With some shows, you really worry about episodes that tilt the focus away from the lead, mostly because the others often do not have the sort of structures in place that are needed to support a larger story on their own.
Luckily, “Arrow” has found a way around that with the John Diggle character. Despite the fact that he was never once a part of the comic series, the writers have made David Ramsey’s character into an interesting flawed hero in his own right. He’s a man who perpetually wants to do go, but is at times blinded by his view on morality as a black-and-white issue. There are some gray areas, and maybe in that sense he actually did learn something from Wednesday’s “Suicide Squad.”
Somewhere along the way, the strangest thing happened here for him as he realized that at times, Deadshot had more of a potential for good than Amanda Waller, who was willing to kill countless people just for what she defined as the greater good. Remember, Deadshot is his own personal Lex Luthor, a man responsible for the death of his brother. This is one of our favorite villains, and he had tons of good stuff to do in here as he, Bronze Tiger, and Shrapnel were recruited for a mission that in some ways tied back to the last time the Tiger was on the show.
The biggest critique that we have for this whole story, though, was the implementation of Bronze Tiger and Shrapnel, especially the latter since we assume that he is no longer among the living. That’s how quickly you do away with Sean Maher? It feels like there was more that could have been done with the part.
But in the end with this, Diggle got an opportunity to grow closer to Myla, find some sort of redemption in Deadshot, and also reflect back on some of his past. We still would like to know more about John’s pre-army days, but at least getting a better sense of who he was at that time was welcome. Plus, Ramsay’s great at playing the all-American hero in a way that is never annoying, and shows the drawbacks of that role.
Oliver’s story here was a backseat, and we honestly thought going into this that Slade Wilson was going to be featured a little more prominently than he was. Instead, the mention of Deathstroke was at the very end, and the rest of this story was Oliver wandering around and trying to figure out that it was okay to tell Sara about what some of his fears are when it comes to Slade.
One of the night’s biggest highlights to us came in just the span of a few seconds. That screengrab of Harley Quinn(?) from the promo for this episode was left on the cutting-room floor. However, we had in its place a line from a woman at ARGUS who clearly seemed to be her, judging from the insane tone in her voice. We never saw the character (which leaves the casting possibilities open), but we’re 99.9% certain that the producers knew what they were doing with this little hint at things that may come up someday. Episode Grade: B+.
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Photo: The CW