This week on TV…. Once Upon a Time tested its fandom with questionable writing choices as the Underworld arc wrapped up. The Flash had a zombie metahuman and Barry trying to get back from…wherever he went. Arrow tried to stop a nuclear apocalypse, just like any other day. Read on for our full thoughts!
Once Upon a Time 5×21, “Last Rites” (Brianna)
…What is this?! Death and nonsense and favoring one sub-set of fans over the rest. That’s what this episode was. There is no way for writers of any series to completely satisfy everyone, but this episode was immensely frustrating. And I’m one of the people who didn’t actually hate last year’s Frozen arc, so this is saying something.
The newly returned Underworld Rescue Team (arguably the Underworld Failure Team?) goes on the defense against Hades. Blinded by her love for him, Zelena refuses to believe that Hades hasn’t truly changed. She starts to question things when Hades brings out the never-before-mentioned Olympian Crystal and talks about taking over Storybrooke. Now that she has love in her life, Zel doesn’t care about dominion over others.
Meanwhile, Killian is unable to move on from the Underworld until he knows Emma is safe from the god of death. He teams up with the recently-deceased King Arthur to find the hidden pages about Hades, and sends them to Emma through The Storybook. She confronts Zelena with the pages, which show that the Olympian Crystal can kill a god. At the same time, Regina and Robin infiltrate the mayor’s office to get baby WickedHood away from danger. Robin dies protecting Regina from Hades’s attack. That, coupled with the pages from Emma, force Zelena to face the truth: their love is not enough for him. Zelena destroying Hades with the crystal was one of the few satisfying moments of this episode.
Storybrooke takes its time to mourn Robin Hood at his funeral, and Zelena names their daughter after him. Emma finally grieves for Hook, but then gets her pirate boyfriend returned to her because Zeus is a biased prick and gave Killian all the credit for offing Hades. *groan* Spare me.
The Flash 2×21, “The Runaway Dinosaur” (Megan)
In the aftermath of last week’s recreated accelerator explosion, Cisco has a vibe that Barry is still alive, and Jesse and Wally are found knocked out in the hallway. Wally wakes up, but Jesse is in a coma, and they weren’t the only ones affected: Tony Woodward a.k.a. Girder was reanimated (that’s right – we got a zombie metahuman, but instead of brains, he wants Iris). Meanwhile Barry wakes up in a house that looks like his childhood home and finds someone who looks like Joe downstairs – but it’s not Joe, it’s the speed force, presenting itself as a familiar face. Barry is almost rescued by Cisco, but the speed force tells him if he stays and catches a mysterious moving shadow, he can return to his world with his powers.
The speed force then takes him on a Christmas Carol-esque visit to his mother’s grave, and tells Barry he needs to accept his mother’s death, even taking on the form of Barry’s mother. Barry shares a moment with this “mother” and then catches the shadowy figure, regains his speed, and returns home when Iris and Cisco reach out a second time. He saves the team from zombie Girder, and is able to wake Jesse from her coma with a jolt of speed force. It’s also revealed that Zoom has assembled a metahuman army, and he gives Caitlin the chance to either stay with him, or rejoin her friends. I was scared that this episode might feel like filler before the final two episodes, but it absolutely did not. It was a strong episode in terms of Barry’s character development, and did a great job of pulling together the rest of the team for the finale.
Arrow 4×21, “Monument Point” (Megan)
Darhk sets up Rubicon and starts taking control of the world’s nuclear missiles. In an effort to stop him in under twelve hours, Felicity and the team rescue her father from the team Darhk sent after him (knowing that “The Calculator” was a gifted hacker albeit terrible at coming up with a villainous name) so that he can help them stop Genesis. Because Felicity has been so focused on trying to save the world, the board of Palmer Tech fires her for not doing her job. This forces the team to break into Palmer Tech so they can steal a high-powered processor that Felicity’s father needs to stop Rubicon. Felicity and her father manage to stop all but one of the nukes, while Oliver and Diggle track down Darhk right as he is gathering strength from deaths caused by the nuke. Felicity is able to redirect the nuke to a slightly less populated town, changing the death toll from the millions it might have been, but it’s still horrific.
Throughout all of this Thea is still in the creepy dome city H.I.V.E. that is built as their fallout shelter. Malcolm is there, and the two of them take down an intruder who would have killed everyone in the shelter. But at the last minute Alex is killed by the intruder, meaning H.I.V.E. has lost their main piece of leverage for getting Thea to play nice. This episode was high-intensity from the start, with the clock counting down on Rubicon, and it managed to maintain that energy and intensity well. Yes, there was setup happening for the final two episodes, but there was enough happening in this episode alone to make it stand on its own. I do still think the team could use a replacement for Laurel but I don’t think one will be coming before this season ends – there are too many other things that need to happen first.
What did you think of this week’s episodes, Geekettes?