Title: Arrow Season 6 Episode 2: “Tribute”
Genre: Action, Adventure, Drama, Science Fiction, Superhero
Platform: TV – CW
Director: Laura Belsey
Writers:  Marc Guggenheim and Beth Schwartz
Rating: TV-14
Release: October 19, 2017
Cast: Stephen Amell, David Ramsey, Emily Bett Rickards, Katie Cassidy, Paul Blackthorne
Feature image: Source

[Spoilers]

Has Bruce Wayne left Gotham to hang out in Star City recently? Oliver Queen – Arrow

Reporters in City Hall surround Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell). Oliver: “Anything interesting on the news last night? [The reporters start screaming questions.] Ladies and gentlemen, please! If you want to know what I have to say, it would probably help if you could hear me.  Thank you. I’ll tell you two things, both of which you probably already know. First: — this is important — I am not the Green Arrow.”  Female reporter: “If you’re not the Green Arrow, then who is? Who is the Green Arrow?”  Oliver: “Number two: photos can be doctored. They could have put Bruce Wayne’s head on that body. Has Bruce Wayne left Gotham to hang out in Star City recently? No. Now, if I was running around the city during the day and managing it as Mayor while running around at night frightening criminals as a vigilante, that really would make me a superhero. But I’m not. I’m just the Mayor. Thank you very much.” A FBI agent Samanda Watson (Sydelle Noel) is waiting in Mayor Queen’s office. She informs him that the FBI is investigating him.

“At least they caught his good side.” Curtis Holt – Arrow

Curtis Holt (Echo Kellum) and Felicity Smoak (Emily Bett Rickards) watch the video of Oliver in his Green Arrow garb and try to track down where the photo comes from. Curtis:  “At least they caught his good side.” They begin to discuss how Oliver’s outing affects them. Curtis: “This could destroy our whole lives.”  Felicity: “It’s hard to think that before, my biggest worry was getting a new job. And now, it’s about whether or not we’ll end up in jail.”  Curtis: “I thought you were sitting pretty from your Palmer Tech settlement.”  Felicity: “Uh, yeah, from, like, a year ago.”  Curtis: “What are you gonna do? Assuming that we’re all not in jail?”  Felicity: “I mean, I’d definitely rather go to Iron Heights than work at Tech Village again. That place was horrendous. What about you? I mean, you’ve been out of a job as long as I have.”  Curtis: “Not really. I’ve been doing some free-lance coding in my spare time.”  Felicity: “You what? What? What spare time?”  Curtis: “Yeah. Tell me about it. Barely any. But I did not take a dime from Paul in the divorce, and a man’s gotta eat.”  Felicity: “So you, like, just had a secret job this whole time, you didn’t tell anyone about it?”  Curtis: “I thought we all, like, had, like, secret jobs.”  Felicity: “No.”  Curtis: “Except for John, maybe. What does he do for money? That’s something that’s been perplexing me.”  Felicity: “Well, he’s… he’s married to the director of A.R.G.U.S.”  Curtis: “Ah, yeah, that’s right…. She doesn’t make a lot of money.”

Oliver is doing his mayoral duties and conducting a tour of the Markovian Initiative.  Men with machine guns attack the group. It is the Bratva, led by Anatoly Knyazev (David Nykl). He persuades Oliver not to get involved. Anatoly: “Unless… you know something maybe a mayor should not know?” The Bratva kidnap the Markovian trade group from the van. Oliver receives the ransom, the Bratva wants $20 million; the same amount the city is getting from insurance to renovate police headquarters. The team is sure Anatoly is behind the photo.

Curtis and Felicity track the Bratva to a Russian restaurant. Oliver, Curtis, Dinah Drake (Juliana Harkavy), and John Diggle (David Ramsey) arrive at the restaurant for the rescue. A big fight breaks out between Team Arrow and the Bratva. Oliver throws a Bratva thug on a stove and he catches fire. Diggle hand shakes when he tries to fire his gun. They rescue everyone except the CEO of Vortex Industries, who Anatoly sneaks out of the restaurant.

