Monday, April 28, 2014

The NJ DIS Meet Weekend 2014

The Bride and I attended this event last year, and came back for more this year. The New Jersey DIS Meet Weekend is a get together for fans of Disney, and fans of the DIS Unplugged Podcast. This past weekend there were charity auctions, open buffets, trivia contests, competitive Tastykake eating, and the chance to attend a live taping of the podcast - and all the proceeds go to Give Kids The World, so it's all for a good cause.

On Friday night it was a get to know everyone get together. They even had a version of speed dating they called speed DIS-ing where folks broke into groups and switched tables every three minutes, while questions about Disney experiences were thrown out as discussions topics. In no time flat most of the seventy or so folks in the room knew a little something about everyone else, fun. Trivia followed, food was provided and the mingling and conversation continued.

Then it was time for the big event of the night, the Tastykake Competition. Last year they were out of the area folks who had never seen a Butterscotch Krimpet before eating them… and would never want to see one again. This year, competitors came prepared. Competitive food eating techniques like dipping the cakes, and excessive drinking were in play. Last year's record was ten, won again by the reigning champion this year with fifteen. Man, he was inhaling them. After that, we had a late dinner at Applebee's with some of our new friends and folks we knew from last year, no Tastykakes for dessert though.

Saturday began with breakfast at the hotel, then a trip to the local Elks Lodge where many of the main events of the weekend would take place. There were games, an open buffet lunch, and several auctions, with all the proceeds going to GKTW, a couple of which we actually won. Then we were all in the audience for a live recording (and streaming) of the DIS Unplugged Podcast with hosts Pete Werner, Kathy Werling, and Teresa Echols. The enthusiastic Bride even got to ask a question. You can see the podcast here.

Later in the day, we returned to the hotel for a 1920s themed party night featuring performances by the improv group Comedy On Demand. The Bride was part of a skit during the festivities with podcast host Teresa Echols and had a ball.

Drinks, discussion, and donations continued into the night, and was capped off by a quiet breakfast the next day. A terrific weekend with good friends, new friends, and all for a good cause. In the end, over $16,000 was raised for GKTW. Can't wait 'til next year!

For more on the NJ DIS Meet Weekend 2014, check out the Make Mine Magic Podcast's special episode on the event here.

DJ E-Z Rock Dead at 46

Even though the song was released in 1988, there wasn't a club - dance, rock, otherwise - that this song wasn't played at least once a night throughout the 1990s. "It Takes Two" by Rob Base and DJ E-Z Rock was the song. Love it or hate it, its insane popularity cannot be denied.

Hip hop pioneer DJ E-Z Rock, born Rodney 'Skip' Bryce, teamed with lifelong Harlem friend Rob Base to create the song, died yesterday from undisclosed circumstances at the age of 46. The album It Takes Two went platinum and yielded two other hits besides the title track. The song changed the world of sampling and itself was sampled by dozens of other artists.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Arrow S02 E20: "Seeing Red"

One week later from the events of our last episode, Roy has lain comatose in the Arrowcave as Felicity's friends at S.T.A.R. Labs in Central City try to recreate a cure for Mirakuru. Felicity turns her head for a second in the opening, and Roy is up and around, and on the rampage.

This is one of these episodes where the main thrust of the plot is really merely a distraction. Yeah, everything revolves around Roy's rampage, but what it really is is an excuse for little vignettes with other characters. Diggle and Felicity, Diggle and Thea, Thea and her mom, Thea and Sin, Oliver and Sara, it goes on, ultimately ending with Mom telling Oliver she knows he's the Arrow, and has known for a while.

In his rage, Roy takes down Arrow and Canary, just like Deathstroke would have, sans the training - or are the fighting skills inherent to the Mirakuru? And speaking of Slade, where is he? Taking a break while the Roy subplot plays out? In the fight, Arrow's leg takes a beating, making him pretty useless the rest of the episode. It's okay because Roy's rampage was for the most part useless too, he was back in the Arrowcave status quo by the end anyway.

And as long as we're talking about subplots, Flashback Island goes out the window this week in favor of a flashback of a different kind. This one goes back seven years, to the midst of Oliver and Laurel's relationship, when Ollie's extracurricular activities resulted in another girl getting pregnant. Could this be Connor Hawke's mother?

