Arrow Review: Atonement, Rescue and Sexual Innuendo

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We finally got the full picture of everything that has gone into "The Undertaking" and how long it has been in development. It's what got Robert killed and Walter kidnapped. It's still moving forward.

The list is a side project that was only barely connected to it. I never imagined Malcolm would have known about the list and helped Robert to create it. They were actually working together. 

Hood in Trouble

It was really weird seeing Robert and Walter interacting, knowing Walter's future would be with Moira, and that the destruction of the Glades they were discussing while Walter was in the house that day was what would get Walter kidnapped one day.

Walter was once just an innocent business man who fell in love with the boss' widow - and he got caught up in the worst possible scenario. 

Felicity tried to wrangle Diggle to help with the Walter lead, reminding him that if it was actually Diggle's life on the line, Oliver would be there. Oliver just seems unable to help with Diggle's vendetta, or anybody's but his own. 

That left Felicity on her own on an assignment in the field. Well, not exactly alone. 

Felicity: It feels really good having you inside me. And by you I mean your voice. And by inside me I mean my ear. I'm going to stop talking right now.
Oliver: That would be my preference. | permalink

She is pure gold, that girl. I was worried about her, considering the last time she was in the field. I can't believe I missed that Oliver was just trying to get information from the casino guy to push Moira to confront Malcolm.

Interestingly, we learned Malcolm took Robert (and therefore everyone else on the boat?) from Moira. Most likely because he balked at leveling the Glades. For Robert, the list all started with one death. An atonement for one accidental death. Moira tried to tell him that preventing the horror of leveling the Glades would be the ultimate atonement. 

Once Moira heard about Walter's death from Oliver, she immediately went to Malcolm and accused him of double crossing her and killing Walter. Oliver finally discovered his mother wasn't the woman he thought she was and she was working with Malcolm to ensure the Undertaking - the destruction of the Glades - would go down this time without a hitch.

This is when things are going to get really ugly. What the hell is going to happen now that Malcolm knows Walter has been rescued? Will he move his plans to level the Glades onto a faster track to avoid detection? Will he get Tommy involved?

A lot more needs mentioned, so it's getting bullet points:

  • Laurel wanted Oliver to go to Tommy on her behalf and tell him he doesn't love her. Oliver wouldn't because he has enough lies in his life. Poor Laurel looked like she'd been smacked!
  • Frank being killed doesn't seem so sad now that I know he was right next to Malcolm in taking down the Gambit. He didn't give a crap about Moira's family, so her not giving one about his makes sense.
  • I'm glad Oliver finally went to Diggle's place to tell him he was right all along. Admitting that had to be difficult; almost as difficult as asking for his help. 
  • Nothing on Roy this week. I wonder if he'll fit into the master plan to stop the Glades being destroyed since it IS his home, of if he's benched for the season.
  • Anyone else think Tommy is past the point of return now? He was so harsh to Laurel, and he really loved her. If he can be like that to her, then imagine how he'd react around the other characters. Yikes.
Two episodes left in Arrow Season 1. What about this hour surprised you the most? Hit the comments and check out the promo for next week:


Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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Rating: 4.8 / 5.0 (86 Votes)

Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter and on Google+.


Didnt Walter buy Unidac industries? is he really as innocent as we all assume?


Did anyone else notice Melcom name dropped "applied sicences" - its A.I.M. people!!!! Awesome episode!


Great episode, loved the Felicity bits and the line about having him in her was just funny and the dead pan way Oliver deals with it just topped it off.
Personally i think Oliver is right to be serious some heavy stuff going on, but saying that he does show humor its just not laugh out loud, just the odd line.Saying that this episode was great for the action i mean talk about one man army the corridor scene reminded me of the movie Oldboy. I also liked the way the story suddenly jacked up a notch with Oliver finding out so much in such a short space of time, and personally i think he only realized something was up with his mum by the way she reacted to the news of Walters death.
All in all looking forward to next week


Great ep, and I have to say that Felicity is a STAR! I love her character, and I think Oliver would be better off with her rather than snooty and naive Lauren, who would freak out if she knew he is the vigilante. I loved that Felicity went to Diggle and told him that Ollie needs him, and I am very glad that Ollie and Diggle are on the same page again, because they work so well together (plus, it is oh so HOT to watch them work out without shirts...two ripped hotties, yummy). I am also glad that Walter is back, but I also wonder if he and Moira will stay together once he learns how complicit she is in Merlyns mass murder plot and his kidnapping.KansasGuest, yes, I, too wondered if they were using CGI to make not only Arrow but his mother look younger in the flashbacks. It could also be good lighting, makeup and wigs, of course.


