Another week, another handful of DC Comics references on Arrow.
While Judge Mandelbaum wasn't anybody, surprisingly, we did get a number of other surprises along the way, including the return of some characters we'd seen before (Vertigo, Kate Spencer, and more) and the introduction of some new names and ideas.
Warning: There be big-time spoilers ahead. There's really no way around it this week.
With Marc Andreyko, the creator of the Kate Spencer version of Manhunter, taking over Batwoman after a controversial transition this month, it's difficult to imagine a better time for all involved to have Spencer back on TV. Her one, brief appearance last year was a treat for fans of the cult-favorite series but when she didn't reappear and remained absent in the world of the New 52, a lot of us kind of gave up on the prospect of the character.
Now that she's had a massively high-profile mass murderer go free, might we see Kate Spencer take to Manhunter-ing, if she should find out that Merlyn was gaming the system on behalf of his baby mama? Doesn't seem outside of the realm of possibility, although the actress doesn't seem the action hero type.
"He bounced the signal off a S.T.A.R. Labs satellite; he could have sent that form Markovia," Felicity says at one point of Vertigo's broadcast. She just means it could have come from a distant place, but the name she uses is actually a significant place in the DC Universe.
In Arrow, Dr. Brion Markov was a scientist working for Unidac Industries. He developed the Markov Device, which has the power to cause an earthquake. Malcolm Merlyn used Brion's device as part of the core plan related to The Undertaking. However, after he was done with him, he killed him and his colleagues so he could not reveal anything to anyone. In the comics, though, Markov is Geo-Force, a superhero with geo-kinesis abilities that was also prince of Markovia.
(Thanks, Arrow Wiki; that's more concise than I could have put it!)
So...if Brion wasn't a superhero, had to have a machine do all his earthquaking for him, and wasn't a prince, who runs Markovia? Might we see Terra?
"There are places in this world where death is an illusion. I've been to one," Malcolm Merlyn tells Moira in the final moments of the episode. That would be Nanda Parbat, which Phil Coulson would call "a magical place," and which is one of the DC Universe locales that's been name-dropped a few times so far in the show. We know that the League of Assassins, of which Merlyn is a member, spends some time there, but not much else about how it will be interpreted for the reality of Arrow just yet.
In the comics, everyone from Batman to The Question has spent time there over the years. Other notable characters with ties to Nanda Parbat and/or the League of Assassins that we think might show up are Cain, Cassandra Cain and Lady Shiva. Outside chance of Cheshire, as well...and we join our readers in rooting for Boston Brand and Vic Sage.
Cyrus Gold, better known to comic book fans as Solomon Grundy, appeared in the final moments of the episode, teamed apparently with Brother Blood. Apparently the first successful recipient of Miracle in Starling City...well, it should be interesting to see how that plays out.
Anybody catch whether this episode takes place on a Monday?
The zombie-like powerhouse has faced down everybody from Alan Scott to Batman to the Justice League, and squaring off with Green Arrow isn't, as you can see at right, unheard-of either.
Is it too much to ask that we get the "Solly" of James Robinson's Starman?
Depending on what version of Solomon Grundy they use, it could open doors to aspects of the DC Universe currently untapped in Arrow, although what it seems they'll do is apply the name and basic personality to somebody a bit more on the order of Deathstroke.
Especially since it's strongly being implied that the same drug that made him "stronger" is going to be what saves the badly-injured Slade in the island flashbacks.
This seems to bring to a close Jean Loring's dealings with the Queen family, at least for now. Is it too much to hope she had a daughter she named after herself and that there's still some hope that's who Laurel was talking about last season? We think it could work...!
Professor Ivo still cuts a pretty dashing figure; do you think we'll see him undergo a disfiguring event while on the island? Doens't seem unlikely...and what of T.O. Morrow?
Can't imagine Merlyn will be happy about the death of the man who trained him at the hands of Sara Lance a couple of weeks back.