Arrow Recaplet: Black Canary Is Unmasked

Arrow Sara Lance Is Black CanaryThis week on The CW’s Arrow, even more revelations and DC name-checks were flying, as Oliver got a good look at the Black Canary and another ominous adversary was unmasked.

If I may first indulge in my own flashback… not to a remote island and my own bad wig, but to this past summer’s TCA press tour. There, CW boss Mark Pedowitz — in the course of teasing Black Canary’s introduction during Arrow Season 2 — matter-of-factly noted that the blonde badass would be revealed as Laurel’s “dead” sister Sara.

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Perhaps Pedowitz misunderstood what all had gotten out there at that point, or was unclear on what Arrow‘s creatives ideally wanted kept close to the vest. Whatever the case, in retrospect, it’s simply a shame that the reveal was spoiled for anyone. Because as I watched that unmasking scene tonight, all I could think was, “Jaws should be dropping, gasps should be gasped,” since given all intel to date, Sara is perhaps the last person we’d expect to see alive and well.

But even so, even with some viewers expecting that bombshell, this episode marked a thrilling shift for the series. As my industry peer Damian Holbrook tweeted during the hour, the Oliver/Canary scenes were like “comic-book porn,” especially as they took on, kicking ass in tandem, a small army of well-armed gang bangers — even swapping weapons of choice for a beat.

Beyond that visceral thrill, there’s all the good this wrinkle does for other areas of the canvas. Every lament from Quentin Lance about the daughter he lost now is processed through a new filter. There’s now a new set of eyes to (discreetly) look on as Laurel loses herself to drink and pills. And Oliver, we now know that he carries the burden of having known Sara survived the Queen’s Gambit catastrophe, even though he’d later see her “die” “again” (presumably on the ship where the latest flashbacks now show him being held captive — by his roughened, toughened ex-lover).

As for the woman behind Sara Lance’s “mask,” I know none of actress Caity Lotz’s previous work, but so far, so good. She’s Oliver-like stoic when she needs to be, yet also lets slip the inner pain Sara feels as she overhears her father in the next room recounting his drunken days or bemoaning Laurel’s altered self. Added bonus: With BC comes Bex Taylor-Klaus as Sin, who has improved the Roy Harper/Thea side of the canvas by 125 percent, just by being Bex Taylor-Klaus.

As one last bit of icing, this week’s hour closed with another big, if not unexpected reveal — that conscientious alderman Sebastian Blood wants not to help his city as an elected mayor but by building himself a chemically charged army, in the guise of Brother Blood.

All told, Arrow has loaded its quiver with a bounty of fun and familiar faces for Season 2, and it promises to be an exciting ride as the pieces ultimately coalesce.

What did you think of the Black Canary reveal? And how are you liking Arrow Season 2 thus far?