“Yeah, it’s worse. Because there are a million psychos always trying to kill you.” William – Arrow

While the rest of Team Arrow is at the restaurant, Rene Ramirez (Rick Gonzalez) and Quentin Lance (Paul Blackthorne) are meeting with Agent Watson. She asks where Oliver is. Rene tries to charm her with his support of working women, “I’m a feminist like that.”  Oliver finally arrives and says he is late because of William. Agent Watson doesn’t care. When Oliver gets home, he and William (Jack Moore) discuss Oliver’s ‘other job’. Oliver: “William, I will always come back.”  William: “Just like my mom?”  Oliver: “This is different.”  William: “Yeah, it’s worse. Because there are a million psychos always trying to kill you.”

Anatoly calls Oliver and he explains why he is doing this. The Bratva has exiled him because of his friendship with Oliver. They think he is soft on him. He needs to prove they aren’t friends; plus he needs the money. Anatoly has poisoned the CEO with a toxin and he will die in three hours if Oliver doesn’t bring him the money.

Diggle tells Dinah that he caught shrapnel on Lian Yu and he has degenerative nerve damage. Dinah promises to keep his secret. Curtis and Felicity are still talking about Curtis’ side job while they try to locate Anatoly and find an antidote for the toxin. Oliver and Rene talk parenting. Rene: “Lance told me about what happened at school. Kids are mean.” Oliver: “He’s not worried about bullies. He’s worried about me. He thinks I’m gonna make him an orphan.”  Rene: “Damn.”  Oliver: “I told him, I said that will not happen. I will always come back. I’ve never lied to my kid before.”  Rene: “You know I’m not exactly Father of the Year. But, white lies are kind of, like, an important parental tool. I remember telling Zoe that she came from a cloud. I really hope her mom set her straight on that one.”  Oliver: “So help me with this. How do I reconcile that he’s right? Because every time that I’m in the field, there’s a chance I don’t come back. And that he’s alone. And now you’re telling me that he’s gonna have to lie to an FBI agent so that he doesn’t lose his father to prison.” Felicity and Curtis locate Anatoly in an abandoned shipyard. They have an antidote for the toxin. Rene is able to return to the field for the showdown with the Bratva. A Bratva thug starts choking Dinah; Diggle is unable to shoot him because of his shaky hand. Dinah is able to slip out of the hold and put him down; she shoots Diggle a dirty look.

“I am an honorable man.  I am still good man.” Anatoly Knyazev – Arrow

Oliver catches up to Anatoly and shoots the CEO with an arrow full of the antidote. Anatoly shoots his hostage and kills him. Oliver: “What the hell has happened to you? Not even Gregor would’ve done that.”  Anatoly: “Yes, he would’ve. You never saw because you were too naïve. You still are.”  Oliver: “We were friends.”  Anatoly: “Yes. But I see how you treat your friends.”  Oliver: “No, Anatoly, no. This is on you. You used to be an honorable man!”  Anatoly: “I am an honorable man. Did I have bomb planted in your son’s school? Did I have him kidnapped? Tortured? No. Because even though we stand apart, I am still good man. I wonder. What would happen to William if he ran afoul of someone who was not good?” Oliver asks him why he released the photo; Anatoly tells him he didn’t, because he is an honorable man.

Oliver meets with Agent Watson and tells her William is off limits. A news report comes on TV; there is evidence that the Green Arrow photo was doctored. Agent Watson isn’t convinced; she will keep investigating. It turns out that Felicity and Curtis did find out the photo was doctored, they still don’t know who released it. Felicity wants to go into tech business with Curtis.

Diggle talks privately with Dinah. He admits he is compromised. He will tell Oliver. Oliver is with William. He apologizes for being wrong; he will try his hardest not to be killed, he is working on the details. He can promise to work to be the best father he can be. William thaws up a little so they can play videogames.

