Arrow: Keep your Enemies Closer (2×08)
Synopsis: Diggle has to go to Moscow when someone important in his life goes missing.
Isabel and Oliver are each other’s throats again but Felicity has to interrupt because The Hood’s been summoned by Roy. After showing The Hood where his targets are Oliver tells him to go home while he and Diggle tag team to take down four guys participating in an illegal exchange. Roy (the idiot) doesn’t listen to The Hood and tries to help but winds up getting arrested when the police arrive. But Quentin lets Roy go after Roy tells him that he works for The Hood. More importantly though at the scene Diggle gets knocked out and captured by some mysterious men.
When Diggle wakes up he’s cuffed to a chair and approached by a woman called Amanda Wall from A.R.G.U.S. They need his help tracking down Lyla, who’s gone missing in Moscow after getting a lead on Deadshot. Diggle can’t refuses her, partly because Amanda knows about The Hood and Diggle’s involvement in his cause.
In a flashback Oliver is shocked and confused to see Sarah alive but doesn’t say word about it when he meets Dr Ivo, who asks him questions about himself and the island. They’re looking for a serum made by the Japanese during WW1 which makes men really strong and the only supply of it just had been lost on Oliver’s island.
When Diggle tells Oliver that he has to go to Russia Oliver doesn’t hesitate in going along to help, with Felicity of course. Isabel, who thinks Oliver’s going to Russia to talk with their overseas partners, refuses to be left behind and goes on this trip with them. Not only is she not pleased that Oliver decided to make this “business trip” without her she also doesn’t like the idea that he’s running off to spend some quality time with Felicity.
Back in Starling City Moira’s attorney, Jean, visits Thea at Verdant and warns her to stop seeing Roy as his criminal history could potentially hurt Moira’s case in court. Thea does break up with him though she doesn’t tell him the real reason why.
At the Russian Verdant Oliver takes Diggle to meet Anatoli Knyazev, who tells them that Lyla’s broke into Gulug, a Russian prison, but hasn’t come out yet. The only way for Diggle to get into the prison and save her is for him to be arrested and taken in as a prisoner. Fortunately one of the prison guards is a friend of Anatoli and he’ll help get both Diggle and Layla out. The plans seems a bit extreme to Felicity but then Diggle tells her and Oliver that Lyla is his ex-wife who he married when while in the Army.
As planned Diggle gets arrested and taken to Gulag where he meets his roommate who kindly informs him that black people aren’t very popular in Russian jails. Diggle’s unimpressed reaction is fantastic to watch. Meanwhile Oliver, Felicity and Anatoli meet up with some men with guns and a police truck. A lot of Russian gets spoken and Anatoli gives the men with guns an envelope while they give Oliver the keys to the police truck.
In another flashback Oliver is back in his cage and Sarah goes to see him. She warns him not to reveal that they know each other or else they’ll both be killed. She tells him how the people on this ship saved her and why she has to help them. Oliver tells her that he needs to help his friends, who aren’t actually dead though half of Slade’s face has been burnt of which isn’t pretty.
In prison Diggle gets into a fight with some of the other inmates and he’s taken to the “cold room” as punishment. There he seed for himself why Lyla broke into the prison because Deadshot’s there. Anatoli’s prison officer friend helps Diggle out of the cold room but before he can take him to Lyla Deadshot kills him and tells Diggle that he’ll take him to Lyla only if Diggle helps him escape.
Oliver, meanwhile, shares a few drinks with Isabel and he get friendly. He tells her that he and Felicity are not together and Isabel tells him that she knows he’s more than the idiot persona he puts on. Eventually their conversation leads them to have sex. When Felicity goes to Oliver’s room so that they can go get Diggle she sees Isabel leave it and is completely shocked. The two of them and Anatoli travel in the police truck into the prison and wait for Diggle to come out.
Back on the ship Sarah sneaks Oliver out of his cage and gets him to phone his friends to help him off the ship. But it’s actually a trap to get Oliver to admit that his friends are alive so that Dr Ivo and his men can find and kill them.
Deadshot leads Diggle to Lyla and the three but before they can escape they’re found by several guards and they have to fight their way out. Eventually they manage to break out of the prison and get to the police truck where they all drive away. When they get far enough away Diggle let’s Deadshot go because of his honour (lame) but before he leaves Deadshot tells him that he was sent by someone or something called H.I.V.E to assassinate his brother.
Thea visits her mom in jail and Roy’s there too after Moira calls him so that they can finally meet. Moira tells Thea that she doesn’t have to break up with Roy just for her.
Back at work Felicity confronts Oliver about what happened between him and Isabel back in Russia. He tells her because of his dangerous life it’s better that be with Isabel than someone he could actually care about (i.e. Felicity).
The episode ends with Oliver almost being shot but then Sarah stops it by pointing out that he could still be of some use to them.
This is the second week where I give my beloved Arrow three stars. I really hate doing that because I adore this show and I did like this episode but like last week’s one it wasn’t as thrilling as other episodes have been. I’m glad we had an episode centred around Diggle but it was sort of flat, though I do like that his separate story is continuing because there is nothing worse than characters whose entire lives are centred completely around the main characters life (*coughTVDcough*).
Let’s hope that Arrow gets back to its usual awesomeness in next week’s episode.