Constantine's presence in this newly shared universe is seamlessly done and deserves to be repeated
Special props to the Lances for some great acting this episode
Yay for Stephen Amell campaigning for geeky stuff!
Not enough of Diggle being weirded out by magic like he was by Barry
Some plot points felt a little rushed, but it wasn't too bad
Of the many reasons why Marvel’s comic-to-screen adaptations have been soundly destroying DC’s attempt at making movies has been the former’s ever-ready opportunity to feature comic book-esque crossovers and mythology. Thankfully, DC’s small screen endeavours have amazingly succeeded where their big screen counterparts abysmally failed.
While Arrow‘s season 4 has been enjoying a great run of fun, if not unique, spate of episodes the show’s new choice of tone hit its fullest exploration of potential with its fifth episode: Haunted… featuring your friendly neighbourhood sorcerer John Constantine following the premature cancellation of his own show over at NBC due to last season’s less than impressive ratings… Stephen Amell himself offered to guest star on the show as the Arrow if it was given a second season by NBC, however it was insufficient and the show got shut down anyway. Nevertheless, the character proved popular enough to be resurrected over on the CW for an episode—a well-suited one at that.
With Sara lacking her soul after her extended bath in the Lazarus Pit, Ollie finds himself in the position to call in a favour from an old acquaintance, using all of his influence and star power to give us the crossover that we’ve been wanting.
The true sorcery of the show however, was its ability to finally meld the flashback sequences to the present day story. With John Constantine having been conveniently placed on Lian Yu 5 years ago, the overall plots of the show have finally converged to a certain extent.
Related: Supergirl and Co. Are Stronger Together! Despite having a primary plot that pretty much existed solely to serve the future premise of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, the story offered some great development for Laurel after weeks of neglect. But more impressively, the episode still managed to sneak in a secondary plot involving Captain Lance on yet another errand for Damien Darhk.
While the plot itself remained a tad underdeveloped due to having been shoved aside for the awesomeness that was Matt Ryan, it allowed for the formation of an irregular team-up between Lance and Diggle. This also allowed for some additional progress on Diggle’s side mission of finding out information about his brother and his involvement with H.I.V.E., with the final revelation being somewhat promising for the arc’s future.
Ultimately, the greatest takeaway from this episode would be the choice of incorporating a character from another network (albeit from an already-cancelled show) and, in doing so, proved that shows that don’t spend every other episode contributing to each other’s continuity could still work together for the occasional crossover.
While Curtis Holt has been long-rumoured to the Arrowverse’s take on Michael Holt a.k.a. Mr Terrific, it is only in this episode that we get some actual confirmation… kinda. First mentioning that he’s a Olympic decathlete who participated in the 2008 Olympics, the real geek-off was the “FP” on his bag and the full term of “Fair Play” on his jacket. Something that any fan should recognise.
Baron Reiter / Blitzkrieg Although it was announced early on that Baron Reiter, the man who is better known as Baron Blitzkrieg in the comics would be an antagonist in this season, it is only now that we’re officially putting a face to the name.
Restitutionum John’s mention about having performed a Restitutionum about a year ago is more probably a reference to the one he did in the Constantine episode ‘Quid Pro Quo‘ to help save his friend’s daughter.
If you don’t know what I’m talking about, then you should really be watching Constantine.