‘Arrow’ Review: “Lone Gunmen”
‘Arrow’ lets loose another shot in the third episode of the series “Lone Gunemen,” as Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) finds himself tasked with taking down a deadly assassin known as Deadshot (Michael Rowe), while dealing with personal crises unresolved from his time on the island.
Last week’s ‘Arrow’ episode "Honor Thy Father" saw Oliver Queen settling into the the details of his old life, while coming to tangle with villain China White (Kelly Hu) as Laurel Lance (Katie Cassidy) went after a corrupt official with ties to the Chinese Triads. So, what does the third episode of ‘Arrow’ bring? Does it hit the same bulls-eye as the first two episodes?
Read on for your in-depth recap of everything you need to know about ‘Arrow’s third episode, “Lone Gunmen!”
Oliver trains in is underground base, eying his next target James Holder, a man who installed faulty smoke detectors in housing developments in Florida. He confronts the man on his rooftop penthouse, but before he can finish talking, a man with a rather strange-looking eyepiece spies on them from a distance with a sniper rifle, and fires into Holder, killing him. Arrow returns fire, taking a bullet to the shoulder, and ultimately retreating.
After treating his wound, Oliver quickly finds himself getting woozy, a sign of poison coating the bullet. Frantically, he mixes herbs from inside his suitcase and ingests them, before passing out. Unconscious, he flashes back to a time on the island with an arrow through his chest, as a mysterious hooded man treats his wound and pulls out the arrow. Afterward, Oliver awakes in the present, recovered.
The next morning, Oliver learns that his sister was dragged home by police again for intoxication and petty larceny, charges she completely shrugs off. Oliver urges his mother to be more firm with her, unlike what he was allowed to get away with in the past. Elsewhere, Quentin Lance oversees the crime scene of the James Holder murder, noting how the gunshot wound doesn’t seem to be the Arrow’s style.
Meanwhile, Oliver tests the bullet to find it covered with a poison known as curare, a typical calling card of a mysterious wanted assassin named Deadshot. Oliver resolves to take him down for his complete lack of moral code, as we see the mysterious man tattooing the name of his latest kill onto his body.
The next morning, Oliver shows Tommy and Diggle the abandoned warehouse, noting that it seems perfect for a nightclub even with its troublesome adjacent neighborhood. Neither Tommy nor Diggle seem particularly enthused at the idea, one which Oliver secretly hopes will be an effective cover for his lair and the amount of time he spends within. Later, Laurel eyes the press release for the club online, to which her friend Joanna resolves that the two should go out dancing to forget about Oliver and meet some new men.
Back at the Queen mansion, Moira takes her son’s advice of a more firm hand with Thea, and grounds her daughter despite her dismissal of the punishment. Oliver meanwhile investigates a nearby alley and retrieves one of Deadshot’s bullets from a wall, in order to help track the man down. Elsewhere, Quentin Lance still has his doubts, as a shot from 100 yards away doesn’t fit with Arrow’s profile, or the presence of literal arrows recovered from the scene.
Having traced the bullet and various dealings through the Russian mafia, Oliver pays a visit to a seedy Russian garage under the guise of a man named Bratva, speaking Russian and hoping to secure a meeting with Alexei Leonov. One of the mechanics reveals himself to be Alexei, and agrees to help “Bratva” (Oliver) track down Deadshot.
After another man falls victim to Deadshot, Detective Lance pays a visit to Moira and Walter, pointing out how Walter’s competition for an upcoming auction seem to be the ones dying. Walter dismisses the allegations, while Tommy and Oliver visit a local club, encountering both Laurel and Thea in the process. Drunk and unwilling to put up with her brother’s judgment, Thea tactlessly reveals that Tommy and Laurel were involved during Oliver’s absence, though he professes not to care. The argument is interrupted by socialite and club owner Max Fuller, irritated with Oliver for once sleeping with his fiancée. Max takes the pair to the back room and begins to rough them up, but Laurel enters the fray and holds her own, causing Max and his men to back down.
Briefly flashing back to the island and his escape from the hooded man, Oliver remembers how he was caught in a net trap, before returning to the present. Oliver and Tommy sit down for some Big Belly Burger as the latter apologizes for his involvement with Laurel. Oliver insists it doesn’t, even couldn’t bother him considering he was supposed to be dead at the time, while Diggle converses with his former sister-in-law the waitress.
A phone call from Oliver’s new Russian associates interrupts the moment, as they identify Deadshot as a man named Floyd Lawton, staying in a nearby hotel. Deadshot himself looks over the schematics of a building, when Oliver rushes in as Arrow looking to confront him. Deadshot manages to cover his escape with shots from a wrist-mounted machine gun, leaving behind his laptop for Arrow to collect. The next day, Oliver takes the laptop to Queen Industries IT guru Felicity Smoak, hoping she can retrieve anything from the bullet-ridden laptop.
Back at the Queen mansion, Moira asks Thea to attend Walter’s upcoming auction, lamenting the fact that she was never as good at getting through to Thea as the girl’s deceased father. Realizing that her mother hasn’t mentioned her father in years, Thea warms somewhat, and seems to agree to the request.
Meanwhile, Felicity informs Oliver of Deadshot’s plan to attack the auction, having been hired by a man named Warren Patel. Realizing he can’t cover the entire building alone, Arrow confronts Detective Lance in a police parking garage, and advises him to guard the auction with men wearing Kevlar, leaving behind Warren Patel’s laptop.
At the auction, Walter and Moira are surprised by the appearances of both Thea and Oliver, as the police escort Warren Patel away. Lance checks in with his men, all seeming secure for the moment, except that his fifth unit has been killed, and replaced by Deadshot! Meanwhile at the courthouse, Tommy confronts Laurel to talk about their relationship, hoping to prove to her that he can be a one-woman man for her sake.
Back at the party, Oliver urges Diggle to get his family out of there, as Quentin narrowly saves Walter from being sniped. Deadshot continues shooting into the crowds, and in the confusion Oliver breaks away to change into costume upstairs. With a quick arrow zip-line, Oliver bursts through Deadshot’s window, and the two battle it out. Deadshot taunts Oliver that they’ve both taken lives in their respective professions, but Oliver manages to get the drop on him and land an arrow through his eye-scope, incapacitating him. As Oliver turns around, he sees Diggle present, and hit by one of Deadshot’s stray bullets!
Oliver flashes back to the mysterious Asian man liberating him from the net on the island, alluding to a mysterious group of others that would have killed him, while back in the present Arrow rushes Diggle back to his underground base. Oliver treats the man’s wounds, and when Diggle wakes up in a daze, Oliver greets him sans mask, uttering a casual “hey.”
'Arrow' continues to impress with this week's "Lone Gunmen," integrating yet another DC character seamlessly as the plot progresses excitedly. Whether the charm of its stars or the tone of the drama, in only three episodes the series has continued to earn good will, balancing rich plot developments with hearty action. The series does continue to ape a few 'Batman Begins' moments here and there, but given the pace "Arrow' moves, it hardly interrupts the flow, making 'Arrow' one of our favorites of the new season.
What say you? Did you feel that ‘Arrow’ hit the mark with its third episode? What did you like about “Lone Gunmen?” Join us next week for another all-new ‘Arrow’ episode recap of “An Innocent Man” on The CW!