Friday, January 19, 2018

Arrow 6x10 Recap: "Divided" (OTA vs. Newbies) [Contributor: Marilyn]

Original Airdate: January 17, 2018

We open this episode with Helena Bertinelli’s cousin doing some business dealings — shady or otherwise. Cayden and his crew show up, offering to buy his port and he declines. Black Siren does her thing on him and they tell him he has 24 hours to reconsider. Threats are made. Meanwhile, the OTA is chilling in the bunker being, you know, the OTA. Oliver is making arrows and Felicity is in need of coffee, which Dig kindly supplies for her. Curtis is coming over to help Felicity work on Dig’s arm implant and Oliver isn’t going home to take care of William (who doesn’t know his dad is back on Green Arrow duty) because he’s determined to bring down Cayden James and can’t really relax until he does.

At City Hall, Quentin and Thea reconnect and she tells him she’d like to be his new assistant since Rene Ramirez is, obviously, not working there anymore. Thea gets why Rene was let go but she’s concerned that it’ll look like retaliation against a “whistle-blower.” Quentin is fine letting Oliver worry about that and... oh, he already hired an assistant. But he can use a chief of staff!

While Felicity and Curtis are working on Dig’s chip, they get some weird feedback. But it goes away and so they get back to work. Except... the chip still isn’t working. Dig is getting frustrated, understandably. There’s some interference again and Felicity figures out that it’s signal interference — they’re being bugged. Vince drops by the precinct to visit Dinah, which she thinks is dangerous considering he’s currently wanted for vigilante activities. He wants to meet with her at the pier the next day after her shift ends. She’s a little hesitant but agrees.

Felicity and Dig meet up with Oliver and they tell him about the bug. They realize Black Siren put it there when she broke into the bunker months ago. But for the moment, Cayden doesn’t know that OTA knows. Oliver rushes off to confront who he thinks is Cayden James, but is actually Jerry Bertinelli. Jerry tells the Green Arrow about the visit from the baddies and the threats made against him. And since Jerry’s technically the enemy of his enemy, then maybe they’re allies. Oliver brings the information to Felicity and there’s cute and witty banter about getting in bed with the Bertinellis that I enjoy a lot more than I probably should.

Elsewhere, Rene is bonding with his daughter and because she is perceptive, she wonders why he’s not going to work. Rene doesn’t know what to tell her, but he does promise that no one will take her away from him again. Curtis stops by and Rene asks him to help with the evidence that Watson has against him. He wants to be able to recant his testimony. Rene doesn’t feel great about how he betrayed Oliver, and Curtis says he’ll work on it.

Dinah meets Vince for her date and she’s having a great time — walking along memory lane, and sharing some funny and embarrassing stories. Vince is charmed but he warns her that this thing with them is complicated. She’s used to it but she’s not the Black Canary at the moment and she’s okay being with him just for now. They nearly kiss but are interrupted by Vince receiving a text. He tells her its from an informant but it’s actually from Cayden James.

Oliver and Thea have a bit of a moment in the mayor’s office when she tells him that she wishes she could be more help to him and the team — but she’s just not there yet. Oliver says she will always be his Speedy. Felicity calls, informing Oliver that they tracked Cayden. Dig warns him against rushing in unprepared but there’s nothing stopping Oliver now. He discovers not only Cayden James but Black Siren as well.

Oh. And also an enormous bomb. Cayden has some of Curtis’ T-spheres, which he tries to use against Oliver. But Oliver has an arrow for that! Cayden brings in reinforcements and blocks out Felicity on the comms so Oliver is truly alone in the field against everyone — including the Vigilante. That’s not great. But for whatever reason, Cayden lets Oliver go, saying it’s not the time to kill him.

Dig and Felicity are horrified to hear about Cayden’s posse. Dig says they need a team of their own but Oliver refuses to bring the newbies back in. He can’t go into the field with people he cannot trust. Felicity suggests a sort of compromise — Oliver does not have to go into the field with them, but should share information with them at least. After all, Dinah deserves to know the truth about Vince. Quentin tells Thea that he’s conflicted about Black Siren and thinks he might have seen Laurel in her eyes. He doesn’t know what to think but really wants to find a way to get through to her. Thea cautions him against going down this road because he could get killed if he does.

Felicity invites the old team over to the loft — neutral ground, I suppose. Dig tells the newbies that Black Siren had the bunker bugged and Dinah is upset they didn’t tell them their identities were compromised sooner. Then, the OTA tells Dinah that Vince is working with Cayden. She doesn’t believe them, naturally. So once again we return to the storyline of "the newbies reach another impasse with OTA." In my opinion, the newbies come off poorly in the exchange.

