“Arrow” Recap 2.01: From the Ashes

Arrow returns with a quiver full of action, repercussions and drama.

Are you ready, my peeps? Have you steeled your hearts and girded your loins? The Arrow roller coaster is about to leave the station. Keep your hands and arms inside the car at all times. (And if you need a refresher, be sure to read over the season one primer.)

Season 2 openers can be tricky. A lot of shows stumble badly when trying to recapture the momentum they had at the end of their first season. In a way, it’s like trying to make a sequel. And as everyone knows, a lot of sequels stink.

Arrow put all my worries to rest. This episode was basically a message from the showrunners saying, “Season one was just the prologue. You ain’t seen nothing yet.”

We start off with Digg and Felicity skydiving into Magical Ninja Island. Why? Because that’s where Oliver has gone to lick his wounds and grieve the loss of his friend. There is something impossibly sad about the idea that the place where Oliver feels the most at peace is the island he was marooned on.

Digg and Felicity tell him it’s time for him to come home, which Oliver isn’t too keen on. He tells them that he failed completely which resulted in Tommy’s death and the destruction of the Glades. The worst thing is that he’s actually right.

But Queen Consolidated is the target of a hostile takeover and Moira is about to go to trial. So it’s time for Oliver to get over himself.

Flashback!

We’re back to Magic Ninja Island five years ago where Slade is slowly turning Oliver into a moderately competent combatant while Shado hunts and gathers. I have to say, this is one area where I have some issues with the show. It has this weird habit of making kick-ass women like Laurel and Shado and then turning them into the weak link.

Anyhoo, they discover that there are other people on the island, which is strange since they’re certain they killed all of their cohabitants. The Super Friends head off to investigate.

Back in modern day, Oliver arrives back in Starling City. We get our first look at the damage to The Glades and it’s just horrifying.

The terrible irony is that since Oliver failed to stop the Markov Device but did (apparently) kill Malcolm, he’s not only failed to protect the city but he robbed The Glades of the financial backing Malcolm had intended to provide to rebuild the place.

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