I asked earlier where Slade was. We find out in the final moments of the episode. As Mom, Thea, and Oliver leave a mayoral rally, the car crashes and our hero wakes to find them all tied up, with Slade stalking over them with a gun. He offers Oliver the same choice Ivo offered him on the island - choose who dies. Mom makes the decision for him.

"Seeing Red" was a mediocre episode with excellent character development, and a beautiful terrible pay off. This just goes to show you it is always a bad idea to know a super hero's secret identity, and as far as Roy goes, based on this episode, it doesn't look good for him either.

What was Mom about to tell her children when Slade interrupted them? What friend was Sara going to see? What about Oliver's child who would be about six now? And who was the other person Slade needed to kill? The season is rushing to a close, see you next week.

…and was that Ravager?

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The Rest of the Eurovision 2014 Semi-Finalists

Here are the rest of the Semi-Finalists for the Eurovision Song Contest 2014. There has been a lot of Susan Boyle-ish hype about Belgium's entry, although it does nothing for me. Poland definitely has the spirit of Eurovision with their risqué video. Latvia gets it too, even though apparently Montenegro doesn't. I'm kinda fond of Ireland, as with most years, it's one of my favorites, but this is a year of very fierce competition. Time will tell…

Azerbaijan - "Start A Fire" by Dilara Kazimova

The Netherlands - "Calm After the Storm" by The Common Linnets

Belgium - "Mother" by Axel Hirsoux

Poland - "We Are Slavic" by Donatan & Cleo

Latvia - "Cake to Bake" by Aarzemnieki

Montenegro - "Moj Svijet" by Sergej Cetkovic

Hungary - "Running" by Kallay-Saunders

Ireland - "Heartbeat" by Can-Linn featuring Kasey Smith

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Even More Eurovision 2014

As the clock ticks down to the first Semi-Final on May 5th with competitions every day through to the Grand Final on May 10th, the 59th annual Eurovision Song Contest in Denmark's Copenhagen is looming closer and the competition is fierce.

Here is a quick look at some more of the entries this year, featuring more than a few vastly different musical styles:

Belarus - "Cheesecake" by Teo

Georgia - "Three Minutes to Earth" by The Shin & Mariko

Greece - "Rise Up" by Freaky Fortune featuring Ricky Kidd

Iceland - "No Prejudice" by Pollaponk

San Marino - "Maybe" by Valentina Monetta

Armenia - "Not Alone" by Aram MP3

Malta - "Coming Home" by Firelight

Monday, April 21, 2014

Superman Unbound

Superman Unbound ~ I was not expecting to like this. Many of the recent DC animated flicks have been just okay, significantly altered from the source material, or just plain mediocre. True, there have been a few winners, but for the most part, not.

When I saw this preview with my Injustice: Gods Among Us PS3 game I was nonplussed. Another retelling of the Brainiac story, and more bratty Supergirl? No thanks. My Brainiac is neither Darkseid nor Galactus, and my Supergirl died in the Crisis on Infinite Earths, and I haven't seen her since. Still, I finally sat down and watched Superman Unbound, and I gotta say, they made it work.

This movie is surprisingly good, and despite being based on Geoff Johns' complex "Brainiac" story arc from 2008, they keep things pretty simple with a Silver Age vibe. They do try to put Brainiac in the same league with Darkseid and Galactus, but I didn't mind it. Supergirl is the newer teenaged version but also very Silver Age. I dug this a lot.

The voice cast is phenomenal - Matt Bomer, Molly Quinn, Diedrich Bader, and especially John Noble as Brainiac and Stana Katic as Lois Lane are terrific. Katic's Lois is one of the best, and her relationship with Clark is a subplot that would have been fluff in other hands. Here it's real and believable.

Superman Unbound is an animated movie that I think will, for once, appeal to both old school and newer fans. This was awesome.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Arrow S02 E19: "The Man Under the Hood"

There was a hell of a list of cliffhangers last time, a couple involving secrets. Thanks to Slade, now Thea knows that Malcolm Merlin is her father and both her mom and her brother knew and didn't tell her. And the biggie, Slade also told Laurel that Oliver is the Arrow. Oliver drove Roy away, Quentin is in jail for helping the Arrow, Isabel has taken over Queen Consolidated, and oh yeah, and Slade is also giving Brother Blood a super-powered army to take over Starling City with.

