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Recap / Arrow S 8 E 3 Leap Of Faith

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Oliver reunites with Thea to find information on the Monitor. Future Team Arrow tries to take down the Deathstrokes.

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  • Absentee Actor: Laurel doesn't appear, most likely since Katie Cassidy is directing the episode.
  • Ambiguous Situation: It's not clear whether the "god" encountered by Al-Fatih is the Monitor or the Anti-Monitor. Not knowing about the latter yet, Oliver assumes that it's the former.
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  • Ambiguously Evil: The scroll that Oliver uncovers suggests that rather than trying to stop the Crisis, the Monitor is going to cause it. Though this may be referencing the Anti-Monitor.
  • Arc Welding: Due to the timeline's apparently merging, Team Arrow from the future meets Oliver and his friends.
  • Been There, Shaped History: The Monitor appeared on Earth in ancient times, and the religious terror his arrival inspired in a man named Al-Fatih led the man to found the League of Assassins and become the first Ra's Al-Ghul.
  • The Bus Came Back: Thea returns (having last appeared in Season Six) as does Talia (last seen in Season Seven). Also returning are Athena and the Thanatos Guild, as well as Dinah and Rene.
  • Cain and Abel: If Connor and JJ weren't this already, they become so after JJ kills Zoe, with Connor wanting to kill him in retaliation.
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  • Call-Back: The tomb of Al-Fatih is in the same mountain that Oliver dueled Ra's Al-Ghul atop back in Season 3.
  • Character Death:
    • Athena, being buried under a piece of the ceiling in the tomb of Al-Fatih.
    • Zoe in the future, courtesy of JJ. Also counts as an offscreen version of Outliving One's Offspring for Rene.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Thea, disarmed in a duel with Talia, grabs a chain from a nearby wall and chokes her until she yields.
  • Crazy-Prepared: Turns out that the floor of the Arrow Cave is rigged to electrocute intruders, which William uses to take out JJ's men when they come for him.
  • Daddy Issues: Part of Talia's motive for throwing in with Thea's plan to turn the League of Assassins into a league of heroes is because she knows that her late father would be aghast at the idea of two women leading an organisation that he refused to allow either of his daughters to inherit.
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  • Didn't Think This Through: Mia's plan to take out the Deathstrokes leaves a lot to be desired; she leads her team (all of four people, only three of whom are fighters) to take on superior numbers in their own headquarters, with Mia herself taking on JJ, who's beaten her in a fight before. Rather inevitably, the plan fails; Mia loses her fight with JJ, most of the Deathstrokes escape, and Zoe is killed saving Mia's life.
  • Died in Your Arms Tonight: Zoe passes away in Mia's arms.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Him: Athena dies rather anticlimactically when a piece of the ceiling at Nanda Parbat collapses on her.
  • Easily Forgiven: Oliver and Thea forgive Talia rather quickly despite her betraying both of them. Thea even offers her to rebuild the League into something heroic alongside her.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Gholem Qadir, the man Ben Turner killed all the way back in Season 2 had a son named Farzad who is out for Lyla's blood.
  • Generation Xerox: This ain't the first time one of the Diggle brothers killed another, or at least attempted to.
  • The Ghost: Abdul Nardoc, who ordered Ben Turner's family captured, doesn't appear directly.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Talia recognizes the error of her ways and accepts Thea's offer to reforge the League of Assassins into a League of Heroes.
  • Hidden Depths: Thea can read Arabic. She likely learned it from Nyssa.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Zoe, courtesy of JJ.
  • In the Back:
    • How JJ impales Zoe.
    • John saves Lyla by shooting Farzad Qadir in the back.
  • Internal Reveal: Thea learns about Oliver's cosmic quest and impending death.
  • I Work Alone: This attitude actually comes back to bite Oliver in the ass, as Talia betrays him once he sent Thea away.
  • Know When to Fold 'Em: Talia surrenders when Thea has her defeated.
  • Laser-Guided Karma:
    • Talia betrays Oliver in the hopes of claiming Al-Fatihs' sword and rebuilding the League of Assassins. She is subsequently caught by the Thanatos Guild even more quickly than Oliver and Thea.
    • Zoe clearly points out the riskiness of Mia's plan to her. Now Mia has to deal with her teammate's blood on her hands.
  • Leeroy Jenkins: Mia's hotblooded attitude finally costs her dearly, as Zoe gets killed during the attack on the Deathstroke's headquarter.
  • New Era Speech: JJ gives one to the Deathstrokes, rallying them to destroy the unification movement.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Connor gives JJ a vicious one after he kills Zoe, even preparing to slit his brother's throat.
  • Out of Focus: While E-1 Rene and Dinah are back from the bus for the first time since the last seasons finale despite being regulars, they only show up at the very end.
  • Plot Parallel: Oliver and Mia get a little overprotective of their siblings in both the present and future.
  • Predecessor Villain: The A-plot of the episode deals with the backstory of Al-Fatih, the first Ra's Al-Ghul.
  • The Purge: The Deathstrokes are targeting all the members of the Star City unification movement.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • Fighting in an unstable structure is a bad idea. Athena finds out the hard way.
    • Mia's plan to derail the Deathstroke gang's plans involves engaging a superior force on their own turf. As soon as the fighting starts, things start to go sideways, with Mia losing her fight with JJ, Zoe being killed, and most of the gang escaping.
    • Zoe learns, to her detriment, that talking is not a free action; JJ fatally stabs her in the back while Zoe is talking to Mia.
  • Seen It All: Given the amount of times Oliver was previously thought dead, Thea isn't fazed at all when Oliver tells her that he's fated to die in the Crisis. Oliver is not at all amused by her underreaction.
    Oliver: [The Monitor]'s seen the future. He's seen me die. It's soon, Speedy.
    Thea: ...And?
    Oliver: Take as much time as you need to be upset.
  • Shout-Out: Thea references Indiana Jones when going through booby traps in Nanda Parbat.
  • Snark-to-Snark Combat: Thea and Talia keep exchanging snide remarks throughout the episode.
  • Slashed Throat: JJ prepares to execute Mia this way, but Zoe intervenes.
    JJ: You know, the human body holds five liters of blood. Let's see how much you have.
  • Villain: Exit, Stage Left: Thanks to the inconveniently timed time travel, JJ escapes near-death at his brother's hands to fight another day (possibly as the Deathstroke II featured in the next episode).
  • Wham Episode: Mia, Connor, and William are somehow transported to 2019 and meet Oliver in the present day. Also, Oliver finds out that the Monitor is apparently the one causing the Crisis.
  • Wham Shot: Oliver sees his son, daughter and Connor Hawke in the present day.
  • Whole Plot Reference: In addition to the Shout-Out above, the climax of the episode is very similar to that of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade in particular. The villainous expedition forces the heroes to enter the temple containing the MacGuffin relic first. The Hero then solves a riddle that allows them to cross over a booby-trapped floor by stepping on particular stones. Finally, the female villain is killed by part of the temple falling apart.
  • Wild Card: Talia is Athena's enemy, but doesn't want Thea to have the sword either. By the end of the episode, she comes around.
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