Oliver meets with Bertinelli again, just as he’s leaving town, for fear that Cayden will target his daughter. But Oliver wants him to make a final stand — he’s confident they can end Cayden together. Meanwhile, Dinah meets with Vince... and punches him. Fair. Turns out she believes Oliver a little more than she let on. Vince doesn’t deny his involvement, and Dinah’s furious and feeling betrayed (understandable). She tries to arrest him but he gives her the slip.

Oliver is sure that Dig, he, and Felicity can handle whatever comes their way — without the newbies. But Dig is less sure. Curtis, meanwhile, tries to help Rene learn what Watson has on him. He finds an audio recording and it’s likely the evidence that Watson has. And it was likely leaked to her by Cayden via the bug in the bunker. Dinah shows up and tells them about Vince. They catch her up on what they found out and they wonder why Watson went after Rene and not the rest of them. They want to take on Cayden James and his super posse, forming their own team outside of Team Arrow.

Felicity tells Dig and Oliver that the Bertinellis are bringing in the Red Lions — a death squad from Chechnya. Cayden, who is watching, isn’t concerned and plans to ambush them. Of course it’s a trap set by OTA because they wanted Cayden to overhear them. Bertinelli shows up as anticipated and is met with Richard Dragon and his goons. Oliver is there and there’s all kinds of fighting hijinks but Black Siren blasts Oliver into a wall and Felicity warns Oliver to get out. Oliver is overpowered by Anatoly and Vigilante, while Cayden stops Bertinelli from escaping. He gives him a choice, and Bertinelli is about to side to with Cayden and shoot the Green Arrow when he triggers an explosion which allows him to escape. Bertinelli offers Cayden the port and he’s thanked for that but is shot and killed anyway. That’s bad etiquette.

Felicity gives Oliver a pep talk, and Oliver admits he can’t be out in the field alone against a group of baddies. It’s just not smart. The group meets again with the newbies, trying to bury the hatchet. Oliver tells Rene he understands why he did what he did, but it also meant taking Oliver away from his son he reacted angrily. An olive branch is offered but Oliver says they don’t have time for grudges; they need to work together.

Curtis can’t go back to the way things were though. Rene and Dinah back him up and reveal that they plan to work together and try to help the city — but they’re not going to work with OTA again. Felicity says Cayden wants to split them up and they are playing right into his hand. Oliver tries to warn them about what they’re up against with Cayden, and wishes them luck. Before the newbies leave, Curtis gives Dig the new chip and believes he solved the problem.

At City Hall, Quentin comes across pictures of Laurel and Thea apologizes for telling Quentin that Laurel/Black Siren couldn’t change. After all, Malcolm did (... did he though?) and maybe she can too. She offers to help him try to break through to Black Siren. Or Laurel. That is a terrible idea. Meanwhile, the newbies set up shop in the old Helix headquarters. They toast to “partners they can trust,” and I want to throw multiple things at their heads.

Cayden confronts Vince about his concerns — he worries about his relationship with Dinah. But Vince doesn’t think it will be an issue. After all, he knows how to play her. Meanwhile, Felicity puts the new chip in Dig’s hand and breaths are held while waiting to see if it works. It does! Dig is back in business! 

Final thoughts: 

  • I love to see OTA together again, interacting with each other and relying on each other like the well-oiled machine we always knew they are. 
  • Still, it was super frustrating to see Dig sidelined by his bum arm/hand the whole episode. 
  • Black Siren is useless as always. Yawnsville. 
  • Dinah was frustrating this episode. She tells Oliver she doesn’t believe him, but she actually does? And her reasoning for maintaining anger with OTA was flimsy as heck. 
  • (Honestly, in a battle of loyalty, I’m always going to side with OTA.)
  • Cayden James was sufficiently creepy this episode. Bringing ALL the baddies together like that felt like a legitimate threat, so good job there. 
  • The fight sequences in the warehouse were very clearly directed by Bamford, but I mean that in a good way. The way he likes to maintain the camera on Oliver and just show brutal hit after hit feels really claustrophobic and tense and I feel works really well in a scene like that. 
  • There was not nearly enough Olicity in this episode. Not a single "Mr./Mrs." joke or anything. Fix that in the future, show. 

That’s it! Arrow is back and not a moment too soon. Next week we get an episode where it sounds like William is in a bit of danger, thanks to Cayden James.


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