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The CW's Arrow Season 1 Episode Guide

Updated on May 16, 2013

Watch "Pilot" Now!

Episode 1: Pilot

Air Date: 10/10/12

Episode Summary: Oliver Queen went down in a shipwreck five years ago on his father’s yacht. Shortly before dying, Robert Queen told Oliver that he had been involved in shady dealings and needed Oliver to set things right. Now Oliver’s back in Starling City. His mother Moira remarried her husband’s friend from the company, Walter Steele. His sister Thea became a teen party girl with a drug habit. His best friend, Tommy Merlyn, started hooking up with his ex, Laurel. She and her father, Detective Lance, aren’t thrilled to see Oliver alive, because he was cheating on Laurel with her sister Sarah… and decided to take her yachting this one time. Bad timing. They both blame Oliver for Sarah’s death. Oh, and it turns out Oliver spent his time away learning parkour and how to shoot a bow and arrow, so now that he’s back in town, he’s taking down bad guys while dressed in a green hood.

Evil Businessman of the Week: Adam Hunt, who swindled hundreds of people out of their homes and life savings.

Super Villains: None

Notable First Appearances: Oliver Queen, Moira Queen, Walter Steele, Thea Queen, Dinah Laurel Lance, Joanna De La Vega, Robert Queen, Sarah Lance, Tommy Merlyn, Detective Quentin Lance, John Diggle, the Arrowcave (Oliver’s headquarters for fighting crime)

Death Count: 9. After Oliver was kidnapped, 1 thug tasered in throat, 1 thug shot by another thug while being used as a human shield, 1 thug snapped neck. While confronting Hunt in parking garage, 2 bodyguards shot by arrow. In Hunt’s office, 2 bodyguards shot by arrow, 1 bodyguard tricked into getting riddled with friendly fire, 1 bodyguard hit by thrown weapon (knife?).

Training Montage: Making new arrowheads, salmon ladder, upside-down ab work, pinning tennis balls to the wall with arrows

DC Comics Easter Eggs: Deathstroke’s mask (with an arrow through one eye) is on Oliver’s island as he is being rescued. Thea’s childhood nickname is Speedy, the name of Green Arrow’s sidekick in the comics.

Notes: Oliver used a trick arrow to electronically transfer Adam Hunt’s funds.

Watch "Honor Thy Father" Now!

Episode 2: Honor Thy Father

Air Date: 10/17/12

Episode Summary: Oliver heads to court to prove he’s alive, and runs into Laurel at the courthouse, who is trying to prove that Martin Somers ordered the death of a dock worker. Somers calls in China White, from the Chinese Triad, to protect him by assassinating Laurel. Meanwhile, Oliver decides to pretend he is a womanizing, often-drunk playboy to keep people from figuring out what he really does during his evening hours. Moira meets with a mysterious figure and reveals that the yacht was sabotaged!

Evil Businessmen of the Week: Marcus Redmond, who stole a bunch of people’s pensions. Martin Somers, who was taking bribes from the Chinese Triad to smuggle drugs into the city and had a stevedore killed to keep him quiet.

Super Villains: None

Notable First Appearances: China White

Bad Guys Killed: 11.While attacking Marcus Redmond, 2 bodyguards shot by arrows.While snatching Martin Somers, 3 bodyguards shot by arrows. As Somers tries to escape the city, 1 walkie-talkie-wielding guard killed by unknown means (offscreen), 5 guards shot by arrows.

Training Montage: Rope climbing, sword fight practice

DC Comics Easter Eggs: China White first appeared in comics in the Green Arrow: Year One series.

Notes: Oliver uses a tape-recorder throwing knife to record Somers’s confession.

Watch "Lone Gunmen" Now!

Episode 3: Lone Gunmen

Air Date: 10/24/12

Episode Summary: Oliver is about to take down an evil businessman when an assassin does the job for him using poison-laced bullets. The assassin, Deadshot, is killing prospective buyers of a company Walter Steele is interested in purchasing. Throughout the episode, Oliver learns his crusade is easier if he gets help (from Felicity Smoak and the police), so he eventually reveals his identity to Diggle. As a cover for his nocturnal activities, Oliver plans to open a nightclub above his secret lair.

Evil Businessman of the Week: James Holder, who put defective smoke detectors in low-income housing in the Glades. Warren Patel, who hired Deadshot to take out the other bidders.

