The revelation that Ray Palmer is still alive (and now in the clutches of Damien Darhk) sends Felicity into a frenzy of guilt and stress, that will drive a wedge between herself and Oliver. A surprise visit from her mom doesn't help matters. Thankfully, the rest of Team Arrow - now bolstered by the return of The Canary - is ready to save Ray on their own. At least, until the side-effects of The Lazarus Pit endanger the mission...
The Atom comics of Gil Kane (The Atom shrinking and having to cope with unexpected troubles at that size) and Green Arrow: Year One (The Lian Yu sequences).
Ray looks remarkably clean-cut for someone who hasn't been able to shave or get a haircut in six months.
Why do they send the whole of Team Arrow out for a burglary where a smaller group would be much more effective? At the very least, why didn't someone act as a physical look-out?
The attitude toward our heroes killing is all over the place in this episode. Oliver seems to shoot down one guard, though it is possible he used a tranquilizer arrow. And Laurel gets shocked when Sara snaps the neck of one of Darhk's men... yet nobody seemed worried about giving the ex-assassin who is apparently having magical blood-lust issues a loaded gun. Or indeed using guns at all. Granting that Digg has probably shooting to wound all this time, it still seems foolish to trust Sara to have that kind of control.
The flashback sequences really need to stop depending on cliff-hangers where Oliver's life is in danger. We KNOW he survives, okay? We know he's going to survive the drowning attempt. And it just seems like padding to pretend he's in danger.
The chemistry between Stephen Amell and Emily Bett Rickards contiues to be the best aspect of the show.
Second only to that, however, is David Ramsey and Stephen Amell playing off of each other as they share a bottle of whiskey.
Caity Lotz is criminally wasted in this episode. You'd think there'd be a bigger deal made about Sara Lance coming back from the dead and some examination of that fact. But no - we're lucky to have her get two fight scenes and one bit where she tells about how Thea explained the Lazarus Pit inducing blood-lust at some point off-camera. That's a scene I would much rather have seen - if only to see how weird things were between Thea and Sara - than another Felicity sniping at Ollie scene.
The quantum manifold needed to restore Ray Palmer to normal size is made by Kord Industries. In the comics, Kord Industries is the business of Ted Kord a.k.a. The Blue Beetle.
Felicity refers to John Diggle by the code name Spartan when Curtis is with her. There is a DC Comics hero called Spartan, who was a member of the team Wild C.A.Ts. However, the character bares no apparent relation to Diggle, being a robot programmed with the personality of an alien warrior. Most likely it's a reference to the general design of Diggle's helmet/mask resembling that of a Spartan warrior.
Ray makes reference to fighting roaches the size of cocker spaniels while he was shrunk. The Atom fighting giant (from his perspective) insects was a frequent thing in the classic The Atom comics.
When told about HIVE, Ray compares them to SPECTRE - a similar evil organization from the James Bond novels.
Felicity creates a back-trace algorithm to find the point of origin of Ray's broadcasts.
Ray jerry-rigged his suit to broadcast a short-range message burst.
It is confirmed that Ray perfected miniaturization by finding a way to shrink the space between atoms shrink. Curtis says this feat is comparable to getting cold fusion to work or discovering the Ultimate Theory of Everything.
The one part Palmer Technologies doesn't have to build the device to enlarge Ray Palmer is a quantum manifold.
The Kord Industries building's interior is protected by pressure-sensitive flooring.
Felicity's program to control the traffic cameras around Star City takes a minute to upload.
The Latin Building was at one time totted as the most secure building on the west coast, with every access point requiring a retinal scan and voice print to enter.
The box holding Ray requires an asymmetric cipher to open. His best guess is that five years and an NSA grade computer might be able to open it.
Curtis says the quantum field won't be able to penetrate that polymer making up the cube containing Ray when Felicity asks why they don't just use the enlarging ray and Ray's increased size to break it. They're eventually able to bypass this complication when Ray siphons the energy powering the security cameras inside the cube into his suit, which shorts the containment field.
Apart from a noticeable iron deficiency, Ray did not suffer any adverse physical effects because of his shrinking.
(Upon meeting Ollie for the first time, Curtis holds up his hand to focus on Ollie's jawline.)
Ollie: Curtis? Whatcha doing?
Curtis: The Green Arrow showed up right about the time that you came back into town.
(Curtis suddenly scoffs and shakes his head)
Curtis: Nah. It's not you though. Jaw's not right.
Ollie: That's what I keep telling people.
(After getting off the phone with her mother)
Quentin: How'd that go?
Sara: Easier than the last time Mom found out that I wasn't dead.
Quentin: Are you okay, honey?
Sara: Yeah. Fine. It was just something mom said about how I got lost when I was walking home from school once, and - and how I promised that I'd always come back. But I can't remember...
Ollie: Is there anything that I can do to help?
