Arrow Season 5, Episode 8: Invasion Recap. Will Oliver want to leave his ideal life?


Spoilers for Arrow Season 5, Episode 7/8

Last time:

Oliver, Thea, Sara, Ray and Diggle were beamed up by aliens.

Oliver is living the dream:

When we begin the episode, Oliver is running through trees. It looks like one of the island flashbacks. Oliver emerges into the grounds of a familiar place: the Queen Mansion.

Oliver and Laurel are due to be married the next day. Both of them are so happy. It is then revealed that Oliver and his friends are captive in pods. None of this is real, but will Oliver and the others want to leave?

Felicity tries to find Oliver:

At the Arrow cave, the recruits, minus Evelyn, who is presumably running around with her new buddy Prometheus, greet Felicity, who arrives with Cisco. Felicity gives Cisco Oliver’s old bow from season one. Cisco vibes where Oliver is.

Cisco and Curtis plan to download some intelligence from some alien technology that Cisco took from the spaceship that crashed in Central city.

Oliver talks to Thea and his parents:

Thea gives Oliver a present. A hozen, just like Oliver gave to Thea in season one, to symbolise reconnecting. It seems to trigger something within Oliver.


Robert and Moira arrive, alive and well. They are proud of their children. Their servant knocks a vase over, and Oliver catches it. He is surprised at his reflexes.

Sara arrives:

Sara arrives and points out Laurel’s necklace. Laurel says that it is a canary. Sara reacts to that and has a flash of recollection, which she shakes off almost immediately.

Oliver and his father are nearly mugged:

After they visit the tailor, Oliver’s father asks Oliver to take over Queen Consolidated, as he will be mayor soon. They look up to see a building: Smoak Technology.

A man tries to mug them at gunpoint. Oliver steps forward and tries to get him to back off. Robert is shocked that his son acted that way, and Oliver is a bit shocked too.

The Hood saves them. Back at the mansion, Robert says that Oliver was the real hero.

Oliver experiences a few flashes of memory. When Laurel comes in and hugs him, he experiences another vision, of her in a hospital gown looking sickly.

Oliver hunts for the hood:

Something about the man in the hood has Oliver intrigued, so he heads to the police station. Captain Lance, who actually likes Oliver, and will be proud to call him son in law, says that the hood brought in the guy who attacked them earlier.


Oliver asks if they know who the hood is. Quentin points to a board of information. Oliver has more flashes of memory: the base and the team.

Lance offers to take Oliver to the rehearsal dinner. Oliver says that he will meet him there.

Oliver finds the Arrow cave:

Oliver finds the Hood’s base, and the Hood punches towards Oliver. Oliver stops the blow, which surprises them both. The Hood is Diggle.

Oliver says that he knows him, he was his bodyguard. Diggle says that Oliver must mean his brother, Andy. Oliver says that he doesn’t think this is right. He says he thinks that John killed Andy. This makes John mad.

Diggle says that Oliver has everything, and he should stop trying to throw it all away. He throws Oliver out, and tells him to go back to his perfect life.

Barry and Kara help the recruits:

Cisco figures out that they need a regulator for the alien technology.

Felicity tracks one down, but it was stolen and implanted into a doctor, who now has electrical powers. Felicity calls backup.

Rene arrives by motorcycle. Rory and Curtis got a lift from Barry, who they think is awesome. Barry introduces Supergirl, and Rene has had enough. He storms off.

Rene tells Barry that he hates meta-humans and superpowers. As soon as Barry showed up, meta-humans appeared everywhere. As soon as Kara showed up, they got aliens. He believes that superpowers are evil, and he doesn’t want anything to do with them.

Diggle and Oliver realise what is happening:

Diggle interrupts Oliver, who has just apologised to Laurel for missing the rehearsal.

Diggle admits that he has been getting memory flashes too. They discuss Smoak technology, which feels out of place. Felicity said that she never owned a company.

