In Season 4 of Arrow, Oliver and Felicity abruptly broke up because Felicity believed that Oliver didn’t trust her after finding out about his secret son William. It was a strange move in a somewhat strange season and angered a certain section of fans who really enjoyed the two together. While Arrow season 5 has proven that the show doesn’t need Oliver and Felicity together (romantically) to survive, and even thrive, this episode entitled “Underneath,” brings Oliver and Felicity back in a big way. Trapped in the bunker, due to the end of the previous episode, Oliver and Felicity finally talk about their feelings in “Underneath.”
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Power Couple Without Power
Oliver and Felicity aren’t just stuck in the Arrow Cave. Felicity’s chip has been disabled so she can’t walk and they only have so much air before they completely suffocate. It’s not the most romantic setting but don’t tell Arrow that fact because “Underneath” is all Olicity, all the time. “Underneath” is just picking up the threads from “Dangerous Liaisons,” so there is nothing really new in the Oliver and Felicity interactions. The two of them are still butting heads over the Helix incident(s) but it is necessary repetition.
“Underneath” doesn’t add much in the way of new stuff but it is a nice refresher course on why when they work, Oliver and Felicity work very well together. Stephen Amell and Emily Bett Rickards do an excellent job playing off each other as Oliver and Felicity are completely isolated. Their interactions are pretty antagonistic, but their chemistry is on full display. Even though I’d personally like to see if Oliver could have a romantic future with Dinah (Arrow should give Green Arrow and Black Canary another shot with a much better Black Canary) it is hard to deny that Oliver and Felicity do have something special.
No amount of chemistry can help Oliver and Felicity from making some stupid mistakes though. Arrow finds interesting ways to pull out the two’s personalities with individual plots to escape. Neither Oliver and Felicity come up with the right solution. Their attempts to get out of the bunker just puts them into more danger and Oliver gets severely injured. So, it is really up to Team Arrow to save their parents, I mean leaders, Oliver and Felicity.
The Team Arrow stuff is cute but not worth much. Thankfully though, Diggle and Lyla, with a help from the perfect Dinah, work out their stupid and hypocritical (on Diggle’s part) argument from “Dangerous Liaisons.” Diggle understands that Lyla isn’t evil, she just has a morally complex job just like Oliver and himself. Dyla is no longer headed to another divorce. More than one Arrow relationship is salvaged in this episode.
We don’t go back to Russia in this episode. Instead, we visit the period between seasons 4 and 5 when Oliver and Felicity, with occasional assist from Curtis, were all of Team Arrow. “Underneath” will probably be criticized by fans who are against Oliver and Felicity being together in any form and will see this episode as “shipper bait.” (This isn’t true as there is some deeper stuff in present day material between Oliver and Felicity.) The flashbacks are, however, complete fan service. Oliver and Felicity get slightly drunk, working late one night and have sex in the bunker. It’s a sexy scene but meaningless. There is not even resolution on their break up because Felicity is not ready to talk yet.
It takes Oliver almost dying, in present day, for one of them to finally open up. As Oliver starts to lose consciousness in the bunker, he tells Felicity that he didn’t back her with Helix and keeps secrets from her not because he doesn’t trust her, but because he doesn’t trust himself. Oliver tells Felicity that Chase made him believe that this entire mission was built on a lie and that ultimately, Ollie is a bad and broken person. Oliver doesn’t even know who he is anymore after this year.
Obviously, Oliver doesn’t die after this confession but Arrow spends quite a lot of time trying, unsuccessfully, to convince that it could happen. Eventually though, Team Arrow’s efforts to rescue Oliver and Felicity are successful. Oliver is taken to ARGUS facility where he is treated for his injuries in the attempted bunker escape and everything is just fine.
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Now it is Felicity’s turn to open up. Felicity finally apologizes to Oliver for walking out on him during the break up and refusing to talk for months. Felicity also tells Oliver that she got a taste of what it is like to be with him when she was working with Helix. Felicity now understands why Oliver lied to her about his son. Felicity is not ready to get back together (yet) but she tells Oliver that he still needs to figure out who he is before anything happens.
This would be a great ending for the episode, but there is one cliffhanger to go. Arrow never really answers how Chase could’ve or did set up the EMP in the bunker but they do tell us who is his next target. Chase has found Oliver’s son William, in his new town with his name. None of this can be good. Whether Chase is planning to torture a child or Arrow is revisiting the ill-conceived William plot again, remains to be seen.
So what do you make of the heavy Olicity episode? Do you think this sets the stage for their romantic reunion? Do you want to see that happen? How do you feel about William coming back to the series?
Arrow season 5 airs Wednesdays at 8/7c on The CW. Want more news? Like our Arrow Facebook page!
(Image courtesy of The CW)