Review: ‘Arrow’ S04E05 – ‘Haunted’

By November 5, 2015

On this week’s episode of Arrow, we learned that it’s dangerous to be a brunette with a bob in Star City, there’s a reason energy drinks are being banned at Palmer Tech and that I really, really, really miss Constantine. Let’s take a closer look at ‘Haunted,’ shall we?

After her escape last week, Sara is running amok through the city, killing criminals and thugs. Problem is, she also has a tendency to attack young women who look remarkably like Thea. Of course, this is because she’s trying to avenge her death and since Thea was the one to kill her, it only makes sense that Thea’s death would be the thing she wants most. Even though Thea is willing to sacrifice herself, because she understands the bloodlust, the rest of Team Arrow doesn’t see that as a viable option. After a couple of misses, they finally manage to capture Sara after setting a trap at the remains of Verdant. This is where Ollie calls in the big guns. That’s right, ladies and gentlemen. John Constantine is part of this universe.

We find out, in the contrived and rather useless flashback sequence, that Oliver actually met the occult detective during his second stint on Lian Yu. John was there to acquire some mystical object and had been captured by the military operation there. For some inexplicable reason, the guy in charge let’s Oliver be John’s tour guide, even though Conklin has more than enough evidence to prove that Oliver isn’t who or what he says he is. Anyway, John and Oliver find the mystical object and do a little bonding, culminating in John lifting an Asian character tattoo off of his forearm and placing it on Oliver’s abdomen. Oliver is left with the cryptic message that he’ll need it for later.

Constantine arrives in Star City to perform a restitutionism, which is the opposite of an exorcism, in order to return Sara’s soul. He performs the ritual, taking Laurel and Oliver with him to the other side. In a very quick and to the point sequence, they battle milky-eyed League soldiers and rescue Sara from the Lazarus Pit she’s being held in. Boom! All is right with the world, again. As Constantine leaves, he warns Oliver that Damien Darhk is dangerous, and that it would be best if Oliver left town and didn’t look back. We all know that’s not going to happen.

In the side story arcs this week, Diggle joined up with Captain Lance to help take down Darhk and HIVE. During a mission to erase data at a nearby base, Diggle is surprised to see his brother’s name on the list. He’s too late though, and the information is deleted. Lance confronts Darhk about it, and learns that Diggle’s brother was actually a drug lord in Afghanistan. He takes the file to Diggle who is disappointed, but also grateful because he now has closure. Back at Palmer Tech, Felicity learns that Ray is in fact alive and is in trouble.
arrow haunted body imageSo, overall, I thought that this was a pretty decent episode. It moved away from the villain of the week arc that seems to have permeated the rest of the season, which was good. We got a little more understanding of Sara and her motivations, as well as a head first dive into the magic and mysticism surrounding this world. So much for the real and grounded approach of the first two seasons! Of course, we all knew it was coming as soon as Ra’s was included in season 3.

The addition of Damien Darhk this season (as well as the idea of meta-humans and the multiverse on The Flash) has just cemented the idea that realism is now out the window. And I really thought that Matt Ryan’s appearance was way to short and sweet. It felt a bit rushed, but honestly, I was just happy to see the character live on as part of this universe. Anytime John Constantine wants to make an appearance, contrived or not, it absolutely should happen. I think there’s also part of me that is hoping, if his appearance is successful enough, The CW might decided to resurrect the show. A girl can dream, can’t she?

Did I mention that I miss Constantine?

I am looking forward to next week’s episode, not only because I like Ray Palmer and will take any excuse to see Brandon Routh on my screen, but because he is basically the last piece in this Legends Of Tomorrow puzzle. Once ATOM is found and re-established, Arrow and The Flash can go back to telling their own stories. I get that having a television universe is going to lead to cross-over, but I have to admit I’m kind of done with the LoT setup. I will be happy when it’s done and they are able to move on. I think it would be different if we didn’t know that it was leading up to something and that each of the reveals wasn’t something we already knew was going to happen. A little more organically, please, and then it might not be so frustrating.

Arrow airs on Wednesday nights on The CW.

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Erin Parisien
Erin is a writer, a comic-book geek, a movie nerd and a pop culture junkie... all long before it was cool! She's the senior Editor and a writer over at and can always be found behind a keyboard, because it's all about the words. Follow her @erin_the_novel over on twitter.