It’s the Holidays in Star City, but Darhk is being a Grinch, causing trouble for Oliver and the gang. Check out Josh’s recap of Season 4 Episode 9, titled Dark Waters, and our thoughts on the episode!
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Episode Recap of Arrow, Season 4 Episode 9: Dark Waters
The midseason finale of Arrow begins with Oliver getting his potential constituents to clean up the bay. Oliver gets interviewed by the news. Diggle, meanwhile, is still angry about his brother being brainwashed. But the nice bay cleaning project turns bad with a drone attack. Diggle opens fire on it, while Felicity tries to shut the drone down with her laptop, which she finally does.
On the news, reports of the attack are airing, and Team Arrow watches from their cave. Diggle then visits his brother, trying to break through to him. Andy seems to be free of Darhk’s hold, and he admits to running drugs before working for Hive.
Felicity, meanwhile, heads home, and her mother is Christmas decorating. She is going through some decorations, and finds Oliver’s engagement ring–and this turns into both she and Felicity thinking Oliver is going to propose soon.
Back at the bay, Oliver is trying to decide how to handle their situation. Team Arrow decides to out Hive and Damien Darhk on the news. Darhk, watching from his hideout, is not very happy about this. Meanwhile, at the Arrow Cave, Oliver wants to stop the holiday party, but Team Arrow thinks they need to move forward to ensure that they don’t appear to be afraid of Darhk.
Later, Thea gets a visit from her father. Thea tells Merlyn that she might be cured due to her encounter with Darhk. Merlyn still seems worried about Thea though, and warns her to be careful.
The holiday party is on, and Team Arrow shows up. Diggle has gotten some extra security. Felicity, meanwhile, wanders off to find her mother, and discovers the budding relationship between Detective Lance and her mother. Felicity is a little freaked out, and wants to speak to her mother alone. Felicity tells her mother that she realized that Oliver was going to propose 3 months ago, back in their “suburban” life. Felicity decides to confront Oliver about this, and wants to know why Oliver changed his mind. Oliver says that he needed time to think things through when they came back to Star City. Oliver was worried about the dangerous life that they are leading. This of course cues the danger to show up–Darhk arrives with soldiers, and opens fire. Darhk demands time with Oliver. Oliver pleads for everyone else to be let go, but Darhk decides it is best to punish loved ones to really get the point across. Darhk tosses Oliver across the room and takes Felicity, Thea, and Diggle.
Oliver gets up, and makes a promise to save Thea and Felicity. Lance tells Oliver what went down when he was unconscious, and Lance regrets not making a move even though it would blow his cover.
Oliver goes into berserk mode, interrogating Ghosts, but gets no information. Meeting up with Laurel, Oliver is frustrated, and thinks he might have made the wrong decision outing Darhk. Laurel tries to calm him down, and Oliver decides to head back out to bang more Ghosts’ heads.
Meanwhile, Laurel got a tip on the phone that Lance might be working for Darhk. Lance admits to working with Darhk to keep Laurel safe. He then tells Laurel about Oliver’s request for Lance to be a “double agent”. Oliver then gives a call to Lance, and Lance and Laurel show up. Then another guest shows up unexpected–Merlyn. Merlyn hands over a phone used by Hive, but they aren’t sure what to do with it. Oliver decides his best solution is to turn himself in to Darhk.
Darhk then has a “board meeting” with some mystery group, and Darhk plans seem to involve some project referred to as “Genesis”. The group gives Darhk a hard time for not making progress, but Darhk seems to be happy due to the text he receives–from Oliver. Darhk shows up and confronts Oliver.
Back at the Arrow Cave, Merlyn, Laurel and Lance work on a plan. Apparently Oliver allowed Merlyn to tag him with a tracker, so they can find Oliver in Darhk’s custody. Lance wants to go, but Laurel doesn’t want him there.
Oliver is taken to Darhk’s hideout, and Darhk shows Oliver a gas chamber. One of Darhk’s minions is sacrificed to the chamber as a demonstration. Darhk seems disappointed in how quickly the minion dies and has his scientists work on some “adjustments”. Oliver gets to see Felicity held in her cage, and Darhk allows them to say goodbye. Oliver tells Felicity the situation is under control but Felicity is not agreeable. They then talk about the whole proposal thing, and Felicity tells Oliver she would have said yes.
Darhk betrays Oliver’s deal though, as Felicity is shoved into the gas chamber with Diggle and Thea now inside. The gas is turned on, and Oliver frantically works to free them. Laurel and Merlyn as Green Arrow show up, and begin their assault. Laurel uses her Canary Cry to break the gas chamber. Oliver hurries the three out, and Merlyn confronts Oliver. Merlyn gets whacked by Darhk, and is not having a good time. But Merlyn gets some help from Oliver.
