follow her on Twitter and email her here at TV Fanatic.