‘Arrow’ Recap: Canary Cry

'Arrow' Recap- Canary Cry

At the end of Arrow‘s most recent episode, Laurel Lance was killed by Damien Darhk. So I knew “Canary Cry” was going to be depressing – but I was still shocked at how sad it was.

“Canary Cry” opens at a funeral I thought was going to be Laurel’s, but was actually Tommy Merlyn’s in May 2013. (Remember him? He was Oliver’s best friend who died saving Laurel, whom he loved, during the Undertaking.) Oliver, who was like family, was set to say his eulogy but couldn’t because he blamed himself for his death. So Laurel spoke instead.

In the present day, Quentin shows up at Laurel’s hospital only to learn she’s dead. Everybody’s watching him, making it simultaneously really awkward and heartbreaking – especially when Dr. Schwartz (Venus Terzo) tries to stop him because she doesn’t know he’s Laurel’s father. She tries to hand him Laurel’s belongings, which Oliver takes instead.

Later, everybody returns to the bunker and is super-depressed, especially Diggle. He sent his family to various safe houses to keep them same from Andy, who he doesn’t know anymore. He also blames himself for Laurel’s death because she’d be alive right now if he hadn’t trusted his brother. Oliver reminds Diggle not to blame himself. That’s when the TV switches on. Alex is announcing that ADA Laurel Lance died at the Iron Heights prison riot, and Darhk is the prime suspect.

We then get a scene of the Black Canary stopping a gun sale with her sonic cry. I thought it was a flashback – until Quentin shows up at the bunker with a newspaper. (The whole team, including Felicity, is already there because Oliver called them to say they still have to kill Darhk.) On page 3 is a report of someone using a sonic weapon against the gun dealer and buyer, but it occurred after the prison riot. The team watches the CCTV footage from last night’s attack and see Laurel’s doppelgänger. This doesn’t make any sense because Cisco keyed the sonic device to Laurel’s vocal cords so no one else should be able to use it. Then again, Oliver realizes that Laurel’s sonic device is missing from her belongings.

Quentin is convinced this is a sign Laurel’s still alive. It’s not that crazy – Sara has come back from the dead once before. But Quentin’s clearly in denial, so Oliver takes Quentin to the morgue so he can see Laurel’s corpse. While there, he thanks Dr. Schwartz for her discretion in hiding Laurel’s identity. He also asks who might have taken the sonic device from her belongings. Dr. Schwartz mentions there’s a patient who frequents the ER who seems “off,” but she can’t say anymore due to doctor-patient confidentiality.

In another flashback, Oliver comes to Laurel’s house on the day of Tommy’s funeral. Laurel tells Oliver she’s sorry his mother wasn’t allowed to come, and basically asks why he couldn’t deliver the eulogy. Oliver admits he stayed up all night working on the eulogy, telling stories about him and Tommy, but he realized he didn’t have the right to say any of those things. Oliver failed Tommy; he could’t make this city better and now Tommy’s dead. Laurel reminds him that Tommy loved him and he can’t blame himself. Oliver says, “You’d blame me too if you knew the truth.” Remember, Laurel doesn’t know that Oliver is the Hood yet, and she doesn’t know about his/Tommy’s falling out over both Oliver’s identity and his love for Laurel.

At the bunker, Felicity works to find the mysterious Black Canary, while Diggle again blames himself for his death. Felicity can’t comfort him because she wasn’t there. Meanwhile, Thea and Alex go out on a date to distract themselves from Laurel’s death. But they’re interrupted by the new Black Canary, who furiously attacks Alex because he works for “them.”

Thea immediately calls Oliver, who races after the new Canary – a young teenage blond girl. She demands to know why he abandoned them and left them at Reddington. She’s furious that he only cared about his friends and says he failed this city. She then uses the Canary Cry, which Oliver’s special earplugs mysteriously don’t protect him against, to escape.

This girl has somehow modified the sonic device; she’s using it at higher decibels than Laurel ever did. Oliver also figures out that the new Canary thinks Alex works for H.I.V.E.. After all, Reddington Industrial is where Darhk held Team Arrow hostage over the holidays. All the people there were volunteers, but they were also drugged to become open to suggestion – so maybe that girl is mad she didn’t save them?

