It never pays to be a parent on Arrow

This week every single parent on the show gets it in the neck. Whether they are morally scarred, physically beat up, or have their hopes pureed while being expected to make pleasant conversation, the CW is no place for people who have had kids. You want kids? Head over to ABC. You've been warned.

It never pays to be a parent on Arrow

This episode of Arrow may be the absolute best method of birth control ever devised, and not just because no human sexual partner could measure up to the prettiness of the actors. Parents are having a terrible time of it, even in flashbacks. On the island, Ollie and Slade try to trade the control chip to the missile launcher for a boat. Fyers counters by bringing out Yao Fei and his daughter Shado, and threatening to kill her. Shado manages to suddenly manifest superhero ass-kicking powers; specifically, the power of ignoring guns while doing cool flips. The four run, but Yao Fei, the only father of the bunch, is shot in the leg and left behind. The lesson for parents? You're basically raising your own replacements!

Back in Starling City, Quentin and Dinah are still trying to track down Sarah. Laurel manages to do it first, except she finds that the woman is not Sarah, but some random American tourist. Have you ever known someone who seemed to have no problem with you, but suddenly, over some innocuous event, exploded at you with the kind of hate that you know took years to accumulate? This display of hate was worse. This took a Cape Fear amount of hate. Laurel has her parents come in to her office, tells them she's found the woman in the picture, and just as their hopes are highest, a stranger walks up to them and engages them in innocuous conversation about her trip to China.

It never pays to be a parent on Arrow

I expected Laurel to finish up by putting out a cigar in each of their eyes and hissing, "You're gonna learn about laaoooosssss." It was that brutal. It turned out that Dinah was mainly searching for Sarah so desperately because she'd seen her packing for the boat with Ollie. Sarah had told her that Dinah had always taught her to "follow her heart," which is why she went, and died. The lesson for parents? The child who follows your advice will die. The one that doesn't will rip your heart out in public. Make your choice.

Meanwhile, Moira is in charge of tracking down whoever tried to kill her evil boss without letting him know that it was her. She meets with her co-conspirator, Frank, and basically tells him she's going to betray him in semaphore. — she even gives him significant looks while saying, "I would do anything for my children." If the sweetest mother in the world says that to you? Throw your wallet at her and run. She's two seconds from dragging you back to her cave by your torn throat. When Frank gets three arrows to the chest from Merlyn, I'm actually miffed that he looks surprised. The show decides to add some Macbeth to the productions of Oedipus and Hamlet that poor Moira is already putting on, and we end with her scrubbing blood off her hands. The lesson for parents? Something is always your fault.

In this episode's A-plot, a vigilante called The Savior is kidnapping people who he believes are contributing to evil in the Glades, then executing them on a livestreaming webcam. I have to say, the live executions were pretty scarily done. When the guy kidnaps Roy, however, the tension goes away. Forget that he's a character in the comics, how could anyone kill those cheekbones? They're like parallel models of the White Cliffs of Dover. I'm surprised he hasn't been declared a heritage site by a historical society. Ollie, with Felicity's help, tracks the killer to a defunct subway system. Roy manages to cut himself loose from his bonds, Ollie shoots the vigilante and makes his escape, and Roy ends up sharing a really awkward subway ride with a bloody corpse. Seriously, the scene ends with them both sitting, facing each other, and Roy clearly thinking, "God, I hope this is the local." He seems to have kept an arrow, and I'm guessing it will lead him to Ollie soon. For now, the lesson in general? If something terrible happens to you, and you don't know why, it's probably because you're secretly a parent.