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– by Mark Cook

Arrow returns with its sixth installment in the series.  What results will viewers find from last season’s finale?  Who survived?  How?  Where does Oliver and the team go from here?  Read on to find out:

(Photo Courtesy of The CW)

Five Months Later — The episode begins with viewers getting a glimpse of a couple survivors from Lian Yu.  We see Spartan and Wild Dog taking down Alex Foust on a pier.  Meanwhile Mr. Terrific is nearby in order to disable a missile that was launched.  As they return to the base it is revealed that Felicity is alive as well…(great).  Were there other surviving members?  It seems the majority of Team Arrow survived as Dinah Lance makes her appearance  at the police department.  Next we are treated to a very alive Lance who looks like he wants to take up the bottle again due to…Black Siren? Well it wouldn’t be because of a tragic loss on the island seeing as all of Team Arrow has survived…as well as Black Siren.  Why bother having the entire island blow up if pretty the majority of the individuals on it survive?  They could have created great story lines from the deaths of certain characters, or introduced other new characters, yet they decided to kill any type of real fallout from last season’s finale by allowing so many people to return.  An entire island was blown up…come on now.  Anyways, the return of the team hasn’t come without its issues.  Diggle seems to have lost his aim and Wild Dog got a collapsed lung in the field.

Flashbacks / Casualties — Well, I guess they aren’t totally doing away with the flashbacks. Granted they only went back to the end of the previous season in order to slowly show viewers how certain members survived the island.  The main survivor that I care about is Slade, of course. Viewers do find out that there were a few casualties: Thea (who isn’t dead, but in a coma) and Samantha as most people predicted.  I feel that both of these were anticlimactic due to both characters being absent from the show for extended periods of time. What I used to enjoy so much about Arrow was how unpredictable it was. I never knew what exactly was coming (remember Slade killing Oliver’s mom?).  Now I feel like the show has become the opposite.  Most of us knew Thea and Samantha would be the casualties, and it really lessens the impact of a season finale.

 

(Photo Courtesy of The CW.)

Father / Son Issues — William clearly isn’t happy with Oliver, or to be living with him.  He even calls him by his first name.  William keeps having nightmares and tells Oliver that he fears “the bad man”, which he then points out is Oliver.  The role of paternity looks to be the secondary theme throughout the season with Oliver/ William, Rene and his daughter, Lance/Laurel (Black Siren), and Slade/his son.  The best part of the show was Slade’s conversation with Oliver regarding them living in two worlds, and how that can’t last forever.

 

(Photo Courtesy of The CW.)

Black Siren — Yet another survivor from Lian Yu, Black Siren is now terrorizing the police and comes into a confrontation with the team.  I don’t enjoy the character of Black Siren.  Yes, she is a contrast to Black Canary, but I just don’t find her character very interesting.  Maybe I am just jaded by the fact that so many people made it off the island (can you tell this bothers me?). Lance shot Black Siren back on the island in order to save Dinah, which puts him back in his “I’ve lost my daughter” phase for the third time now (or is it the fourth?  I’ve lost count).  This is the supposed reason she has returned, but she ends up stealing one of Mr. Terrific’s T-Spheres.

The show ends with the twist that somehow a picture of Oliver in his Green Arrow costume, without his mask and hood, was given to the press.  While this seemed like a good twist for a second, this isn’t the first time Oliver has been questioned about being the Green Arrow.  Honestly, I wasn’t impressed with the episode.  Readers know how strong of an advocate of Arrow I am, but it was disappointing.  The “suspense” is in how they all survived the island, which isn’t really that appealing.  The suspense for me in the off season was in wondering who would survive, now that pretty much everyone has, it really doesn’t seem as interesting how they survived.  Also, Oliver being questioned about being the Green Arrow seems like a rehash of past seasons.  Yes, he is mayor now, but I didn’t find anything fresh, or very interesting in the episode as a whole.  Maybe next week.

What did you think of the return of Arrow?  Does this season have potential, or are they beating a dead horse?  Leave your comments in the usual spot, and thanks for reading!

Arrow returns next Thursday at 9 p.m. on The CW.

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