Super Villains: Deadshot (Floyd Lawton)

Notable First Appearances: Deadshot (Floyd Lawton), Big Belly Burger, Carly Diggle, Felicity Smoak

Bad Guys Killed: 1 (presumed). Deadshot is hit in the eye by an arrow.

Training Montage: Wood chopper (torso twist) with cinderblocks as weight

DC Comics Easter Eggs: Diggle’s sister-in-law Carly works at Big Belly Burger, a fast food franchise owned in the comics by LexCorp.

Notes: The name “Diggle” is tattooed on Deadshot’s chest, indicating that he killed John’s brother Andrew. Deadshot also appeared as a character in the CW’s Smallville. Laurel’s firm, CNRI, is a reference to the Black Canary.

Watch "An Innocent Man" Now!

Episode 4: An Innocent Man

Air Date: 10/31/12

Episode Summary: Oliver tries to convince Diggle to join his crusade. As he convinces Laurel to investigate an innocent man being framed for the murder of his wife, Oliver’s illegal methods of gathering evidence start to impress her. Walter discovers that Moira has been hiding the remains of the Queen’s Gambit, the yacht that sunk with her husband and son aboard. Detective Lance reviews the security footage from Deadshot’s assassination attempt, and sees Oliver grabbing his Arrow gear out of a trashcan. Just as Diggle accepts Oliver’s offer to help, Detective Lance shows up at Oliver’s house to arrest him.

Evil Businessman of the Week: Jason Brodeur, who ordered the death of an employee who was trying to blow the whistle on Brodeur’s toxic dumping and then framed her innocent husband for the murder.

Super Villains: None

Notable First Appearances: None

Bad Guys Killed: 1.During a prison riot, 1 prisoner shot in the neck by arrow. (Oliver also killed a bird in a flashback sequence.)

Training Montage: Oliver forges new arrowheads

DC Comics Easter Eggs: In the comics, the Iron Heights prison is located in the Flash’s hometown of Keystone City. Oliver threatens to let a man be killed by the 10:15 train to Blüdhaven, which is the sometime home of Nightwing.

Notes: Diggle says he doesn’t want to be a sidekick, the traditional term for superheroes’ junior helpers.

Watch "Damaged" Now!

Episode 5: Damaged

Air Date: 11/7/12

Episode Summary: After being arrested for murder, Oliver requests that Laurel represent him in court. This was part of his plan all along, though, because the timing of his return and the vigilante’s appearance is suspicious. Oliver uses a sighting of Diggle dressed in a hood while he is under house arrest to prove that he’s not the vigilante. Walter, angered by Moira’s deception about the Queen’s Gambit, takes an impromptu business trip. During flashbacks, Oliver is captured by Edward Fyers and tortured by Deathstroke.

Evil Businessman of the Week: Leo Mueller, who plans to sell machine guns to Starling City gangs.

Super Villains: Deathstroke

Notable First Appearances: Oliver’s first shot with a bow, Edward Fyers, Deathstroke

Bad Guys Killed: 2. At Leo Mueller’s second attempt at an arms deal, 1 thug shot by arrow, 1 evil businessman shot by arrow (offscreen).

Training Montage: Diggle pricks his finger on some sharp arrows, finds some high-tech tracking devices, and says “Oh, that’s sweet”

DC Comics Easter Eggs: Oliver is offered a plea deal by Kate Spencer, the alter ego of the costumed hero Manhunter. Oliver and Laurel reminisce about a Halloween costume that involved fishnets, like the Black Canary’s costume.

Notes: Deathstroke also appeared as a character in the CW’s Smallville.

Watch "Legacies" Now!

Episode 6: Legacies

Air Date: 11/14/12

Episode Summary: With a non-businessman threatening the city, Diggle must convince Oliver to help stop the Royal Flush Gang. Tommy realizes he has real feelings for Laurel, and throws a benefit for her firm to try to win her good graces. Fighting “street crime” helps Oliver realize that there are more ways for him to make a difference than just following his father’s paint-by-numbers guide to cleaning up the city.

Evil Businessman of the Week: Scott Morgan, who runs water and power in the Glades, jacks up the prices and turns the services off when people can’t pay, even in winter.

