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Arrow - The Thanatos Guild - Review

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Arrow “The Thanatos Guild” was written by the team of Beth Schwartz and Ben Sokolowski and was directed by Joel Novoa. The episode sees a return of the League of Assassins – sort of. But most importantly, the episode sees Thea leave… again. This time, at least, she does go with Roy. The episode had some good dialogue and the promise of a possible end to at least one of the stupid storylines – assuming Diggle will accept that Oliver is keeping the Hood… This week also saw the renewal of the show for a seventh season.

The episode begins with a flashback to four years ago to when Thea (Willa Holland) went with Malcolm (John Barrowman). In the present, the league of assassins want to go to Thanatos. The Guild of Thanatos are lead by Athena (Kyra Zagorsky). Nyssa (Katrina Law) is determined to stop them.

At the lair, they are having a goodbye party for Thea, who is going to follow her heart with Roy (Colton Hayes). Oliver (Stephen Amell) only wants Thea to be happy. Quentin (Paul Blackthorne) chats with Diggle (David Ramsey). Laurel (Katie Cassidy) is as messy as his Laurel was, but she’s trying. Diggle clearly isn’t sold as even though Laurel gave them the lead, Diaz still got away.

Oliver checks in with Quentin about the SCPD. Dinah (Juliana Harkavy) and Curtis (Echo Kellum) – and why Curtis?? – are looking into possible cops on the take. Quentin is more concerned that the DA won’t drop Oliver’s case even without Roy’s testimony. Clearly, Diaz has his finger in multiple pies! Diggle wants Oliver to let him take care of Diaz. I loved the look between Amell and Ramsey. Diggle pushes about taking over. He wants to know if something’s changed, and Oliver points out that there’s only the two of them left.

Curtis is still as annoying as ever. He obsesses about missing Thea’s party – and mentions that he’s still Felicity’s (Emily Bett Rickards) business party – say what? How are they still in business together with so much bad blood between them? Curtis and Dinah go over the list of cops. Curtis wants to know more about Officer Nick Anastas (Even Roderick) who he thinks is hot. Curtis is also still looking after Zoe (Eliza Faria) until Rene gets out of rehab.

Thea and Roy are attacked on their way out of town – of course – and are saved by Nyssa. Thea thinks that she can just walk away and tells Nyssa that this isn’t her life anymore and she wants nothing to do with it. Nyssa tells her that as the heir to Ra’s al Ghul, Thea has no say in the matter.

Thea and Roy go back to the lair. There’s some fun sparing between Nyssa and Felicity about who is really Oliver’s wife! Nyssa tells them that Malcolm found a map leading to something ancient and powerful and he wanted Thea to be at his side when he unearthed it. Nyssa insists that Thea can’t run from it. Nyssa tells her that she needs her help getting the map – Thea can’t run from her legacy. Thea agrees to help Nyssa get the map.

Thea and Nyssa go to see Tigressa (Alvina August) who is Malcolm’s confident. She tells them that Malcolm made sure that Thea was the only one who could unlock the secrets of the map. Tigressa gives them the location of the map and tells them that she rejected the League of Assassins a long time ago – that’s why she didn’t go after the map.

Everyone suits up – except for Roy because Thea is wearing his suit. Naturally, the map is hidden in a special material in a warehouse. The map is inside an ancient Leagues cipher. They’re interrupted in trying to open the cypher by Tigressa’s dead body – and then the Guild, who want Thea to go with them or they’ll kill everyone else. Thea and Roy take off with the cypher while the rest fight.

Athena gets Roy and Thea, but Thea Raiders her way out of it. Athena seems to be immortal as she simply pulls an arrow out of herself and seems to be fine.

Back at the lair, Felcity hilariously refers to the cypher as the box from Hellraiser – as always the perfect analogy! Nyssa tells Thea that the map is her burden, not Thea’s, so she is going to take it far away. Roy is happy that that was easier than he thought it would be! Nyssa tells them that she’ll find someone who can unlock the cypher. Thea doesn’t want Nyssa to go out by herself. They have the greatest mathematician in Felicity and they can protect Nyssa. Oliver backs Roy up in second guessing Thea. She can’t explain why she’s changed her mind.

Curtis and Dinah break in to the evidence locker. Curtis keeps watch while Dinah searches. Naturally, the person who walks in on them is Nick, who offers to give Curtis a tour of the new building. Dinah finds the drugs she took off the suspect that Hill (Tina Huang) earlier took away from her.

