Warning: spoilers ahead!
Each week we’re bringing you the best of “Olicity” moments on Arrow—from those reassuring hand touches to the day Oliver finally makes out with Felicity in the new lair. Here’s our “Olicity” Watch for 4×05, Haunted:
This was once again a Lance-heavy episode, with Oliver finally figuring out that Sara Lance was resurrected and that she’s the blonde running all over town trying to kill Thea look-a-likes (as Thea Queen was the one who unknowingly killed her way back at the start of Season 3). Without her soul, Sara is a pretty scary thing to behold, all animalistic and just as badass as usual. It makes Laurel Lance’s Black Canary look like a Halloween costume, to be honest, and also makes me realize how much I miss Sara’s natural and strong fighting style. Regardless, she needs to be stopped, and Team Arrow finally catches her — but not until after Thea is hospitalized, unfortunately.
To put an end to Sara’s blood lust, Oliver gets the help of John Constantine, fresh off his canceled show. Together, he, Oliver and Laurel travel to some bizarre other world to get Sara’s soul back. In the end, Sara is herself again, Laurel and Oliver’s relationship seems to be on the mend, and I’m struggling to make myself care.
Look: I’m an “Olicity” fan and I have been from the beginning. But that doesn’t mean I haven’t tried to like Laurel. And it’s not the fault of the actress, Katie Cassidy, or even the truly terrible chemistry between Cassidy and Stephen Amell. Laurel Lance has been consistently poorly written with very little sustained characterization or likeable storylines. She’s the character who is generally thrown under the bus in favor of boosting certain plot decisions, and this latest one — resurrecting her sister from her eternal rest in a way that can only be described as cruel — seems particularly thoughtless.
At this point I’m struggling to see what Laurel brings to the table in terms of Team Arrow or to Oliver’s life in general. So I was happy when he seemed to be questioning their friendship in the beginning of the episode, but less happy when everything sort of magically resolved itself by the end. There’s a lot of bad blood between Laurel and Oliver, and one conversation is not going to fix that, particularly one where Laurel comes off as selfish, dismissive, accusatory and kind of naïve.
It wasn’t the writers’ intention I’m sure, but the result was the same: if they truly want to heal this relationship, Laurel and Oliver need more than just one fast-paced episode to make it actually happen.
In general, this episode felt disjointed with several storylines jammed together in a way that never quite gelled. The fact that some of them were so much more fun or interesting than others—I’m looking at you, energy-drinking Curtis — didn’t help matters much. The John Diggle/Captain Lance thread was necessary but felt shoehorned in, especially with how big of a moment it was for Diggle to find out his brother wasn’t such a good guy after all. I’m curious to see where they go with this and I hope it gets the screen time it deserves in the future.
I did appreciate seeing how much Oliver has changed this episode—with Thea and Laurel he showed a patience and understanding he wouldn’t have in earlier seasons. I’m going to credit Felicity’s influence with most of that, but it’s also nice to watch Oliver’s hero journey continue in a way that feels natural and true to his character…unlike some people in this episode. I’ll just keep my hopes up for next week, where the hunt for mini-Ray goes into high gear and Felicity will finally be more of the focus (I’m so ready to move past all this Lance drama).
- Felicity has installed a PA system throughout the lair, and uses it to make hilarious jokes where she says, “This is your overlord Felicity Smoak,” in a growly voice. Never change, Felicity. Oliver adorably rolls his eyes and how can I love these two so much when they’re not even in the same room together?
- Oliver and Felicity sit together on their couch in the loft, rubbing hands while they talk about Sara’s resurrection. It’s all very domestic, though their conversation isn’t quite as tranquil: they discuss their deceased loved ones, the dangers of the magical Lazarus Pit and Ray’s final message. They’re open and honest with each other and Oliver is vulnerable in a way we rarely see. They also consistently play with each other’s fingers or rub the other’s arm throughout. It’s a nice metaphor for their relationship in general: yes, a lot of shit will get thrown their way, no, they will not let it break the quiet but strong connection that always exists between them.
- Felicity and Oliver pace Thea’s hospital room waiting for her to wake up after Sara’s attack. This is a minor moment, but important because: family. Also, there’s a love fern in the background. Coincidence? Surely not.
- Oliver and Laurel travel with Constantine to some weird alternate world where Sara’s soul is being held. Despite the buildup and warnings, getting her out of there is pretty quick and painless. There is about half a second where Constantine worries they’ll get stuck there, which is probably why Oliver beelines for Felicity as soon as they’re mentally back in the lair. He wraps her in his arms and we get the impression that she’s holding him up as much as he’s embracing her. Felicity as Oliver’s literal support is one of my favorite things in the entire world, turns out. She rubs his chest, he kisses her hair, and I basically faint a little bit.
Kiss Count: Forehead? One. Mouth? Zero. I’m getting pretty tired of writing this number. If I wasn’t so jazzed about the promise of an “Olicity”-heavy episode next week (with some Oliver/Ray jealousy hopefully making an appearance), I might be getting my pitchfork out.
Best Moment: That forehead kiss though! I love how Oliver dropped Laurel’s hands like a hot potato and actually fell into Felicity’s arms. The way he just sort of mashed his lips against her temple was icing on the cake.
Steamy or Loving: “Olicity” has been firmly established in the background over the last few episodes, just enough so we know that Felicity is Oliver’s emotional rock and a solid member of his family. There’s a reason she and Oliver were the only ones in Thea’s hospital room after Sara’s attack. This is the new Queen family—and given how married Oliver and Felicity already seem (and have seemed for years) the proposal almost feels like an afterthought at this point. Not that I still don’t need to see Oliver getting down on one knee. Preferably sooner rather than later.
Here’s next week’s promo for episode 4×06, “Lost Souls”:
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Tune in next Thursday for another edition of “Olicity” Watch!