Super Villains: The Royal Flush Gang (though without their lasers and flying playing cards)

Notable First Appearances: The Royal Flush Gang (Derek Reston, Kyle Reston, Ma Reston, and Younger Brother Reston)

Bad Guys Killed: None! King was shot by a bank guard, which was the only death in the episode.

Training Montage: Diggle and Oliver spar using metal batons

DC Comics Easter Eggs: The Royal Flush Gang just finished hitting banks in Keystone City, the home of the Flash. Tommy wants to whisk Laurel away to Coast City, home of the Green Lantern.

Notes: Oliver shoots the Royal Flush Gang’s duffel of cash with a trick arrow that shoots out straps to pin the bag to the ground.

Watch "Muse of Fire" Now!

Episode 7: Muse of Fire

Air Date: 11/28/12

Episode Summary: Oliver discovers he has more in common with a mob boss’s daughter than he’d like to believe. Could she be the one person Oliver can be honest with? Tommy makes a play for Laurel and gets cut off from his trust fund by his father, the well-dressed mystery man constantly harassing Moira.

Evil Businessman of the Week: None. Although Frank Bertinelli is an evil businessman, Oliver doesn’t try to take him down this episode.

Super Villains: None

Notable First Appearances: Helena Bertinelli, Frank Bertinelli, Nick Salvati

Bad Guys Killed: 2. During Oliver’s escape, 1 thug shot by another thug while being used as a human shield, 1 thug snapped neck.

Training Montage: Shirtless workout punching a canvas-covered wing chun dummy

DC Comics Easter Eggs: Helena’s cross necklace is a nod to her devout Catholicism, hence Salvati’s threat that she will go to hell for her actions. In the comics, Helena often incorporates a cross across her décolletage in her revealing Huntress costumes. “Muse of Fire” was written by DC Comics scribe Geoff Johns.

Notes: Thea and Moira both have a mole on the left side of their upper lips.

Watch "Vendetta" Now!

Episode 8: Vendetta

Air Date: 12/5/12

Episode Summary: Oliver tries to help Helena search for justice instead of vengeance, which includes trading out her guns for a crossbow. Their budding romance goes awry when Oliver and Helena have dinner with Tommy and Laurel. Walter discovers Moira’s copy of Robert Queen’s book of names. Tommy applies for the general manager position at Oliver’s new night club.

Evil Businessman of the Week: Anthony Venza, who sells illegal prescription drugs

Super Villains: None

Notable First Appearances: None

Bad Guys Killed: 2. During China White’s assault on the Bertinelli house, 2 triad thugs shot by arrow.

Training Montage: Shirtless handstand pushups, salmon ladder pull-ups, salmon ladder, shooting office supplies (and a tennis ball) with arrows

DC Comics Easter Eggs: When Oliver is dressing Helena up to go out on patrol, she asks, “Does it come in purple?” This is a reference to her various comics costumes. The crossbow Oliver supplies is also a favorite weapon of the Huntress in the comics.

Notes: In the comics, the Huntress and Black Canary are teammates in the Birds of Prey organization, but it doesn’t look like they will be having lunch together any time soon.

Watch "Year's End" Now!

Episode 9: Year’s End

Air Date: 12/12/12

Episode Summary: There is a copycat vigilante on the loose killing the evil businessmen Oliver has convinced to give back illegally gotten money. Detective Lance struggles with his department, who insists on telling the public that the murders are the work of the hooded vigilante. Meanwhile, Oliver plans a Christmas party for his family.

Evil Businessman of the Week: None

Super Villains: Merlyn

Notable First Appearances: First use of the name “Green Arrow”

Bad Guys Killed: None!

Training Montage: Knife fighting with Diggle

DC Comics Easter Eggs: When Detective Lance tells Oliver, “There’s a heating vent on the corner of O’Neil and Adams,” he’s referencing the writer/artist team of Denny O’Neil and Neal Adams, who collaborated on Green Lantern/Green Arrow in the ‘70s. In the comics, (Commissioner) Nudocerdo is a corrupt police chief.

Notes: Oliver uses a trick arrow to blow up a locked door to escape the Wharf Street warehouse. The name of the company supplying the arrows, Sagittarius, is Latin for "the archer."

Watch "Burned" Now!

Episode 10: Burned

Air Date: 01/16/13

Episode Summary: Oliver has lost confidence in himself, and nearly misses an opportunity to help Laurel stop a fiery killer. Since the company has lost two CEOs in five years to mysterious circumstances, Moira is asked to fill in at the office. Detective Lance has a plan to track down the vigilante.

