This article contains spoilers for the Arrow episode – Disbanded.
This episode is all about the fallout from what Adrian Chase did to Oliver Queen, but it’s also about brotherhood and thinking outside the box. Chase has been ten steps ahead at every turn because he studied his opponent and set the rules long before Oliver new there was a game being played. But he also tortured Oliver, broke him. It’s unclear what Chase wanted Oliver to do next. Chase shows up at the mayor’s office, gets Oliver alone and gives him a knife… and is then disappointed when Oliver doesn’t try to kill him. If there is an endgame, it remains a mystery.
Oliver on the other hand has made it clear that he is done as the Green Arrow and won’t let anyone else get hurt or corrupted by his crusade. He disbanded the team, changed the locks on the bunker and told everyone to stand down. But that doesn’t mean he will let Chase get away. Oliver calls in Anatoly Knyazev and the Bratva. Oliver’s relationship with Anatoly has been strained lately, but he calls in his old friend to kill Chase in exchange for letting the Bratva steal the makings for a street drug they can sell back in Russia. Intermixed with this is the flashbacks of Oliver’s last 48 hours before going back to Lian Yu. Anatoly gets Oliver’s help in stealing medication for poor, sick kids that need it. He does this to try and show Oliver that he could do good things in Russia. But Anatoly also wants to keep Oliver around for himself… he’s afraid of becoming like Gregor and thinks Oliver can keep him from becoming corrupt.
Meanwhile, Team Arrow is not good at being told to stand down. John Diggle gets some gear from ARGUS, allowing he, Renee, Dinah and Curtis to get back into action… and accidentally trying to stop the Bratva. Felicity on the other hand is over with Helix and Alena (the hacker formerly known as Kobo Sledgehammer), trying to find proof that Chase is Prometheus. After their interference, Oliver tries again to shut down the team, even at one point decking Diggle. But Digg won’t give up on Oliver, he thinks if the Bratva kills Chase, it’s something Oliver can never come back from. Digg see it as trying to save Oliver’s soul. But Oliver doesn’t see himself as worth saving. He thinks his whole crusade was a cover for his killing spree and that it has tainted everyone who has gotten close.
The real hero of the night though is Mr. Terrific, who read Felicity’s computer while she wasn’t looking figured out what she was up to and what was needed. Then, when the team stepped in and stopped the Bratva from killing Chase, Curtis used one of his T-spheres to get the data from Chase’s color that scrambles cameras. Curtis then found Felicity at Helix, gave her the data and then went with Felicity to break into Kord Industries to de-encrypt the data. This produces evidence that Chase is definitely Prometheus.
Diggle gets through to Olive finally and convinces him to stop the Bratva, but this puts them at odds and the team has to stop them from stealing the other drugs. Oliver and Anatoly are at an impasse. Oliver has chosen team arrow has his brothers, not the Bratva. He points out how Anatoly has become like Gregor… which Anatoly doesn’t deny, but blames Oliver leaving Russia on him becoming corrupt.
All of this leads to a change in dynamic, as Chase is now outed as Prometheus. He was in protective custody, but figured out that something was up and killed his two guards before they could arrest him. The episode ends with a blood covered Chase driving away, passing by police cars, while the song: It’s a Beautiful Morning by the Rascals plays on the radio. Chase is burned, his wife is dead and he’s already broken Oliver in his mind. There is nothing holding him back, which means he will probably become far more dangerous before he is taken down. And he can do a lot of damage in five more episodes.
But Oliver isn’t as done as he thought he was. Diggle has convinced him to fight and atone for what he did in the same way Oliver convinced Diggle to do the same after Andy’s death. Oliver isn’t wearing the hood though, he doesn’t think he’s ready for that… but the team is back together.
My favorite moment from the show was when Quentin Lance stood up to Chase. To think about how much he hated Oliver at the beginning of the series, and now Quentin is ready to go toe-to-toe with Prometheus to protect Oliver. That was awesome.
Arrow goes on a short hiatus until April 26th, but when the show returns it looks like Felicity’s connection with Helix is going to put her at odds with Oliver.