'Arrow' Recap: Episode 10: 'Burned'
January 17th, 2013 12:37pm EST
Previously on "Arrow": Oliver, our hooded hero, went up against the Dark Archer (aka Malcolm Meryln, the father of his best friend. He lost and barely escaped with his life. And Oliver’s mother Moira Queen attempted to make a turn for good but her plans were thwarted by Malcolm, who kidnapped her husband, Walter, to ensure her cooperation in his evil plan.
The latest episode finds us six weeks down the road since Arrow’s fight with the Dark Archer and yet Oliver is still feeling the effects. He hasn’t been on the prowl for the criminal element haunting Starling City or marking off people on his father’s list. Instead he has focused his efforts on helping his mom and sister Thea cope with the unexplained absence of Walter.
The latest string of murders just may help get back into the groove however; it seems that someone dressed in firefighter garb has been visiting the scenes of fires and setting firefighters on fire after dousing them in turpentine. The latest victim is none other than Laurel’s co-worker brother.
Jo pleads with Laurel to take a closer look into the case. She knows her brother was murdered and she presents a lot of evidence to Laurel that certainly suggests that something is fishy. Like the fact that turpentine was all over her brother’s uniform even though it wasn’t in the factory that caught fire and that he burned hotter than the actual fire. So Laurel shows the case to her father. Of course he quickly brushes her off. But not before he shows her the phone that the hooded vigilante sent him however. She sneaks it off of his desk while he isn’t looking and calls up Arrow for help.
Oliver, unable to resist a pleading woman, shows up at Laurel’s house. How she doesn’t notice the way he stands, his body shape, anything about him that resembles the guy she wants us to believe she is deeply in love with is beyond me. But nonetheless, she reviews the information with Arrow and he agrees to look into it.
Back at Arrow HQ, Oliver recounts the evidence to Diggle (who looks pretty nice shirtless) and asks his bodyguard to dig up some clues and then hand what he finds over to the police since is all “in his feelings” and incapable of actually doing any rescuing at this time. They are interrupted by noise of Tommy pretending to be a club manager upstairs and Oliver goes up to look into it. Seems the contractors aren't working fast enough or at all. And Tommy wants to host a benefit for firefighters, an excellent idea that still won’t get him any closer to a firm commitment from Laurel.
At home, Moira is still sharing her depression with everyone else. But a man in a suit tries to convince her that it’s time she snap out of her funk and take the top spot at Queens Enterprises. The stock has been doing backflips since the past two heads have disappeared under mysterious circumstances. She rebuffs his attempts and insists that she isn’t done making her family’s life miserable. She must finish eradicating any joy in the house before she even thinks about taking up a position at the company.
Seems Moira and Oliver are suffering from a similar affliction. Both are sad and feeling it’s their duty to help those closest to them, even though they aren’t actually helping anyone.
Diggle attempts to help Oliver by dragging him to the scene of the latest fire. He has found a car that is the common link between all the fatal fires at the latest scene and they need to get there before this mysterious man claims another life. Unfortunately, Oliver isn’t at the top of his game mentally, so he fails to save the victim and even loses a fight against the firefighter imposter. But he did get a glimpse of the assailant’s hand. He has a firefly tattoo on his hand – which links him to the Engine 15 firehouse.
A firefighter killing firefighters? Seems so. Some nifty web searching and a Q & A session with a fire captain reveals that there was a five alarm fire a few years back. 22 floors of badly constructed steel in a factory conspired against a team of firefighters and claimed the lives of 34 civilians and six firefighters. One of those that died (or was thought to have died) was Garfield Linz, who happens to be the only one with a tattoo of a firefly on his hand.
Back at the warehouse, Diggle gives Oliver a pep talk that involves telling him he’s lost his balls and he has to find them if he plans on being a hero and Oliver confesses that he lost them when he realizes the impact his death could have on his family. It rings a bit selfish. They’ve lost him before and clearly survived. So he then admits that it’s him that has something to lose this time around. He doesn’t want to die and when he was defeated by the Black Archer he got a glimpse at his own mortality.
At the benefit soiree, Oliver forces the fire chief to fully divulge what happened during that fire years ago in front of Laurel. The chief concedes that he pulled his crew out of the fire since it was getting too bad but Linz wouldn’t leave. He wanted to stay and fight and they just presumed him dead. But of course, he isn’t and he walks up just as the chief is finishing to spill turpentine all over his suit. He’s ready to finish this but wants the chief to die first. Oliver dons his Arrow outfit in record time and is able to shoot the cigarette lighter out of Linz hand just in time to give the chief a chance to run. He offers Linz a chance to walk out but the fireman kills himself instead by walking right into the fire.
And with the taste of success charring his hair, Oliver decides that losing one fight doesn’t make him weak. He wants to return to the hunt. And not a moment too soon, because “Burned,” while not a horrible episode is by far the closest this show has ever gotten to “filler”. He may soon have trouble though, as Laurel's father let her keep the phone she used to reach him ...only after he installed a listening device. A fact that will also surely further tear father and daughter apart.
In B-Plot Land: Moira decides to take the CEO position after a tongue lashing from Thea. And with the bad guy defeated, Jo has decided to take a leave of absence to care for her mother. She gives Laurel her brother’s badge and asks that her co-worker deliver to Arrow the next time they meet up. Oh and on the island: Oliver gets better at surviving without ATF.
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