Good episode!
Some nice character development. I have always liked Ollie and Laurel as a pair.
Nice to see events leading up to the boat sailing. Hope this show stays interesting and on TV.


Great episode and great action fighting scene! Loved Felicity as always. She always looks stunning when she's dressed for special events-wow! It will be interesting to see how Laurel responds to knowing that Ollie's just as much in love with her as ever. Glad that Walter is OK and back. Moira is in such a dark space. She has to go along with Malcolm--she knows what happens to her family if she doesn't. She's been heading down a dark path all the way from when Robert revealed his dark partnership regarding the Glades. Feel for her. Awesome revelatory episode--we learned so much!


PART IV...something different & not be the token nemesis to Arrow, a la Green Goblin to Spiderman. Tommy just doesn't have the physicality to take his father's place & become the substitute Dark Archer. Oliver & Malcolm have been training for YEARS, and Oliver in the most punishing physical environments. Even Laurel could take Tommy down right now, and in the foreseeable future. OK, I'm done!


PART III...felt like I was watching Brad Pitt age backwards in THE CURIOUS CASE OF BENJAMIN BUTTON. Back to Young Oliver. What a callow, superficial JERK! Well done, Steven Amell! The way he walked, his gestures, his facial expressions - they all communicated just how carefree, self-absorbed and completely selfish this guy was. I admit I didn't think Amell's range was that good because he's always the straight, serious guy holding up the tentpole of the series. But given the chance to show both pre & post Oliver, especially that last scene w/Malcom where he can barely contain his contempt, I saw so many layers of emotion in his eyes. Bravo! Finally, Tommy's presence was short, but meaningful. He looked comfortable in that suit, acting all cold & entitled to Laurel. It's almost too predictable to have him take Malcolm's place. I want Oliver to have his best friend back. Hope the writers find a surprising, awesome 3rd path that would allow Tommy to do something different & not be the token nemesis to Arrow, a la Green Goblin to Spiderman.


PART II...arrogant, entitled personality more removed & superior from everyone around him. OTOH, Oliver's trauma of watching his father & Sarah die right in front of him had the opposite effect. He may seem cold & removed because he has a double life. But, we know that compared to that spoiled, rich kid using a $100 bill to pay for pizza in this episode, Oliver cares now more than he ever did about his family & community, & at least is aware about the emotional consequences of his actions on other people. I like how we're seeing what made Arrow & the Dark Archer at almost the same time. They're mirror images of each other, making ethical choices that you can compare because their emotional crises were similar. QUESTION: Does anyone think they are using CGI to make Steven Amell look younger in his pre-island days? You can use makeup only so far, and Oliver Queen's skin & facial structure is so youthful in his scenes with Laurel, that it almost felt like I was watching Brad Pitt age backwards in THE CURIOUS CASE OF BENJAMIN BUTTON.


Was this episode only one hour long? SO MUCH INFORMATION that this review could only do a recap to underline the important points, of which there are many (and to make sure all of us understood). LOVED IT! LOVED IT! LOVED IT! Thank you for finally revealing how the List connects to the Plan, how far back Moira's involvement went (or didn't go), and how Mr. Queen got roped into all of it. I was surprised that he wasn't the mastermind. But, instead more of an unwitting accomplice because he had something to hide. What is fascinating is we know now that Malcolm developed all these plans as a reaction to his wife's murder, and because he couldn't deal with how he let her die alone. He blamed a location for her death, and condemns *everyone* who lives there as being unworthy of existing. Overreact much, Malcolm? Becoming the Dark Archer was an emotional outlet for his trauma. But, it only magnified & distorted his "God complex," as Robert put it, and made an already arrogant, entitled personality more removed from the community...CONT'D ABOVE

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Arrow Season 1 Episode 21 Quotes

Laurel: Then help me understand. If our relationship is going to end, at least let it end with honesty.
Tommy: Okay Laurel. Honestly, you belong with Oliver.

Diggle: What did you want?
Felicity: Is that any way to treat a girl who just walked up six flight of stairs?
Diggle: No, it's not. Welcome.