Oliver’s theory checks out. Felicity identifies the girl as Evelyn Sharp (Madison McLaughlin), whose parents died of hypoxia and who went missing over Christmas.

Meanwhile, Quentin is still in denial, desperate to bring his daughter back. He even calls Nyssa and is furious to learn she destroyed the Lazarus Pit months ago, and gets even angrier when she refuses to help him find another way. Worried, Nyssa meets with Oliver. She doesn’t know what Quentin might do out of desperation. Oliver agrees to talk to him.

Felicity is also feeling guilty. She confesses to Oliver that she let Diggle blame himself because for a minute, it stopped her from blaming herself. She wasn’t there because she quit the team and she could have been. Oliver tells her that sometimes he blames himself just to have a reason in a completely unreasonable situation. But their conversation is interrupted when Thea calls Felicity. Lyla called Thea asking where Diggle was, but he’s supposed to be checking in on her. This can’t be good.

And indeed it isn’t, because Diggle stupidly attacks Ruvé Adams and her security detail. When Ruvé refuses to reveal where her husband is, Diggle nearly shoots her – but before he can, Oliver shows up and shoots the arrow out of his hand. Diggle confesses he’s so angry he can hardly think. He’s desperate to find Andy. Oliver reminds him what Laurel would have wanted him to know: “You cannot forget who you are, and we can never become them.”

So Oliver and Diggle go home, where Oliver surprisingly doesn’t tell the rest of the team what happens. But it doesn’t matter because Ruvé is holding a news conference. She says that Alex was attacked by the Black Canary, and she was attacked by a vigilante tonight. So she is issuing arrest warrants for every vigilante, who she calls “masked criminals.” Worst of all, she says the Black Canary was there at Iron Heights the night Laurel died, and so she’s dedicating the arrest and prosecution of the Black Canary to her. She knows Laurel was the Black Canary and is dragging her legacy through the mud. Oliver realizes they have to find Evelyn before the CCPD does to save her life.

We then flashback to a week after Tommy’s death, when Oliver finally stopped pitying himself because he knew that’s not what Tommy would want. He and Laurel are in her home looking at a photo of when Laurel won student body president their senior year of high school. Apparently, Oliver sent people gift baskets encouraging people to vote for her, but he says she did all the hard work. Laurel reminds him they’ve always made a great team. She also says they can both save the world together, and the two kiss in front of her fireplace that’s filled with candles. (Aww, how romantic!) Laurel then says, “I’m really excited about the future, Ollie.”

In the present day, Oliver finds Quentin at a League of Assassins hide out. Quentin is furious when Oliver tries to tell him Laurel’s dead because he has no idea what it’s like to lose a child. Oliver gently tells him he’s lost a lot of other people and Laurel is gone. Quentin yells that when Sara supposedly died and he fell into alcoholism, Laurel was the one who kept him sane. He calls her his rock – then corrects himself, saying, “She was my rock,” before finally breaking down in desperation.

Felicity apologizes to Diggle for what she said earlier and reminds him that Laurel’s death is not his fault. He is reluctant to believe her and Felicity points out that he’s “one illegitimate child away from an awesome Oliver Queen impersonation.” Their conversation is interrupted by the news that Evelyn has been spotted at Star City Plaza Hotel. She’s planning on killing Ruvé – which Diggle is all for until Felicity reminds him that if Evelyn does so in that costume, she’d also be killing Laurel’s legacy.

So both the vigilantes and the anti-vigilante task force show up at the hotel. Ruvé’s security team wants to move her to a secure location once Evelyn arrives, but she refuses. So Oliver finds Evelyn and tells her that this is not the way to get revenge on H.I.V.E.; this is not how you get justice done. He tells Evelyn that since she saw the Black Canary at Reddington, she knows she was a hero, and he asks her to ask herself: what would the Black Canary want her to do?

Evelyn seems moved by Oliver’s words and lowers her gun from Ruvé, who has an expression on her face like she’s daring Evelyn to shoot her. Ruvé immediately wants Oliver arrested – but he escapes easily. I guess Evelyn does too because later Felicity says she removed the tracking device. But this isn’t a happy ending because now the world sees the Black Canary as a gun-toting would-be murderer.