Evil Businessman of the Week: None

Super Villains: Firefly (Garfield Lynns)

Notable First Appearances: Firefly (Garfield Lynns)

Bad Guys Killed: None, just innocents saved!

Training Montage: Shirtless salmon ladder, trying to shoot a tennis ball with an arrow with no shirt on, upside-down shirtless shadowboxing. Diggle also gives the wing chun dummy a good shirtless workout!

DC Comics Easter Eggs: The Firefly in the comics is more commonly recognized as a Batman villain, a former pyrotechnics expert who uses a flying suit and a flamethrower. The Nodell Tower shares a name with Green Lantern (Alan Scott) creator Martin Nodell. Stagg Chemicals, site of one of the fires, is owned by evil businessman Simon Stagg, a Metamorpho villain.

Notes: Since the vigilante appeared on the scene, the murder rate in Starling City has dropped 16%.

Watch "Trust But Verify" Now!

Episode 11: Trust But Verify

Air Date: 1/23/13

Episode Summary: Oliver suspects Diggle’s former commanding officer of robbing armored cars, but Diggle defends his friend. Thea suspects Moira is having an affair with Tommy’s dad.

Evil Businessman of the Week: None

Super Villains: None

Notable First Appearances: Ted Gaynor, first use of the term “Arrowcave”

Bad Guys Killed: 1. During botched armed car robbery, Ted Gaynor shot by arrow.

Training Montage: Shirtless one-handed pushups

DC Comics Easter Eggs: TheBlackhawk Squadron was a WWII team of heroic fighter pilots of various nationalities. In the comics, Ted Gaynor was a Blackhawk who ultimately became a villain. Thea’s Vertigo pills are black and green, just like the comic book outfit of villain Count Vertigo.

Notes: Oliver uses non-lethal tranq darts to subdue guards at Blackhawk, instead of shooting them with arrows.

Watch "Vertigo" Now!

Episode 12: Vertigo

Air Date: 1/30/13

Episode Summary: Thea is facing potential prison time after her arrest for driving while under the influence of the new drug Vertigo. Oliver tries to take some heat off his sister by taking down the drug’s creator, The Count.

Evil Businessman of the Week: None, unless you consider Count Vertigo a businessman

Super Villains: Count Vertigo

Notable First Appearances: McKenna Hall, Count Vertigo

Bad Guys Killed: None, since Oliver went to the Vertigo plant without his bow

Training Montage: Shirtless Vertigo detox

DC Comics Easter Eggs: Thea’s middle name, Dearden, is a reference to the last name of Mia Dearden, an ex-prostitute who became Speedy in the comics. Anatoli Knyazev, the leader of the bratva, shares a name with the KGBeast, a Russian hitman who chopped off his own hand to escape from Batman, and later upgraded his missing limb to a cybernetic gun.

Notes: Oliver is reeling from the effects of Vertigo, so he can’t take his bow to fight the Count, but he is still perfectly accurate with his throwing darts.

Watch "Betrayal" Now!

Episode 13: Betrayal

Air Date: 2/6/13

Episode Summary: Cyrus Vanch plans to fill the power vacuum in Starling City’s criminal underworld, deciding that the best way to establish himself is to take down the hooded vigilante. Diggle tries to convince Oliver that his mother may know more about the names in his father’s notebook than she admits.

Evil Businessman of the Week: None

Super Villains: None

Notable First Appearances: Slade Wilson (out of costume)

Bad Guys Killed: 12. Getting into Vanch’s lawyer’s house the first time, 4 guards shot by arrow. Getting into Vanch’s house the second time, 5 guards shot by arrow, 1 guard stabbed in the neck by flechette, 2 snipers shot by arrow.

Training Montage: None! Another episode like this and Oliver’s abs may turn to flab.

DC Comics Easter Eggs: George the lawyer is a partner in the law firm of Wolfman and Perez. Marv Wolfman and George Perez are famous for relaunching the New Teen Titans, the series in which they introduced Slade Wilson. Oliver asks to meet laurel on the rooftop of the Winick Building. Judd Winick is a comic book writer who worked on Green Arrow in the 2000s.

Notes: Oliver uses a tape-recorder arrow to collect evidence against Vanch. According to Vanch’s studying of news footage, Oliver carries only 24 arrows and flechettes with him.