Meanwhile, the cages holding Darhk’s minions are opened, and they attack Laurel, Thea, Diggle and Felicity. Lance shows up and provides some assistance. The police show up to provide some further assistance. Meanwhile, Oliver gets a beating from Darhk, but Merlyn puts an arrow in Darhk. Darhk mutters a spell as the area explodes from the explosive arrow–so I would guess Merlyn made it out alive.
Felicity seems to think Darhk is alive too, and back at the Arrow Cave, Diggle tells Andy that he will be treated like a Ghost if that is what Andy wants.
Then back to Darhk, he is showing some crops to the “board” and says this air is breathable. But it looks like Darhk has a plan for his gas concoction…
Oliver has a vigil to stand up to Darhk. He gets his voters and followers to another Holiday celebration. Then Oliver makes the leap, and proposes to Felicity. She says yes and the happiness exudes from the crowd for Oliver. The two get into a limo, and the happiness is ruined. The car is surrounded by some SUVs. The car is shot up by some Ghosts, and it looks like Felicity is wounded. Oliver takes control of the vehicle and speeds away. He stops, and finds Felicity, who is bleeding profusely. Meanwhile, Darhk has his Christmas celebration with his family.
In flashbacks, Oliver and Taiana move to look for what they are looking for. Taiana isn’t happy to be helping Oliver, but Oliver makes sure to avenge Vlad once they get what Oliver is looking for. Turns out he is looking for some survey maps, which are on the sub we saw in previous seasons.
Oliver gets to the sub, and makes his dive to get aboard. He gets to the sub, and retrieves what he is looking for. He then works his way out, but has an unwelcome visitor–a shark. He gets a shark bite, but even worse, Oliver’s “best friend” shows up with some soldiers.
Josh’s Thoughts: Arrow, Season 4 Episode 9: Dark Waters
Another great episode of Arrow, I thought. When this show is firing on all cylinders, I really like it, and this episode was one of the best of the season so far. Darhk is out in the open, which is interesting to see, as he has always operated from the shadows so far. But on top of that, he has proved to be a big adversary for Oliver. We can see this is a struggle for Oliver to deal with, as he tries to be more of a hero than a vigilante, because of how ruthless Darhk is. We now see that Felicity has been severely wounded and I wonder if this is what brings Oliver back to the more lethal Arrow.
It is sad to see Felicity wounded, and of course this begs the question–is Felicity’s name on the mysterious tombstone? I am hoping Felicity recovers from this, and I wonder if this is a big red herring, but it could very well not be. We will have to see where this tombstone ends up, and I hope we get an answer soon.
I am still not exactly clear what this gas is supposed to be doing that Darhk is working on. It sounds like his intention is not to kill people with it, it just seems to be a side effect so far. Maybe he is hoping to have a massive brain washing drug to use on Star City? That would be my best guess so far.
I am ready to see where the story goes though. Hopefully Felicity makes it out, and Oliver lays the hurt on Darhk. Although, how that will happen remains to be seen, as putting an arrow in Darhk, and blowing him up doesn’t seem to do the trick…
Violet’s Thoughts on Season 4 Episode 9 of Arrow: Dark Waters
Arrow has been pretty good this season, but I thought this was an especially good episode. We knew Oliver was going to stir up some trouble by cleaning up the bay, since he went against Damien Darhk’s wishes. I didn’t expect for him to out Damien Darhk though, at least not at this point in time, when he had barely really begun his campaign. But I suppose it’s better to expose Darhk’s true demeanor sooner rather than later, so that people in Star City would not continue to trust him. Unfortunately for Oliver, this was a dangerous move, as it cause Darhk to attack him where it hurts the most: his loved ones. This all resulted in some pretty exciting action scenes, and a fun and interesting choice to use Merlyn as Green Arrow.
But then at the end, you get the sucker punch. Just when everything looked like it was going to wrap up into a nice, neat bow for the holiday hiatus, with Oliver finally proposing to Felicity and her saying yes, everything went downhill. They had to leave us with a cliffhanger, making us wait over a month to see what happens next. I don’t think that’s Felicity in the grave. It seems too obvious. But then maybe that’s what the writers want us to think, that it’s too obvious to be her, so we assume that it’s not her, and then it turns out to be her after all. I guess we’ll find out on the next episode!
Scenes from Arrow, Season 4 Episode 10: Blood Debts
Here are scenes from the next episode of Arrow, titled Blood Debts: