Arrow: Season 1 Episode 18 – ‘Salvation’ Review

Arrow Season 1 Episode 18 Salvation Roy Harper

In Arrow Season 1 Episode 18 titled Salvation, a new vigilante inspired by the Hood, broadcasts online killings of criminals that have wronged The Glades.

Oliver’s character arc through out season one is the gradual process of regaining parts of the humanity he lost while on the island of Purgatory. Since returning to Starling City, Oliver opened himself up in his relationships to Helena Bertinelli and McKenna Hall, only to have the door slammed in his face. Fresh off McKenna’s abrupt break up, Oliver is a little colder, reverting back to an emotionally isolated man driven to rid the city of criminals.

This week’s nemesis nicknamed The Savior, served as a fractured mirror image of the Hood’s vigilantism, forcing Oliver to reexamine his actions and where his current path will lead if he doesn’t change course. Though the Savior doesn’t appear on-screen until the final scene, the lack of the villain’s depth didn’t hurt the episode because he’s only a device for Oliver to realize the importance of a close circle of friends and family.

To tie in the B-plot with the main story line, it was fairly evident that the Savior’s final victim would be someone connected to Oliver. Fortunately, Laurel was passed over as a damsel in distress and since she’s neither corrupt or a criminal she wouldn’t fit the profile of the Savior’s victims.

Instead the petty thief Roy Harper became the target which led to a revealing character moment. Beneath Roy’s self-reliant and suave demeanor is a young man who doesn’t believe his life is of any worth; yelling at the Savior to kill him because no one would care as Thea watches online.

The one oversight after this climatic moment is there is no acknowledgement or exchange of words between Roy and his rescuer, the Hood. However, Oliver as Roy’s personal savior is a fitting introduction to what should eventually evolve into an enduring partnership. It would be interesting if in future episodes, Roy makes the most of his second chance and obsesses over the mysterious vigilante that saved him, perhaps igniting his crime-fighting origins.

Mirroring Roy’s emotional breakdown this episode is Dinah Lance (Alex Kingston) who blames herself for letting Sara go on the ill-fated yacht. Laurel has comes to terms with Sara’s death long ago and it’s her understated strength of character that gets to the core of Dinah’s grief which has been stuck in the denial stage. However, in order to truly sympathize with Dinah, more scenes over the last few episodes should have focused on the mother-daughter relationship and addressing questions like how they became estranged.

Other Quick Observations:

» Pretty predictable that Moira would rat on Frank. Her blood covered hands that she tried to wipe clean is very Lady Macbeth. The Dark Archer’s brief cameo makes me anticipate a rematch with Oliver.

» Tommy said that he recognized Roy. Did this mean that Roy applied for the valet job or something else? Is Roy a well-known criminal in the glades that the Savior decided to make an example of him or just convenient story writing?

» I think Yao Fei will make it out okay. Meanwhile, the superhero team up in the making (Shado, Deathstroke, & Oliver) is gathering steam. What is Fyers up to and more importantly when is the next all island flashback episode?

» Oliver jumping from rooftop to rooftop in daylight was pretty cool and a refreshing change of pace from the night scenes.

» I found it funny when Felicity kept on explaining that the Savior was in the subway as Oliver walks away … yes we got that like a half hour ago. :)

» “I’ll be back in Central City in a flash”. Nice line, I didn’t even have to know The Flash resides in Central City to get the inside joke because of the well-timed delivery.

» I liked how the end of the episode tied back into the on-going arc of the undertaking involving the Glades. Also, we finally learn what the mysterious symbol on the book means.

What did you like or didn’t like about this episode? What did you think of the first meeting between Roy and Oliver? Did the Dinah Lance story arc work for you?

More Posts You May Like:

Arrow Season 1, Episode 15 “Dodger” Review (vs Dodger)

Arrow Season 1, Episode 16 “Dead To Rights” Review (vs Deadshot & China White)

Arrow Season 1, Episode 17 “The Huntress Returns” Review (vs The Huntress)

Read an excellent in-depth back story of DC Comic’s Deathstroke:

The Character Spotlight – Deathstroke (Slade Wilson) (by Gotham Rogue)

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Posted on March 28, 2013, in Arrow, Comics, Television and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 15 Comments.

  1. “in a flash” *Wink* *Wink* puns ahoy :D

    So that guy is supposed to be speedy right?

    Blood on the hands was very Lady Macbeth!

    Felicity is so damn funny, that bit near the beginning when Oliver is half naked above her haha her face xD

    • I noticed Felicity was eyeing shirtless Oliver too haha! Diggle should give her a handkerchief to wipe off the drool. :) I believe Roy will become speedy. From what I’ve searched online, there’s also another Speedy in DC comics named Dearden, which is Thea Queen’s middle name. If there can be two Deathstrokes then maybe there can be two Speedys ???

      • I wouldn’t mind him being Speedy but Thea normally gets on my nerves so i’d draw a line there :D

        There’s only one Deathstroke!

