Finally Caught Up with Arrow!

So I’ve just finished watching Season 3 of Arrow (although, once you read this it will be over a week since I finished. Blog schedules and stuff, you know.) Anyway, this means I’m all caught up with Arrow!

I enjoyed this season. I do think Season 2 was a better, but 3 was not that much worse than season 1. The major storyline that appeared in the second half of the season had some issue that I can’t seem to place my finger on. I don’t know if it’s that it was under-developed or simply far-fetched (which I realize is ridiculous to say of a show of this nature), but the series is still entertaining and engaging (*cough*my coworker told me I’m addicted*cough*). The flashback storyline was pretty interesting this time around. It was much more intriguing than last season’s flashback sequences.

The action this season was on point. As Oliver’s team expands to include more heroes, they all learn to fight and it was fun to watch them learn, fail, but then succeed. The music in Arrow was once again excellent and the special effects like last season were pretty average. The characters, once again, continued to grow, which was wonderful. Thea Queen literally stole the show. She was such a strong character this season, and you couldn’t help but love her. She became an epic fighter, emotionally and physically. And her reaction to Oliver finally telling her the truth was beautiful. Thankfully, Oliver continually became less annoying. He still has those decisions that are poorly made, but he’s become a much more likable character. (But there is one major decision he makes in the season finale that makes me want to scream at him. This guy. Honestly.)

In Season 2, Laurel Lance was incredibly annoying (she was basically a whiny damsel in distress), but she got a lot of her act together in 3, which I was pleased to see. Roy, Digs, and Felicity continue to show what amazing friends they are as they stick with Oliver through thick and thin. In fact, Roy makes an amazing decision towards the end of the season that displays just how awesome and loving he is. Ray Palmer, the alter-ego of the Atom was introduced this season, and he is an absolutely wonderful character. He’s incredibly geeky, thoughtful, and an all-round nice guy. There was romantic relationship drama in this season, but it wasn’t distracting and pointless like season one’s.

With the character improvement and other good aspects of this season, I’m sure you’d expect that I’d say I loved this season and it was my favorite, but unfortunately this is not the case. The drawback is the bland storyline(s). As I was saying earlier, there was just something wrong with them; they were definitely not up to par with the previous two seasons. They weren’t awful; they still were entertaining and engaging enough. They just could’ve used more development and interesting but not ridiculous plot. Despite this, I still enjoyed Season 3. The best parts of Season 3 were the Arrow/Flash crossovers, the Suicide Squad episodes (yes! They had the Suicide Squad), and Thea Queen. So, Season 3 was fun and not a complete waste of time.

Now that I’ve caught up with Arrow, I’m glad I watched it. As I’ve been saying for all three seasons it’s an entertaining show. It’s not amazing and not the type of show I would re-watch. Overall, it has a good, engaging, and intricate storyline. As the show progresses, the characters grow and develop, which is quite awesome. The soundtrack is well-done and the CG and special effects are good. It’s definitely a show with good entertainment value and fun to watch, especially if you like self-made superheroes.

Oh! And remember those opening sequence flashback scenes that I complained about in Season 1? They actually grew on me! They became quite useful in reminding me of past plot points from all three seasons that would prove important in the specific episode they were opening to. They were great to foreshadow with, so I kinda take back my complaints (only kinda cuz they were annoying in Season 1).

CHUCK -- "Chuck vs. Operation Awesome" Episode 304 -- Pictured: Brandon Routh as Daniel Shaw -- NBC Photo: Chris Haston
I have no complaints about Ray Palmer whatsoever. None!
Malcolm Merlyn has a pretty major role in this season, and he also has some pretty major skill to keep cheating death as he does...
Malcolm Merlyn has a pretty major role in this season, and he also has some pretty major skill to keep cheating death as he does…
Deadshot: Most likeable member of Suicide Squad. Yes, he's a killer, and yes, he's a villain, but he has his humane moments.
Deadshot: Most likeable member of Suicide Squad. Yes, he’s a killer, and yes, he’s a villain, but he has his humane moments.
Ra's Al Ghul: The main player in that kinda lame major storyline of the season.
Ra’s Al Ghul: The main player in that kinda lame major storyline of the season.
Because Thea Queen is just awesome. She really kicks some butt in this season!
Because Thea Queen is just awesome. She really kicks some butt in this season!
And I shall leave you with the one, the only, Team Arrow!
And I shall leave you with the one, the only, Team Arrow!
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Arrow: The Brave and the Bold

I never really thought that I’d review a specific episode of a TV series, but I felt the need to, so here we go! Please note that this post has a potential to contain spoilers, depending on how far you’ve watched in the shows, so be wary when reading it, but I tried not to include anything super spoiler-y. It is episode 8 of season 3 of Arrow.

