“Arrow” recap (3.3): Aftershocks

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Previously on Arrow, Sweet Canary Sara got got by some arrows, Felicity got got by Ray “McSkeevy” Palmer, and Thea got gone to Corto Maltese with her biological father, Merlin.

Speaking of which, we start by finding out what happened six months ago, when Thea first got into Merlin’s car. He asks her to pick a place to go, and she’s wary but brave. She says it’s not a physical place she wants him to take her. Thea wants Merlin to take her to a place where she won’t feel so many feelings all at once. She wants to be able to shut off her pain.

Present-day Oliver as The Arrow leaps from car to car after a man who probably shouldn’t even have bothered running. Oliver catches him and interrogates him, because he has a glass shard from the rooftop where Sara was killed with this man’s fingerprint on it. The man tells Oliver that he was drinking on the roof with some buds, and a woman came and told them to leave. She looked like she could handle herself, so they left. Knowing that this was a very accurate description of Sara, Oliver lets the man go. As he stalks off, the man calls after him that he’s glad he’s not the person Oliver is looking for, because an Angry Arrow is not something you want whizzing toward you.

When Oliver gets to Team Arrow HQ, he tells them the fingerprint lead was a dead end. Felicity tries to cover her inner turmoil by making a joke about how nearly impossible it was to track that guy down.

ARROW 303-1“Sara would have appreciated my finger joke.”

But Oliver just growls, “We have failed this Canary” and asks if Felicity has managed to track down Thea in Italy. Felicity tells him that yes, she tracked Thea down but no, she’s not in Italy; she’s on the island of Corto Maltese. Diggle, too, tries to joke about the Queen family penchant for islands, but Oliver’s trademark scowl is still pretty set in his face. Oliver says that he can’t very well watch Laurel mourn her sister and have no idea if his own sister is okay or not, and that he’s going to find her and bring her back to Starling City. Roy grabs a bow, and when Oliver asks what he’s doing, Roy starts in on a speech about why he is definitely coming with Oliver to find Thea and there’s nothing he can do to stop him. To which Oliver responds that he merely meant that weapons generally weren’t allowed on commercial airplanes. Roy awkwardly admits he’s never been on an airplane and Oliver finally cracks a smile, proving part of his soul is still definitely in tact.

Diggle goes home and tells his wife that he now has plenty of time to stay home and stare at their baby now that Oliver is going to be in Corto Maltese for a few days. Lilah suggests that maybe he go with Oliver, not just to keep Ollie out of trouble, but also because it just so happens ARGUS has an agent on that very island who hasn’t reported back in a few days, and it would be nice to have someone check in on him. Diggle remembers that, at this point in her life, his daughter’s smiles are just gas anyway, and agrees to go.

Meanwhile, across town, Laurel interrogates a rather tough-looking fighter. Despite her thick-skinned lawyer act, he can tell that she’s hurting, he can see the spirit of a fighter in her. He gives her a flyer and tells her to come by if she ever wants to learn how to work off some of that white hot rage she’s holding onto.

ARROW 303-2 I am so looking forward to a sports bra training montage.

The Team Arrow boys arrive in Corto Maltese and head to the address Felicity got to Thea’s phone. Oliver inquires about Thea, and though the info he gets is that “Mia” works at a nearby cafe, he follows the lead. Merlin watches this exchange go down, but Team Arrow doesn’t catch a glimpse of the Dark Archer.

Seeing Oliver makes Merlin flash back to one of the first days on the island with Thea. He gives her a meditative tea and tells her that a true warrior fights first with the mind and then with the sword. He doles out some very profound advice: “Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.” Though he then takes it way too literally and pours scalding hot water on his hand, never flinching. Worse still, he then takes Thea’s hand and does the same.

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