Spoilers for Arrow. Trigger warning: This episode deals with dark magic, violence, estranged parents, and death.
On the previous episode, Felicity and her father narrowly stopped all but one nuke from hitting its target. Still, tens of thousands died, giving Darhk a surge of unstoppable power. Meanwhile, Thea is still trapped in the Ark. In order to stop Darhk and save their city, Team Arrow must do something else...
This is Arrow!
The episode picks up right where the last left off. Oliver and Diggle find Darhk in an underground lair--a Nexus chamber--soaking up the life forces of the people who died in the explosion. Oliver tries to shoot Darhk with an arrow while Diggle tries to shoot him with bullets. Neither succeeds at hitting him because Darhk uses his ultra-creepy powers to block the projectiles. He knocks Oliver and Diggle off their feet and then knocks down the entire chamber as he makes his escape. Oliver and Diggle barely make it out of the underground lair before it collapses.
Darhk: "I turn steel arrows into dust and you thought lead would do the trick?"
Thea lays over Alex's dead body. (Apparently, he is dead. I couldn't tell last episode.) She picks up a cell phone and hastily types in a message. Merlyn appears like the creepy person he is while Lonnie Machin escapes. Merlyn's henchmen take Thea into the nearest house despite her protests. Merlyn threatens Thea into compliance. When she refuses, he gives her something that will make her compliant. (Let me guess... the yellow pills?)
Merlyn: "Not to sound too much like your father, but I really think you need a timeout."
Felicity watches news coverage of the nuke explosion. Her dad turns off the TV and tells her they need to keep working on Rubicon because he only stalled it for twenty-four hours. She gives him a hug and then agrees. Curtis barges in, rambling on and on about everything that has happened. Felicity introduces Curtis to her father--Noah Kuttler, a wanted super hacker. (This is my favorite conversation. I honestly need more Curtis in this show.) She also gives him a quick rundown on the "sequel to War Games" that is happening outside right now. Felicity gets Thea's text and leaves Curtis with her dad.
(Curtis is my favorite.--source)
Darhk meets up with Ruve in their super-secret, bad guy bunker. (I honestly have no idea where they are.) He found a hacker to help him regain access to Rubicon. It's Cooper, Felicity's ex-boyfriend. (Oh, this is brilliant.) Cameras in the Ark catch footage of Lonnie Machin running around causing trouble.
(Nice. Great ex-boyfriend you have there, Felicity.--source)
Oliver and Diggle return to the Arrow cave where Felicity and Lance wait for them. Felicity traces Thea's text message. Oliver and Diggle head out to the location, but when they arrive, there is nothing there. Lance tells them to find something that is out of place. There's a sewer access that isn't on the city's blueprints. They enter. Ruve and Merlyn waltz down the idyllic and soldier-infested streets of the Ark. They get an alert about intruders. Ruve tells Merlyn to deal with it. Oliver and Diggle walk down a tunnel that opens into the Ark.
When they enter, Felicity loses their signal. Curtis texts Felicity for help, so she leaves Lance in the cave to man the communication. Felicity returns to the apartment to find her parents arguing--and Curtis awkwardly standing there listening. Felicity tells her mother about the end of the world. Donna doesn't believe her until Felicity admits she works with the Green Arrow. Felicity and Noah get to work while her mother tries to process the truth.
(This is my favorite conversation.--source)
Oliver and Diggle investigate the Ark town. They decide to split up to find Thea. They scope out the houses where families sit idly together, all smiles and super creepy vibes. Oliver finds Thea. He knocks out her guards, but when he unties her from the chair, she attacks him. She radios that she has the intruder and points a gun at Oliver. He tries to talk to her, but then Merlyn comes in and admits she's been drugged with the yellow pills. Oliver says he should have killed Merlyn when he had the chance. Merlyn just scoffs.
Diggle arrives to help, and Merlyn runs away like the big baby he is. Thea flees also. Ghosts chase Oliver and Diggle through the town. They fight. People scream. They manage to evade capture and hide in a house, which is occupied by a family. Darhk paces back and forth while Cooper tries to get access back to Rubicon, but Felicity and her father put up a good fight. Ruve sends an announcement to the town about the intruders. She orders the people to find them and kill them. Merlyn is skeptical that her loyal subjects will turn into murderers for her. Meanwhile, Lonnie Machin hides in the vents above Ruve's broadcasting studio.
(This is my favorite fight scene.--source)
As Felicity and Noah continue to work on Rubicon, Curtis suggests overloading it in order to shut it down. During all of this, Donna and Noah continue to hold an argumentative conversation where Donna throws a lot of shade. (Let's just say, I'm beginning to like her character more and more.) Cooper sends a message to them that he has control of their system and will gain control of Rubicon shortly. He sends electrical surges to their system, which start messing up the computers. However, this gives them Cooper's location, so they are able to send a surge back at him. They do, and Cooper's computer explodes, which sends him flying across the room. Darhk is not happy. They also manage to get Rubicon offline. Felicity thanks her dad, which makes Donna leave the room.
(Felicity: 2, Cooper: 0--source)
The Ark family tries to inform the ghosts that Diggle and Oliver are in their house, but Diggle stops them. Oliver tells Diggle to go easy because the people are innocent and being drugged. But the family says they haven't taken pills. They are in the Ark because they chose to be in the Ark. They believe that this is the way to save the city, to fight the darkness in the world. Darhk has given them hope.
Man in Ark: "We're here because we believe, because we know the world is evil and dark. It's beyond saving."
Oliver: "How can you believe that?"
Man in Ark: "Because we've lived it. Every day. So many promises were made to save the city, but it all just fell apart, and we were the ones left in the rubble. Damien Darhk has given us hope. Can you with your masks and your guns actually say the same?"
