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'Arrow' Season 3 Premiere Review: 'The Calm'



Arrow finally returned for season 3 in what seemed like ages ago and fans were rewarded with thrills, romance and a shocking ending. More on that later but be mindful there will be spoilers. Once the sole comic book based show on TV, Arrow is the veteran now amid an onslaught of new and upcoming series. Even on the CW, The Flash was welcomed to the network's highest ratings in five years. Yet, the show based on DC Comics' Green Arrow is still the best.
 
The old gang is back and better than ever as the opening action sequence epitomizes the best stunt work on television. Ollie, Diggle and Roy are chasing down a semi full of stolen weapons and with the helpful guidance of Felicity via satellite. It's so great to finally see Roy as Arsenal(?) in his signature red costume and fighting along side Ollie in his contrasting green duds. Fans knew this day would come and finally the comic book pair are on screen taking down bad guys side by side. 



Things seem to be going well in Starling City as the Arrow gets recognition from Captain Lance in a public ceremony citing his contributions to saving the city. Ollie isn't the CEO of Queen Consolidated but finds happiness with his team and realizes Felicity may be the one to get serious with. Seeing Diggle as an expectant father has him pining for a love of his own now that he's seemingly in a happier place. 

Online shippers have long extolled #Olicity as their call to arms to finally, and rightfully in their eyes, see Ollie and Felicity together romantically. They got their wish as he invited her to dinner, a 'real' dinner, and it may have been the most honest sincere conversation they've ever had. He expressed his insecurities and divulged his apprehension in getting together. 

The writers have always balanced the drama and action with true emotions surrounding the characters' relationships and in this particular scene we witness Ollie's growth as a man as he lays it out for Felicity. This was probably one of the most poignant discussions on the show. And as lovely as the moment was it was short lived.



The life of a superhero is filled with danger and of course a target for villains. In The Calm Vertigo (Peter Stormare) reemerges as a new villain looking to take over the drug trade and launches a missile into the Italian restaurant after tagging Ollie with a tracking device during a tussle earlier. Bloody and bruised but alive the pair survive the attack but Ollie realizes despite loving her it just isn't safe to be in a relationship. The #Olicity crowd were none too pleased. 

Going after Vertigo will take some teamwork but the attack also opened Ollie's eyes to not only the danger posed to any love interest but to that of soon-to-be-daddy Diggle. Despite angry protest Diggle has to sit this one out and take care of his 9-month pregnant wife. In a fantasy world of comic book heroes Ollie is making some real-life logical choices. 

Those sad for Felicity need not worry as a possible suitor emerges in the form of former movie Superman, Brandon Routh, as Ray Palmer who's vying to take over Queen Consolidated (and rename Starling City as Star City). They have some instant chemistry as Palmer is affable, intelligent and charming.


Comic book fans know that Dr. Palmer also becomes superhero 'The Atom' capable of shrinking down to the size of, you guessed it, an atom while retaining super strength. If there's one thing the showrunners aren't afraid of is bringing on characters from the DC universe. They give the fans exactly what they want and that's familiar heroes and villains in live-action. Especially if they've never been on screen before. 

Routh had the misfortune of sorts of playing Superman, very well mind you, in Bryan Singer's poorly scripted Superman Returns in 2006. It set back the franchise seven years but Routh's talents shined through despite the incoherent script. It's a delight to have him in the DC Comics fold with another chance of charming audiences as another superhero.

What episode of Arrow would be complete without a flashback subplot? This time he's on the run in Japan but can't escape the watchful eye of Amanda Waller who usually gets what she wants. He's become her reluctant recruit under the supervision of Tatsu Yamashiro (Rila Fukushima), otherwise known as Katana, and her husband Maseo.

Probably the most polarizing character over the last season has been Laurel. She's been through a lot and has divided fans but coming out of her angry, addiction-addled phase she's found professional success and peace. Sister Sara makes an appearance just in time to aid Ollie in subduing Vertigo in an exciting rooftop fight. She and Laurel share a touching moment of genuine sisterly love and say their goodbyes.

Cate Cameron/The CW

Suddenly, someone calls out to her and shoots her with four arrows to the gut. She falls off the roof and lands not too far from Laurel. Laurel cradles her in her arms wrecked with anguish. Who killed Sara? We think we know. Considering her vital role on Team Arrow and what she meant to the Lance after being thought dead the consequences could be devastating. Selfishly and logically for fans, this could be the catalyst that leads Laurel to take over the mantle of Black Canary. 

Like a fine-tuned exotic sports car, Arrow revs up the third season with exciting action, heartfelt emotions and a game changing event. It's still a fanboy/girl's dream of a series that brings the comic book world to life on a weekly basis. With two seasons under their belt season three is off to a confident and intriguing start. Arrow is still the cream of the superhero crop. 

Check out scenes from next week's episode: 'Sara'


Comments

  1. Great review!


    Thought the episode was great all around. I just feel that Roy rubs me the wrong way. His suit is cool and all but I am not his biggest fan. Maybe that will change during the course of the season. While I think Felicity is certainly the best choice we know that it is sometimes better to have the actually tension than it is for them to be together. I really liked Ray Palmer enjoyed Routh in Superman and also on Chuck so glad he could make his way back.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks, Chris. There's something going on with Roy. Either he's worried about Thea or he might be turning to the darkside or wants to go on his own. hard to tell. Felicity has some better suitors down the line, Ray and Barry. Routh was great casting.

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