Arrow’s midseason finale Irreconcilable Differences felt like a case where the writers suddenly realized they needed to get to this season’s point. Compared to last season, Season 6 still seems like it’s struggling to find its way. While the last scene made for an decent if illogical twist, I’m not fully sold the writers can pay it off.
Oliver and Felicity got to have the wedding reception Barry and Iris deserved. Donna and Noah were even there to help everyone’s favorite wedding interrupter make an entrance. As much as I completely hated on this moment, it was a nice callback to have Oliver and Felicity’s Season 4 neighbors from Ivy Town make it to the party. And Quentin giving Oliver his father’s watch was also cool.
I’ll give Curtis some credit for trying to have a Felicity moment and make the reception about him as he reminisced on his wedding, then got trashed and ruined the toast. That really felt like more of a Diggle or Thea moment than Curtis, but apparently this episode needed some comic relief.
Roy’s continuity on this show is so confusing now that it’s hard to remember if he’d get arrested if he showed up to the reception or not. Thea did have a great line about not wanting to hook up with DJs. Also, how weird is it that no one on Team Arrow has parents (or children in Quentin’s case) besides Felicity?
The episode’s best moment came when the kidnapped Quentin managed to get through to Black Siren. I don’t know if this will lead to a full face turn for Black Siren, but this was the most intriguing Season 6 development.
Irreconcilable Differences really called into question the whole Diggle as Green Arrow storyline. When Oliver learns someone is testifying against him, it never felt like a deep betrayal, but a worthless added layer to the tired Oliver Queen is Green Arrow subplot.
Since Diggle has been Green Arrow for most of the season there was this disconnect to Oliver immediately mistrusting everyone. It was disappointing Diggle didn’t have Dinah’s back once she was suspected of being the turncoat. Dinah has had his back throughout his Green Arrow run and he’s all like ‘I don’t know this chick, man.’
Rene’s ‘betrayal’ seemed like it came outta nowhere, but at least Thea acknowledged Oliver would do the same for his child. Rene has always been the loose cannon of Team Arrow, but the writers made him out to be an absolute moron for going against Arrow’s orders in the mission to rescue Lance. It’s like all the character development put into making him Quentin’s assistant and evolving him from the shoot first, shoot second member of Team Arrow got wasted for nothing.
It’s hard not to agree with Dinah and Curtis for quitting after learning Oliver and Felicity spied on them. Oliver constantly kept secrets from them and Team Arrow ver. 1 (aligning with Merlyn to stop Ra’s) so it’s not like he has some high moral ground here.
To close things out, Cayden James was doing some spying of his own, watching the breakup of Team Arrow. And he had company too with Anatoly, Richard Dragon and Vigilante.
If the systematic dismantling of Team Arrow wasn’t James’ point, what was the reason for the cameras in the first place? I give Felicity grief all the time, but assuming she wouldn’t check for bugs or surveillance camera after their HQ was invaded seems like a huge stretch.
Of all of James’ posse, only Anatoly truly made sense. He has a legit beef with Team Arrow that’s actually been established. Richard Dragon popped up in one episode and why would Vigilante suddenly throw in with the bad guys? That didn’t fall in line with anything the show has established with the character so far.
This final scene would have been far more effective if Anatoly, James and Black Siren were joined by Watson. Her obsession with bringing Oliver down would have made more sense in hindsight if she was a James ally working within the system to take down Team Arrow.
Irreconcilable Differences attempted to provide some focus for the remainder of the season, but the shaky character logic prevented it from leaving things on an encouraging note heading in to 2018.
Rating: 4.5 out of 10
Photo Credit: The CW