Caught up? Good, here we go. We open on Team Arrow breaking in and blowing up Queen's applied sciences division in hopes it will prevent Slade from creating superhuman soldiers, then play catch up with the various plot threads. Despite Slade's revelation, Laurel doesn't seem completely convinced of the Arrow's identity but is trying to figure it out on her own, and unfortunately many things are falling right into place.

Meanwhile Team Arrow returns to the Arrowcave to find Deathstroke lying in wait. I know this big bad is a serious big bad, but this fight is far too quick to be believable. Although he wasn't in the Arrowcave to fight or to ambush anyone. He was there to steal the Clock King's skeleton key. Now he has access to anywhere in Starling City.

When Deathstroke decides to take the soon-to-be-abandoned S.T.A.R. Labs facility, closing because of the bad publicity from the particle accelerator accident in Central City (second reference as Felicity name dropped Barry Allen earlier in the episode), that's when the awesome starts. There are two scientists there, Caitlin Snow and Cisco Ramon, talking about a Dr. Wells. My mind immediately went to Kristin Wells, AKA Superwoman. Probably not, but it gets better.

Cisco Ramon is played by Carlos Valdes, who will be appearing as the character in the CW's "Flash" series. Comics readers might know him better as Vibe, sadly stereotyped, much hated, and doomed member of Justice League Detroit. The New 52 version of Vibe has dimensional travel powers similar to those of the Flash. Formerly a breakdancing gangbanger, the new Vibe is a scientist.

Seeking to save their lives here, Cisco uses a weapon that formerly belonged to Arthur Light, someone Wells fired two years ago because he was a psycho. This is a clear reference to Doctor Light, one of the Justice League's most dangerous and sociopathic foes, who used Thanagarian light technology to terrorize his enemies. He is a major league psycho, but his gun knocks Deathstroke on his butt. Go, Cisco!

Bad news, Slade gets what he's looking for and leaves - a centrifuge to put his blood into the inmates he released, making his army. In other news, as it turns out, Felicity knows Cisco and Caitlin from visiting Barry. His condition has deteriorated and he was moved to S.T.A.R. Labs, where he's visited often by a woman named Iris, his 'something.' Iris West was hinted at before, but this is the first time she's been named. Felicity is clearly heartbroken, despite the vagueness of Iris' description.

We also find out a little of Isabel's background. She was an intern having an affair with Oliver's father, but he chose his family over her. Sad to find she's just about petty revenge. It seems that Slade is playing the long game, and trained her just to hurt the Queen family. She is just a jilted lover blindly following a man sworn to hurt those she wants to hurt too. Pathetic. She deserves what she gets, at first at least. Could she be on her way to becoming Ravager? Either way, nice to see Diggle do something for once.

The best scene has to be Quentin being confronted by Laurel. She's going to tell him who the Arrow is, but he doesn't want to know, giving meaning to the episode's title. It's his anonymity that makes him useful to Quentin. If he knew he had family, friends, people who cared about him, Quentin couldn't use him as a weapon to point at people. Nice.

And I should say that's the best scene, because Slade deflecting arrows with a sword is pretty cool too. Oliver goes to confront him when he finds out where the centrifuge is, and finds Roy hooked up to it, giving his blood to the inmates. The fight between Arrow, Isabel, and Slade is intense, but still quick due to the big bad's ridiculous superiority. On the good side, Roy saved, army stopped short of superhuman, and Isabel out of the picture.

On Flashback Island, Ivo is spouting some nonsense about a cure for Mirakuru. Why hasn't Oliver mentioned this before? Probably the writers didn't think of it. He says he was ashamed, I call shenanigans. Either way, Felicity gives a sample of Mirakuru to Cisco and Kaitlin to work on. All of the Island stuff this episode rings wrong.

This was a good episode, chockful of comics references, performances, and action. Looking forward to Roy's journey back next week, but hope the fight against Slade doesn't drag on too long - because it's starting to.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

More Eurovision 2014

Here are several more of the finalists for the 2014 Eurovision Song Contest, being held in Coperhagen in just a few weeks, including the controversial Austrian entry by Ms. Conchita Wurst. Definitely some very tough competition this year...

