In one of the most intense openings of an episode of Arrow, we see Laurel dressed as the Black Canary getting mauled by someone else… and that someone else is none other than her sister, Sara. Laurel is definitely losing the fight, and then the time tables turn on us and it’s 48 hours earlier. Black Canary takes down the man that Oliver and Roy are chasing, and then Oliver reprimands her for being out on the street. Laurel, being the badass that she’s become, stands up to him and maintains the stance that she’ll remain on the streets.
A scene that has been long awaited, Oliver finally confesses to Thea about being the Arrow, and in one of the sweetest moments they’ve shared, she thanks him for being the Arrow and lying to her to save countless people. Thea then realizes that Malcolm has known and finally acknowledges that he has driven a wedge between so her and so many others, including her brother.
Zytle, the villain that the Arrow writers seem to use every time they need a filler, returns and drugs a federal agent outside the courthouse, on his way to trial. The agent proceeds to pull out his gun and (fatally) shoot a few of the reporters, leaving Laurel no choice but to knock him out. Felicity is being so supportive of Laurel being the Black Canary, and her line, “This is my favorite part,” when showing the Team the video of Laurel punching the agent is one of my favorites. Which leads to Laurel showing up and delivering one of her best lines throughout the series, “Was my form off?” I’m really appreciating the amount of Laurel/Oliver scenes we are getting in this episode, even though they are quite negative, I’ve wanted to see this team up since the series began. Ollie tells Laurel to stay off the streets again, so Laurel goes after Zytle by herself and ends up being given vertigo, which leads to her showdown with Sara. Vertigo-Sara calls her a fraud, a fake, and an addict, things that Laurel has obviously struggled with throughout the series. Back in the foundry, Laurel sees Vertigo-Sara once more before Oliver gives her something to counteract the vertigo. When Laurel wakes up, her and Felicity share one of the most important scenes of the episode, where Felicity says, “You have a light inside of you that Sara never had.” And then she encourages Laurel to continue in her Canary ventures, but as herself, not Sara.
Thea sleeps with the DJ at her club, and then discovers that he’s working for Ra’s al Ghul after he tries to give her red wine laced with cyanide (a trick she learned from daddy dearest) and long-haired DJ attacks her, Roy and Malcolm and then finally kills himself. Thea’s well-deserved screen time seems to finally be rearing its head this season, and should throughout the rest of season 3, as Oliver, Malcolm and Thea, plus Team Arrow are going to be working together to get ready for the inevitable showdown with Ra’s al Ghul and the League of Assassins.
Roy is unreachable after being taken out of commission by long-haired DJ, so Oliver and Laurel track down Zytle once more. Oliver is stuck saving the hostages and Laurel goes after Zytle, being injected once more. After another fight with Vertigo-Sara and now Vertigo-Quentin (he repeatedly yells at her about lying to him about Sara’s death,) Laurel becomes herself, the Black Canary and takes down Zytle and looks up to see Sara smiling at her. If that’s not the best ending to Laurel’s Canary versus Black Canary trilogy, I honestly don’t know what is. Flash forward to the police station and Laurel spills the truth to her father, bringing forth one of the most emotional scenes in recent episodes, as the camera zooms out and we see Laurel comforting her father.
Merlyn decides that Oliver and Thea need to go to the only place on the planet where they can conquer their fears, in order to face off against Ra’s al Ghul, so Oliver leaves Starling in the hands of Team Arrow and departs for Lian Yu.
Tonight’s episode was such a culminating ending/beginning for Laurel’s Canary/Black Canary journey, and so important to building the relationship between Laurel and Oliver, and Laurel and Felicity. She’s becoming and integral part of Team Arrow, and it’s interesting to see how Oliver is coping with the changes to Team Arrow. I really appreciated the scene between Roy and Oliver, where Roy finally stood up to him, and Oliver was just so shocked and outraged that Roy would even consider it. And then Felicity’s comment about how things changed while they thought Oliver was dead, she’s such a strong woman and I’m so excited to see more of the dynamic between the Team, though probably not next episode seeing as Oliver is back in purgatory.