Oliver goes to Nyssa to ask her to leave. Oliver tells Nyssa that he doesn’t want Thea spending her life righting the wrongs of her father, who Oliver still sees as evil. Nyssa points out that she’s spending her life righting the wrongs of her own father. Nyssa points out that Oliver is doing the same thing. Oliver counters that his father asked him to with his dying wish. Nyssa also points out that Malcolm sacrificed his life for Thea just as Oliver’s father did for him! Nyssa believes Thea also owes the same debt.

Felicity figures out how to open the cube but gives the honors of actually doing it to Thea. I did like Roy chiming in with the last number – he says he was always good at math! The parchment inside is – of course – blank. Roy is clearly creeped out. Nyssa, however, gains some respect for Felicity’s tech-fu.

There’s a nice scene between Roy and Thea. Thea tries to explain that she feels she owes Malcolm a debt because he sacrificed himself to save her. She doesn’t feel like she can run away. Roy tells her that for him it’s running towards something. Roy tells her that it feels like she’s finding any excuse not to leave, and he doesn’t want to lose her again. Thea reassures him that the map isn’t her future – he is.

Dinah is sure that Hill is dirty, but Curtis isn’t convinced. The drugs aren’t the type Diaz is pushing, they’re vertigo. But hello… of course, Hill took the drugs from Dinah and exchanged them for vertigo. How stupid are these people????

Oliver checks on Thea. He tells her that she doesn’t have to leave everything to Nyssa – the rest of them will help Nyssa so Thea can go after her happily ever after. Thea asks Oliver about his own happily ever after. Felicity told her that Oliver handed the hood to Diggle. Oliver tells her that he’s worried about Diggle going up against Diaz all alone.

        Thea doesn’t think anything is over Diggle’s head, and Oliver concedes that she might be right. Oliver tells her that he gave it up because he wanted to be a better father. Will (Jack Moore) accepts that he’s the Green Arrow, and… he just doesn’t want to give it up. He doesn’t know why. But Thea does. Being the Green Arrow makes him feel complete. It enables him to become the best version of himself. Oliver says that they are supposed to be talking about her. Thea muses that she’s still trying to figure out what the best version of herself is – or where it is.

Diggle finds the Guild holed up at the Star City gas plant. They are using the plant to leverage them into giving them the map. Thea refuses to let them hold the city hostage.

Once again, the team goes in and Felicity notes a bomb has been armed. Thea calls them out and Athena has Roy taken out. She then informs Thea that the map is meaningless without her blood. Guess it works like lemon juice on invisible ink… And… the fight is on. Felicity reminds them that they should remember the bomb situation – and Roy remarks that there’s always a bomb situation. Roy almost gets shot by Oliver again when he sets him an electricity arrow to short circuit the bomb.

Thea threatens to burn the map, but uses the distraction to stab Athena – who still manages to not die and get away. And d’uh, Thea’s blood has revealed the map. But they still need Felicity’s help to fully reveal it.

The map reveals lay-lines – always bad news. The map reveals the location of three Lazarus pits! And are we really surprised? Clearly, Athena has to have a lead on one of them. Thea is not happy. Roy is going to go after her, and Oliver tells him to give her space.

Curtis drops into the police station and makes a date with Nick – this poor guy is so dead. Dinah finds out that there are no active Vertigo cases – clearly Hill is dirty and the vertigo is what Diaz is pushing.

Roy shows up the next morning at Thea’s apartment. Where did the poor guy spend the night? Thea has packed her bags. Thea tells Roy about her talk with Oliver. She thinks her calling might be to right Malcolm’s wrongs. Roy has also made a decision. He’s going with her because it doesn’t matter where they go as long as they go together.

Oliver sees them off. He tells Thea to be safe – and to call whether she needs anything or not. Oliver also tells Nyssa that she bears the responsibility of pulling Thea back in. Nyssa presents Oliver with a dagger to symbolize the cutting of their marital ties. I did enjoy her teasing Felicity though! Thea gives Oliver some parting advice too – stop stringing Diggle along if he’s not planning on giving the hood back – YES!

A couple of good fights in this episode and some fun dialogue. This was a decent send off for Thea and Roy, but I really wish that it was Dinah, Curtis, and Rene hitting the road. Does anyone think that Diggle is just going to accept Oliver’s decision? Here’s another storyline that is just not doing it for me. Could we please have back the John Diggle who was actually a good friend to Oliver? Very little progress on the Diaz storyline again, but that too has become the modus operandi of the show – not using great guest stars to their full potential. What did you think of the episode? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

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