A couple weeks ago, I saw about ten minutes of a random episode of the Flash, another CW show based on DC comics. I thought it was SO cheesy and lame, but at the same time I knew I couldn’t really judge the series based on watching ten minutes midway through an episode and midway through a season. Then a couple days later, I saw Barry Allen’s modern introduction to the cinematic DC universe on Arrow. The kid was adorable! (And I do mean personality although he is also a cutie. 😉 No surprise there…) It made me want to watch Flash. I haven’t gotten around to it yet, as I’d like to catch up with Arrow first, but after that, Flash is on the list.

Anyway, Arrow episode 8 of season 3 rolled around: The Brave and the Bold. It was a Arrow/Flash crossover! It probably would’ve been helpful to see the crossover contained in the beginning of Flash first for a bit of background information, but not seeing it didn’t hinder the viewing pleasure all that much. I loved it (I mean, I’m devoting a whole post specifically to this episode so…).

Barry and Oliver decide to work together to catch Digger Harkness, a mean killer whose weapon of choice is a psyched out boomerang. At first, they’re hindered by A.R.G.U.S’s involvement with the case, but soon the two are able to take over to try and catch this killer who seems to have something against Diggle’s love interest, his ex-wife, Lila.

This episode was so fun to watch. With Barry and his team on the scene, the mood of the show was a lot more light-hearted than most episodes of Arrow. They can have the tendency to be on the darker side (that includes the lighting on the show as well). Barry is younger than Oliver and hasn’t gone through all the darkness Oliver has faced. Yes, he did lose his parents, but he’s not turning a dark leaf. He’s still a peppy, positive soul. And his friends also bring some humor to the table. Cisco thinks everything going on with his friend’s new superpowers and then his friend’s epic friends is pretty amazing, and he’s not afraid to voice his awestruck opinions.

The action choreography, cinematography, acting, and storyline of this episode were all well-developed and well-executed (Plus there was no lame relationship drama in the entire episode!). I truly enjoyed watching this episode and seeing the two heroes’ teams working together and getting along. This episode makes me want to watch Flash all the more and made me a happy that I watch Arrow. 

Barry Allen, ladies and gentlemen.
Barry Allen, ladies and gentlemen.

Continuing Arrow

When I said that I planned on watching the rest of Arrow, I really meant that I was going to watch all of Season 2 in one week. Arrow, as promised by others, only got better. Season 2 was full of action and a continuation of intricate storylines and character development!

In Season 2, I didn’t dislike most of the main characters. Oliver Queen still has a lot of work until he becomes truly likable in my book, but he’s realizing he needs other people, and how not to push them away as much. In many personality aspects, he’s growing into a better person,slowly…but surely. Felicity Smoak was still awesome; you can’t really mess her up. She always knows what’s up. Digs was also cool. Roy became an important character as well. Thea Queen stole this season though. Her character transformed from a teenager only struggling to deal with conflict to a strong dynamic woman learning how to thrive amidst conflict and betrayal. There were other important characters I won’t delve into to prevent spoilers, including the introduction of Barry Allen, the lead character of Flash. 

The plots and storylines of Season 2 were just as, if not more, engaging than those of Season 1. There were a few episodes towards the end of the season where the island scenes tended to drag but other than that the episodes kept you hooked. (I mean I finished in a week!) There were many surprises and twists and the main plot of the entire season was well-developed and connected well. The romantic relationship drama I complained about in Season 1 was minimal this time around. Oliver still made some annoying decisions on that front, but the drama as a whole wasn’t detrimental to the show. There was a lot of conflict in other relationships such as familial ones, but they were integral to various plot points. The acting also improved this time around. It was great to see not only the characters grow but the actors as well!

Arrow has a good soundtrack in general, but the show also does this cool thing where it has specific music solely for scenes when certain characters interact. The CG and special effects were pretty average, but they weren’t bad. The fight scenes were well choreographed, especially in that it showed the heroes weren’t invincible. Oh yes, heroes. I love that Oliver isn’t a one-man show anymore. He works with others and together they clean up the streets of Starling City.

With its engaging storylines and good character development, Arrow definitely improved. I look forward to seeing what Season 3 may hold.

The Canary is an important player in Season 2. You might be surprised when you discover who she is...
The Canary is an important player in Season 2. You might be surprised when you discover who she is…
All Roy wants to do is be a good boyfriend to Thea, and find the Arrow...
All Roy wants to do is be a good boyfriend to Thea, and find the Arrow…
Thea Queen
Everything in Thea’s life kinda sucks. People can’t be truthful with her, and event after event just proves to be horrid.
John Diggle is a symbol of strength and intelligence. Oliver is lucky to have him on his team.
John Diggle is a symbol of strength and intelligence. Oliver is lucky to have him on his team.

