Dec 12 2013 9:45am

Ship’s Log: An Olicity Hug (!!!) in Arrow 2.09, “Three Ghosts”

This post contains spoilers for all aired episodes of Arrow, including last night’s 2x09, “Three Ghosts."

What a winter finale, eh? Whoa. I need to rewatch that a time or 10 just to absorb it all. But what I do know is that Arrow 2.09, “Three Ghosts,” kicked off with Oliver coding on the table and never let up. We got Barry saving Oliver, Oliver freaking at Felicity over the reveal of his identity, Roy being injected with Mirakuru, Shado dying on the island, Lance nearly dying, Slade Wilson showing his face in present-day Starling, Tommy returning in a flashback, Laurel being consoled by Brother Blood, Barry gifting the Arrow with his mask and then commencing with his own superhero origin tale, and so many other amazing moments big and small.

And then there were the delicious Olicity moments. WE GOT A HUG. AN UNNECESSARILY LONG HUG, at that. It was beautiful.

Of course, this is after Oliver was a huge ass to Felicity for outing him to Barry TO SAVE HIS LIFE (which he never apologized/thanked her for, what a jerk). I dig the angst it brought in the short term and I understand Oliver being upset, but I hope this topic comes up again when tensions/stakes aren't quite so high and that Felicity gives him hell for thinking he can talk to her that way. Oliver/Felicity works so well because she doesn't take his shit—I need to see that continue. There's no question Oliver's entitled to being a bit (a lot) broken, but he shouldn't get a free pass ever, especially from Felicity and Digg. And I mean, c'mon, equally angry Oliver and Felicity would be hot to watch. (Oh, is my Starbuck/Apollo shipper past showing? I have no regrets.)

That said, Felicity's loyalty and devotion to Oliver was exciting to see as an Olicity shipper, and Barry not only picking up on it (Felicity was a bit obvious with her “Fantasy Island” snark) but even calling her on it (twice!) was THE BEST THING OF ALL TIME. Despite her denials, the guy clearly knew what was what (“I have a little experience with liking someone who doesn't see you the same way,” Barry tells her, an admission that works brilliantly for the story here and in further developing Barry's character) and bowed out gracefully, though not before outright saying he'd be around if she ever decided she was over pining for Oliver. Eeeee!

Yet for all that Oliver does still seem unaware of the depth of his feelings for Felicity and hers for him, “unrequited” was not a word that came to mind last night. For one thing, there was that blink-and-you-missed-it bitch face (or, OK, he was at least taken aback) when Felicity said she and Barry would go hang out at Big Belly Burger. And for another, there was that sequel to last week's eyefucking combined with an intense “I'll come back” when Felicity expressed concern about his leaving for a potentially suicidal mission (he refused to answer her when she pleaded with him to promise her he'd return, which let's be honest was a dick move, if an honest one—gaaaah, the angst). Oh, and of course when he did return safe and (relatively) sound, there was THAT HUG, GUYS. Still not over it. (In fact, I predict I will spend a lot of time staring at GIFs of it on Tumblr.)

So...let's talk this through. What did you guys think of the episode overall, and the Olicity scenes specifically? Did we interpret things the same way, or did you see them in an entirely different light? it January yet?!

P.S. Anyone else find it interesting that Felicity was on screen solo during Slade's line about intending to “corrupt those [Oliver] loves”?! Gah.

Find Heather Waters on Twitter at @hwaters_

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Heather Waters
2. HeatherWaters
@ChelseaMueller -- Yessssss. That, and Oliver calling and telling Digg that Roy was shot with an arrow and could he please bring the first aid kit to Thea's room? GOLDEN.
4. alwaysmc23
I would also like to point out that Dig looked to Felicity to decide what to do when Oliver was dying at the beginning. HE KNOWS!
Jennifer Proffitt
5. JenniferProffitt
Is this the hug to which you refer? I need to start watching this show again!
Heather Waters
6. HeatherWaters
@alwaysmc23 -- Excellent point, I noticed that too. He looked to her to make every decision about Oliver's wellfare. That was veeeeery interesting.

@JenniferProffitt -- Yes indeedy! It went on for a bit after that too (he, like, had a conversation with Dig while still holding her!)
7. Claire Rose
Gah! So glad you posted something, because I need an outlet LOL. I'm not "signed on" with Tumblr and am seriously questioning that right now ;) Initial ramblings:
1. Ghost Shado tells Oliver "don't fight anymore" then in the background you hear Felicity, "Oliver! stay with me!" followed by Shado calling, "stay with me".

