Arrow finally gets down to business, and it's amazing. This what I've talking about people, I knew you could it! This how I like my Arrow: fast moving, heartfelt and with no characters holding the stupid ball just because the plot requires it.
So, Slade's army of mini!me's is wreaking havoc through the city, mostly at random and killing as many people as possible. Brother Blood quickly has discovers that Oliver was right, and Slade won't stop until he completely destroys the city just as DA Kate Spencer is killed right in front of him. (I think Laurel's about to get a promotion.)
Speaking of which, Team Arrow quickly digs themselves from under the bind they were left in at the end of the last episode and (finally!) get Roy out the compromised foundry and regroup (rather inexplicably) at Sara's clocktower rather than at Oliver's backup lair. Of course, that ends up being for the best because it gives them a panoramic view of the city's destruction and dramatic mood lighting. Fortunately, the mirakuru cure is on its way. Unfortunately not brought by Barry, so naturally the messenger bites it (poor guy, he never had a chance) and Slade gets his hands on it.
Meanwhile Detective Lance gets in on the really badass action by blowing up the mirakuru'd goon that was trashing the place (goodbye, snarky computer guy, we'll miss you!) which leads him to get his detective shield back! (And how awesome is it that team Arrow pretty much never stopped calling him that anyway?)
Speaking of the Lances, Sara's back! Just in time to rescue Laurel from another one of the minions. They end up having an amazing heart-to-heart conversation in which Laurel offers Sara her own path back to the light. That scene worked for me in so many ways. It mirrors the speech Sara gave Oliver when they broke up, as well as the one Laurel gave Oliver last episode (except better, because Laurel actually knows Sara). Later Sara rescues a child out of a burning building and a very proud looking Laurel is the one who puts the name to SC's other vigilante: The Canary. (Who wants to take a bet on which of the Lances bites it by the end of the season? Because this family can catch even fewer breaks than the Queens. Hint: probably not Laurel.)
Elsewhere Captain Jack shows up to rescue Thea from the mayhem. Understandably she doesn't trust him, and they basically have one long scene in which he's like "We both lost everything! All we have is each other and our sad eyes!" and "Thea, I am your father!" and she's all like WTF?! Something the producers said (it was in Morning Spoilers a couple of days ago) actually had me worried about her going off with him just because, but when he tries to get close she actually shoots him. She shoots him! Welcome, badass Thea, I like you.
Sebastian Blood makes a predictable heel face turn and hands the cure back to Oliver which gives him a heel-face door slam. And of course redemption brings about his death at the hands of Isabel. Trope bingo! Drink!
Team Arrow had some nice moments this episode. This works so well when it's the three of them. Oliver is pretty defeated and (still) blaming himself for everything, but Felicity gives the rallying cry: "You honour the dead by fighting! And you are not done fighting!" She has always been his biggest cheerleader, and the one person that has never doubted him even though she sometimes disagrees with him (loudly). Oh and did I mention Felicity ran Isabel over with a van? If you didn't cheer at that, you have no soul. (Love her horrified face though.) Dig still needs more stuff to do, though. I mean I' watch full episodes of him just smirking in various ways, but still.
Anyway, they soon discover ARGUS descending on the city and that Amanda Waller made a stupid-ass decision to nuke SC rather than risk Slade or any of his other men escape. At Oliver's requests she gives him until dawn to solve the problem, or KABOOM.
I loved this episode a lot, and it was hard resisting to jut spam you guys with Felicity (and Oliver) gifs. News episode looks like it's going to give us more of (SPOILERY GIF FOR NEXT EP) exactly what we want. The promo looks AWESOME.