Thursday, October 24, 2019

Arrow - Welcome to Hong Kong

The second episode of Arrow's final season works better than last week's premiere as it becomes obvious that the common theme of these early weeks will be putting Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) on a road trip of hitting up various locales important to the show over the years. "Welcome to Hong Kong" takes Oliver, Diggle (David Ramsey), and Laurel (Katie Cassidy) back to Earth-1 on a search for a scientist who fits into the larger plans of the Monitor (LaMonica Garrett. The return to Hong Kong (where most of the flashbacks from Season Three occurred) offers a call-back to the Alpha-Omega virus and the return of both Tatsu Yamashiro (Rila Fukushima) and China White (Kelly Hu). Following this theme, next week offers a return to Nanda Parbat and more familiar faces.

Like Bronze Tiger, who finally got a couple of nice moments last season, China White is a character (and actor) I don't think Arrow ever took full advantage of (but it is nice to see Hu one more time). The subplot of Laurel refusing to accept, and then final come to terms with, the loss of her Earth offers a renewed purpose for this Laurel to continue her role as a hero. Lyla's (Audrey Marie Anderson) role of comforter gives her something to do before the inevitable reveal of her connection to the Monitor (teasing her eventual reveal as Harbinger). While the rest of the episode works fairly well, I have completely lost interest in the flash-forwards and the troubles and tribulations of the next generation of Star City heroes (the latest being a battle of will between brothers). Honestly, I'm simply fast-forward through more and more of these segments week to week.

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