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The action picks up pretty much right after the events of last week, where we got to see the Crisis in action as Earth-2 was effectively erased from existence (all except for that reality’s version of Laurel). The adventure also heads to Hong Kong for a ton of great throwbacks.
Spoilers ahead for “Welcome to Hong Kong,” the latest episode of The CW’s Arrow, which aired Tuesday, October 22, 2019.
Oliver apparently broke The Monitor’s rules by saving Laurel from the Crisis-pocalypse in her universe, so he hijacked their breach back to Earth-1 and dropped them off in Hong Kong. The reason being? His mysterious mission needs a virus-making scientist, to go along with that dwarf star stuff Oliver acquired last week. Much of the episode focused on the action of making that acquisition happen, as Oliver butts heads with the Yakuza, China White and even his old pal Tatsu, who is living that vigilante life in Hong Kong.
Tatsu gets her face off with China White, and though she wins the fight, she takes a sword to her chest and almost dies (thankfully she’s set to recover) once it’s over. Laurel also shows up and blasts China White into oblivion, though she’s likely still alive, because it’s pretty rare for anyone to have an off-screen death in this series.
As for Laurel, she’s having a hard time adjusting to the fact that Earth-2 is gone, and spends much of the episode trying to repair her breach machine so it’ll take her home. Turns out the device it’s working fine, it’s just there’s no Earth-2 to visit thanks to the Crisis. She’s understandably devastated, but comes to realize the larger mission really is worth it, if she can save other universes from suffering the same fate as her own.
Lyla also shows up this week, after Diggle checks in and tells her they’re on a mission in Hong Kong. We also get a massive Lyla-centric twist, as she hands over the scientist to the Monitor and reveals she’s been scheming with him behind Diggle and Oliver’s back for at least some time here. What arrangement did she make? What’s her endgame? Why is she keeping it a secret? Plenty of questions, not a whole lot of answers at this point.
Aside from it being great to see a blast from the past, Oliver’s time with Katsu also inspires him to think about his own deal with the Monitor in a new way. He realizes that, put simply, he knows next to nothing about the Monitor. So, he’s going to kick up his own investigation to make sure the Monitor is on the up-and-up. His quest will take him to Nanda Parbat next, as he turns to one of the oldest organizations in existence to try and find out if they know anything about this mysterious entity and his true motivations.
Looking to the future storyline (which is getting its own backdoor pilot soon), Connor (Bronze Tiger’s son and Diggle’s future adopted son) finally has a sit-down with his estranged brother JJ (Diggle’s first son, who is a villain in the future running the Deathstroke gang). Turns out Diggle spent so much time trying to make sure Connor stayed on the straight and narrow, JJ rebelled and became the baddie himself. There’s plenty of drama to mine here, and they seem to be saving some of that for later in the season (and possibly a series run, if the backdoor pilot scores a pick-up). JJ also proves to be a cunning baddie, tricking Future Team Arrow into a trap, raiding the bunker and capturing William in the process.
Next week: Thea is back! She looks to be joining Oliver as he makes his trip to Nanda Parbat to investigated the Monitor’s actions and history. He also breaks the news to Thea that the Crisis is coming, and umm, that he’s probably gonna die by the time it’s over.