Watch "The Odyssey" Now!

Episode 14: The Odyssey

Air Date: 2/13/13

Episode Summary: Oliver’s mom shoots him, so he must seek aid from Felicity Smoak. While struggling to survive, he recalls his first real attempt to escape the island with Slade Wilson.

Evil Businessman of the Week: None. Oliver was recovering from being shot this episode.

Super Villains: None

Notable First Appearances: None

Bad Guys Killed: None

Training Montage: None, because Oliver was recovering from being shot the whole episode. However, in flashback, Oliver did train with Slade Wilson using knives and escrima sparring sticks.

DC Comics Easter Eggs: In the comics, Bill Wintergreen was first introduced as Slade Wilson’s concierge, but was later revealed to be his ex-partner. Slade’s son Joe is better known in the comics as Jericho. His throat was slit as a boy while being held hostage, so he is mute. However, he later developed the ability to inhabit a person’s body if he can make eye contact with them.

Notes: Oliver laughs to himself that he’s stuck on an island and his only friend is named Wilson, a reference to Tom Hanks’s volleyball in the movie Cast Away (2000).

Watch "Dodger" Now!

Episode 15: Dodger

Air Date: 2/20/13

Episode Summary: The jewel thief Dodger hits Starling city and puts Felicity in danger. Roy Harper, a pickpocket with a long rap sheet, steals Thea's purse. Moira schemes to get out of the "undertaking."

Evil Businessman of the Week: Ken Williams, who runs a pyramid scheme

Super Villains: None

Notable First Appearances: Dodger, Roy Harper

Bad Guys Killed: None! Oliver is really trying to tone down the violence to convince Felicity to help out.

Training Montage: Shirtless wing chun workout with escrima sticks, with Felicity looking on.

DC Comics Easter Eggs: In the comics, Dodger is a thief who sometimes assists Green Arrow. Roy Harper wears a red hoodie, recalling the outfit that he wears in the comics as Speedy/Arsenal/Red Arrow. While chasing Dodger, Oliver heads towards the corner of Adams and O’Neil, a reference to the comic book creators Neal Adams and Denny O’Neil, who created Green Lantern/Green Arrow #85, in which it is revealed that Speedy (Roy Harper) is hooked on drugs. The corner of Adams and O’Neil was also referenced in Year’s End (Episode 9) as the location of a heating vent where Detective Lance would drop off some evidence for Oliver to examine.

Notes: The Sherwood Ruby is a reference to Robin Hood’s Sherwood Forest. Despite his protestations, Oliver is obviously a Robin Hood figure.

Watch "Dead to Rights" Now!

Episode 16: Dead to Rights

Air Date: 2/27/13

Episode Summary: Moira’s plot to kill Malcolm Merlyn goes into effect, using the presumed-dead killer Deadshot as the assassin. Oliver tries to balance his responsibilities as the vigilante with his new relationship with McKenna Hall.

Evil Businessman of the Week: None

Super Villains: Deadshot (second appearance)

Notable First Appearances: Laurel’s mom

Bad Guys Killed: 3. During fight on helipad, Guillermo Barrera stabbed in chest with arrow. While Oliver buys time for the Merlyns to get to the panic room, 2 thugs shot by arrow.

Training Montage: Oliver leaves the training to Diggle and Felicity this episode, but Slade does shirtless pull-ups in a flashback.

DC Comics Easter Eggs: In the comics,Guillermo Barrera is a low-level villain named Brutale, whose specialty, as we saw in the episode, is throwing knives. At Laurel’s apartment, there is a picture of Detective Lance and Sarah looking at bird, which is a black canary, a reference to Laurel’s alter ego in the comics. Deadshot is holed up in the Bludhaven Apartments; Bludhaven is the fictional city Nightwing sometimes operates from. Merlyn tells Tommy he trained in Nanda Parbat, a mystical city where many other heroes, including Batman, have trained.

Notes: While Oliver has a picnic dinner with McKenna on the floor of his unfinished club, he talks about getting bands to play there in the future, asking, “Is Fall Out Boy still cool?” McKenna tells him they broke up, but about three weeks before this episode aired, Fall Out Boy announced a reunion album and tour, and released a new single, “My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark (Light Em Up).”

Watch "The Huntress Returns" Now!