FYR Macedonia - "To the Sky" by Tijana

Slovenia - "Round and Round" by Tinkara Kovac

Russia - "Shine" by the Tolmachevy Sisters

Austria - "Rise Like a Phoenix" by Conchita Wurst

Sweden - "Undo" by Sanna Neilsen

Portugal - "Quero Ser Tua" by Suzy

Finland - "Something Better" by Softengine

Norway - "Silent Storm" by Carl Espen

Switzerland - "Hunter of Stars" by Sebalter

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

The Dumpsta Players Present… PromTrash Broadway!

The Dumpsta Players Present "PROMTRASH BROADWAY"

The Date: Wednesday, APRIL 16, 2014
The Time: Doors open at 10 PM, showtime is 11 PM sharp! 21+ $1.99 cover!
The Place: Bob and Barbara's, 1509 South Street, Philadelphia PA, For info: 215-545-4511

Mirror, mirror on the wall, who's the trashiest Prom Queen of all? That's right, folks, time again to pick America's trashiest Prom Queen!

The Dumpsta Players celebrate their 18th Annual stag, drag, come-as-you-were/are/is "PROMTRASH BROADWAY" @ Bob and Barbara's!

Cheery Hell High's drama teacher, Mr. Blob Claymation, is workin' the kids up into a frenzy as this Prom is guaranteed to be an EXTRAVAGANZA! From "A Chorus Line" to "Bye Bye Birdie" the kids promise a show you will not soon forget!

Will 2013 Prom Trash queen Sharon Babcock AKA Divine Miss Jimmi return? Will last year's runner up, Mrs. Miller be back?

It's revenge of the dreadful prom, so join in the ffffun! We invite all to put on a prom dress, don a tux, and compete with the gender bending drag kings, queens, straight up females and males, fag hags, pretty princesses and assorted other freaks!

Come enjoy The Dumpsta Players' 150th show and the sensational crowning in - "PROMTRASH BROADWAY!"

A portion of the proceeds from "PromTrash Broadway" go to support The Rotunda.

The Rotunda is a community-gathering place that is fueled by the belief that art is a catalyst for social change and that the arts can lead to the formation of meaningful partnerships between the University of Pennsylvania and surrounding neighborhoods. Over 300 events are offered every year, including live music, film, spoken word, theater, art, dance, education, youth programs, arts incubation, and various experimental genres. As an alcohol-free, smoke-free venue, The Rotunda provides a critical social alternative for all ages. At its core, The Rotunda is a shared space fostering learning, enrichment, and community support while empowering the public to present, produce, and promote their work.

This event is also co-sponsored by Philly Queer Media.

Check out The Dumpsta Players on Facebook, YouTube, Flickr, and on their own website.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Legacy of the Blue Falcon

There was a dead zone in the middle of the 1970s when we really didn't have superheroes on Saturday morning television. Oh, they were there, they were just... neutered. They solved problems, fought pollution and litter, preached brotherhood, rescued kittens, and taught magic tricks and moral lessons. These are by no means bad things, but at the time, I knew all that stuff, what I wanted was for Batman to punch the Joker just once.

It was into this environment, full of neutered superheroes and teens and their dogs solving mysteries that Blue Falcon and his robotic sidekick Dynamutt the Dog Wonder were born. They were a bit of both worlds. The latter being the Scooby-Doo like comic relief and BF being the serious superhero. For me, a new superhero was sometimes better than an out of character superhero like the Super-Friends.

Blue Falcon was a wealthy socialite in Big City, Radley Crown, a loose Batman clone with more science at his disposal, well, obviously, with a robot dog. He had a great car that also flew, was summoned by a signal, and best of all, was voiced by Gary Owens. As shown by more than a couple crossovers (and sadly the Laff-a-Lympics), BF and DW were solidly in the Scooby-Doo universe.

Sometimes it was silly, but it was still superheroes on TV so I ate it up. Sadly though, after only twenty episodes, an apparent two seasons, our heroes were relegated to syndication. There were appearances, yes, on the embarrassing and aforementioned Laff-a-Lympics, and much later as a ridiculous recurring character on Cartoon Network's "Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law."

