You are here
Home > Review > Episode Review > Arrow: The Candidate – Season 4 Episode 2

Arrow: The Candidate – Season 4 Episode 2

Oliver and Felicity find adjusting to their new roles isn’t as smooth as they’d hoped.


Jessica Danforth (Jeri Ryan), a friend of the late Moira Queen, was inspired by the Green Arrow’s speech. She’s decided to run for Mayor, despite the city’s history of having leaders with a short life expectancy. As soon as she announces her candidacy, she’s attacked by Lonnie Machen (Alexander Clavert), a prospective member of Hive and a character commonly known as Anarky. Oliver and Thea are there and manage to protect her, but they know that it’s not the end. Oliver goes to Quentin to offer his help protecting Danforth, but all he gets in return is another lecture about how lurking in the shadows won’t help the city. Meanwhile, Felicity arrives at Palmer Tech only to find out that the board wants her fist act to be the firing of many workers. The company is in dire straights and the board has used an algorithm unwittingly created by Curtis Holt (Echo Kellum), to identify the best people to fire. By the end of the episode, Felicity has figured out how to move forward without firing anyone. Her solution is to lie, and tell them that Curtis is working on a revolutionary technology. It’s not a great plan, but it buys them 6 months to come up with something.

Arrow-s4e2-felicity-curtis-holtWhile the Green Arrow and Speedy are out trying to find the location of Machen, they have a problem. Speedy breaks a drug dealer’s arm, confirming Oliver’s suspicions that something’s wrong with her. When they get back to the Arrow Cave, Oliver pushes her to reveal that she’s not in control. After she attack Oliver he tells everyone that Malcolm warned him about putting Thea in the Lazarus Pit. Her blood lust is apparently a side effect of her resurrection. Laurel didn’t know about this (I didn’t remember that she wasn’t privy to that information), and it gives her an idea.

I love this shot of Oliver and Speedy

While Thea cools down, Oliver goes to see Danforth. After he talks to her, he becomes concerned about her daughter. As he feared, she’s been kidnapped. However, that wasn’t part of anyone’s plan. Darhk goes to Machen to tell him that he’s overstepped and that he needs to fix it. Captain Lance is also furious at Darhk for the kidnapping of the girl. To prove that this isn’t the way he does things, Darhk gives Lance the location of the girl. Lance, in turn gives Oliver a chance to prove he’s doing things differently by taking down Machen. Unfortunately, things go awry when Thea loses control again and ends up setting Machen on fire. This doesn’t go over great with Captain Lance who tells Oliver that he would’ve arrested him if Machen hadn’t survived.

Arrow-s4e2-anarky-burning Arrow-s4e2-anarky-symbol

After Danforth’s daughter is recovered, she concedes her mayoral candidacy. This leaves Oliver to further consider what Captain Lance had been telling him. His solution is to run for Mayor himself. That’s probably the best news to come out of the end of the episode. Lance finds out that Machen escaped from his medical transport, leaving two mauled bodies and the symbol for “anarchy” above them. Laurel adds to the “oh no” moments when she proposes taking Thea away to relax. Instead of going to a spa, she takes her to Sarah’s grave. Laurel believes that she should use the Lazarus Pits to revive her sister.

The Island / Hong Kong / Flashback

Oliver Discovers that he’s been sent back to Lian Yu to investigate some kind of operation being run by Baron Reiter (Jimmy Akingbola). Before he can infiltrate them, he has to kill one of the guards and drops him on a landmine. Because Reiter knows who Oliver is (a lost rich-kid) he doesn’t kill him, but he can’t let him go. Instead, he employs him as a slave driver. Arrow-s4e2-oliver-meets-baron-reiter

Favorite Moments

  1. The only person that gets to speak in sentence fragments around here, is me.
    Curtis and Felicity seem like an interesting duo. Two socially bumbling, but very intelligent people. I’m not sure if he’s supposed to be Mister Terrific (who’s alter ego is usually Michael Holt), but it seems like he’s going to be helpful on the tech side of things. It’s also probably worth noting that they’ve made him gay in this iteration.
  2. Green Arrow vs Speedy
    Oliver puts on a little demonstration to reveal that Thea’s not okay and she goes completely feral on him. Willa Holland is pretty fun as a feral Thea.
  3. Speedy creates Anarky
    It looks like this episode might’ve been a bit of an origin story. Machen’s character is known in the comics by the alter-ego “Anarky”. It looks like Speedy setting him on fire may have given him the push he needed to jump from aspiring villain to super villain. I guess this kind of proves Captain Lance’s point about Oliver being the cause of monsters showing up in Star City.
  4. I need a codename
    While this is just more of Felicity being herself, it’s probably true that they should just stop referring to her as “Felicity” out loud when they’re fighting the bad guys.


I really do like feral Speedy. I also thought it was interesting that this episode introduced a villain that everyone ended up working against. Despite their differences, Darhk, Lance and Team Arrow all had a hand in taking him down. It’s like they all went, “Hey, this guy is just too much for us to deal with”. So, now that he’s gone, they can get back to jockeying for the future of the city. While that’s happening, it looks like people are going to be making some poor life decisions. Laurel’s is obvious, but I think Diggle’s renewed interest in tracking the truth behind his brother’s murder is going to take him to a bad place.