2. Oliver and Felicity fighting—I love that Felicity comes out from the other side of the table to confront Oliver the jerk. She doesn't allow the table to remain in bettween during the confrontation—a safe zone so to speak. Even better is Barry standing up to the guy that almost snapped his neck a few moments early in defense of Felicity. And didn't back down even when Oliver gets in his face. Oliver lets it go — maybe due to a "saved by the bell/phone", but I really think it is also due to the fact that Oliver respected the fact that Barry stood up to him in defense of Felicity. He saw that 'heart of a hero' perhaps.

3. Felicity was actually jealous. The remark was hilarious, but the fact is, is that this is the FIRST time we've really seen jealousy on Felicity. Is this part of the corruption that Slade was referring to? I think the fact that we are 'seeing' more from Felicity in regards to feelings for Oliver and not vice versa is that 1, it's just too early IMO and 2, this is now an exposed achilles heel if you will. Question is, will it be something that Felicity can overcome so the 'evil' doesn't get in and tear them apart. I like to think that the evil doer will try to use it to his advantage, but that Felicity and her strength will win in the end.

4. I love these amazing popups we keep getting, but as much as I love Shado, I do hope she remains dead otherwise this will take on an "oh shrug, they were killed"

5. Tommy coming back as ghost — perfect, perfect, perfect

6. The hug. This was a big step for Oliver because this is a guy who is usually pretty closed off. However in this instance, he is coming down the stairs and his eyes are off camera where Felicity is. Then you see HIS arm opening up, welcoming/initiating a hug before Felicity even makes it in the shot.

7. Hero — used by both Tommy (someone Oliver values immensley) and by Felicity ...

Such a great episode, so many moments all around!

I know I've got more, and will prob be back! LOL
8. carmenlire
This was an action packed midseason finale and I can't wait a month for it to continue!! I liked the olicity scenes, but I have to say that I love love LOVE Barry Allen. I can't wasit to see more of him, especially in light of the last minutes of the episode. I liked that Tommy came back and told him he was a hero, even if it was an hallucination. I think that not only did Oliver need that to get the strength not to give up, but that over all for his mental health he needed some form of closure that his best friend didn't think him a monster. Felicity was awesome and she is quickly becoming my favorite character (perhaps more than Oliver). I also want to see what happens with Roy--I don't want him to end up a bad guy! And Slade. . . it made me sad when I though of how he wants to kill Ollie even through everything. I was shocked that Shdo's death came so quickly and I just dont like to see such conflict between two one-great friends.
Heather Waters
9. HeatherWaters
@Claire Rose -- I love Tumblr for the images and such but haven't figured out how to have actual conversations with people, so I hear ya. Let's discuss!

1. I did not catch that myself but heard about it, and now I can't WAIT to go back and rewatch. That seems meaningful!

2. True, I love that she gets right up in his face and doesn't back down. But I am mad that Oliver can NEVER admit he's wrong, and I think Felicity deserves an apology and a thank-you-for-saving-my-life. He was pretty out of line imo.

3. She WAS jealous! That was big. Barry immediately saw it, too. As for her being know, I actually think that line could have suited Laurel just as well since it looks like the may get caught up in Brother Blood (uh-oh).

4. Same here.

5. Oh, god, I know, I wouldn't have guessed it after the first episode, but by the time he died I adored Tommy. He can come back anytime.

6. Relieved the writers are taking it slow and giving us these little moments before rushing into anything. Like you said, this was a big step for them, and for now it's enough for me.
Heather Waters
10. HeatherWaters
@carmenlire -- You're right, Barry Allen got even cooler in last night's ep and I love him too. I'd tune into him as the Flash for sure, so I hope that works out.

Great point about that convo with Tommy being closure. That's how I'm going to think of it from now on (unless he comes back for real one day!).

Ahh, Roy...yeah, he may need to work out some anger at the vigilante anyway, and then there's the fact that now he may be superpowered??? Can't wait to see where that storyline goes.

Present-day Slade is SO angry I'm wondering if there's even more to it than Shado's death. Hmm...
11. ChelseaMueller
Re: Claire's point:
6. The hug. This was a big step for Oliver because this is a guy who is usually pretty closed off.
I think they leveraged Felicity's connection with Barry really well. Last week (and to a lesser extent this week) Ollie was able to be jealous. I like to think that helped spurred him to open more to Felicity.
12. Claire Rose
When he sees Shado's ghost while "crashing", it's almost like a tug of war going on between Oliver continuing the fight — Felicity calling him, wanting him to hold on and stay with her, and Oliver wanting to just give up—which occurs TWICE mind you. First, in the beginning with Shado telling him to stay with HER and then in the end when he just collapses.