Felicity: Well, have you magically learned how to code in the last 72 hours?
Felicity: That was a rhetorical question.
Ollie: I know.
Felicity: I will, however, accept your undying support and back-rub.
Ollie: You can have both as soon as you -
Ollie: And take a nap.
Ollie: I thought it would be a good thing!
Felicity: A good thing? What on Earth made you agree to this?
Ollie: Well, you know your mom really doesn't take no for an answer...
Felicity: You've faced down Mirakuru soldiers and the League of Assassins. Are you honestly telling me that you couldn't say no to my mom?
Ollie: She said she missed you and then she texted me one of those emojis with the single tear...
Felicity: YOU HAVE BEEN TEXTING WITH MY MOTHER?! How long has THAT been going on?
John: You guys think we can find a better time to fight about this?
Felicity: John? I thought only Oliver's line was open.
John: Nope. Mine is open.
Laurel and Thea (in unison) And mine.
Sara: I don't remember there being so much chatter on these missions.
Laurel: Are you ok?
Sara: Yeah. I need a little normal. And for me, this is the kind of thing that passes.
(As Darhk threatens Felicity)
Ray: Don't you touch her!
Darhk: Don't make empty threats. It's so... small.
Felicity: Ray was sending distress signals for weeks after the accident. I wasn't here to receive them because I was too busy traveling the world with you. I took the voice's word for it that no body could be recovered because I was so swept up in being with you. I'm sorry. It was my choice to uproot my entire life, leave my home and my job - which it turns out I'm very good at. I lost myself in you. And I was never that girl. That girl who just loses herself in a guy. That is not who I am.
Oliver: It it just makes me wonder... why did she choose me?
John: Oliver. I've heard you say a lot of crazy things over the years, but that has to take the prize.
Oliver: You know what I mean. (gesturing to a computer) It takes me ten minutes to log into this thing. Felicity does it in two seconds. And Ray probably invented it.
John: Yeah, you're probably right. Except, Felicity didn't choose Ray. She chose you. Sure, she has a lot in common with Ray. But sometimes what looks good on paper isn't what works in real life.
Oliver; What if something happens to him? We don't get him back?
John: Felicity Smoak is one of the smartest, most badass women on the planet. She comes through this, she'll get Ray back.
Oliver: You seem pretty sure.
John: I married a woman just like that. Twice, Oliver! Twice!
Felicity: I didn't exactly grow up with the best example of a normal, healthy relationship,
Ollie: Line forms behind me.
The episode opens with an extended sequence of the scene from 323 where Ray blows up his lab. This time, however, we see him shrink and fall among the wreckage.
The message Felicity decoded in the last episode was made on the day she received it. This episode takes place six days later.
Ollie refers to what Constantine said in 405 about the chamber inside the ruins having a barrier that prevented the impure of heart from passing.
Baron Reiter was interested in the ruins Constantine was looking for because of writings describing a greater treasure in a heart of water - a cove surrounded by mountains.
We see a black canary as a decoration in Laurel's apartment.
Ray modified his suit with the same nanites Felicity injected into him in 318.
Palmer Technologies main business competitor is Kord Industries.
Another note is made that Felicity dyes her hair blonde.
Sara has the same blood-lust that infects a non-dead person healed by The Lazarus Pit.
Ollie makes a great Chicken Cordon Bleu.
John prefers Tennessee whiskey to vodka.
Darhk's base of operations - at least the one where he held Ray Palmer - is The Latin Building.
Curtis Holt is an experienced base jumper.
We once again see Damien Darhk using telekenesis - both to catch Oliver's arrows and to strangle him with some handy chains.
Felicity hates snakes and spiders but not as much as she hates cockroaches.
Ray elects not to reveal that he isn't dead for the moment.
Sara leaves Star City at the end of the episode to visit her mom in Central City and wander around for a bit.
Quentin Lance and Donna Smoak just happen to meet at a bar.
Thea asks Ollie's campaign manager, Alex Davis, out for a drink.
Darhk's people were able to get a sample of the dwarf star alloy that powers Ray's ATOM suit and turn it into a power source. He tells them to test on the box we first saw in 405, which unfolds into board or map of some kind.
Ray makes reference to fighting giant roaches while he was shrunk.
The Bottom Line
Honestly, it wouild be rather dull if it weren't for the chemistry between Stephen Amell and Emily Bett Rickards. The drama between Ollie and Felicity feels a little forced but we get enough distractions from it (Ollie talking about his romance troubles with John, Felicity talking with her mom) that it is manageable. Less forgivable, however is that very little is done with Sara's return apart from confirming that she has the same issues as Thea and sending her away until Legends of Tomorrow is ready to deal with her. This is a shame given how much drama between Thea and Sara is just waiting to be tapped and goes completely ignored. But hey - Quentin and Donna are hooking up! Yay?