Felicity finds Donna in her room folding clothes. They talk about her father leaving, and Donna says Noah didn't disappear, she did. She took Felicity away from her father because he was dangerous. She didn't want Felicity to lose her mother too.
(Aww... so sweet.--source)
Diggle ties up the family. Oliver wonders if Darhk does have a point--the world is falling apart, and he's bringing more hope than they ever could as vigilantes. Ghosts arrive, so Diggle tells Oliver to find Thea while he holds them off. Oliver finds her, but all she wants to do is fight him. He refuses, so she points an arrow at him. Oliver tells her to fight it. He says she always keeps fighting, she never gives up. (Oliver deserves another award for a great speech. Where are these coming from?)
Oliver: "This isn't you, Thea. They're trying to control you. But you are stronger than that. You can fight through it."
Thea: "I can't."
Oliver: "Yes, you can. Every day, we stand side by side to protect this city, and no matter how dark or how hopeless, you always keep fighting. You never give up! I refuse to believe that you're going to give up now. So fight!"
Merlyn shows up while Diggle fights the Ghosts, but before he can do anything, Thea and Oliver return and disarm him. Then Lonnie Machin broadcasts over the TVs. He has Ruve and Darhk's daughter tied up. He threatens to kill one of them, or both of them, if Darhk doesn't show his face. If no one shows up, he'll blow up the Ark. Merlyn says they need to stop Machin. Oliver surprisingly agrees with conditions. If they can't stop Machin, Merlyn has to lead the people out. Merlyn says there is nowhere to go--outside will be destroyed by nukes. Oliver refuses to believe that will happen. He has hope.
(What is Merlyn doing in that last gif? How is he even doing that? I don't even...--source)
Team Arrow finds Machin. He warns them that the entire complex is powered by a dwarf-star (Ray?!), so any sudden damage could blow the entire place. Machin tries to attack Ruve when he realizes he won't be able to escape, so Oliver and Thea shoot him. One of them hits Machin while the other hits an important piece of equipment in the room. The room starts to explode. (Oops.) Machin stabs Ruve. Oliver, Diggle, and Thea fight Machin. The streets of the Ark start to explode. Merlyn tries to lead people out. (Wow. He actually listened to Oliver.)
Oliver saves Darhk's daughter from falling debris. Machin escapes. Oliver tries to help Ruve, but she says to leave and save her daughter. They escape just as the building collapses. Darhk learns that something is wrong with the Ark. A whole chunk of Star City has crumbled into a crater, which has caused more death. Felicity calls Oliver, who has just gotten out of the sewer. For now, the city is safe, but there are people who still need saving.
Darhk stands alone in his bunker, which is shut down. Merlyn comes in and tells him it was Machin... and that Ruve is gone. Darhk wants to get Rubicon back online. Merlyn says they can't do that because there's nowhere else on earth that's safe. Darhk doesn't seem to be bothered by that: he says let it burn.
Donna and Noah chat. She asks him to leave, for good this time. She says he's still a danger to Felicity, and if he loves her, he'll leave. Felicity tells Curtis about her mother kicking her dad out and that he can't change. Curtis says this story sounds familiar--like Felicity and Oliver. (Oooh, you go, Curtis!) Donna comes back in and tells Felicity her father is leaving. Then Darhk walks in and asks for a favor. When Felicity tells him to go to hell, he says he's bringing it to them.
Darhk: "I need you to do me a favor."
Felicity: "Go to hell."
Darhk: "Why bother? I'm going to bring it to us."
Oliver and Taiana continue through the forest. Reiter's men catch up with them, and they shoot Taiana. But she doesn't die. Instead after Oliver shoots the men, she absorbs their life force, her eyes turning yellow. She tells Oliver she understands what Reiter is after, and she can do the same--free her village. Oliver tries to remind her there are people on the Island that need her help first. More soldiers attack the fleeing prisoners. Oliver and Taiana arrive to help. She uses the idol to scare them away. Oliver tries to help a wounded prisoner, but Taiana says he'll slow them down. She points a gun at the prisoner and says his life could make her stronger. Oliver tries to stop her, but she tosses him aside and snaps the prisoner's neck. (Oh my gosh. I actually hate her more than I did before.) Oliver grabs the idol. Taiana tells him to give it back, but he says no. If she wants it, she'll have to kill him too. Then Reiter arrives.
Concluding ThoughtsSurprisingly, I enjoyed this episode. It was fun to watch Oliver and Diggle fight ghosts in the idyllic town. Lonnie Machin's part in destroying the Ark was splendid. I'm glad he didn't die yet because he is actually kind of fun to watch. Learning more about Felicity's parents was intriguing too. (Does anybody else think it's interesting that Felicity's dad is Noah and Darhk built an Ark to save people from the flood? Hmm...) I love Curtis. I hope we see more of him.
The Island story line has become obnoxiously boring. I really hope the season finale somehow connects it because right now it's a loose thread that I just want to cut. I don't care about Taiana--I never did--and I really don't care about the idol or Reiter or any of it. It's boring and annoying. Can Slade Wilson please come back?
I'm curious to see how the season finale will end up. Rubicon is stopped for now, the Ark is destroyed, but Darhk still wants to end the world. I wonder why--is it Ruve? His daughter is still out there, and Oliver has her. I honestly don't know where this show is going or what will happen next season. The end of the world play kind of makes everything that comes after it...not as crucial. But I'm sure they've got something cooked up for season five. I hope the Island scenes get better.
(I am Thea.--source)
What did you think of "Lost in the Flood"? What do you think will happen in the season finale?