Diggle and Oliver

Nanda Parbat Recap

All the hype of “breaking the internet” and warnings of being “anti-Olicity” at the same time, probably over-hyped (and under-hyped) the episode so much that by the time I got around to actually watching it, I wasn’t shocked by anything that went down (note: try not to oversell sometimes). I very much expected the Ray/Felicity hook up and had so many bigger scenarios in my head about the ending, that I wasn’t really shocked at all. Nevertheless, one thing Arrow never disappoints in: entertainment. Here’s my quick rundown of “Nanda Parbat.”

Freedom Denied

Oliver flashback picture

This week’s flashbacks were short lived, but to the point. After debriefing with the American Military, Oliver is freed to go to Japan and then off to anywhere he likes. The same is said for Maseo and his family. Ready to leave for good and go home to Starling City, Waller attacks the four of them full force. They take down a bunch of Amanda’s goons but Maseo and Tatsu get trapped, Oliver running off with their son to save him. This poor kid’s fate is still rather ominous.

Thea and Oliver’s Choices

Laurel and Thea

Despite some quite awesome training going down between Malcolm, Thea, and Oliver, Thea just can’t live with the guilt. She can’t live with what she did. First she confesses to Roy (the two bonding in this episode over killing someone while under the influence of a drug), and then to Laurel. Laurel doesn’t blame Thea however, she blames Malcolm Merlyn. And she wants him dead. The two women want their vengeance. I’m glad to see that Laurel didn’t blame Thea at all. That would have been unpleasant TV viewing…

Laurel confronts Oliver about protecting Malcolm, putting a final nail in the coffin of their romantic relationship (considering he’s hell bent on protecting the man that killed Sara and in a roundabout way, Tommy). It’s great to see all the female characters on the same page though. None of them want to work with the morally bankrupt Malcolm Merlyn.

Laurel then takes her revenge in an amusing attack against Merlyn, Laurel proving she’s not Sara yet. To Malcolm, it’s like a fly trying to kill him. Laurel doesn’t make much headway in her vengeful attack (though she does pull a gun on him), until Nyssa and the League of Assassins arrive to take Malcolm. Thea had traded safety for Sara’s real killer. Nyssa wants Sara’s killer to face justice.

Oliver, however, has other plans. He decides he needs to go rescue Malcolm in order to save Thea’s soul (he doesn’t think Thea could live with getting her own father killed). Oliver’s excuses really are getting weaker though. It’s no wonder Felicity doesn’t want to be with him right now. While Oliver can’t stop Malcolm getting taken, he does take Nyssa prisoner. He wants to know Nanda Parbat’s location. Nyssa gives it freely, believing Oliver would die there. Clearly, she’s not on the “in” of her father’s plans…

Oliver and Diggle bond

Diggle, thanks to some advice from Lyla, goes with Oliver to Nanda Parbat to have his back. They take down a lot of Ra’s’ men, but still get taken. It was a trap after all. Once imprisoned, the two have a much needed talk, Oliver admitting that the real reason he wanted to come was that he hated losing to Ra’s before. His ego really needs to come down a peg or two and perhaps he should get some counseling for the past several years while he’s at it. Besides Oliver’s confession, Diggle also asks Oliver to be his best man at the wedding. I loved that this episode was able to put some focus on the two’s friendship. Their friendship has always been a highlight.

Back in Starling City, Laurel and Nyssa bond over Sara, Nyssa recalling the first time she saw Sara. Unlike most people who come before her father, Sara just let out this innocent laugh. From that point on, she was in love. This is really great characterization on Nyssa’s part. I actually wouldn’t mind if she joined the cast.

Later on, Thea decides to make one final confession to Nyssa: that she was indeed Sara’s killer. She releases Nyssa from the prison, offering Nyssa a sword to take her vengeance. Thea really just can’t live with the guilt. Something tells me that Nyssa might see Thea the same as Laurel though.

Ras-and-Oliver-sword

Back in Nanda Parbat, Oliver is brought before Ra’s and pleads for Diggle’s life, very much expecting his own demise. But Ra’s has other plans. He doesn’t want to kill Oliver; he wants Oliver to become his heir.

Standout Romantic Moment and A.T.O.M. Takes Flight

Ray-and-Felicity-romantic-m

Now I know the Ray and Felicity relationship isn’t that popular between Olicity fans, but objectively they had some great moments this episode, their lighthearted scenes breaking up the more serious nature of “Nanda Parbat.” While I am personally rooting for Oliver and Felicity as endgame, I think Ray is adorable. He’s intelligent, funny, and sweet in a sort of rambling genius kind of way. I thought it was cute how he hadn’t been getting any sleep, so Felicity locks him out of his work, forcing him to take a shower and get a few hours of shut eye. But it wasn’t those moments that probably had half the Arrow fandom in a worried frenzy.

When Felicity comes back to Ray’s place to give him the password, Felicity marvels at his expensive taste in art and then Ray himself who comes out in a towel. Felicity of course continues to make her awkward and accidental innuendos before the two have a real conversation. Ray values her input and listens to her, something she doesn’t feel Oliver is doing at the moment (thanks to his unbending Malcolm crusade). It is this difference that leads her to Ray at least for now.

With an impulse, Felicity quickly kisses Ray.

Felicity and Ray kiss

She apologizes but Ray isn’t sorry, the two going in for a more passionate kiss.

Felicity and Ray kiss 2 Felicity and Ray kiss 3 Felicity and Ray kiss 4

Right now, Felicity is exactly where she needs to be. I’m happy she chose Ray because she really can’t be with Oliver until he makes better choices. To me, it is the Jane Eyre dilemma. Jane loved Rochester but she couldn’t be with him until after he was redeemed. It would have been an immoral choice. Until Oliver seeks redemption for his choices (and he stops making bad choices in the present), Felicity and Oliver can’t be together. It wouldn’t work. For now, that means Ray Palmer.

Ray as A.T.O.M.

After the two sleep together, Ray wakes up with new inspiration. He’s finally figured out his A.T.O.M. suit. He finishes his work, and while Felicity is still sleeping, takes it out on his first flight a la Iron Man style. I can’t wait to see it in action.

Favorite Quote

Malcolm delusions of grandeur quote

Malcolm: Oliver mentioned you were having some identity issues, though he didn’t mention about your delusions of grandeur.

Thoughts and Questions

How could Oliver really consider becoming the heir to Ra’s Al Ghul? He really does need to let some air blow out of that big head of his…

Does anyone else get the vibe that Nyssa might become Laurel’s trainer? It seems the two have a lot in common…

Also, will Ray and Felicity be an official couple now? If so, I’m very curious as to how Oliver takes the news. Furthermore, I hope that now the A.T.O.M. suit is functioning that this story arc will begin to connect with the rest of the show and cast!

What did you think of Nanda Parbat? Did you like the Ra’s Al Ghul twist? Sound off in the comments…

Stay tuned for my next Arrow Recap.


Photo Credits: CW

 

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