Oliver realises that they are in a world where the Gambit never went down. They have to figure out how to escape, but the aliens will push back at whatever they do.


On cue, Slade appears. Diggle and Oliver engage him. Sara shows up and kills him. She doesn’t know how she did it. Oliver explains that this is a shared hallucination, and she learned those skills in Nanda Parbat.

Sara remembers the fight, and that five of them were taken. Ray and Thea were the other two.

Meanwhile, in the real world, Rene is saved by Barry and Kara:

Rene confronts their suspect, and Barry saves him. Barry and Supergirl tag team the woman, and the team get what they came for.

Rene thanks Barry and Kara. He says that he won’t apologise, but if superpowers are a thing, he is glad there are guys like them to help the world.

Sara gathers Thea and Ray:

Sara talks to Ray, who admits that this feels weird. His fiancée was Anna, not Felicity.

Oliver’s parents notice that he is acting strange. Robert insists it will not end well, and Oliver experiences more flashes of memory. His mother says that this is his life now.

Oliver replies that no, it isn’t. He hugs his mother and his father, upset and emotional. It is very similar to the scene in Flashpoint, where Barry says goodbye to his parents.

Thea knows it isn’t real, but she doesn’t want to go. They have a chance to be happy, with Laurel and their parents. There is nothing but pain awaiting them back home.

Oliver says that they can’t stay here, and he begs Thea to come with him. Thea refuses: she can’t lose her family again. Oliver is hurt, but he tells her that he loves her, and to live a good life, before he leaves.

Oliver has developed so much since season one! He has always cared, but he has never shown it so openly before.

The group fight their way to Smoak technology:

Oliver informs the others that Thea is staying. He is then shot in the shoulder with an arrow. He barely flinches, and tells the group that their attackers are not real.

Thea appears and comments that they sure look real. She has changed her mind. She can’t lose her family again. Oliver is her family now.

Their attackers, Merlyn, Slade, and Damien Darkh, attack. Thea gets to kill Merlyn, Oliver gets to kill Slade, and Sara gets to kill Darkh, which must be pretty therapeutic.

Laurel appears and asks what is going on. Sara says that they have to go. Oliver apologises and says that he never deserved her. He tells her that he loves her. Laurel pleads with him not to go. Oliver takes one last look behind him, and leaves.


They head for Smoak technology, where they believe they can escape. As Oliver leaves through the portal, he sees visions of all those who he has lost, and those that still fight beside him. They speak words of kindness, and Oliver is moved. He leaves, and is back to reality. Pods and a spaceship.

Felicity and Cisco figure out that Oliver is in space:

The regulator the group stole worked, but the translator threw up some random text. Rory recognises it, as it is based off the old testament. They figure out the coordinates, which are baffling at first, until Cisco realises that Oliver and friends are in space.

The Waverider rescues Oliver and company:

Oliver and the group find a ship, and Thea manages to activate it. They fly off, but there are no controls, and they are chased and attacked by other alien ships.

The Waverider saves them, and Nate comments that luckily, the ship can replicate clothes and equipment, which is good, because all of theirs is gone.

He explains that Oliver’s ‘nerd army,’ back on earth found out where they were. Don’t mock the nerd army, Nate, or they will rise up against you!

Ray realises that the Dominators were trying gather intelligence, whilst they kept their minds occupied with the hallucination. They were chosen because they aren’t meta-humans. I only realised this when Ray said it. I thought that they had kidnapped those five because they all originated in Arrow.

Ray remembers a phrase that the aliens said, and asks Gideon to translate it. They find out that the Dominators are nearing completion of a weapon. The ship that they escaped from is now heading for earth…


Special episode for the 100th episode? I thought so, although the episode did made a better impression the second time that I watched it. It was nice to see what would have happened, had Oliver not experienced so much tragedy. I bet it has given Oliver and the others a lot to think about too.

Next time:

The crossover concludes on Legends of Tomorrow.

Will the team defeat the Dominator’s? What is this weapon?

Will Cisco ever forgive Barry?

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