Published on October 21st, 2015 | by Maggie


Arrow S4E1: Green Arrow

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CW’s Arrow presents a new season, a new city, and a new hero.

This review contains spoilers.

We closed season three with an optimistic Oliver and Felicity speeding off into the sunset in a Porsche. Ra’s was defeated, Merlyn assumed his place, and Ray Palmer taught us all a lesson in lab safety. Since these events, the city has undergone an intense rebranding campaign, renaming itself Star City.

The city isn’t the only one rebranding itself. Since Arrow’s departure, Laurel, Diggle, and Thea have assumed the responsibility of upholding street justice. They discover they’re in over their heads when the precinct is attacked and members of the force, including Papa Canary, are targeted by an unknown threat.

Meanwhile, Oliver is experiencing his own rebirth. He’s hung up the hood and picked up an apron. Put down the arrows in exchange for a power drill. I could go on. We learn that Oliver intends to propose to Felicity but is interrupted when Thea and Laurel show up in need of help. With Felicity’s support, FKA Arrow reluctantly comes to their aid albeit in a ski mask.

The team discovers that the attack was spearheaded by a seemingly superhuman Damian Dahrk and his hive. Knowing the amount of danger that his friends and city face, Oliver reluctantly reconsiders rejoining the team, only to learn that Felicity had already done so without telling him. Plagued with apprehension, Oliver wonders if he can reassume the Arrow moniker without succumbing to darkness. Through the power of ~*love*~ and ~*friendship*~, our hero decides to start anew with a message to Star City that he is now Green Arrow.

Arrow: Season 4 Episode 1

Unlike a lot of season three, Green Arrow avoided the age old mistake of biting off more than it could chew. Some episodes in the previous season had so much going on, it became a matter of juggling plots and subplots to stumble across the finish line. Aside from what I feel are absolutely pointless flashbacks, the episode played out more clearly than usual. I struggle to understand how Diggle got on the train without being noticed, but I’m getting a bit picky here.

The end of the episode is particularly interesting. Felicity and Oliver move into Thea’s old apartment, where Oliver discreetly places the engagement ring in some Bed Bath & Beyond decor. The scene that immediately follows is six months in the future, where Barry joins Oliver at the viewing of a tombstone. Oliver swears vengeance as he looks over the grave whose owner is not revealed.

It could go in any direction. The fact that Barry is there has implications, but we all know Barry to be a nice enough guy to support Oliver no matter what. That said, why is it Barry in particular? Is it Felicity? Is it Thea? Diggle? Sara for the eighth time? Only time will tell. I still find it pretty curious that the shot immediately preceding this one was a of the engagement ring.

I really enjoyed the easter eggs in this particular episode. All the mentions of Kord Industries, the Coast City sign, Ray Palmer’s billboard, and how about that bomber jacket? I love it. I doubt anything will come of these details, but it’s still nice to see.

Aside from the borderline unbearable flashbacks, everything else presented in episode one is new and improved. Hope it stays that way or goes up from here. I can only look at that terrible flashback wig for so long.

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