Arrow season 2 episode 6 review: Keep Your Enemies Closer

Arrow delivers a Diggle-centric episode this week. Here's Caroline's review of Keep Your Enemies Closer...

This review contains spoilers.

2.6 Keep Your Enemies Closer

After being stuck in the background for the entire season up to this point, Diggle finally gets an episode to himself with Keep Your Enemies Closer. We’re back with his Deadshot revenge mission when Lyla, whom we discover is actually Diggle’s ex-wife, is captured and held in a Russian prison while following up on a lead. It’s a good job that Oliver has connections there, eh? We finally get to see the fruits of that Russian mob tease in episode two of the first season, and Oliver, Diggle, Felicity head over to rescue her.

It was nice to see an hour almost entirely dedicated to Diggle, since he’s been on sidekick duty for a little too long, and this part of the storyline now seems to have played out. Diggle had the chance to kill Deadshot, but ultimately decided against it. He’s always been our moral compass on this show and to have him shoot his enemy down right in the middle of Oliver’s anti-vigilante epiphany would have seemed more than a little off. I like how this played out and, despite not completing his revenge mission, Diggle did get some more information. He’s now on the trail of H.I.V.E., with a quick Bing search most probably just the beginning.

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The fact that he didn’t just go to Oliver and Felicity and ask them to help him look into it probably means that it’s going to be a secret for a couple of weeks, but at least he has Lyla to distract him. It’s about time one of our three Team Arrow members maintained a healthy relationship, and for some reason I don’t think that’s going to be Oliver and Isabel. That hook-up was obviously going to happen and, until Oliver figures out some of his intimacy issues, I don’t hate this no-strings meeting of lonely souls. Anyone but Laurel is okay with me at this point, if I’m honest.

And we have to address the Oliver/Felicity stuff, which came out of left field despite being a pairing the Internet has been obsessed with for months. Is it too much too soon? I feel like those scenes were written by someone who has experienced the show up to this point via a tumblr blog and, even if I actually quite like the fast-forward on their potential romance, it does feel strange. What purpose does Laurel play if we get behind this pairing instead? That said, she was noticeably absent during this episode, and our inconsequential sub-plot of the week was instead focused on Thea and Roy.

We got a lot done in the flashbacks, as we found out Ivo is after a superhero serum invented by the Japanese and hidden on the island. The best thing about the flashbacks right now is that Sarah, despite having departed Starling City at the end of last week, is still on our screens. She’s playing double agent for Ivo and Oliver at this point in the story, and Shado and Slade are left to fend for themselves while Oliver is on the freighter. I assume this is the point at which Slade becomes Deathstoke, but maybe the writers are saving that for a later point in their five year plan? We already have enough present-day villains to deal with right now, after all. 

Next week we’re dealing with the return of Vertigo, and Felicity is kidnapped. Then there’s Moira’s trial to be getting with on with – will the promised return of Malcolm Merlyn have a role to play in the verdict?

Read Caroline’s review of the previous episode, League Of Assassins, here.

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