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TV Review: Arrow 1×08 – Vendetta

Arrow 1x08

By Demi Moumas, Reporter

This episode of Arrow is the second in the birth the ‘Huntress’ arc and it starts off steamy with the scene after Oliver and Helena get together. It is when Helena gets up and leaves that Oliver shows us he was awake the whole time too. Now I’m all for finishing things you start, but really? What woman in their right mind would leave him? A woman out for revenge that’s who.

Helena’s anger drives her to go after the leader of the Chinese Triad only to have the Hood appear and making her shot stray. The Triad get the hell out of dodge causing Helena to become furious. She turns to Ollie and yells at him for interrupting her justice. She had weakened her father’s organization that they wouldn’t survive an attack from the Triad. Once thing Helena should know as a potential antagonist is…don’t tell the hero of the show what you are planning on doing. It will come back to haunt you later. Lucky for her the hero is the Hood. Oliver tries to explain to her that the way she is working, it is not justice but revenge, so he decides he is going to show her the difference. So they are on what is considered a second date, when Oliver explains that he doesn’t do what she does. He doesn’t kill people as an opening move and what she is doing is only so she can get back at her father. She denies it vehemently and leaves. Great second date Ollie, should do it again sometime.

Back at the hideout, Diggle tries to tell Oliver that Helena is crazy and that they shouldn’t trust her (no kidding bro). The younger man attempts to convince his bodyguard that Helena is a lost soul that is grieving and needs help. Having a Mafia boss as a father and killing people in order to get back at him does not give Helena points in Diggle’s eyes. Despite the warnings, Oliver tells Diggle he has to try to help her see the truth of her actions. Ollie, Ollie, Ollie…there is a difference between an avenging woman and an angry one. Unfortunately this one has a side of hatred and crazy.

While Oliver is having his problems, Walter has come back home but has been distant with Moira Queen. At this point, I am hoping that Moira is seeing how her secrets destroyed the trust between her and her second husband. Not only that, but she should see that this is another thing that Oliver learned from her. As Thea comes and whisks away with Walter, Moira looked like she was contemplating what to do.

With Helena, she sees her father talking with the widow of Nick, the man who killed her lover. Her father makes a threat to avenge Nick’s killer and that is when Oliver appears and alludes to wanting to talk to Helena. The two younger have a contest of wills before Oliver takes her to Sarah Lance’s tombstone. He explains a bit of his past to Helena and how that he slept with the sister of his girlfriend at the time. This kind of throws me through a loop. Despite keeping his secret from just about everyone, Olive suddenly decides to open up to a woman that is trying to kill her father. I understand that he thinks they are similar but after everything that has happened, he should know better.

So he takes her under his figurative wing. Now enter what I call the third date in which Oliver brings her to his ‘Hood’-base. He tries to teach her about control and patience, but Diggle interrupts and things clash. When Helena leaves, Diggle tries to remind Oliver of what she did. He explains how this will end very badly for everyone if he doesn’t realize how far gone Helena is. Later Oliver decides to show Helena what he does. He gives her a crossbow gun and a uniform per say. Though I don’t know how he gets the outfit done so quickly and in purple (at her request, he’s not that fashion forward) without people asking questions. I can image that conversation at the seamtress. On the mission Oliver shows Helena how he uses his abilities in order to get their marks arrested or to stop what they are doing. He doesn’t kill anyone, no one dies.

At the Queen mansion, Walter is searching through Moira’s things while she is away. He was given a symbol from the tech queen Felicity. He had reprimanded her, telling her not look into his wife’s business again. Now at home, he searches for some item that has that symbol. Just as he is about to give up the search, he sees a reflection of the mysterious shape in the grandfather clock. He withdraws a small box and opens it to reveal….a small journal similar to the one we see Oliver have. Unlike the one our hero has, this one is blank on the inside.

Meanwhile, Tommy and Laurel run into Oliver and Helena at the new restaurant that just opened up. Let’s just say many things go down hill from there. Bad Oliver, don’t you know past girlfriend and new psycho girlfriend shouldn’t meet until at least the fifth date. Rehashing history in front of Helena, let alone in front of Laurel doesn’t go over so well. It gets a bit worst when Laurel let’s out that Tommy was going to ask Oliver if he could work for Oliver’s new club. As the couples split, Helena gets angry at Oliver and leaves him because of his love for Laurel still. Talk about a cluster….chute.

Back at the Hood-base, Diggle forces Oliver to see what he didn’t before. Luckily our favorite archer wises up enough to admit it while trying to make excuses. Ollie still feels sorry for Helena. A woman he thought he had so much in common with is already over precipice and he couldn’t prevent it or pull her back up. It is kind of sad to see such a whirlwind romance in the two episodes of this arc. He tried so hard to show her control and how to help people without resorting to killing and she denies him. I think for Oliver, after the island, this might be the closest thing to affection he can give at this point in the series. And Helena threw it back in his face, by killing the Triad leader to start the mini-war. If you noticed in that scene, our Huntress does not use the crossbow that Ollie gave her for her alter-ego, but a pair of handguns. A sign that she’s turned to her hatred perhaps?

As Helena’s plan comes to fruition, Oliver comes and tries to help her father survive the Triad’s onslaught. She attacks her father, with Oliver’s crossbow this time, and tells him why she is doing this. I’ve noticed the only time she uses the weapon is when Oliver is with her or about to appear. Maybe it’s a sign that she will always have a piece of his teachers with her. Oliver saves her father once again, only for her to get shot. He takes her away as her father is arrest with the evidence to incriminate him. After healing her, despite her anger, Oliver tries to explain how everything he has done was for her. She once again rejects his feelings after threatening to expose him if he doesn’t stay away.

Back at Queen Consolidate, Felicity shows Walter the book under a UV light. Now that Walter can read the book, it begs the question what will happen between him and his wife? Will he keep digging or will he confront her about it first?

In the end, the episode ends with Diggle giving Oliver a lecture about love. A very chick flick moment for the usually stoic men. The older man also says that it is good that Oliver is becoming more open with his heart and secrets now though. However, look how well that turned out Digs. Not too well now did it. After returning home, Oliver is then confronted by Tommy, a best friend that explains how daddy cut him off from his trust fund because he was a snob. Boo hoo Tommy, you still live in a mansion and have a luxury car and your wardrobe. Oliver gives him job of general manager of the club, that is still being created (can you have a G.M. if it’s not there yet?). The real question is will Tommy change with this new job or will he continue to be the same? He might say he wants to change, but he is taking Laurel from Oliver. When he questions Ollie about Helena, Oliver just says he will see her again.

The Oliver that is shown in this episode is more forthcoming with information and more open. He tries to latch onto a woman he perceives himself to love and tries to help her dig her self out of a hole. This only serves to make it deeper as she continually gets angry for things he does to help her. I find his openness to be degrees away from his personality he demonstrates in the earlier part of the series. His openness feels a bit rushed and out of place. Helena’s attitude toward him also confuses me. One minute she is flirting and sexy the next she is angry and vengeful. The episode was full of mood swings and needed a midol pill stat. And although the background plot was there, it got lost in all the drama between these two characters.

Rating: ★★★☆☆
ComicsOnline gives Arrow – “Vendetta” 3 psycho women out of 5.

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