And so we finally get to Laurel’s funeral, which Evelyn watches from the corner. Dinah, Laurel’s mother, isn’t convinced Laurel’s dead because Sara came back. It’s Quentin who has to remind her Laurel’s gone forever, meaning he’s finally moved past the denial stage of his grief. And Oliver clears Laurel’s name by asking to say a few words, giving the eulogy he never could for Tommy. He tells the world that Laurel told him before she died that she was the Black Canary.

“She was not a criminal,” Oliver says. “She was a hero. She was a hero in every way that a person can be. And if Laurel were here, I know that she would expect all of us to live up to the example she set. She’d want us to save our city.”

We then get a final flashback, when Laurel finds a letter Oliver left for her. He admits he’s too cowardly to say goodbye in person – because this is when Oliver returns to Lian Yu to do some soul-searching and figure out how he can save his own city. He writes, “You’ve always seen the best in me because you’ve always been the best of me,” and leaves her the picture he kept on his first trip to the island. Laurel breaks down crying.

And finally, we return to the scenes that started off the season-long mystery of who would die on Arrow. Oliver tells Barry that Laurel’s death is not his fault but it is his responsibility, and he’s going to kill Darhk. We also see that Laurel’s headstone is decorated with the words The Black Canary, which I loved. And in the car, Felicity tells Oliver he has to kill Darhk, and he confesses he doesn’t know how because Darhk’s magic is also darkness and feels unstoppable.

Felicity refuses to let Oliver believe that Darhk is unstoppable, saying that Laurel will have died for nothing if Darhk wins. She says she fell in love with him because he always finds a way, and he has to find a way now – for Laurel, for their city, and for all of them.

I had pretty mixed feelings about “Canary Cry.” I liked the way that each character dealt with Laurel’s death – although I would have liked to see a little bit more of Thea’s reaction since she and Laurel were like sisters. Maybe we’ll get that in future episodes? Of course, Paul Blackthorne’s performance was by far the standout in this episode. I was moved to tears in every scene he was in, particularly the moment when he finally realizes his rock is gone.

I also liked the flashbacks. I’m not a fan of this season’s main Lian Yu story, so it was a nice change to see Oliver and Laurel in a moment when they were happy together – which we so rarely get to see. And it was a great way to show how much Oliver has changed since Tommy’s death, which was the catalyst he needed to really become the Green Arrow, and now Laurel’s.

I did have a few issues with this episode. I’m really worried about Diggle and how he’s going to continue handling this – because, as Oliver pointed out, going after Ruvé Adams is totally insane. She’s the mayor for crying out loud! That said, Oliver and Diggle were using each other’s names and yelling at each other in the middle of the street during that scene. Diggle even took off his mask, which was pretty stupid – although Ruvé does already know their identities. What was weird though was that Ruvé was nowhere to be found. How did she escape Diggle? Where did she go? Why didn’t we see it?

I also wasn’t a huge fan of Evelyn’s storyline either. I guess it was helpful by giving Quentin false hope and a reason to reveal Laurel’s alter ego to the world…but otherwise it didn’t do much. I didn’t really care about Evelyn’s plight, and she honestly seemed pretty disposable as a character – just another angry teenage girl. That said, her story makes it seem like she might join Team Arrow permanently. I’m not sure how I feel about that – I mean, they JUST lost Laurel. Can we bring Curtis back instead? More importantly, how are we just going to totally ignore how she managed to use Laurel’s sonic device??? Is she some kind of tech genius a la Felicity?

And finally, I’m really curious about Ruvé Adams – who I frankly find to be a far more interesting character than her husband. Using Laurel’s death to attack the vigilantes was twisted but also genius. I loved how she dealt with Evelyn, and her expression as Evelyn attacked her belied a coldheartedness that I’m eager to see in upcoming episodes. Also, before Diggle attacks her, Ruvé tells someone to lie that they’re working on the sewage system because nobody needs to know what’s going on underground. I wonder what that’s about?

Liked this? Check out last episode’s recap!