Everyone in Arrow is hot!

Okay, except maybe some of the villains, but seriously the actors on the show are very attractive. The women are gorgeous and the men are very handsome. And for both genders, it’s not just the young flesh; the actors chosen to play the older characters like the parents have aged very well. The amount of attractive on the show is borderline ridiculous, however. There is no way a city can be composed of only excessively attractive people. I think Starling City should have been named Studsville.

Anyway, after high recommendations from multiple close friends, I have finally started watching Arrow. There were a few days of binge watching in the past couple weeks that allowed me to finish all 23 episodes of the first season. I enjoyed it. The story is quite entertaining and the plot is very intricate and well developed—well, actually there are two plots. Arrow is based on DC comics’ Green Arrow. I’ve never read any of them, but the show has intrigued me in that field, so hopefully at some point in the future, I shall. The story follows billionaire playboy Oliver McQueen once he returns to his home in Starling City after spending five strange years stranded on an island. His father had asked him to survive in order to “right his wrongs” as the Queen fortune is not built on fair play. Oliver takes up a vigilante identity to try and clean up the corruptness of the city. That’s the main plot, but the show also has a second major plot which follows the story of Oliver’s life on the island in the form of flashbacks. They’re actually my favorite part of the show. It’s very interesting to watch.

The acting of this show is pretty average. I can’t really complain about it much, but I also can’t say all the actors are amazing. Some of them are quite replaceable. That feeling also might be derived from the fact that I’m not a fan of many of the main characters. Some of them are so one-dimensional and really lame. I can’t believe I’m about to say this, but I do not like Oliver Queen. This surprises me as I rarely dislike the main character in a superhero film/show. I like when they have flaws as they’re only human, but Oliver is a different story. I find him to be a jerk who doesn’t place his priorities straight and is simply lucky enough to be surrounded by very loving and forgiving people. I much prefer Stranded-On-An-Island-Oliver over Back-In-Starling-City-Oliver. (Not because he was stranded but his convictions seemed stronger and you could see him learning/growing.) I have been assured by my friends that this show is full of character development, so I’m holding out hope that the people who bug me will change into more likable characters. In fact, Oliver isn’t as bad as he was at the beginning of the show, so perhaps there is still hope for him yet. There are characters I do like, though. Tommy, Felicity, and Digs are all great people.

I’m not super familiar with CW shows, but I do think they have a tendency to be more drama filled than most shows I watch (which are few to begin with so…) I’m all for romance. I watch and enjoy my fair share of romantic comedies, dramas, etc, but I found the romantic tension and drama in this first season to be a bit too much and unnecessary. It could very  well be that I just didn’t like 66% of the characters in the major love triangle, but still, I would’ve preferred more action or maybe some light on other relationships like Oliver’s familial ones as opposed to this romantic drama.

Now this is me just being lame; it has absolutely no effect on the show: but I really don’t like that the opening sequence contains flashbacks, that whole “Previously on Arrow…” thing. I never did like TV show flashbacks opening sequences like that. I suppose though, when you’re not binge-watching an entire season within two and a half weeks like me, it’s nice to have the reminders as to what was going on.

Despite all my complaints, overall, Arrow is an enjoyable and entertaining show. It often ends in cliffhangers forcing you to immediately watch the next episode and has a way of keeping you hooked. It’s that amazing storyline that keeps me coming back. Arrow is extremely engaging. There are many action sequences throughout the show and they are very well done. The special effects are good and the stuntmen really get their workout in this show. With the hope of better character development, I plan on watching the rest of Arrow.

Did I mention Oliver has an awkward amount of shirtless onscreen time? I mean, Stephen Amell has a nice body and all , but it gets a bit excessive...
Did I mention Oliver has an uncomfortable amount of shirtless onscreen time? I mean, Stephen Amell has a nice body and all , but it gets a bit excessive…And I guess I’m only promoting it by posting this particular picture. Oh well, if you end up watching the show, this is nothing, so I’m not doing any harm anyway, and if you don’t, well, here’s your one-time-look.
Tommy Merlyn is my favorite character. He's just an all-around nice guy.
Tommy Merlyn is my favorite character. He’s just an all-around nice guy. Plus, he’s not too shabby looking. ;P
Felicity Smoak is just the best. XD She's fun. She's quirky. She's awkward...It's quite fab.
Felicity Smoak is just the best. XD She’s fun. She’s quirky. She’s awkward…It’s quite fab.