After taking what felt like an endless break following the shocking death in episode 18, the CW’s “Arrow” returned to pay its respects to the newly departed friend. Despite the mourning, it was vengeance on most people’s minds in episode 19, titled “Canary Cry.”
It was a somber episode, now that Laurel Lance (Katie Cassidy) has officially died at the hands of the villain Damien Darhk (Neal McDonough). The episode opens where one would expect, at a funeral. A priest says a few words about losing someone gifted too soon and then calls for Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) to come deliver the eulogy. He isn’t there, but a young Laurel stands up, proving to the audience that it’s a fake out. Some text reveals that they’re actually at Tommy Merlyn’s (Colin Donnell) funeral in 2013. After some kind words from Laurel, things cut back to the present day, where we find the team right where we left them.
An emotional Captain Lance (Paul Blackthorne) is working up his courage to go look at his daughter’s body. He does, but Oliver quickly gets him out of the room and they all leave the hospital separately. Back at the lair, Diggle (David Ramsey) is breaking the hard news to his wife that his very own brother, Andy (Eugene Byrd), betrayed them and was working for Dahrk the entire time. Oliver shows up and tries to convince him not to blame himself, but it doesn’t work.
Meanwhile, out on the town, some shifty arms dealers are selling gang members guns out of the back of a truck. They’re about to get away with their crime when someone dressed as the Black Canary, Laurel’s former superhero identity, stops them using her infamous Canary Cry device. Captain Lance brings this to the team’s attention, believing that Laurel is somehow still alive. It’s not an unreasonable thought as he points out that there have been three resurrections this year alone (Andy, Ray and Sara).
Sadly, a quick trip to the morgue reveals that Laurel is not the one in her costume, and that her Canary Cry device had been stolen. Oliver speaks to Dr. Schwartz (Venus Terzo), who he had to thank for her discretion the night before when he brought in Laurel dressed as the Black Canary. She even managed to put out a fake news story that explained how Laurel Lance died that neglected to mention the hero affiliations. Unfortunately, doctor and patient confidentiality prohibited her from saying too much more.
Luckily, the team didn’t need help catching the new Canary as she came to one of them. While Thea (Willa Holland) is on a date with her new boyfriend Alex Davis (Parker Young), he is attacked by the new Black Canary. Thea subdues her before she kills Alex, but she still gets away thanks to a modification made to the Canary Cry. Oliver manages to track her and she reveals that she was one of the people Damien Darhk was keeping around to murder to sustain his magical powers. Although most of them were there by choice, this girl was apparently drugged to keep compliant.
Before the team can launch a proper offensive against the Black Canary imposter, a guilt-riddled Diggle puts them on the offensive against Dahrk’s secret wife, Star City Mayor Ruve Adams (Janet Kidder). He attacks her limo and even goes as far as to hit her a few times while he tries to get a location for Andy out of her. Luckily, before he can cross the line and do some real harm to her, Oliver arrives and stops him. However, the damage is done as the mayor releases a press conference soon after calling for an end to all masked vigilante activity in the city, starting with the Black Canary, whom she, ironically, blames for the murder of Laurel Lance.
Also making bad decisions out of grief is Captain Lance, who called Nyssa al Ghul (Katrina Law) back into town in the hopes she’d help him resurrect Laurel with the Lazarus Pit, like she previously did with Sara (Caity Lotz). However, she breaks the hard news to him that she destroyed the pit months ago. Instead, she brings the news to Oliver’s attention and he confronts Lance to try and get him to face the reality that his daughter is lost. In an emotional moment, Lance finally breaks down and cries on Oliver’s shoulder.
With everyone’s guilt firmly in check for half a second, the team gets a chance to go after the baddie of the week, the fake Black Canary. Fortunately, Mayor Adams is holding an event, likely an attempt to bait the imposter into attacking. It works, but Team Arrow arrives on scene first. Their mission is to stop the imposter before she attacks the mayor and makes heroes look bad, gets hurt or hurts someone else.
Oliver manages to find her and convince her to honor the name of the real Black Canary by not turning her into a ruthless murderer. Fortunately for everyone involved, she complies and allows herself to be taken into custody without anymore fuss, much to the dismay of Mayor Adams.
While everything is now back to normal, the group could finally focus on giving Laurel the funeral she deserves. However, that will be extra difficult this time since recent events have dragged the Black Canary’s name and legacy through the mud. Seeing only one way to stop it, Oliver delivers Laurel’s eulogy and reveals that she was the real Black Canary all along.
The episode closes with a repeat of the now infamous grave scene, which is no longer a flash forward. Oliver makes his way to the limo with Felicity (Emily Bett Rickards), and she tells him that he has to kill Darhk. However, this time Oliver responds saying that he doesn’t know how. He tells her that he encountered this magic on the island years ago, but says he failed to stop it there too. Things end on a low note as the hero drives off, feeling helpless for the very first time.