      • WatchThisNotThat

        My brother and I are in constant debate about Roy v. Thea being Speedy, maybe they’re should be two :D
        I love Felicity and Oliver better as a couple than Laurel and Oliver.
        Actually, I just love Felicity in general, always have.

        • Haha, I think a lot of fans are having the same debate as you and your brother. :) I eventually want both Roy and Thea to join the crime-fighting crusade. But for Thea it needs to be a gradual evolution over a couple of seasons. I think Roy with his ninja moves is a lot closer to being Oliver’s apprentice.

          Felicity is a great addition as a regular character on the show. In my reviews on early episodes I felt Laurel and Oliver scenes were a weak link for the show, but I believe with some strong writing they can make it work. There’s a lot of potential there even if Oliver’s chemistry with Felicity is stronger at the moment. Thanks so much commenting!

      • I think Mia will be Speedy and Roy will skip ahead to his Arsenal identity from the comics. If they go with codenames that is… :)

  2. I missed this one and it sucks!
    Thanks for the recap!

  3. “Tommy said that he recognized Roy. Did this mean that Roy applied for the valet job or something else?”
    I agree with you. From the sounds of it in the earlier episode it seemed like they just had a phone conversation.

    “Meanwhile, the superhero team up in the making (Shado, Deathstroke, & Oliver) is gathering steam.”
    I was wondering in what direction they were going ot take Shado in and was happy to see her kick ass. A flurry of action from her is just a hint at what she can truly do. Now I wonder what we will see first: her in present day or Slade?

    “Oliver jumping from rooftop to rooftop in daylight was pretty cool and a refreshing change of pace from the night scenes.”
    For sure. Nice well done scene that successfully captured the urgency while also looking fantastic.

    “I’ll be back in Central City in a flash”.
    Love these little Easter Eggs for fans of DC lore!

    “Also, we finally learn what the mysterious symbol on the book means.”
    That was unexpected. What is their aim with the subway tunnels. Are they going to destroy the Glades? Questions, questions, questions.

    “What did you not like about this episode?”
    The whole Laurel family drama. I really thought this was going to lead somewhere. Also the introduction of Laurel’s mom was disappointing as I was expecting her to be something more than she was.

    “What did you think of the first meeting between Roy and Oliver?”
    Great. It succeeded in setting Roy on the path to redemption and I love how he just stared at the arrow souvenir in the end. He has a purpose now and he knows he has someone that cares for him (Thea) as well.

    Next week…the return of Count Vertigo!

    • When Alex Kingston was cast as “Dinah Lance” there was some speculation as to her possible alter ego. Then when Laurel said something about Sara liking canaries and mom saying she was alive, it got people speculating about Sara too. Haha.

      Just when I thought they forgotten about Shado she shows up, takes names and kicks ass. One of the tricky parts about introducing flashback characters in present day is it that the writers might have to do it without giving away too much of what happened in the past … or of course they can misdirect and tease fans with the possibilities. :)

      That’s my hunch as well that the plan is to destroy the glades. I hope the show focuses more on this arc soon. I’m looking forward to more Count Vertigo!

      You’re very welcome for the link. I hope people check it out because it is a fantastic read.

  4. P.S. Thanks for the link to my Character Spotlight of Deathstroke (Slade Wilson)! Much appreciated! :)

  5. Still catching up and thought I’d chime in on this one since I haven’t watched the newest one yet. I am so glad that Felicity is on the team now. She is so much fun and her getting a bigger role on the show than before is great.

    I have no knowledge of any of the comics, so the fact that Roy or Thea might end up being a sidekick of sorts to Oliver (based on your inferences here and a quick google search of who Speedy is) was news to me! That is actually pretty interesting. Not sure I care much for Roy on the show so far, but that certainly makes Oliver rescuing him a lot more interesting. And Thea annoys the crap out of me despite being nice to look at. Imagining her being a superhero is kind of tough but might make her a lot more interesting to me.

    Glad you mentioned it too as I also loved the daytime roof jumping.

    • Glad to hear you’re catching up on Arrow. Yeah, Felicity is signed on to be a regular in Season 2. :) She’s has a lot of light-hearted moments and comes in handy like hacking from her tablet!

      This show works because it appeals to a wide audience. People who never read the comics can enjoy it and comic fans can appreciate it in another way. I actually have never read any Green Arrow comics but I’ve picked up on some stuff online. It doesn’t really spoil anything, especially since the show plays on people’s expectations in a fun way.

      Since Thea has met Roy, she’s become a lot more tolerable to me. Maybe when Roy’s storyline crosses path with Oliver’s crime fighting crusade you’ll warm up to him? Right now with Diggle and Felicity as the sidekicks, there’s no need to rush Roy into the fold. They can stretch out that arc for Season 2.

      Another thing I liked about the daytime roof jumping is that we got to see details of the buildings, which often get lost or look different in the dark.

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