Death is a natural part of any superhero story. It’s something every hero must deal with, and no one knows that better than Oliver, who has watched his best friend and mother die in the past two years. In the wake of those deaths, Oliver lost confidence in his mission and sought isolation from the world to grieve alone. Thankfully, tonight’s episode does not retread old plot points, and, instead, we start to see how Sara’s death will force our characters to make decisions about what they want their lives to be. While, “Sara” might not be as poignant as last season’s “City of Blood,” it still does a decent job of handling Sara’s death.
STARLING CITY — PRESENT DAY
Villain of the week: Simon Lacroix a.k.a. Komodo
The episode opens with Oliver, Felicity, and Roy are arguing about something as they enter the Arrow Cave, but their conversation is interrupted when they find Laurel standing over Sara’s dead body on the table. Because of Sara’s vigilante alter-ego, Laurel didn’t know where else to go and couldn’t stand to leave Sara’s body lying in the street, so she brought it to Verdant. Everyone reacts as you’d expect: Felicity starts rambling, while Oliver and Roy remain silent.
It’s easy to understand just how upset Laurel is: She’s grieved for her sister once already, and when she came back to life, she didn’t expect to go through this again. She tells Oliver that the first time Sara “died,” she didn’t have an outlet through which to channel her rage, but now she does: finding Sara’s killer.When Laurel tells Oliver that a bar, like Verdant, is the last place she should be, it’s clear just how far she’s come since last year’s season premiere. Like Oliver, she did not take Tommy’s death well and used alcohol and drugs to numb the pain. Oliver tells her to focus on taking care of her family and to leave finding Sara’s killer up to him. Because of Quentin’s weak heart, Laurel decides that she’ll tell him about Sara when they’ve found her killer.
The death of Laurel’s sister also highlights someone else who’s missing from the show: Thea. Her absence was felt more tonight than it was in the premiere, mostly because Oliver calls her several times, seeking the comfort of hearing her voice, but receives no response.
To distract himself from his grief, Oliver gets right to work and goes to check out the roof where Sara died. He quickly recreates her death in his mind and figures out where the archer was standing. Diggle shows up to lend some emotional support, but their conversation is cut short when Captain Lance calls asking for the Arrow’s help, re: there’s a new archer in town. Team Arrow believe they’ve found their guy. Unfortunately, Oliver has no idea who this archer could be because all of the ones capable of doing this are in the League of Assassins, and he doesn’t think they would’ve killed one of their own. He asks Diggle to use A.R.G.U.S’ database to draw up a list of potential archers.
Elsewhere, this new archer in town, who we later find out is Simon Lacroix, also know as Komodo, takes out another target.
Back at the lair, Felicity walks in on Roy hacking into the FBI database to locate Thea because he doesn’t think she’s where she says he is based on a letter she left him during the siege. (Um, when did Roy learn hacking skills?) He shows Felicity the letter, and she insists that he show it to Oliver, who is obviously upset that he hasn’t heard back from Thea. Their conversation is cut short when she receives a text that pisses her off, and she leaves to go kill someone.
And who might that someone be? You guessed it, Ray Palmer. Turns out Ray, whose charm makes it so hard to hate him, bought the company that owns the electronics store chain for which Felicity works. He gives her two options: either work for him in that horrible uniform, or come work for him at Queen Consolidated. Because Felicity isn’t like most women and is not flattered that Ray spent so much money on her, Felicity chooses option C and quits her job at the electronic store and proceeds to storm off. In his first human moment since his first appearance, Ray points out that Felicity is obviously taking her anger about something else out on him and tries to comfort her. And while merely reminding her that “it gets better” is a rather lame response, it’s the thought that counts, and it definitely leaves an impression on Felicity.
Using a description Oliver got from a witness, Diggle is able to use A.R.G.U.S’ database to narrow the list of potential assassin archers down to one: Komodo. With a name, Felicity is able to track Komodo’s burner phone and finds out that he’s on the move now. Oliver hops on his motorcycle and speeds off to find Komodo, who is about to kill another target. Oliver arrives in time to stop him, but in the ensuing motorcycle chase and game of chicken, Komodo knocks Oliver off his bike and manages to escape.
NEXT: Laurel takes matters into her own hands