“Star City needs the Green Arrow. It just can’t be me anymore. Oliver Queen – Arrow

Oliver meets with Diggle. Diggle: “What is it, Oliver?”  Oliver: “I’d like you to do something for me.”  Diggle: “If it’s suit up as Green Arrow, Felicity and I already talked about it and we don’t think it’s enough to take the heat off you.”  Oliver: “That’s not what I’m asking.”  Diggle: “You’re serious.”  Oliver: “Every time that I’m out there as Green Arrow, I’m a target…of the FBI, of the Bratva. Of the threats that are out there and the threats that are undoubtedly coming…and on my own? I can take it. But I’m not on my own anymore. I can’t be responsible for my son losing the only parent that he has left.” Diggle: “Oliver…”  Oliver: “Star City needs the Green Arrow. It just can’t be me anymore. So I’d like it to be you.” Diggle doesn’t get to tell Oliver about his nerve damage.

The photo from the last episode brings the FBI’s attention. As usual, Oliver is able to wiggle out of being outed as the Green Arrow to the public, but Agent Watson doesn’t buy it, she will continue to investigate Oliver. We find out that John Diggle was hit with shrapnel in Lin Yu and has degenerative nerve damage. After nearly getting Dinah killed, he finally decides to tell Oliver. Unfortunately, for John, Oliver asks him to take over the duties of the Green Arrow so he can fulfill his promise to William, and not get himself killed. Diggle doesn’t tell him about his condition; putting the rest of Team Arrow in danger and possibly getting himself killed, making himself the one who doesn’t go home to his son. It’s quite a mess. Anatoly comes back to Star City to kidnap some dignitaries and ransom them for $20 million. Anatoly is down on his luck and needs to prove to his Bratva brethren that he is no longer friends with Oliver. Killing that CEO in front of Oliver probably guarantees that for the moment. Anatoly argues that he is still an honorable man, but he doesn’t sound convincing. Of course, the Bratva is a Russian criminal organization, so just, how honorable has he ever been. He was Oliver’s friend, and I think deep down he still is. I wouldn’t be surprised if he and the Green Arrow team up again later this season. On a happy note, Felicity and Curtis are nearly broke, but they are going to start a tech business. We don’t know what they will be doing, but with their big brains, they should make a profit.

There was a lot happening in this episode with the reintroduction of the Bratva, Oliver dealing with the fallout from the photo, Oliver’s new status as a parent, John’s degenerative nerve damage, Curtis and Felicity going into business, and oh yeah, Oliver is handing the mantle of the Green Arrow to John Diggle. You got your stories worth this week. I always enjoy David Nykl as Anatoly. He adds a lively, humorous, but deadly vibe when he is on. Even though he is a bad guy, he has a code of honor. The fear you have in this episode is that he might be losing that code. I’m glad to see Sydelle Noel from “Glow” as Agent Watson. She is a no nonsense FBI agent, but we’ll see how long she stays no nonsense. She could turn out to be a bad cop, or become an ally. We’ll see.

It seems that every season, someone is dumb and keeps a major secret from everyone else. This season, Diggle is wearing the dunce cap. You are a crime-fighting vigilante and you won’t tell your team you have shrapnel damage and can’t fire you’re gun. That is dumb and selfish, which isn’t like Diggle. I think the writers are letting his character down, but I’ll wait to see where this is going. I’m not really enjoying the addition of William. I don’t believe a child fits into a show like this. The heroes can have kids like Diggle and Rene, but they should mostly be off screen with a few appearances during the season. Jack Moore isn’t bad, but I’m not interested in Oliver Queen, single dad. The most enjoyable part of the episode was Felicity and Curtis discussing finances. You forget that no one is actually bankrolling Team Arrow, but the two have to eat. The show handled this in a humorous way and I appreciated it. I’m interested in Felicity and Curtis’ business venture. The action was top notch as usual; I really got a treat in seeing the Bratva goon on fire. I am interested in seeing how all of these storylines will play out.

Grade: B+

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anthony (Kbear!) Nichols | Senior Contributor

Anthony (Kbear!) Nichols | Senior Contributor

A fan, enthusiast, and appreciator of sci-fi, comic books, and fantasy film and TV. kbeartv61@nayahscifi.com
Anthony (Kbear!) Nichols | Senior Contributor

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