There really wouldn't be a more serious appearance until the "Dyno-Might" episode of "Dexter's Laboratory," where Dynomutt is mortally damaged in combat and Blue Falcon brings him to Dexter to repair. Dexter of course rebuilds him to the max, into a cross between Robocop, Batman, and a mechtank. Hilarity ensues as BF, Dexter, and the old DW must stop this new threat. A bit cartoony, but not bad, it was certainly better than Harvey Birdman.

The Blue Falcon's next major appearance was very different. In the "Heart of Evil" episode of "Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated," there are several landmarks of note for the character. We finally get an origin story for Dynamutt and the Blue Falcon, the hero is presented very much the same way as Batman in Frank Miller's The Dark Knight Returns, and the Hanna-Barbera shared universe is expanded to include the "Jonny Quest" characters as well with Dr. Benton Quest involved in the origin and Dr. Zin as the villain.

But this year, just as I was getting excited by a world where Jonny Quest and the Blue Falcon co-exist, they rewrote the rules. Scooby-Doo! Mask of the Blue Falcon reboots the superhero as a fictional character from comics, who had a campy TV series in the past, and now a darker edgier movie coming out now. Yeah, holy Batman, Batman. It does however make some nice points about grim and gritty superheroes and Hollywood.

The direct-to-DVD movie is not without its charm however. Many of the Hanna-Barbera superhero characters of the past appear as background as this case happens at a comic book convention. Look for cameos of Frankenstein Jr., Mightor, the Herculoids, Hong Kong Phooey, Space Ghost, Apache Chief, even Atom Ant, and others. These Easter eggs make the feature almost tolerable. Despite his name in the title, the Blue Falcon isn't really in this flick. There is a sequel in the works, set in the same continuity.

Dynomutt and the Blue Falcon live on however in our memories, and on DVD (though not yet streaming). If you remember the toon, relive it, and if you're a noob, check it out. It's an animated slice of the 1970s worth watching.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Marvel's Iron Man & Hulk: Heroes United

Marvel's Iron Man & Hulk: Heroes United ~ This was a nice surprise to find on Netflix, a new Marvel animated film. I was even more excited by the opening credits sequence filled with Silver Age-y art and design. When the feature actually started however, I was disappointed. It is very blocky ugly computer animation, the type of which would make the MTV "Spider-Man: The New Animated Series" or Nick's teenage "Iron Man: Armored Adventures" show look positively pretty. No wonder I hadn't heard of this. Even Marvel must be ashamed of it.

I'm really not sure what to make of the neon version of the movie Abomination, it's just bizarre. Is he wearing armor, or is that his skin? Speaking of armor, the Hulkbuster armor is featured early, possibly to cash in on its brief cameo in Iron Man Three or rumored appearance in Avengers Age of Ultron. Speaking of Avengers, both Adrian Pasdar and Fred Tatasciore (sadly with some sort of new voice modulation) reprise their voices as Iron Man and Hulk from "Avengers Assemble."

After Hulk and Abomination tag team for a bit, get captured by Hydra scientists who create a living energy weapon, Iron Man shows up and, shades of the Silver Age, picks a fight with the Hulk. It's weird, especially after it's established they're friends. The energy weapon unites the two as it attacks them. It doesn't have a humanoid form at first, but my first thought was Zzzax, and I was right.

I had to wonder about the redesign of Zzzax. Why not put this ugly CGI they're using to good use? With computer animation they could bring to life a character that in the two-dimensional comic book medium was usually just a human shaped lightning bolt. It could look great, but they chose differently, and sadly.

With Hulk blinded and Iron Man's armor non-functional, the two have to depend on each other. I suppose it's a lesson in cooperation for the kids this animated feature seems to have been made for. Besides Zzzax they also have to contend with shadowy Wendigos. Hmmm, I thought they were white and there was only one, but what do I know?

Another thing is did Tony Stark make a killing at a SHIELD yard sale post-Captain America The Winter Soldier? Suddenly he's got his own helicarrier, a fleet of jets, and a battalion of mandroids. What's up with that? I also really dislike the idea of Hulk needing armor. I guess we know, despite the overabundance of Hulk villains, who the real star of this cartoon is.

Don't let Netflix cut off the end credits or you'll miss the lead-in to what I assume is the next CGI feature starring Iron Man and Captain America vs. the Red Skull. This was an okay distraction. I would have rather had traditional animation and maybe more thought in the plot and dialogue.

