Warning – FULL SPOILERS for Tonight’s “Fighting Fire With Fire”:

Well, now. Obviously, there’s quite a bit to unpack with Arrow’s apparent reveal of Prometheus’ identity, but as I’ve stated time and time again with Zoom, Alchemy, Brother Blood and beyond, the CW superhero shows desperately need to throw out the masked villain reveal card. There was never any attempt to hide that the very name “Adrian Chase” goes with Vigilante in the comics, and I applaud Arrow’s efforts at subversion, but Josh Segarra is about the only new addition this year presented with any longterm focus. There was no way around Chase ending up one of Vigilante or Prometheus’ identities, and considering no one was around to see their (evenly matched) fight, we can’t rule out a split personality, or some Prestige-style twin shenanigans.

It’s an oddly nonchalant reveal to drop in the middle of an otherwise un-hyped episode, though I suppose we’re late enough in the season for it, and “Fighting Fire With Fire” likely knew a breakneck impeachment trial wasn’t going to provide the oomph that Arrow generally requires. Regardless of which* mask Chase ended up filling, Segarra’s natural charisma and presence has made him a worthy addition to Season 5, and I’d have been just as content to see his relationship with Oliver continue on, as I am to see the persona tweak as an unmasked villain.

*Indulge my crazy for a moment, but it is ridiculously suspect that Prometheus and Vigilante would share a scene with no one else around, and that Vigilante could both hold his own against, and disappear from Prometheus at that height. Naturally, Chase being at the press conference should discount him as Vigilante, but … did anyone actually see Chase talk to other characters in that scene? What other candidates are there? Pike?

Come on, live a little.

If anything, I’m reminded of the way Flash unmasked Zoom at the end of an otherwise-unrelated “King Shark,” in that it inevitably pulls focus from anything else going on in the hour. Not that “Fighting Fire With Fire” lacked for important developments; impeachment proceedings forcing Oliver to throw his Green Arrow identity to the wolves could prove fertile ground, and there was a lot of fun to be had in the focus on Curtis honing his comic T-Spheres, and becoming a much more fully-realized member of the team. Obviously, Paul inviting him to Jitters dinner to serve divorce papers seemed a bit telegraphed, but considering we only first saw Curtis’ husband this season for the implosion of their relationship, I get the sense that writers aren’t certain where else to take this relationship.

The Arrow women probably got the shortest shrift in the Prometheus haze, as I’m intrigued to see how Felicity took Diggle’s (literal) “fighting fire with fire” speech as a signal to fully immerse herself in Helix, in what seems like such a clearly ominous move. Similarly, it made sense that Thea would once again come across an opportunity to flex her Moira muscle with a little blackmail, but end up swinging the other way. Willa Holland is only ever guaranteed a certain number of episodes per year, and if we’re already engineering her exit after only a few episodes back, I have to wonder if we’re pivoting toward a more permanent retirement for Thea.

“I’ve found it. The last f—k anyone has to give for the word ‘Bloodlust.’”

Still no real movement on the Russia front, considering tonight’s Bratva hearing essentially swapped one unresolved gunfight for another, but I at least appreciate the overall effort “Fighting Fire With Fire” took to move Season 5 forward. Leaning on another masked reveal is a surefire path to disappointment, and my only hope is that a few more wrinkles might keep things interesting, between Vigilante, whatever reason that Russian vodka had to implicate Susan before, and god-willing, Billy.

I refuse to give up on Arrow drawing so much attention to such a forgettable character, and insist he be outed as the true mastermind behind it all.

AND ANOTHER THING …

  • The running focus on Curtis brought with it a lot of wordplay and soft-spoken humor that I wouldn’t mind seeing more of.
  • Regardless of who Vigilante turns out to be, that is absolutely Josh Segarra’s voice, and a definite cheat.
  • Oliver does have a pretty terrible track record with assaults on limos.
  • Do I remember who that doctor was supposed to be, and why she knows Oliver’s identity?
  • I know Kovar’s role was meant to be short, and Dolph Lundgren’s presence expanded it, but I assume we’ll see him again at some point, right?
  • For a city so crime-ridden, you’d think hundreds of rounds of gunfire would be heard a block away at the Mayor’s outdoor press conference.
  • I appreciate that the twist is for our sake, but come on, Paul. Don’t invite someone to a nice dinner to serve them divorce papers. You knew how Curtis was going to take that.
  • Do I remember what joining Helix was supposed to entail, that Felicity hadn’t already been doing?

Arrow Season 5 will return on March 15 with “Checkmate,” airing at 8:00 P.M. on The CW.

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