Jeri Ryan guest stars as Jessica Danforth, an old family friend of the Queens. She decides to step up and run for Mayor. Not a good idea if you plan on being alive by Election Day. Oliver and Thea try and convince her to reconsider. But she stands strong, even when she’s attacked at her press conference and almost kidnapped.

Oliver and his Arrow team think Damian Dark is behind the assault. But he’s not… directly. A dude named Lonnie Machin wants to be a part of Dark’s organization, so getting Danforth to withdraw her candidacy is sort of his initiation. Which he failed. But Dark is feeling generous, and gives him a second chance, though he warns there won’t be a third.

Felicity begins her new day job, running Palmer Tech. But thing haven’t been going well, and she’s faced with the prospect of finding a solution, or downsizing. Felicity hates firing people, and she’s not good at it. We meet Michael Holt, an employee of the company, who helps Felicity figure out an alternative. In the comics, the character becomes a hero named Mister Terrific. If that happens in Arrow, it appears to be a long way off. But he and Felicity do become fast friends.

Machin is another character straight out of the comics, and if he fulfills his comic destiny, he’ll become the villain known as Anarky. But for right now, he’s just the thug trying to impress Dark and become part of HIVE.   It’s the organization that killed Diggle’s brother. To stop Jessica Danforth from running for Mayor, Machin kidnaps her daughter. And this time, his efforts do pay off. Unfortunately for him though, Dark feels he’s crossed a line, and remains unimpressed. So membership denied!

Thea, as Speedy, is out of control. Her bath in the Lazarus Pit has a side effect. It turned her into a rage monster. She ends up almost beating a dude to death, breaking an uncooperative witness’s arm, and even raging against her big brother Ollie in the Arrow Cave. And when the Arrow gang rescue Danforth’s daughter, Speedy puts the hurt on Machin, setting him on fire.

But Lonnie Machin doesn’t die. While he’s being transported to the hospital, probably the burn unit, he escapes. When the police arrive on scene, all they find are bodies and the symbol for anarchy painted in what’s probably blood. Thus a new villain is born. So what’s next for Thea? She and Laurel dig up Sarah’s decaying body, of course. Their plan is to dunk her in the Lazarus Pit and bring her back. Will this create a Zombie Black Canary? Stay tuned.

And yeah, there was a flashback. But I find them distracting. Oliver is back on the island and helping some obvious bad guys harvest some strange flowers. Why, we don’t know.  More to follow I suppose. The one good thing that happened in the flashback, that I saw, was the haircut. Oliver finally loses that bad shag wig and looks like his present day self.

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