Arrow Season 7 Episode 16 Review: Star City 2040

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Well, if you wanted answers about the year 2040, you got a lot of them!

Arrow Season 7 Episode 16 was set almost entirely in the future, and in a matter of 40 minutes, the hour delivered a lot of answers without feeling heavy with exposition.

And a note to The CW: If it's not in your plans to expand the Arrowverse with the second generation of vigilantes, you need to rethink that decision. It's the perfect way to keep the characters we've grown to love alive while almost completely rejuvenating the cast. 

Old Red Jacket Dude - Arrow Season 7 Episode 16

As it turns out, the entirety of the drama playing out in the future falls directly into Felicity's hands.

She's alive (as I always knew) and was held captive in an electronic cube at Galaxy so that when the city got destroyed, they could place the blame on a handy dandy vigilante.

I can only surmise that Felicity took her daughter into hiding because of what she unleashed back in 2019 and how it changed her world.

Cranky Connor - Arrow Season 7 Episode 16

Felicity was so security conscious after what happened with Diaz that she created an AI program called Archer. Archer was brought online, and now we'll get to find out what the heck that means.

It must eventually fall into the wrong hands (or get hacked by better hackers than Felicity) because Galaxy is attempting to take over the world using Archer.

Honestly, I'm a little lost when it comes to the plans for world domination (and home security), but just discovering the connection between the past and the criminal underworld of the future was a cool get.

Related: Grant Gustin Speaks Out on Arrow's Final Season Announcement

What's going to happen isn't tied up with a pretty bow at the moment, but knowing the trajectory of the story throughout Arrow Season 8 does grow into the direction of the future's story will allow us to make predictions.

Who the hell doesn't love predictions??

Crankier Mia - Arrow Season 7 Episode 16

I can tell you what Mia doesn't like. She doesn't much care for liars. Good on her.

We got to see Mia's birth, her childhood, teen years, and into adulthood as she and Felicity lived in a nice, normal home outside of Star City, a place they never visited. Felicity didn't even take day trips to Smoak Tech, working solely online.

But Felicity was always worried about safety, and as a result, Mia was trained by Nyssa al Ghul from the time she was a toddler. That accounts for Mia's skills as a tiny woman. She had more training than any vigilante we've ever encountered.

Of course you can do handstand pushups.


She should be practically invincible. And she is practically invincible.

Mia Looks Annoyed - Arrow Season 7 Episode 16

Felicity's impact on William in her absence was as significant as Oliver's impact on Mia in his absence. William is as much of a technical wizard as Mia is a fighter. As brother and sister, they're the polar opposite of their respective gender appropriate parents.

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Mia has sharper oral delivery than her father did, as you would have growing up with Felicity as your mom. But William is the funny guy to Mia's stoicism on a mission. They make a brilliant team.

Mia: Stay back and in the elevator. Understood?
William: You know, I'm so enjoying these heartfelt brother/sister moments.
Mia: You're just more use to me not dead.
William: I'm sorry. Do you ... care about me?
Mia: Yeah, maybe. I'm also not the only one. You know the angel investors where you got all your capital? I think Mom might have had something to do with that.

Mia left home and became Blackstar after she discovered a secret room Felicity kept in their house. Inside that room was nothing but a desk and computer with screensavers of Felicity with William, and another of Oliver, but it revealed that Felicity had been a vigilante all along.

It wasn't a smooth transition for Mia, and "Star City 2040" was the first time she saw her mother since she got introduced.

Dinah and Roy in the Glades - Arrow Season 7 Episode 16

As a result, Mia felt like she'd been led to become a vigilante almost by force. By helping her brother, she was playing the same game as her parents, the game that kept Felicity away from her for too long.

Mia thought meeting Connor (who was adopted by Diggle) was something she could count on, only to discover he's an agent with Nightwatch. 

Connor: I'm an agent for Nightwatch.
William: Which is what, the good version of ARGUS?
Connor: Something like that.

To Mia, that meant more lies. But she also needed to know he was the child of vigilantes, too, because he had some pearls of wisdom to help her choose to follow in her parents' footsteps.

She didn't understand why he supported his parents when they were never around. Mia was too busy with her anger with Felicity to take a step back and see the bigger picture.

Flanked - Arrow Season 7 Episode 16

Connor quoting Spiderman was cute, as there is still one hero that hasn't found his way to television and seeing comics characters talking about comic heroes is fun.

But the same applies to superhero kids. We need to learn to share our parents and be a little selfless.


Felicity and Mia had some excellent scenes together as they came to terms with Mia's existence and Felicity's purpose.

Related: Enjoy UNLIMITED access to thousands of Movies and TV shows with Amazon Prime Video

Mia: For once in your life, Mom, put your family first!
Felicity: Being a hero, Mia, means choosing other people's safety over your own, including family. That's why I hid my work from you, to protect you from having to make difficult decisions like this.
Mia: You should have just been honest with me from the beginning!
Felicity: I should've. You are right. I am so sorry. Being a hero is my purpose. I can't leave

What's exciting about this development is that we'll have more of Felicity in the future.

As they said, it's great to have the band back together again to fight off evil. With two generations of vigilantes trying to take down the baddies and Rene on the inside, it should only get better from here.

The search for Felicity is over, and everyone has reunited. It's time for the real fun to begin.

A Costume for the Glades - Arrow Season 7 Episode 16

There is still a lot that we need to learn even with so many reveals.

Connor's talk about his parents made it seem as if both were gone, perhaps even killed in action. He spoke of them almost wistfully, and with a finality that I wouldn't expect if they were alive. Catching up with John Diggle, Jr. might be next.

There has also been no word of Laurel in the future, although the Canaries being a group gives me hope she still goes back to the craft.

Oliver's absence also needs to get addressed, but it's hard not to chalk it up to his death occurring during the upcoming crossover event. How that would change the canvas becomes a bit clearer with the latest developments.

Old Dinah Drake - Arrow Season 7 Episode 16

Dinah may not have her Canary Cry anymore, but the Canaries appear to be a multi-gal group somewhat like Team Arrow used to be. They aren't birds of prey, but with multiples, it would be cool to see what others participate.

Laurel believes Emiko is an enemy, and Emiko's connection to Dante might bear that out. The entire city is eventually going to turn against the vigilantes in a way that isn't remotely on track with them working in conjunction with CPD in the present.

Archer's impact on the story going forward is likely to change something, but will it be enough to turn on everyone with all they're currently accomplishing? 

For the first time in ages, Arrow is delivering character-driven stories that don't center exclusively on plot. 

It's an exciting time to be a part of the Arrowverse, so you should watch Arrow online and get caught up.

What answers from this hour did you most appreciate?

Did you wonder how Felicity went to the bathroom, etc., in a room that wasn't a room? There couldn't have been things in the walls there like the porta potties in the Star Labs padded cells!

What are your predictions for Archer, and how do you think it will play into the rest of Arrow Season 7?

Would you watch another Arrowverse show centering on the next generation?

And finally, am I the only one who wouldn't mind a time jump to at least Mia's birth? 

Hit the comments and share your thoughts!

Star City 2040 Review

Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.6 / 5.0 (17 Votes)

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, conversing with cats, and passionately discussing the nuances of television and film with anyone who will listen. Follow her on Twitter and email her here at TV Fanatic.

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Arrow Season 7 Episode 16 Quotes

I don't lose.


Tattoo Artist: What's the black star for?
Mia: My mom once told me that all the starlight we see had so far to travel that they might not exist anymore. Eventually, they all fade to black. Erased. That's where I wanna be.