Recap / Arrow S 1 E 9 Years End

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On the island, Yao Fei brings Edward Fyers back to the cave and tells Oliver that Fyers has a plane. Fyers reveals to Oliver that the island was used as a Chinese military prison and Yao Fei was one of two criminals not killed, with Deathstroke being the other. As the three of them walk through the jungle, Deathstroke and his men attack, taking Yao Fei hostage.

Adam Hunt is murdered in a style reminiscent of The Hood’s, but Detective Lance finds that the arrows and motives don’t match. Oliver sends Lance a phone and calls to say he’s innocent and needs an arrow out of evidence. After he is kicked off the case, Lance calls back with where to find the arrow. Felicity Smoak gives Oliver the address of a warehouse where a company named Sagittarius, Latin for “the archer,” shipped these arrows. Oliver checks it out and narrowly escapes being blown up inside.

Thea admits to Oliver that the Queens have forsaken Christmas the past five years. Oliver announces to his family that he will throw a Christmas party. Tommy brings Laurel as his plus one. Moira and Walter are upset with one another, each for lying about the other’s involvement with the list. Diggle informs Oliver that the other archer has taken hostages.

Oliver frees the hostages and has a serious fight with the Dark Archer, who has been killing people Oliver crossed off the list. Oliver learns that the man who authored the list wants him dead. Ending up concussed on the pavement, Oliver is brought to the hospital by Diggle. The Dark Archer reveals himself (though only to us) as Malcolm Merlyn. Walter is abducted because of his knowledge, while Malcolm tells Moira that in six months, the city will be the way “the organization” envisioned it.

Tropes applying to this Episode:

  • Christmas Episode: Also doubles a bit as An Asskicking Christmas.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: The Dark Archer thoroughly kicks Oliver's ass.
  • The Dragon: In this episode, Malcolm hints that perhaps Walter needs a visit from "our friend", obliquely referring to the Dark Archer. Who it turns out is Malcolm himself. The Big Bad is his own Dragon.
    • However, it is worth noting that one of the Dark Archer's killings took place while Malcolm was at dinner with Oliver, Moira, and Walter. Apparently, just like Oliver, he arranged for someone to take his place.
  • Knight Templar Big Brother: Oliver despises Thea's new boyfriend on sight. When he walks in on them fooling around, his response is a cold "Hit the road."
  • Mythology Gag:
    • This episode marks the first time we hear the name “Green Arrow” on the series.
    • The episode also reveals that Tommy isn't the series' adaptation of the villain Merlyn, his father Malcolm is.
  • Recruiting the Criminal: Inverted, Oliver goes to the police to offer his services in catching the Dark Archer, because he's of the opinion that it would take an archer to catch an archer (or it takes the Hood to catch a copycat of the Hood).
  • The Reveal: Malcolm isn't merely in charge of the Undertaking. He's a massive badass capable of kicking the shit out of Oliver, half his age and spent half a decade fighting a war in hell.