Checkmate - Recap
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At the Castle, Checkmate's secret base of operations, Amanda Waller walks to a chessboard in her office and uses the white queen to knock over its own knight.
Tess comes into her office at the Daily Planet and finds a white knight moved from her chess board to her desk. She goes to a hidden cache of weapons, arms herself, and dons a disguise. She then leaves via a hidden drop chute and takes to the street. Checkmate agents close in on her and she fights them off. Overhead, Green Arrow is on patrol and notices the commotion. He follows Tess to a rail yard as more agents close in and trap her. Green Arrow disarms the head agent, comments on his black on black wardrobe, and stuns him. However, Tess then knocks Green Arrow out and injects him with a sedative. The Checkmate agents come over and take Green Arrow away as Tess declares "Checkmate."
Clark arrives at Watchtower and Chloe informs him that Green Arrow has disappeared and someone has blanked out all the cameras in the area. She complains that Clark doesn't check in or help watch the other heroes' backs. The cameras come back up and they confirm that John Jones is at the rail yard where Chloe last saw Green Arrow, but she didn't call him in. Clark superspeeds there and John admits he had no idea that Green Arrow had gone missing. When John proves evasive, Clark uses his x-ray vision and discovers that John has picked up a communication earpiece with an ID number on it. John says he shouldn't have done that and flies away.
Tess and her people are transporting Green Arrow in an armored car. As they go to an airfield, Tess prepares to remove Green Arrow's mask. However, Amanda appears on a video screen and tells her that she doesn't have clearance to look beneath the hood. Once Tess leaves, Amanda shocks Green Arrow awake and explains that he's been recruited for Checkmate whether he wants to or not. As they talk, Green Arrow uses a hidden lockpick to free himself. After Amanda signs off, Green Arrow uses hidden explosives to blast open an exterior door, leap onto it, and slide away down the road to make his escape as the truck stops.
John confronts the head Checkmate agent, Edward Lott, as he goes to his car after leaving his place of business. He shows Lott the earpiece and reveals that it's his, and easily stops Lott from shooting him. John demands to know where the Castle is, and threatens to expose Lott's double life if he doesn't answer. Lott bites down on a poison capsule rather than talk, and John quickly reads his mind and learns the location of the Castle.
The next morning, Tess is considering the armored truck when Amanda arrives and accuses her of failing to take proper precautions. She promises Amanda that she'll recapture Green Arrow, but Amanda notes that she's been off the grid for the last few years and wonders if she's working with someone else. Tess swears that she's committed to Checkmate, and Amanda warns her that if she isn't, there's only one way out.
Clark checks with Chloe, who has identified the earpiece as government issue. Oliver comes in and Chloe embraces him. They quickly get back to business and Oliver informs them what happened and that Checkmate is involved. Chloe remembers that Starman warned her about Checkmate before he died. She confirms that John met with Lott, who was a double-agent and worked as the CEO of a consumer manufacturing society. He was taken to the morgue an hour later and they wonder if John murdered him. Clark takes off for the morgue before Chloe can accompany him. She and Oliver figure that Icicle was working with Checkmate and she goes to the psych ward at Metropolis General Hospital to check on him. However, Chloe suggests he stay low-profile and he reluctantly agrees to go to a scheduled LuthorCorp shareholder dinner. As Chloe goes, Oliver tells her to be careful while trying not to appear too protective.
Tess is hosting the shareholder dinner at the Luthor manor. Oliver arrives and she tells him not to start. As they banter, Oliver inadvertently repeats the words he said earlier to Lott about his black on black wardrobe, and Tess realizes that he's Green Arrow.
At the morgue, Clark goes through Lott's personal effects and finds a white knight chess piece. He realizes it's from Tess' chessboard and goes to her office to confirm. He uses his x-ray vision and finds her hidden weapons, and leaves for the manor.
John breaks into the Castle and finds a display case holding a blood sample. Amanda comes in and knows who he is, much to John's surprise. She wants to enlist him but realizes that someone else has already, and realizes that he's there for the blood. Amanda notes the blood traveled light-years to get there, and indicates a major threat. John insists that she's reacting out of fear, but Amanda talks about his own fear. She activates a fire trap, circling him in fear, and explains that her investigation revealed he never approached fire.
At Met General, Chloe talks to Dr. Bennett and notes that all of his super-powered transfer patients never arrived at Belle Reeve. He claims he has no idea what happened and goes to his computer. When Chloe secretly tries to download his files, he gets a hidden security alert, initiates security measures, and invites her to come with him to the archives to clear things up.
Tess gets Oliver alone in her bedroom and demands answers. Oliver admits he's Green Arrow and they start fighting. Clark arrives and demands answers. When she refuses, he takes her to the top of a building in Metropolis and threatens to drop her unless she talks. Tess explains that Amanda recruited her to investigate Lex's alien investigations. She never told Amanda about Clark or the Kandorians, and explains that the real target was something called Watchtower.
Checkmate agents bring a captive Chloe to the Castle.
Later, Tess goes to see Oliver at his LuthorCorp office and tells him that Clark is in trouble. She explains that he forced her to tell him where the Castle is located.
A guard hears Amanda call to him and goes to investigate. He finds her in the fire trap and frees her. "Amanda" transforms into John, using his shapeshifting abilities, and he knocks the guard out.
Clark arrives in Amanda's office and she explains that there are aliens among them and she needs his help to fight against them. When Clark hesitates, Amanda tells him it's time to pick a side and shows him a video image of Chloe under threat of death. She offers Watchtower in return for Clark's allegiance and warns he can't stop a bullet if he doesn't know where she is located. Amanda wants Watchtower's central database so she can learn the identity of all of the heroes and recruit them for her anticipated war.
John destroys the alien blood.
Amanda points out that Clark has left Chloe to fend for herself and left her vulnerable. To save Chloe's life, he just has to give Amanda Watchtower's address. The power cuts out and Clark uses his superhearing to find Chloe's guards when they call for assistance. He quickly subdues them and gets Chloe out of the building.
Back at Watchtower, Clark apologizes for endangering her and admits she's important. Chloe admits that he pushed her out of the way because he didn't trust her, but Clark notes she's the one who brought them all together. Chloe focuses on the matter at hand and notes that Amanda can identify them.
John arrives in Amanda's office and uses his telepathy to wipe her memories of everything she learned since abducting Oliver.
Tess arranges a meeting with Oliver at an outdoor café. She apologizes for destroying his trust, and notes that at least she showed him how to shut down the Castle's power grid. Oliver wonders what happens next and Tess says that she's going to go AWOL from Checkmate. He wonders if it hurt her to do something moral for once, and asks her what she really wants. Tess asks for his forgiveness and help. Oliver admits that he wishes they could go back to the times when he could trust her, but those times are gone since she betrayed him. As he leaves, Oliver warns her that if she ever comes near him or his friends again, he'll expose her to the world.
As Oliver walks down the street, he meets Chloe, who thanks him for his help. He admits that seeing her in danger scared him, and she jokingly notes that he might be falling for her.
John visits Clark at his loft and tells him what he did. Clark admits that Amanda had a point and he saw the future where the Kandorians win. John says that he can't choose sides because Clark's destiny is to serve as a bridge between the opposing forces to unite them. He explains that he kept everyone else out of his investigation to avoid exposing them, but Clark realizes that he's working for someone else. All John will confirm is that there's another player, and that things aren't always black and white.
Amanda returns to her office with Brenner and finds a red king chess piece on her chessboard. She decides to shut down the operation as she realizes they've been blocked by a new player… and it's time for a new game.