Arrow: Living Proof review S7 E21

Living Proof was another example of how this season of Arrow never really met expectations for me. It had so much promise, but ultimately just couldn’t put it together. This episode really brought focus to something that would have made so much more sense in connecting the present and future storylines.

Team Arrow is trapped under a building. None of them are as bad as Oliver who’s now having a hallucination of Tommy checking in on him. You’re never gonna convince me killing off Tommy back in Season 1 was a good idea based on how often the writers bring him back. Tommy helps Oliver get out of the rubble and has him reconsider his plan to kill Emiko. This has escalated quickly from his earlier stance of trying to rehabilitate her.

Oliver doesn’t see a way out since Emiko is a murderer…much like Darhk, Prometheus and Diaz. Yep, killing her sounds just about right for Oliver. Convinced he’s got the right mindset, Oliver proceeds to run his (arrow)head against the wall in a futile effort to break free.

Felicity can’t help Team Arrow just yet as police have come to investigate Archer. This is perfectly legitimate since Archer was used to find the device Emiko is planning to use to destroy the city and Felicity was complicit in the cover-up to keep Roy from getting arrested. But, the SCPD didn’t count on Felicity having a sonic alarm system capable of knocking them out. Keep this in mind for later. It was amusing that Felicity wasn’t affected by this defense system that quickly knocked out a police squad.

Now able to access everything with her super computer, Felicity and Alena help navigate Team Arrow to find Oliver a floor below them. At one point they have to cut off a generator, which could set off a big explosion…like from a building collapsing? Hmmn. Roy dives into a potentially hazardous floor to shut off the generator. There’s no suspense here since we know he’s alive and kicking in the future.

This is enough for Dinah to now accept him as a member of Team Arrow after questioning why they didn’t just turn him in after Roy killed the cops. Fair question, but also one that seems ridiculous in the wake of Black Siren hanging with the crew. Dinah says Roy can spend the rest of his life atoning for that ‘messed up thing.’ Killing cops is now just messed up? Vigilante justice is soooo confusing.

Emiko crashes the Arrow Cave, which…does not have any of Felicity’s new security measures. That makes sense as it’s been a whole week since a bad guy invaded the Arrow Cave. Felicity says she’s pregnant and that’s enough to convince the villain who’s planning to unleash a big nerve toxin on the city not to kill an innocent person. Is it a stretch to assume there might be a few innocent people if Emiko follows through with her plan? This lack of logic is making my head hurt.

No matter since Emiko uses a Game of Thrones teleporter to corner Team Arrow just after they’ve reunited with Oliver. Properly motivated, Oliver gets the drop on Emiko. Diggle pleads with him not to kill her, but Oliver doesn’t care and launches his arrow killing Emiko. But he somehow missed Emiko’s rapid fire aim as she kills Diggle, who falls right onto the rest of Team Arrow who also managed to get killed. Oh wait, it was just Tommy playing the Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 2 twist. He was showing Oliver what would happen if he kept feeding his need for revenge.

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Man this is clunky. Oliver can be better and he can help Emiko see the error of her ways, according to Dream Tommy. Team Arrow finds Oliver still trapped in the rubble and pull him out. Felicity gives them a sit rep and mentions Emiko stole some arrowheads to go play Green Arrow again. How anyone could still be fooled by Emiko seems crazy.

Emiko and The Ninth Circle laid out the police department to steal the device. Diggle says it’s a slaughter, but it was hard to figure out if anyone was killed. Oliver corners Emiko on the roof and begs her to help him end their family’s cycle of violence. This is so dramatic. Predictably, Emiko wants no part of that and escapes just as an SCPD copter pops up and tells Team Arrow not to move.

Let’s quickly address this future scenes. Heyyyyy, does anyone else see the irony of Tommy telling Oliver he can break the cycle of his father in dealing with his abandoned step sister while he abandoned William?

arrow living proof review - team arrow underground

William is still whining about Felicity and Oliver leaving him after he was around for one year. That’s not enough for this so called deep bond with Felicity. Anyone notice how he never mentions the woman who raised him for 12 years? You know, if the writers wanted to do something interesting, the big future bad guy wouldn’t have been the random business dude. It would have been William. As Emiko showed, the neglected sibling always goes heel.

The leader of the ZETA group now figures out William is working with Rene and captures them. Felicity realizes William is caught not long after a buzzed cut Alena shows up with token remorse over stealing Archer and selling it to Galaxy Tech. This is pretty late to show Alena turned on Felicity. And it’s also not like she was such an important character that this betrayal has any impact. Plus, she already betrayed Felicity! It’s not like we had any real reason to trust her.

I doubt one more episode is suddenly going to make this future storyline interesting. But at least we’ll be done with Emiko…I hope.

Rating: 5 out of 10

Photo Credit: The CW

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