Written by Sasha Graffagna

Image Courtesy of Diyah Pera/The CW

At the end of Arrow‘s most recent episode, Laurel Lance was killed by Damien Darhk. So I knew “Canary Cry” was going to be depressing – but I was still shocked at how sad it was.

“Canary Cry” opens at a funeral I thought was going to be Laurel’s, but was actually Tommy Merlyn’s in May 2013. (Remember him? He was Oliver’s best friend who died saving Laurel, whom he loved, during the Undertaking.) Oliver, who was like family, was set to say his eulogy but couldn’t because he blamed himself for his death. So Laurel spoke instead.

In the present day, Quentin shows up at Laurel’s hospital only to learn she’s dead. Everybody’s watching him, making it simultaneously really awkward and heartbreaking – especially when Dr. Schwartz (Venus Terzo) tries to stop him because she doesn’t know he’s Laurel’s father. She tries to hand him Laurel’s belongings, which Oliver takes instead.

Later, everybody returns to the bunker and is super-depressed, especially Diggle. He sent his family to various safe houses to keep them same from Andy, who he doesn’t know anymore. He also blames himself for Laurel’s death because she’d be alive right now if he hadn’t trusted his brother. Oliver reminds Diggle not to blame himself. That’s when the TV switches on. Alex is announcing that ADA Laurel Lance died at the Iron Heights prison riot, and Darhk is the prime suspect.

We then get a scene of the Black Canary stopping a gun sale with her sonic cry. I thought it was a flashback – until Quentin shows up at the bunker with a newspaper. (The whole team, including Felicity, is already there because Oliver called them to say they still have to kill Darhk.) On page 3 is a report of someone using a sonic weapon against the gun dealer and buyer, but it occurred after the prison riot. The team watches the CCTV footage from last night’s attack and see Laurel’s doppelgänger. This doesn’t make any sense because Cisco keyed the sonic device to Laurel’s vocal cords so no one else should be able to use it. Then again, Oliver realizes that Laurel’s sonic device is missing from her belongings.

Quentin is convinced this is a sign Laurel’s still alive. It’s not that crazy – Sara has come back from the dead once before. But Quentin’s clearly in denial, so Oliver takes Quentin to the morgue so he can see Laurel’s corpse. While there, he thanks Dr. Schwartz for her discretion in hiding Laurel’s identity. He also asks who might have taken the sonic device from her belongings. Dr. Schwartz mentions there’s a patient who frequents the ER who seems “off,” but she can’t say anymore due to doctor-patient confidentiality.

In another flashback, Oliver comes to Laurel’s house on the day of Tommy’s funeral. Laurel tells Oliver she’s sorry his mother wasn’t allowed to come, and basically asks why he couldn’t deliver the eulogy. Oliver admits he stayed up all night working on the eulogy, telling stories about him and Tommy, but he realized he didn’t have the right to say any of those things. Oliver failed Tommy; he could’t make this city better and now Tommy’s dead. Laurel reminds him that Tommy loved him and he can’t blame himself. Oliver says, “You’d blame me too if you knew the truth.” Remember, Laurel doesn’t know that Oliver is the Hood yet, and she doesn’t know about his/Tommy’s falling out over both Oliver’s identity and his love for Laurel.

At the bunker, Felicity works to find the mysterious Black Canary, while Diggle again blames himself for his death. Felicity can’t comfort him because she wasn’t there. Meanwhile, Thea and Alex go out on a date to distract themselves from Laurel’s death. But they’re interrupted by the new Black Canary, who furiously attacks Alex because he works for “them.”

Thea immediately calls Oliver, who races after the new Canary – a young teenage blond girl. She demands to know why he abandoned them and left them at Reddington. She’s furious that he only cared about his friends and says he failed this city. She then uses the Canary Cry, which Oliver’s special earplugs mysteriously don’t protect him against, to escape.

This girl has somehow modified the sonic device; she’s using it at higher decibels than Laurel ever did. Oliver also figures out that the new Canary thinks Alex works for H.I.V.E.. After all, Reddington Industrial is where Darhk held Team Arrow hostage over the holidays. All the people there were volunteers, but they were also drugged to become open to suggestion – so maybe that girl is mad she didn’t save them?