Episode 17: The Huntress Returns

Air Date: 3/20/13

Episode Summary: Helena Bertinelli resurfaces and tries to get Oliver to help her kill her father. Thea tries to get Roy Harper a job at Oliver’s club. Laurel and Detective Lance listen to Dinah Lance’s suspicions that Sarah is still alive.

Evil Businessman of the Week: None

Super Villains: None

Notable First Appearances: None

Bad Guys Killed: None. That would set a bad example for Helena.

Training Montage: None! I think they replaced Oliver’s traditional shirtless workout with Roy’s shirtless trip to the hospital.

DC Comics Easter Eggs: Helena’s stripper outfit uses the cross and priest’s collar that thematically match her comics costume. When running down the list of Helena’s victims, Detective Lance tells her, “You are quite the hunter, Miss Bertinelli. Well, I guess I should make that “huntress,” using her codename for the first time in the show. Roy Harper is afraid of needles, but in the comics he is a heroin addict.

Notes: Oliver’s night club is named “Verdant,” meaning green.

Watch "Salvation" Now!

Episode 18: Salvation

Air Date: 3/27/13

Episode Summary: A new vigilante named “The Savior” is taking down threats to the Glades, and eventually kidnaps Roy Harper. Moira has to cover up her attempt to murder Malcolm Merlyn. In flashback, Oliver and Slade attempt to trade a missile launcher’s circuit board for a trip off the island.

Evil Businessman of the Week: John Nichol, a slumlord who lets people freeze to death or burn in fires in buildings that aren’t up to code(even though Oliver didn’t take him down himself, he can still be crossed off the list)

Super Villains: None

Notable First Appearances: None

Bad Guys Killed: 1. Joseph Falk shot by arrow when he tried to shoot Roy Harper.

Training Montage: Shirtless horizontal pull-ups

DC Comics Easter Eggs: As she’s leaving, Dinah tells Laurel that she’s taking the red eye back to Central City, so she “should be home in a flash.” Central City is the comics home of the Flash. The Starling City Rockets are the city’s National League baseball franchise. In the comics, they play in Papp Stadium, named for one of Green Arrow’s co-creators, George Papp.

Notes: The crisscross design in Oliver’s father’s notebook is a map of Starling City’s defunct subway system.

Watch "Unfinished Business" Now!

Episode 19: Unfinished Business

Air Date: 4/3/13

Episode Summary: A new strain of the drug Vertigo hits Starling City. When it leads to the death of a Verdant patron, Detective Lance investigates Tommy. Oliver must stop the drug at the source when Count Vertigo escapes from the mental hospital.

Evil Businessman of the Week: None

Super Villains: None

Notable First Appearances: Lyla Michaels

Bad Guys Killed: 1. Mental hospital doctor shot by arrow.

Training Montage: None. All the workout equipment had to be hidden when Detective Lance searched the club’s sub-basement.

DC Comics Easter Eggs: Diggle contacts a friend working for A.R.G.U.S., which stands for Advanced Research Group United Support. In the comics, specifically in DC’s New 52, A.R.G.U.S. (Advanced Research Group Uniting Superhumans) is a government organization designed to combat superhuman threats. They support the Justice League, but also created the Justice League of America in case the Justice League ever needed to be stopped.

Notes: Oliver used a remote-controlled exploding dart to blast himself free of captivity. He then used an antidote flechette on himself to counteract the effects of Vertigo.

Watch "Home Invasion" Now!

Episode 20: Home Invasion

Air Date: 4/24/13

Episode Summary: WhenDeadshot returns to Starling City, Oliver must choose between helping Diggle kill Deadshot and stopping an evil businessman who is terrorizing Laurel’s clients. Roy Harper steals a police radio to try to locate the vigilante.

Evil Businessman of the Week: Edward Rasmus, a financial advisor who orders the murders of families set to testify against him

Super Villains: None

Notable First Appearances: None

Bad Guys Killed: 1. Rasmus’s assassin killed by fireplace poker.

Training Montage: Diggle is the shirtless one this time; Oliver is helping him with his sparring.

DC Comics Easter Eggs: Lyla Michaels’s codename is Harbinger. During the Crisis on Infinite Earths storyline, Lyla Michaels, a.k.a. Harbinger, is an associate of the Monitor, who recruits heroes to save the universe by fighting against the Anti-Monitor. Thea goes to the police station to pick up Roy, and Detective Lance says, “Well, if it isn’t the wonder twins.” The Wonder Twins are brother and sister aliens who helped out the DC heroes on the Super Friends cartoon.

