Arrow “A.W.O.L.” Review by Kevin Morrison
I knew you could do it, Arrow.
After a few weeks of me groaning and being frustrated about the repetitiveness of the show and lack of further development, Arrow throws “A.W.O.L.” at me, where both Diggle and Felicity have real issues to deal with and we learn more about them and the show throughout the episode. Maybe that’s what this show needs more of, exploring side characters, cause this one was pretty damn great.
Diggle becomes this week’s star as not only is the main story about him dealing with his brother Andy, but the flashbacks are all about him, not pointless Oliver Queen stuff. I LOVED this decision and it was great to see what happened in the past between John and Andy versus what they are dealing with now. Andy is believed to have Intel on Shadowspire, an evil organization that may have come to Star City that Agent Walker needs to track down. As the episode goes on, John realizes he may have reason to trust Andy due to their war past and seeing this relationship was great. Diggle blames himself for how Andy turned out because of how he treated him, which was interesting and strong. I’m glad we got more of Diggle and finally got to know more about Andy.
The other great story to talk about here is Felicity, who I became a bit annoyed with recently but this episode redeemed it all. She is stuck in a wheelchair, not knowing if she will ever walk again or truly be able to help Team Arrow anymore. And on top of this, her pain meds cause her to hallucinate and see her younger, college self. A must different version of herself giving her a hard time for changing so much really tests her and this was wonderful. The personal struggle that Felicity goes through shows more about her and gets us to feel her pain in ways we weren’t able to before. This was a smart storyline and Emily Bett Rickards does a great job here in a (sort of) dual role. However, the story does have a lackluster resolution.
Arrow has gotten back on track with this episode and I’m hoping it stays there. I think exploring side characters may be a good idea and I hope that is the key to get new things in this show. On top of this, it’s exciting and well-made. I am impressed for the first time in months.