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TV Review: Arrow 5.16 “Checkmate”
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Arrow 516 Header

Arrow
Season 5 Episode 16: “Checkmate”
Directed by Ken Shane
Written by Beth Schwartz & Sarah Tarkoff
Created by Greg Berlanti, Marc Guggenheim, Andrew Kreisberg
Starring Stephen Amell, David Ramsey, Willa Holland, Emily Bett Rickards, Echo Kellum, Paul Blackthorne, Josh Segarra, Rick Gonzalez, Joe Dinicol
The CW
Air Date: Wednesday, March 15th, 2017, 8:00pm

Two weeks ago on Arrow, the jig was up as Prometheus leaked to the SCPD that the Green Arrow killed Officer Malone. Oliver (Stephen Amell) explained the real reasons, but then it was leaked to the press. Impeachment loomed and Vigilante attacked. Oliver was worried about Thea (Willa Holland) as she was displaying characteristics of their mother. Thea resigned to find herself. Felicity (Emily Bett Rickards) fixed the Susan Williams (Carly Pope) situation. Paul asked Curtis (Echo Kellum) for a divorce. Prometheus was revealed (to the audience) as…

Spoilers below.

Arrow 5.16 “Checkmate” review: … DA Adrian Chase (Josh Segarra). Oliver hikes up some mountains and fights some ninjas to get info from Talia al Ghul (Lexa Doig).

Talia: “He means to destroy you utterly.” She helped Prometheus because Oliver killed his father and hers… Ra’s al Ghul. She name drops Adrian Chase.

Felicity goes to Helix, while Curtis blows up her phone. Helix has more knowledge than the NSA. Chase is taunting him. He has Susan Williams prisoner, and has to give her food and water. They can’t go to the cops. Felicity is MIA. Chase has them “in check.”

Years ago in Russia, Gregor (David Meunier) escapes the gunfight. Where would he go? A hockey game, of course. Another gunfight ensues. Oliver kills Gregor. Was Gregor Chase’s father?

Curtis and Dinah (Juliana Harkavy) go to the mom’s. A video screen shows Prometheus torturing Susan. Chase taunts Rene and Lance (Rick Gonzalez, Paul Blackthorne) at City Hall. Oliver and Diggle (David Ramsey) go to his house. The Green Arrow tries to convince his wife that he is not who he says he is.

Felicity runs in and he is worried about her – he knows there is a secret. She finds evidence of Chase’s false identity. Oliver brings it to Pike, and someone stabs Pike in an alley.

Curtis demands answers after he helps her to hack Homeland Security. But it worked. They gave her the location. After a heart to heart with John, Oliver says they have to play Chase’s game, which I take to mean… play dirty. But dirty wasn’t so bad at first. Diggle brought his wife to expose him, but Adrian cried and stabbed her. They fought, then Oliver gets an arrow to his leg from Talia, and he is kidnapped. Chase has some good stuff for Oliver planned. I hope Nyssa comes and kicks her sister’s ass!

Chase is the most evil adversary Oliver has ever faced. Darhk always brought the fun, and Deathstroke was just outright terrifying, but the depths of evil in Segarra’s face surpasses anything we’ve seen on the show. Amell usual stoicness broke in this episode, and he allowed his vulnerability to show through in the hospital room. That was good stuff.

This was a really exciting episode, one of the better ones this season. It is always shocking with these superhero shows that the whole world does not know who they are, so the plan to expose them can keep happening.

Whatever the endgame is, it’s not apparent, so good job keeping me guessing.

Arrow airs Wednesday nights at 8:00pm E on The CW.

The CW’s synopsis:

Arrow
Checkmate (Ep# 516)
OLIVER SEEKS THE TRUTH — Oliver (Stephen Amell) gets closer to the truth about Prometheus. Meanwhile, Helix refuses to continue helping Felicity (Emily Bett Rickards) until she does a favor for them. Ken Shane directed the episode written by Beth Schwartz & Sarah Tarkoff (#516). Original airdate 3/15/2017.

Video

Arrow | Checkmate Trailer | The CW

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