Notes: Detective Lance tells Thea and Roy Harper that the vigilante has killed 26 people since he started “his little one-man war.” As you can tell from the other recaps, this number is low.

Watch "The Undertaking" Now!

Episode 21: The Undertaking

Air Date: 5/1/13

Episode Summary: Felicity finds a transaction on an accountant’s computer that puts Oliver on the trail to finding Walter. In flashbacks, Robert Queen and Malcolm Merlyn reveal the motivations that led to the Undertaking.

Evil Businessman of the Week: Harold Backman, an accountant laundering money into Cayman Island bank accounts

Super Villains: None

Notable First Appearances: None

Bad Guys Killed: 7. 2 casino thugs shot by arrow. 5 tenement guards shot by arrow.

Training Montage: None. I guess Oliver’s abs are toned enough right now.

DC Comics Easter Eggs: Malcolm’s plan to destroy the Glades involves the “Markov device.” Markov is the last name of two DC characters, Brion Markov (Geo-Force) and Tara Markov (Terra), who have earth-manipulation powers. Robert and Moira Queen attended a Ted Kord fundraiser. Ted Kord fought crime in as the Blue Beetle. Laurel mentions friends Ray and Jean who are moving in together, despite their being together for a shorter time than she and Oliver. These names line up with Ray Palmer (the Atom) and his significant other, Jean Loring.

Notes: “The Undertaking” is the first episode where the flashbacks do not focus on Oliver’s survival on the island. Instead, they focus on why Malcolm Merlyn starts the Undertaking and why he has Robert Queen murdered. Oliver uses an exploding arrow to get Alonzo to release Felicity. He also shoots a microphone arrow into the side of Merlyn’s building to eavesdrop on his conversation with Moira.

Watch "Darkness at the Edge of Town" Now!

Episode 22: Darkness at the Edge of Town

Air Date: 5/8/13

Episode Summary: The Dark Archer kills a team of scientists related to the Undertaking, which leads both the police and the vigilante to Merlyn Global. In an attempt to end the Undertaking, Oliver must finally find out what Moira knows.

Evil Businessman of the Week: None

Super Villains: None

Notable First Appearances: None

Bad Guys Killed: None

Training Montage: Sex with Laurel

DC Comics Easter Eggs: The Dark Archer kills seismologist Dr. Brion Markov at Unidac Industries. In the comics, Brion Markov is the alter ego of the hero Geo-Force, who has gravity- and earth-manipulation powers. He is the prince of a nation called Markovia, and was on the original lineup of the Outsiders. His sister Tara had an illicit underage relationship with Slade Wilson. The airliner Fyers plans to destroy is from Ferris Air, a reference to the company run by Carol Ferris, Green Lantern’s love interest.

Notes: Oliver uses a hand-held, pistol-sized crossbow that shoots a high-tensile wire into the wall to swing himself and Felicity through an elevator shaft. The title of the episode, “Darkness at the Edge of Town,” is similar to the name of Bruce Springsteen’s fourth album, "Darkness on the Edge of Town," which is also the final track on that album. The song’s protagonist refers to losing his wife to a man born into a good life and to secrets that either get cut loose or drag you down.

Watch "Sacrifice" Now!

Episode 23: Sacrifice

Air Date: 5/15/13

Episode Summary: Oliver and Diggle try to stop Malcolm Merlyn from carrying out the Undertaking on the Glades. Thea puts herself in danger trying to find Roy.

Evil Businessman of the Week: None

Super Villains: None

Notable First Appearances: None

Bad Guys Killed: 2. 2 of Merlyn’s thugs killed by broken neck.

Training Montage: Shirtless stretching and chain climbing in Merlyn’s lair

DC Comics Easter Eggs: The original title for this episode was “52 Wells St.” The 52 is a reference to the most important number in the DC Comics universe. The Markov device is under Papp Street, a reference to Green Arrow co-creator George Papp. Detective Lance enters the subway at Puckett Station, a reference to Connor Hawke (Oliver Queen’s son) co-creator Kelley Puckett.

Notes: Oliver keeps a tracking device in his boot.


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    • profile image

      Neal Thomas 

      4 years ago

      This is superb! Can you please make a similar guide for season 2?


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