While this is far from the first time in Arrow's seventh season that fans have not seen Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) gear up to do battle with the forces of evil as Green Arrow, it was a significant one in that the episode was set entirely in the year 2040 and dealt with a mission by Mia Smoak (Katherine McNamara), William Clayton (Ben Lewis), Black Canaries Dinah Drake (Juliana Harkavy) and Zoe Ramirez (Andrea Sixtos), Arsenal (Colton Haynes), and Connor Hawke (Joseph David-Jones). That mission? To save Star City from a series of deadly bombs -- and rescue the previously-presumed-dead Felicity Smoak (Emily Bett Rickards) in the process.
It was the first time that an entire episode has been set in the flash-forward timeline that has driven some of the narrative this season, and gave some tantalizing clues about Mia's childhood (Oliver was never around, but she was trained by Nyssa (Katrina Law), for instance). The story finally united the disparate factions of the Team/Family Arrow in the future, and revealed some surprising facts...like that Oliver and Felicity never told Renee (Rick Gonzalez) that they had a daughter at all. And, along the way, Mia finally came to grips with her family destiny in a way that she had not previously been able to do. Part of that process? Taking on Oliver's bow, arrow, and tactics.
And, as you can see from McNamara's tweet below, even the shot selection for that key moment was designed to invoke some nostalgia for the audience.
If you did not catch that moment during the episode itself, you could be excused -- there was a lot going on -- but even the music sting felt a bit like going home for longtime Arrow fans. That will likely be a recurring theme as the series moves forward; producers have said that the flash-forwards will likely carry on for the rest of the life of the series, which will end after an abbreviated, ten-episode season next fall.
Arrow airs on Monday nights at 8 p.m. ET/PT, following episodes of