Friday, April 11, 2014

The Camden Comic Con

Last Saturday I attended the best comic con I have ever been to - the Camden Comic Con.

You can read my report on the con at Biff Bam Pop! here, or listen to the first of three episodes of The GAR! Podcast recorded live at the con here.

The con, the guests, everything was awesome, I can't wait until next year.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Avengers Chat This Weekend

'reaperradio' presents... AVENGERS CHAT!

Covering the new movie: Captain America The Winter Soldier among other topics.

When: Saturday, April 12, 8:00 PM EST

Where: [Note the change of location for the chatroom. This is a brand new website for the chat group's group's use.]

And introducing:

A Second Round Chat Wave for Late Comers @ 9:30 PM EST

How to use the chat room: You will show up in the chatroom with a random name. To change the random name to your name or ID, just click on the random name and a box will pop up allowing you to change your name and choose an avatar for the show. Type your name in choose your avatar and click the okay button and you're all set!

Hope to see you there.

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Captain America Vs. SHIELD

This has been a very big week for the Marvel Cinematic and Television Universes as they merged with the events of Captain America The Winter Soldier having a shattering effect on "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D."

If you're having trouble keeping up, here's a nifty guide from Biff Bam Pop! to what's been going on.

My weekly episode-by-episode reviews of "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." can be found here.

Last week's episode of "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." is here.

That leads into the events of Captain America The Winter Soldier, which is reviewed here.

And is continued in this week's episode of "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." here

I also wrote an article about the ramifications of the movie on the TV series here called "S.H.I.E.L.D.'s Dark Secret."

This week's episode of "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." will be repeated on Tuesday night, before the next new episode, and Captain America The Winter Soldier is currently the number one movie in the world, in theaters everywhere.

And if you can't get enough talk about the Captain America movie, it's also the main topic of conversion on this week's episode of The Bride's and my Disney-focused podcast Make Mine Magic, which you can hear here.

Monday, April 07, 2014

RIP Mickey Rooney

This weekend we lost Mickey Rooney at the grand age of 93. The man was a Golden Age Hollywood legend - an award-winning actor, singer, dancer, comedian, star of stage and screen - like I said, a legend.

I was first introduced to Mr. Rooney by his not small part in the mega comic opus It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World. Soon I discovered Andy Hardy and the rest. The man was at home on the screen, silver and small, and on the stage. I most recently discovered his performance in Quicksand.

Always entertaining, and someone I thought would always be around, as he was, from the silents to today. We have lost another legend, Mickey Rooney will be missed.

Friday, April 04, 2014

Arrow S01 E18: "Deathstroke"

We pick up right where we left off last week. After Roy broke up badly with her, Thea is picked up by Slade. He's thoughtful and comforting until the car reaches a bad part of town, when he screams at her to get out. She runs away down an alley, right into the arms of Brother Blood.

Yeah, forgot about him, didn't you? That's kind of the theme of this episode, it's old home week. Not only is Brother Blood back, but so is his secret identity Sebastian Blood Aand his run for office. Summer Glau also rears her head as Isabel Rochev, the mean girl turned executive at Queen Consilidated.

People are calling Thea, but no one seems worried until the mayoral debate is interrupted by a video ransom note of Thea pleading for help. Felicity tracks Slade down where Team Arrow apprehends him, but it all seems too easy. Slade of course walks away, he has an alibi, and he even offers a reward for Thea's return. Something's up.

What's up is that Slade is playing the long game. He's been planning this a long time, and watching Oliver a long time. His kidnapping of Thea forces Roy off of Team Arrow distrusting Oliver. His arrest costs Quentin Lance his job, and gets himself arrested. And Isabel? She was working for Slade all along and now controls Queen Consolidated. Long game, baby.

To ice the cake, Slade is creating a Mirakiru bus load of criminals for Brother Blood to control, he also told Thea that Malcolm Merlin was her father, and as a final salvo in his mind game of suffering - he tells Laurel that Oliver is the Arrow. Boom.

We get some really nice acting moments both with Susanna Thomson's Moira, and with the rest of Team Arrow when Roy revolts. There's also a nice Barry Allen reference from Felicity early in the episode just to let us know that iron is still in the fire.

One can only assume, that next week, things only get worse.