Oliver is fully inducted into the League of Assassins, warping his view of the world. His initiation ritual brings him into conflict against Nyssa, and eventually, against his former friends and allies.
Ra’s al Ghul completely molds Oliver into his heir and sets him out to hunt down Nyssa in Starling City. However, Laurel intends to protect her and convinces Diggle and Felicity to do so. Oliver goes against his friends without remorse and even kidnaps Lyla in order to lure out Nyssa. A fight ensues with Thea, which leads to the team accepting that Oliver is gone.
Oliver’s transformation is somewhat shocking to see, though mostly through his actions. We don’t see much of his perspective, but the fact that he was willing to kill someone shows how far he’s fallen. Still, he feels like he is restraining himself on a small level, considering he could’ve killed Diggle and the others several times.
Speaking of Diggle, his large involvement was the highlight of the episode. His role as Oliver’s conscience and closest friend has been ignored most of the season in favor of the bland romance with Felicity, so this relationship being the focal point of the episode was a refreshing move. With the foreshadowing of Damien Dahrk and HIVE through Ra’s story, this will definitely be needed for the next season.
Thea’s involvement was also good to see, particularly since her training at the beginning of the season felt like set-up for a future in vigilante life. So, her intervention against Oliver was rewarding, alongside Laurel’s Canary Cry. However, it is unfortunate that she might leave the show alongside Roy.
Meanwhile in Hong Kong, it’s a race against time when Oliver, Takeo, and Tatsu try to take down the last batch of the virus and flee from the dying city. Despite the flashbacks filling up more time, they finally become relevant to the present time, as the virus Shrieve unleashed on Hong Kong is used by Ra’s to attack Starling City.
“Al Sah-Him” sets up the premise for the season finale. Most of the elements are handled well, but this episode lacks the tension and excitement that Slade’s attack on Starling had. The stakes don’t feel as high as they could be, and Ra’s just lacks the presence that Merlyn and Slade had. Hopefully the League’s attack on the city injects some life into what has been a disappointingly dull season.
What did you think of this episode? Do you think Oliver is playing the League or is he truly gone?
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