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REVIEW: Arrow 5×17 “Kapiushon”

Holy shit, that was dark as all hell in every way imaginable and it was awesome to witness unfold. Arrow has had a resurgence this season and has gotten back to living up to its potential and making sure that everyone knows it. Everything from the flashbacks, to Chase, to Oliver trying to admit to himself, all of was top notch and super fun to watch. This may easily have been the best episode of Arrow since season two and we haven’t even seen how far Chase and now Oliver are willing to go to end it all. This is what makes “Kapiushon” so terrifyingly awesome, we are simply at the start of act three and now the world is being left to burn. Everything and everyone around Oliver are going to feel the repercussions for the events that took place tonight, and really I am just excited to watch this world burn.

Let’s start with Adrian because there is a new king of the big bads and he is utterly terrifying. Plenty of people have challenged Oliver and made him question his ideals but now only two have ever really broke him. Watching Chase make Oliver relieve all of the worst possible moments of being the Green Arrow, and simply never refusing to give up was haunting. Deep down in his core Chase needed to break Oliver, it validates everything he has done from killing the innocents of Star City to murdering his wife. Chase molded himself to be an Oliver who has accepted the darkness within himself and now that he has forced Oliver to realize their was no point in his crusade he has won. Chase broke someone who we as the audience viewed as a type of moral center. Sure Oliver was usually in the right in his decision process, but this changes and challenges everything we know about the character. I simultaneously hate, love, and am terrified of Josh Segarra, man has been amazing since the reveal and basically on a whole other plane of existence.

The same thing goes for Stephen Amell tonight because hot damn was he great in every little bit of the episode. It the flashbacks we had him playing into the idea that he was only a monster when the hood was on and that it was simply an outlet. Having Anatoli constantly trying to convince Oliver that he didn’t need to go as far as he did was beautiful. Anatoli may be a murderous crime lord, but he does realize the toll that ones actions have on oneself. Amell is great in this episode because of the multiple versions of Oliver he has to play. When he is the hood he is brutal, efficient, and as Anatoli says “much like Slade Wilson” in how much joy he gets in killing people. Yet, at the end of the flashbacks Oliver somewhat believes he is not a monster despite all the actions he has taken.

Conversely you have the Oliver of the present who truly doesn’t want to admit just how much of a monster he has become. He is willing to absorb the pain that Adrian is dishing out as long as it means no one else is getting hurt. I am fairly confident that given the option Oliver would have continued to take the beating until he was dead. That is what makes those final scenes with Artemis and Prometheus so great. They both knew just the right buttons to press in order to make Oliver question everything he believes and finally admit the truth. When Amell yelled that Oliver liked to kill it made everything worth it, all of the years Oliver has been attempting to prove that his mission is heroic or worthwhile finally came to the point we have all been waiting for. Oliver is not a hero if he truly doesn’t believe what he is doing is causing any good. He does it because he likes it and killing people makes him feel alive. Finally after five years Oliver can deal with what it means to be a hero and that he can’t truly escape the past.

This in a lot of ways is an entirely new beginning for the show as Oliver now has to come to terms with what it truly means to be a hero after everything he has done. He truly has to embrace the idea of not killing and be a beacon for his city. I really can’t wait to see just how far Oliver Pushes his luck before bringing Adrian down because now after everything that has happened he can’t kill Prometheus. It would go against everything the season has been aiming for.

This was easily the best episode of the season and one of the best episodes of Arrow. Just can’t wait to see how it all ends.

Final Grade A

+Oliver admitting he likes to kill

+Flashbacks were great

+Prometheus breaking Oliver

+Fights were fantastic

+Olivers decision at the end

-Kovar death fake out

Extra Thoughts

+I have never been more terrified of Oliver than when he skinned a man alive. That is hardcore fucked up.

+Oliver is gone for six days, I am wondering how they will explain his absence from city hall.

+The juxtaposition of what Flash is supposed to be and what Arrow is supposed to be is jarring sometimes. Both shows work but when they really hit all notes like this week it is hard to believe they exist in the same universe.

About the author

Scott Swartz

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