Oliver’s theory checks out. Felicity identifies the girl as Evelyn Sharp (Madison McLaughlin), whose parents died of hypoxia and who went missing over Christmas.

Meanwhile, Quentin is still in denial, desperate to bring his daughter back. He even calls Nyssa and is furious to learn she destroyed the Lazarus Pit months ago, and gets even angrier when she refuses to help him find another way. Worried, Nyssa meets with Oliver. She doesn’t know what Quentin might do out of desperation. Oliver agrees to talk to him.

Felicity is also feeling guilty. She confesses to Oliver that she let Diggle blame himself because for a minute, it stopped her from blaming herself. She wasn’t there because she quit the team and she could have been. Oliver tells her that sometimes he blames himself just to have a reason in a completely unreasonable situation. But their conversation is interrupted when Thea calls Felicity. Lyla called Thea asking where Diggle was, but he’s supposed to be checking in on her. This can’t be good.

And indeed it isn’t, because Diggle stupidly attacks Ruvé Adams and her security detail. When Ruvé refuses to reveal where her husband is, Diggle nearly shoots her – but before he can, Oliver shows up and shoots the arrow out of his hand. Diggle confesses he’s so angry he can hardly think. He’s desperate to find Andy. Oliver reminds him what Laurel would have wanted him to know: “You cannot forget who you are, and we can never become them.”

So Oliver and Diggle go home, where Oliver surprisingly doesn’t tell the rest of the team what happens. But it doesn’t matter because Ruvé is holding a news conference. She says that Alex was attacked by the Black Canary, and she was attacked by a vigilante tonight. So she is issuing arrest warrants for every vigilante, who she calls “masked criminals.” Worst of all, she says the Black Canary was there at Iron Heights the night Laurel died, and so she’s dedicating the arrest and prosecution of the Black Canary to her. She knows Laurel was the Black Canary and is dragging her legacy through the mud. Oliver realizes they have to find Evelyn before the CCPD does to save her life.

We then flashback to a week after Tommy’s death, when Oliver finally stopped pitying himself because he knew that’s not what Tommy would want. He and Laurel are in her home looking at a photo of when Laurel won student body president their senior year of high school. Apparently, Oliver sent people gift baskets encouraging people to vote for her, but he says she did all the hard work. Laurel reminds him they’ve always made a great team. She also says they can both save the world together, and the two kiss in front of her fireplace that’s filled with candles. (Aww, how romantic!) Laurel then says, “I’m really excited about the future, Ollie.”

In the present day, Oliver finds Quentin at a League of Assassins hide out. Quentin is furious when Oliver tries to tell him Laurel’s dead because he has no idea what it’s like to lose a child. Oliver gently tells him he’s lost a lot of other people and Laurel is gone. Quentin yells that when Sara supposedly died and he fell into alcoholism, Laurel was the one who kept him sane. He calls her his rock – then corrects himself, saying, “She was my rock,” before finally breaking down in desperation.

Felicity apologizes to Diggle for what she said earlier and reminds him that Laurel’s death is not his fault. He is reluctant to believe her and Felicity points out that he’s “one illegitimate child away from an awesome Oliver Queen impersonation.” Their conversation is interrupted by the news that Evelyn has been spotted at Star City Plaza Hotel. She’s planning on killing Ruvé – which Diggle is all for until Felicity reminds him that if Evelyn does so in that costume, she’d also be killing Laurel’s legacy.

So both the vigilantes and the anti-vigilante task force show up at the hotel. Ruvé’s security team wants to move her to a secure location once Evelyn arrives, but she refuses. So Oliver finds Evelyn and tells her that this is not the way to get revenge on H.I.V.E.; this is not how you get justice done. He tells Evelyn that since she saw the Black Canary at Reddington, she knows she was a hero, and he asks her to ask herself: what would the Black Canary want her to do?

Evelyn seems moved by Oliver’s words and lowers her gun from Ruvé, who has an expression on her face like she’s daring Evelyn to shoot her. Ruvé immediately wants Oliver arrested – but he escapes easily. I guess Evelyn does too because later Felicity says she removed the tracking device. But this isn’t a happy ending because now the world sees the Black Canary as a gun-toting would-be murderer.

