Arrow loses his mojo after nearly being killed by Merlyn. Laurel’s friend believes her brother was murdered and turns to Arrow for help. Diggle tries to help Arrow overcome his loss of confidence and Thea still sounds like a horse when she talks.
Arrow has finally come back from its midseason break, and as Wednesdays usually suck primetime wise, I couldn’t happier. There were some good things going on this week, and some bad things as well. Lets start off with the good.
First off, I liked the idea of Arrow being unsure of himself after getting his butt handed to him so badly in the last episode. He is just human after all, and we all experience those doubts when something that usually goes our way doesn’t seem to be working. I also loved Diggle for hounding him the whole way. Diggle has become Oliver’s voice of reason, his spirit if you will, and this just made Diggle that much better of a character. Oliver is clearly ducking his responsibility as a hero and Diggle is not going to let him get away with it. I also like the fact that Laurel has finally warmed up to Arrow. Yes, he kills people, but he clearly has a good motivation and it was good to see him become a resource instead of him being considered a pariah by all those around him. On that note, I also liked the news pundit who was in Arrow’s corner. The news bits reminded me of The Dark Knight Returns by Frank Miller, and that can’t be a bad thing.
The flashbacks were also quite interesting with Oliver having to fend for himself after his mentor is captured, though I didn’t really see how they fit in with the Arrow losing his confidence bit as nothing major happened in the flashbacks to make us think that Oliver has dealt with doubt before. The flashback tying into the present is what makes them work, but never the less, I am very curious to see how they continue to play out now that Oliver is on his own in the past. Another thing I have been enjoying is Tommy’s evolution into a responsible adult. These changes have definitely made him a more palatable character and have helped to move him off of my ‘characters I would like to see die’ list, a list occupied now solely by Dexter’s Quinn.
Now for the bad. I find it odd that Laurel couldn’t even get her dad to look at the file her friend gave her about her brother’s death. Though the evidence was circumstantial, it was compelling enough to at least look at right? Apparently Lance disagrees, but come on, sprayed with turpentine, ignition burned hotter than fire, and all he does is wave it away? Good job detective. The killer was also not very interesting, he was way underdeveloped and his motivations should have been made a lot clearer from the beginning, or at least the middle. Instead the bomb is dropped at the very end, and when it did drop it felt kind of hollow making me not care much for the killer either way.
Then there was Thea, I understand your mom is not in the mental state to be there for you, but damn, she just lost two husbands in five years. Cut her some slack will you? The scene where Thea bitches her out made Thea seem a bit selfish, though I do understand she was doing it for her mother’s benefit, but it ended up breaking down into a me first speech which made it annoying and insensitive. Plus her voice is a little annoying, she kind of reminds me of 50 Cent in that it sounds like she’s not opening her mouth fully to speak. Also, what’s with Lance tapping the Arrow phone he gave back to Laurel? That seemed really underhanded, especially after he gave her the speech that maybe Arrow isn’t such a bad guy. I liked him for those thirty seconds, and then hated him again thirty seconds later. That was a real douche move. Lastly, and I admit I am being critical here, but Oliver asks his mom if she wants to watch a DVD. Really? All that money and you don’t even have a Blu Ray player? Then when he’s going through the movies he’s holding a Blu Ray case. Sure its minor, but it reminded me of cartoons where a character’s shirt is colored one way in a frame, then differently in the next frame. I know I’m being critical here, but I tend to notice these things, a lot. Attention to detail always scores points in my book.
Overall I enjoyed this week’s installment of Arrow, even through the lackluster story and DVD slip up. There is just something about it that gets me even though it’s not a very strong show. One request though, do we need a shirtless Oliver training in every single episode. I know there are ladies to please, but can we just curb that down a little bit? Please? All that being said, I have to rate this episode as good, but not great.
3 out of 5 nerds
Follow Christopher on Twitter @AUDone44 and The Nerd @nerdfollowing