By Samantha Highfill
October 30, 2013 at 12:00 PM EDT
Jack Rowand/The CW
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This week, the news bulletin in Starling City was all about a gun epidemic, in which a gang leader who referred to himself as The Mayor decided he wanted to create chaos in order to rule The Glades with the barrel of a gun. Basically, the earthquake taught him that the “guy with the biggest gun wins.” That might be true, but Oliver and the gang weren’t about to let him get his hands on the biggest guns in the city. *insert pun about Diggle’s biceps here*

After taking down a few of The Mayor’s men, Oliver had to swap his hood for a suit jacket, because Mr. Queen had a party to attend. It was there that Felicity figured out something major about The Black Canary. The one thing that was consistent every time Oliver ran into their “masked friend” was the fact that Laurel was involved. With that, Oliver knew where the Canary would be next. He set up the fanciest booby trap I’ve ever seen on a roof, where he caught the Canary. Then, she said the one word that shook his world. She called him “Olly,” and in that moment, I knew: It’s Sara Lance (in a wig)!

Oliver tried to explain to Felicity and Diggle that he had seen Sara about a year after the boat when down, but he was sure she was dead. He wouldn’t say much more, even when Diggle relayed his own advice back to him about secrets weighing you down and making it hard to move. Oliver’s retort was my favorite of the night: “You see how hard I work out.” Yes we do, Oliver. But not as much as we would like to. Anyhow, onto a shirt-wearing Oliver in an island flashback — or I guess I should now say boat flashback — in which we saw that one of Oliver’s scars came from being shot in his cage. He was forced to stitch himself up in order to prove that he was strong enough. Then, he was taken to be tortured… by Sara Lance. And the pieces slowly started to come together.

Back at the clock tower, Sara explained to Sin that she wanted to stay hidden from her family because she isn’t the girl they remember. Sin then revealed that Sara had saved her from some guys, because, as Sara put it, “No woman should ever suffer at the hands of men.” However, they should talk to men, which was Sara’s next move. She went to Oliver and explained that she thought he had died. She then asked what happened to Slade — WHAT HAPPENED ON THAT BOAT?! Apparently, Sara knew Oliver was The Hood from day one, and she decided to come back to Starling City after the earthquake in order to make sure her family was safe. That’s all she told Oliver before Quentin came knocking to ask for Oliver’s help with Laurel.

Poor annoying Laurel was in need of a friend. After Hot Paul Adam asked her out to dinner, she drank her way through a bottle of wine and ditched the ridiculously attractive man when he tried to flirt. Seriously, pull yourself together, woman! It’s not every day that Hot Paul asks you out. Her punishment for walking away from such a beautiful being? She got pulled over for drinking and driving. Her blood alcohol level was .6 over the legal limit, but luckily, Quentin was called, and Laurel walked stumbled into a cab.

And after Laurel refused Oliver’s help — so many hot guys to turn down, so little time — Olly headed over to the Cash for Guns event he was anonymously sponsoring with Sebastian Blood. That’s where Blood gave Oliver the “crucible” speech about those who grow stronger and survive, those who die, and those who stay in their crucible because it’s easier to embrace the pain (cough, Sara). But just as Oliver and Blood started to bond, The Mayor showed up to ruin things. Oliver was able to save Blood from getting shot, but the same couldn’t be said for Sin, who Roy rushed to the hospital. She ended up being fine, but did anyone else find Roy’s concern for her just a little weird? Sure, it was sweet, and I love it when sidekicks unite, but does he even know her last name?

Elsewhere, after Diggle flirted with his cop lady friend — they both check the box marked single, y’all! — he and Felicity discovered that The Mayor’s real name was Xavier Reed. Turned out, one of Reed’s foster brothers was in the military, and he was bringing some military assault weapons into the city later that night. We’re talking grenade launchers, which meant Oliver needed help. He grabbed Sara, and the two of them took down The Mayor. However, as great as that was, The Mayor might not end up being their biggest problem. When he woke up, The Mayor was tied to a chair where a man in what appeared to be a Scarecrow mask entered. He explained to The Mayor that he needs an army, and then he injected The Mayor with something that made him cry blood. Then, he took of his mask to reveal Sebastian Blood. Just when you thought his last name wasn’t going to be a crazy coincidence…

Finally, Oliver got Sara to admit that she’s stuck in her crucible, and even though neither Laurel nor Quentin would ever talk to him again, he took Sara to tell her family the truth. Oh hey guys, you might want to give Laurel a minute because she’s busy popping pills and washing them down with wine. Ugghhh, Laurel, you are stronger than this! Come on!

What were your thoughts on tonight’s big reveals, both Sara’s and Sebastian Blood’s? And how will Sara’s return affect Laurel’s hideously annoying downfall? Plus, is this season headed in a Batman Begins direction with Ra’s al Ghul and a potential Scarecrow? Sound off in the comments!

Episode Recaps

Billionaire Oliver Queen — under the vigilante persona of Arrow — tries to right the wrongs of his family and fight the ills of society.
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  • 8
  • TV-14
  • 10/10/12
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