And so we finally get to Laurel’s funeral, which Evelyn watches from the corner. Dinah, Laurel’s mother, isn’t convinced Laurel’s dead because Sara came back. It’s Quentin who has to remind her Laurel’s gone forever, meaning he’s finally moved past the denial stage of his grief. And Oliver clears Laurel’s name by asking to say a few words, giving the eulogy he never could for Tommy. He tells the world that Laurel told him before she died that she was the Black Canary.

“She was not a criminal,” Oliver says. “She was a hero. She was a hero in every way that a person can be. And if Laurel were here, I know that she would expect all of us to live up to the example she set. She’d want us to save our city.”

We then get a final flashback, when Laurel finds a letter Oliver left for her. He admits he’s too cowardly to say goodbye in person – because this is when Oliver returns to Lian Yu to do some soul-searching and figure out how he can save his own city. He writes, “You’ve always seen the best in me because you’ve always been the best of me,” and leaves her the picture he kept on his first trip to the island. Laurel breaks down crying.

And finally, we return to the scenes that started off the season-long mystery of who would die on Arrow. Oliver tells Barry that Laurel’s death is not his fault but it is his responsibility, and he’s going to kill Darhk. We also see that Laurel’s headstone is decorated with the words The Black Canary, which I loved. And in the car, Felicity tells Oliver he has to kill Darhk, and he confesses he doesn’t know how because Darhk’s magic is also darkness and feels unstoppable.

Felicity refuses to let Oliver believe that Darhk is unstoppable, saying that Laurel will have died for nothing if Darhk wins. She says she fell in love with him because he always finds a way, and he has to find a way now – for Laurel, for their city, and for all of them.

I had pretty mixed feelings about “Canary Cry.” I liked the way that each character dealt with Laurel’s death – although I would have liked to see a little bit more of Thea’s reaction since she and Laurel were like sisters. Maybe we’ll get that in future episodes? Of course, Paul Blackthorne’s performance was by far the standout in this episode. I was moved to tears in every scene he was in, particularly the moment when he finally realizes his rock is gone.

I also liked the flashbacks. I’m not a fan of this season’s main Lian Yu story, so it was a nice change to see Oliver and Laurel in a moment when they were happy together – which we so rarely get to see. And it was a great way to show how much Oliver has changed since Tommy’s death, which was the catalyst he needed to really become the Green Arrow, and now Laurel’s.

I did have a few issues with this episode. I’m really worried about Diggle and how he’s going to continue handling this – because, as Oliver pointed out, going after Ruvé Adams is totally insane. She’s the mayor for crying out loud! That said, Oliver and Diggle were using each other’s names and yelling at each other in the middle of the street during that scene. Diggle even took off his mask, which was pretty stupid – although Ruvé does already know their identities. What was weird though was that Ruvé was nowhere to be found. How did she escape Diggle? Where did she go? Why didn’t we see it?

I also wasn’t a huge fan of Evelyn’s storyline either. I guess it was helpful by giving Quentin false hope and a reason to reveal Laurel’s alter ego to the world…but otherwise it didn’t do much. I didn’t really care about Evelyn’s plight, and she honestly seemed pretty disposable as a character – just another angry teenage girl. That said, her story makes it seem like she might join Team Arrow permanently. I’m not sure how I feel about that – I mean, they JUST lost Laurel. Can we bring Curtis back instead? More importantly, how are we just going to totally ignore how she managed to use Laurel’s sonic device??? Is she some kind of tech genius a la Felicity?

And finally, I’m really curious about Ruvé Adams – who I frankly find to be a far more interesting character than her husband. Using Laurel’s death to attack the vigilantes was twisted but also genius. I loved how she dealt with Evelyn, and her expression as Evelyn attacked her belied a coldheartedness that I’m eager to see in upcoming episodes. Also, before Diggle attacks her, Ruvé tells someone to lie that they’re working on the sewage system because nobody needs to know what’s going on underground. I wonder what that’s about?

Liked this? Check out last episode’s recap!

Written by Sasha Graffagna

Image Courtesy of Diyah Pera/The CW

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