It is kind of interesting in how they use Tommy and Felicity in this episode. In the beginning it's Felicity telling him to fight — but it is just so darn SUBTLE that had I not had subtitles on (handy when children are on hand LOL), it would have blown past me. Significant in the big picture? I have no idea, but I will go out on a limb and say YES, IF for no other reason than this—Tommy IMO was the most significant ghost and the next time Oliver wanted to give up it was Tommy telling him to fight, but in a far more in-your-face way. Just so obvious and so key to Oliver not only contiuing the fight, but also to him crossing over into 'hero'.

This is why I feel pretty comfy on my limb, because the word 'hero' was used twice. The first time by Tommy and the second was Felicity. Again, those two key characters. Unlike the 'keep fighting' messages, this time the 'hero' talk was blatent and in-your-face. I'm curious to see how this goes.

And Oliver being a jerk? Oh yeah, NOT HAPPY that he never apologized or admitted that he was wrong. I do like those fight scenes though and Felicity's fierceness, I want more. That being a jerk part shows another dimensio to Oliver, so I am OK with it, but he def owes the girl and apology.

Now for more Felicity defintion. And I love Diggle, I am so glad he was able to get some good time in this episode. With such an excellent cast, it has to be tough spreading the screentime around.

Thanks for letting me dish, my husband just looks at me funny :))
13. Travelover
I STILL think Barry looks WAAAY too young for Felicity. After last week's deliberate attempt to push Felicity towards Barry (and absolutely NO sexual chemistry between the two - geez it would be like being with your younger brother), I was pleasantly surprised to see the show (and Barry) back off and give us more Olicity. I LOVED the hug. While Diggle may KNOW - Olicity are choosing to ignore what is growing between them. As you know, LOL, I want Ollie's tongue to hang out! I want that man tense, drooling, groveling, yearning, burning and SUFFERING. And I want MORE "fights" - because as we all know - fights lead up to VERY big HOT doings LOL!

And they damn well better give us a HOT love scene when the time's right. We've earned it.
14. Claire Rose
Okay, I just thought of one more thing that made this episode pretty significant. I could be wrong, but if memory serves, this is the first episode where Felicity hasn't erred in the social realm with her nonfiltered thoughts. Then again, as I type this, maybe there is nothing significant to that due to the fact she didn't have ONE SCENE outside of the batcave. LOL But I guess the batcave is becoming more homey and comfortable so the errors are less, but the snarkiness is more ;)
Susan White
15. whiskeywhite
I had a similar reaction, @Travelover, that Barry was too young for Felicity. But then I reflected on that a bit. They are clearly meant to be actually closer in age. But we are accustomed, thanks to movies and TV, to seeing older men with younger women (not to mention women trying/being forced to look younger than they are). This is accepted as normal, so much so that older women with younger men are seen as 'cougars' or worse.

In addition, we are used to seeing younger women being more mature than young men of their same age (which is, in fact, usually true especially at younger ages). To have Digg looking to Felicity for decisions/direction on Oliver's welfare (I need to go back and check that out since I didn't catch it the first time) fits this picture. In fact, a bit too much so for my taste given Digg's experience and skills in the 'protecting' department.

While I loved the hug, as I have said before I find Stephen Amell's staring off into space acting technique both odd and distracting. You can see it in the hug scene above -- he's holding Felicity but staring off into the distance.
Kiersten Hallie Krum
16. Kiersten
Yes yes yes yes yes

Ollie actually reaching out for Felicity before shee was even in frame is HUGE. And she didnt stop or check herself just ran full tilt at him and then he just held on, which is also HUGE.

That Dig & Felicity dont take Ollie's shit is what makes them his people. Barry impressed me much more in this ep than last especially with how he didn't back down (physically) from Ollie's bad ass advance during the argument. He yielded with "Mister Queen" but didnt move or cower where most would (and have). Yeah, I picked up on Felicity coming around the table and caught the juxstiposition of her "stay with me" in contrast to GhostShado's same words.

I have more but basically y'all have covered it already. Carry on!
17. Deveney
Okay so here is this...
I just finished 2x9 and omg. So I know I am so behind but I started watching Arrow Christmas day. (My mother finsing it on netflix and starting it a couple days before me and telling me how good it was.) Well I got addicted and from the first moment Felicity came into the picture I have been freaking out. I have been pinning over every little thing Olicity. Even my mother and father are in it with me. When Oliver gave the line to Felicity about not bieng with someone I care about my brother said "Did he just basically say he loved her with out saying it at all." My feels people. So ya...Like I said I just finished 2x9 tonight and that hug made my heart stop. These thoughts you say above where mine exactly I was dying. I needed to watch that scene over and over again. The lingering of their touch. OHHHHH!!! As soon as I seen the solo of Felicity when Slade said corrupt those he loves. I just turned to my mom and yelled oooohhh see what they did there!! Okay I think my ranting and craziness is over for now I just needed to get all my feels out. YESH OLICITY FOREVER.
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