Please note: this recap contains MAJOR spoilers from Arrow episode “Canary Cry.” Read at your own risk!
We’ve had weeks to prepare for the waterworks that Laurel’s funeral was sure to bring on Arrow. But what we didn’t prepare for was having to suffer through not one, but two of them! Yes, Arrow decided to double our devastation by reopening the wounds of Tommy Merlyn’s death to add to our already destroyed happiness in the wake of Laurel’s heartbreaking death (R.I.P. Tommy and Laurel, sob). Because on Arrow, why mourn one fan-favorite character when you can mourn two, right?! Let’s recap all the grief before my tears start falling again, shall we?
The hour opened with a funeral just like we were expecting—but not Laurel’s. It was Tommy’s. Whoa: Taking it back to before the season two premiere! I truly never saw that coming. Turns out Oliver couldn’t bring himself to give the eulogy for his best friend, so Laurel stepped up. Throughout flashbacks during the entire episode, we learned Oliver blamed himself for Tommy’s death (no surprise there) to the point that he regretted all his decisions after coming back from the island that led to Tommy dying. This all happened before Oliver left for Lian Yu (voluntarily), leaving Laurel his photo of her that she had with her in the hospital when she died. It perfectly showed how far Oliver’s come since losing Tommy, since he knows it’s not smart to blame himself. Instead, he knows to place the blame of Laurel’s death where it belongs: on Damien Dahrk. But we’re getting ahead of ourselves.
After the opening fake-out, the episode jumped right back to where the last one left off: the moment Quentin arrived at the hospital just in time to see the devastation on everyone’s faces, realizing what it meant for his daughter. Watching him break down at Laurel’s bedside was absolutely gut wrenching. Just give Paul Blackthorne all the awards now.
Back in the Arrow lair, Diggle was hopping aboard the blame himself train, no matter how hard Oliver tried to dissuade him. Later, Diggle confided in Felicity about how he felt trusting his brother instead of Oliver caused Laurel’s death. But she couldn’t muster up words of support, because he’s not the only one blaming himself: Felicity was also shouldering her fair share of the blame, since Laurel’s death happened after she quit the team. But Oliver helped her see that the situation was completely unreasonable, and they’re all just trying to see a reason in it. It’s no one’s fault except Damien Dahrk’s. He truly has come so far in his emotional maturity. He’s not perfect, but he’s getting better.
But if Laurel was dead, shouldn’t the Black Canary be gone as well? That’s what Team Arrow thought, but someone with a Canary Cry was out patrolling the streets at night. Either someone stole Laurel’s sonic device from her hospital room …or Laurel isn’t actually dead. (At least, that’s what Lance hoped against all logic, until he saw her dead body in the morgue for himself.) But the doctor told Oliver about a frequent flyer, paying multiple visits to the ER, and she said there was something “off” about her. Guess Oliver has a lead on whoever may have stolen the device.
The Fake Canary (that’s what I’m calling her) then attacked Alex while he was on a date with Thea. Oliver followed her, but she used Laurel’s sonic device (now amplified) to get away—only after she told Oliver he failed this city by “leaving them all there at Reddington to die.” He didn’t seem to understand what she was talking about, and neither did I. But Oliver later realized she was talking about HIVE holding people hostage over the holidays, and after a little digging Team Arrow learned Evelyn’s—a.k.a. the Fake Canary—parents were killed in that attack. Even though those people volunteered their lives to HIVE, Oliver knew HIVE used a drug to sway people to their cause, just like they did with Andy Diggle. Evelyn clearly blamed the Green Arrow for not being able to save her parents, and she wanted revenge on the people responsible.
Back at Laurel’s apartment, Lance hadn’t given up hope that he could get his daughter back. He tried to enlist Nyssa’s help to use the Lazarus Pit on Laurel, but she told him she destroyed it months ago. That didn’t deter him, though, and since Nyssa was so worried about what he might do, she tipped off Oliver to what he was planning. That led to the two men sharing a heartbreaking scene in which Oliver tried to make Lance realize that Laurel was gone and there was no bringing her back. When it finally got through to Lance, he broke down, realizing he lost his rock. Watching him sob when he finally came to terms with losing his eldest daughter? I mean, if you had dry eyes during this scene, I’m pretty sure you don’t have a soul. Once again, Blackthorne deserves all the awards.
Diggle decided to take matters into his own hands, though, and held Ruvé Adams at gunpoint to send Dahrk a message back. Thankfully, Oliver stopped him before he could do something he’d regret. He told Oliver the only way he would feel better is finding his brother, but Oliver helped him see that he can’t become the villain in his search for revenge and justice. Laurel wouldn’t have wanted that. She also wouldn’t have wanted the team’s reputation to get ruined, but thanks to Diggle’s actions, Ruvé put out arrest warrants for everyone on Team Arrow, including Fake Canary. Yikes.
Felicity quickly discovered Fake Canary’s plan to kill Ruvé, and while Diggle was all for it, Felicity helped him see that Fake Canary would also be killing Laurel’s legacy as Black Canary (if Evelyn committed murder in her mask and costume). Something Oliver managed to do—as she held Ruvé at gunpoint with a room full of witnesses—reminding her of what the real Black Canary stood for and saving Laurel’s legacy. In the end, Evelyn ran and Oliver got away before Ruvé could have him arrested.
Then and only then, was it finally time for Laurel’s funeral. Lance had to convince Dinah that Laurel wasn’t going to return like Sara did, and Oliver finally got to deliver his eulogy. That was when he revealed Laurel’s Black Canary identity in his speech—to help save her legacy and memory as a hero, instead of a criminal like Evelyn made the public believe. Does that mean the Black Canary mantle won’t be passed to someone new? Do you want to see someone else pick up the mask, or should it be retired now that Laurel is gone?
The episode then finally caught up to the season premiere flash forward when Barry showed up to Laurel’s grave after the funeral ended. We finally got to see her gravestone, and underneath her name and birth/death date, it read simply: “The Black Canary.” Back in the limo, Oliver told Felicity that Darhk and his magic are unstoppable (based on what he saw of that magic and darkness on Lian Yu). But she believes he’ll find a way to defeat him for Laurel—for the city and for all of them. Her hope seemed to bolster Oliver. Could this be their way back to each other?
What did you think of the double funerals, Arrow fans? Tweet me your thoughts at @SydneyBucksbaum!
Images: The CW
Arrow airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. on The CW.