Arrow 4.04 “Beyond Redemption” Review

This week on Arrow, Oliver’s run for mayor takes center stage after being completely glossed over last week. Not only is Oliver scouting out campaign headquarters, but he’s also built a brand new Arrow Cave underneath the office building, complete with all of the bells and whistles you would want in a secret lair for vigilante justice. Felicity seems to have had a big hand in all of the set up, making sure all of the tech is state of the art- even if the entire system is a bit glitchy.

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In addition to a glitch HQ, poor Felicity is still having trouble with her phone. Her quick moments trying to crack the Ray Palmer phone issue with Curtis build up a fun dynamic between the two, while also giving the audience some background on Mr. Terrific. Hopefully, once the phone mystery is solved, we’ll see more of Curtis and Felicity working with team Arrow and not just in their own little world of Palmer Tech.

Team Arrow seems to have found an emotional happy place this week. Everyone is getting along and working well together. Felicity and Oliver still seem to be blissful in their relationship, and Oliver has a few touching moments with Thea, a nice change from the strain we’ve seen in previous episodes. But as happy as team Arrow is, things this week for the Lance family seem to be going from bad to worse.

The Lazarus Pit restored Sara, but in body only. She seems to have no memory of anything before her death, and her living conditions can’t be helping with the adjustment. Laurel is keeping Sara chained in the basement of her apartment building, and Sara seems absolutely miserable. Can someone get the poor girl a blanket at the very least?! She looks cold in that dreary, industrial basement.

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“Beyond Redemption” seems to have taken Laurel from bad to worse. She certainly isn’t winning any daughter of the year awards with this latest bonehead move. Showing her father his younger daughter chained in the basement just seems to drive a wedge even further between them. Laurel claims that she’s showing Sara to her father because she wants to keep things honest between them, but I’m not sure this was the best way to break the news.

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Unfortunately for Captain Lance, the return of his shell of a daughter isn’t the only thing he has to worry about. It seems that there’s an outbreak of dirty, highly specialized cops running loose and they’re getting in deep with the drug life in Star City. It was nice to see a group of antagonists this week that really related back to the tone of the episode, showing just how desperate the people in Star City have become. And the fact that they were lead by True Blood’s Rutina Wesley didn’t hurt either.

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Sure, we all love seeing a criminal mastermind front and center, but the choice to feature dirty cops and the extremes they’re willing to go to fit well with the story.

The desperation of the antagonists also opened a wonderful opportunity for Captain Lance to describe just how much he believes in the city and how he won’t give up on it; that the city isn’t beyond redemption. The motivational speech also serves as the tipping mechanism to convince Oliver that he really should run for mayor- and gives him a convenient running platform as well.

Liz Aaron

Elizabeth has loved reading and nerdy things since she started stealing her older brother's comic books at the age of four. Never one to give up on true love, Liz grew up to be an English teacher. She remains unapologetically enthusiastic about all things literary, especially her love of comic books and Harry Potter.

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