Less than 5 – Skip it, 6 – OK, 7 – Good, 8 – Great, 9 – Phenomenal, 10 – You owe it to yourself to watch this episode!
Midnight City continues to showcase the struggles of Starling while the Arrow gets his rest. The “B Team” tries their hardest to maintain order but the threat that is Brick is just too powerful. With some cool action and great Laurel/Canary development Midnight City pushes the season forward with a strong sense of direction.
Let’s start off with the one thing that bugged me about the episode. Apparently Oliver (Stephen Amell) was never dead. He somehow survived getting stabbed in the stomach and falling from a cliff. Not to mention lying half naked in sub-zero temperatures for multiple days. He somehow managed to cling on to life and he is simply being nursed back to health, no Lazarus pits or otherworldly mumbo jumbo here… which is incredibly disappointing. I do hope that isn’t all there is to his “death” because it would be a massive wasted opportunity.
Ignoring that minor issue, there was a lot to like about Midnight City. Brick isn’t the “big bad” of the season but he sure could be. Without the aid of Mirakuru or assassin training, Brick has managed to take over the Glades through fear and strength. The dude is a bad-ass and Vinnie Jones is Brick through and through. However long this arc lasts it is sure to be memorable thanks to Jones’ performance as well as how screwed up Starling is.
Roy (Colton Haynes) and Diggle (David Ramsey) get to see a bit of action but the main focus this week was on Laurel. At the end of last week’s episode we caught a glimpse of Laurel (Katie Cassidy) suited up as the Canary. Here she tries her hand at real vigilantism but realizes that she may be in over her head. She gets tossed around during every encounter she gets into which goes to show that “a hero does not a mask make”. Showing her go through this rough stretch is a great way of winning fans back over to her side. Laurel has had stretches of being pretty intolerable but having us witness her pain and resilience makes her all the more endearing. In addition to her superhero struggles, she is also juggling a few familial issues as well. Taking up the mantle of the Canary has brought Sara back into the spotlight. Detective Lance, seeing Laurel on the news, thinks Sara is back in town, leaving Laurel to pile lie on top of lie in order to avoid telling her father about Sara’s passing. It’s quite the situation she has gotten herself into and there is bound to be a bit of family feud once things settle down.
Felicity (Emily Bett Rickards) also had a nice arc this week. Continuing from where we last saw her, she is still moping about the loss of Ollie and refuses to help any of her wannabe hero friends. It’s only after Ray (Brandon Routh) valiantly throws himself in dangers path that she sees that her fight isn’t over just because the Arrow’s is. She was a vital member of the team and it was nice to see her go through this small crucible and come out stronger for it.
Keeping with the emotional theme, the scenes involving Maseo and Tatsu were great. We still don’t know what caused their split but seeing them together again was heart wrenching, especially because Maseo is so determined to return to Ra’s even after killing 4 of his men. The flashback sequences involving the couple is some of the best stuff we’ve seen from Oliver’s time away and they are quickly making their way up my favorite characters list. Maseo’s willingness to kill thousands to save his family was a powerful way of showing his loyalty and a great way of showing how dangerous he can be if provoked. What his end game entails is still a mystery but his story is definitely one to watch out for.
Laurel’s growing pains, Felicity’s renewed courage and the Maseo/Tatsu dynamic made Midnight City one of the better episodes of the season. With Oliver’s return looming ever closer it will be a shame we won’t get the same amount of emphasis on the supporting cast but with the League firmly set as the main antagonist and some very compelling flashback content the rest of the season is looking very promising.
Overall I give this episode 8/10