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Subj: Arrow Season 1
Posted: Wed Jun 07, 2017 at 10:03:04 pm EDT (Viewed 187 times)
The Season 5 finale prompted me to go back and watch the Arrow Pilot to see how well the flashbacks dovetailed into the very first episode. Well a funny thing happened, once I watched the Pilot I got hooked and just kept on going, and just last night I finished the entirety of Season 1. I had not seen any of these episodes since 2013 and I thought I’d comment on season 1.
First and foremost it is my thorough conviction that the show in Season 1 was vastly superior to the show in its present form. I was knocking out 2 and sometimes 3 episodes in a single night. I’ve been pondering just what made it so compelling and here’s what I came up with:
A) The island flashbacks were just as good if not better than what was going on in Star City. In Season 1 I really wanted to know “Just what did go down on that island that forged the rather ‘soft’ Oliver into the Vigilante?” Also Slade Wilson and Shado were interesting characters in and of themselves.
By Season 5 the flashbacks had become an annoyance to me. Oliver seemed pretty much a Bad Ass by the time he got to Russia, so the flashback was just telling me a separate story of the already fully formed man he had become – which just broke up the current story rather than augmenting it.
My conclusion is going forward the PTB should just tell a linear story without the flashbacks. The flashbacks served a purpose, but they’ve run their course.
B) In Season 1 there was a true sense of mystery as to who all the players were and what their motives were. Could Diggle be counted on to keep Ollie’s secret? And later on the same question would be asked of Felicity. Oliver (and the audience) didn’t know just what Moira was up to and where her allegiances lay. Oliver had no idea Malcolm was the Black Archer – indeed at one point he actually works at cross purposes with Moira by saving Malcolm from her hired hitman. Likewise Malcolm didn’t know Oliver was the Vigilante until the second to last episode, and even exclaimed “Oh no!” when he unmasked Oliver. And of course there was Detective Quentin always at odds with the Vigilante.
By Season 5 it seemed that everyone knew who the Green Arrow was and even where his hangout was. All of Oliver’s friends were in on the secret, Detective Lance was a part of the “Arrow Gang”, Nyssa was in on the secret, and even Prometheus appeared to know more about Ollie than his friends did. This in my opinion greatly reduced the suspense in Season 5.
My conclusion is that the genie is out of the bottle on this one and there can be no going back to when Oliver had to lead a double life and constantly run the risk of being found out.
Not all shows Jump the Shark, and Arrow is still worth watching but for me it has degraded from the place it started out at. Heading into Season 6 I have hopes that the show can be revived to its former greatness, but I have to admit I will be surprised if it can be.
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