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Saturday, August 19, 2017

TNH Roundtables: End of Season Review - Arrow

With the season now wrapped, some of the TNH Staff decided to sit down and discuss the shows and our thoughts on each series individually as well as the network's franchise as a whole. What are they doing right and what are they doing wrong? Where have they been and where could they be going? We are re-visiting this now to what has changed. Make sure you read our End of Season Review and continue on t check out some of our analysis' and theories in the 7th of this 9 part series and then let us know what your thoughts were in the comments below.


Arrow


Arrow Season 5 (DC Entertainment)
           Arrow is the show that started the revolutionary shared universe of superhero shows on The CW.  Something so astounding that many have dubbed the "Arrowverse". For fans of the show however, the entire run has had its high and it lows.  This is a show that suffered from a third season drop as many do.  The fourth season, however, showed hope at a possible rebound in the future and several months ago we took a look at the current season during the mid way break.  We tried to determine if the show could return to its former glory by the end of the season.  The conclusion we came to was that it had the possibility to do so but at that time was not quite there yet.  So today we look at the second half of the season and the season as a whole and determine whether or not the fifth season of Arrow can be compared to either of the first two seasons.

Now that we have seen Dinah progress more, do like where they have gone with Dinah and do you think that they are succeeding with Curtis.

Michael - Dinah gives me hope that we'll have a worthy representation of the Black Canary character as opposed to what was done w/ Laurel aka "Captain Buckles."  I'm curious to see if the actress playing Dinah goes through the effort of proper combat training the same way Stephen Amell has done as opposed to relying too heavily on stunt replacement actors like the rest of the women on the show have done.  As far as Curtis, his character is one I'm not AS familiar with from the original comics, so I'm kinda enjoying going into his character blind.

Marlon - I love Dinah's character.  I think the best part about this version of the Black Canary so far is the fact that she is a Meta as she should be.  The fact that she can hold her own in a fight better than any previous Canary so far is also a major plus. Curtis is a cool nerd, but I hate him as Mr. Terrific. His role is better suited without a vigilante identity.

John - I like where they have gone with Dinah and Curtis.  Dinah is a total badass and Curtis is on his way up there.  I'm looking forward to seeing their progression continue into next season.

Jack - Dinah is probably my favorite character on the show at the moment I'm looking forward to seeing her continue down the Black Canary path and see her wear a costume.  If it's anything like the portrayal the costume will be far better than any before it.  Curtis was a character that took a long time for me to not cringe at.  I still cringe.  The character still has a lot of potential, but has yet to find a solid footing and direction.  We have yet to see an arsenal of gadgets and fluidity using them beyond a few select instances.  The character seems to be used only as an "ice maker" who interrupts dialogue awkwardly and just takes away from it entirely, as well as, a political mouth piece.  I would like to see the character gain some significance much like Dinah or Wild Dog, otherwise move over for Ragman.

This season has seen a sharp decline in the amount of time spent on"Olicity",  but we now know that it is not completely dead.  Do you think this was a wise move on their part, and do you think that they have properly executed the subplot this season?  Do you think that they can have this subplot and execute it properly in the future?  Are you in favor or against the decision not to bury it forever?  What tips would you give the show runners and writers on how to go about this subplot in the future?

Michael - I'm glad they moved on from it.  As someone who was a "shipper" I can also admit that, for me, I never wanted it to be anything more than a fantasy.  That being said, the way the show chose to end the relationship in Season 4 was, for lack of a better word, hypocritical.  I'd rather we moved on from the relationship [altogether].  I much preferred it before they were together because of the hilarious sexual tension and awkward comments.  Frankly, the quality of characterization for Felicity has declined considerably since she and Oliver got together.  It might be time for her to go and Curtis can take her place.

Marlon - The show needs some form of 'Olicity' to give each hero hope that they can fight crime and still find love.

John - I'm glad they didn't focus on 'Olicity', the show was starting to drag on and this season was better off without all of the drama.  They can continue the plot, but the scale back was absolutely necessary.

Jack - It was a necessary move.  If they want to continue that relationship at a smaller scale it might work, but I think it's time to move on from it.  I would personally put Dinah and Oliver together next season.

How do you stand on this Artemis portrayal and plot?  If you were to have written this character's plot, how would you have gone about it?

Marlon - I never liked her.  The betrayal being used to break down our hero was much needed.

John - The Artemis plot played out well, but questions still remain that need to be answered.  Hopefully next season delves into her story in more detail.

Michael - I'm a little disappointed with how Artemis was handled, but I;m thrilled to see the character involved in the show; She was one of my favorite characters in 'Young Justice'  and to see her used as a main character with this much impact on the plot is fantastic.

Jack - Okay, the plot so far has seemed like a gimmick but a necessary gimmick.  My problem is, why make a major character for a gimmick, and for that matter, why makes such a character as Artemis, and not make her properly.  This is a character with a great back story and a great personality, and this show just shit all over that.  This is by far my biggest gripe of the season.

What are your thoughts on how they handled Prometheus?

Marlon - Prometheus / Chase was a great bad guy choice; execution was even better.  I would have liked to see a few more fight scenes between him and Oliver if I could change anything.

John - Prometheus was amazing.  The way he was always 10 steps ahead, he knew what the team was going to do before they themselves did.  Loved the plot, loved the character, the season was great because of it.

Michael - I thought Prometheus was handled as well as could be.  He's not one of my favorite villains and I thought he was an odd choice at first, but given all the behind-the-scenes mishaps with season 4 and the effect it had on the plot, it made sense to have a more grounded villain for a change.

Jack - I think Prometheus was a great villain and pretty much the biggest plus for this seasons quality.  The acting was what put this character over the top.  The writing didn't hurt it though did it?


Click Here to Read 'TNH Roundtable: Mid-Season Reviews - Arrow
Do you think Arrow pulled off a successful season and redeemed itself: why or why not?

Marlon - This show will always rise and fall with viewers, but if they keep doing what they have been doing as of late they will be okay.

Michael - This season was, without a doubt, the redemption of Arrow.  Season 3 was a total bust and Season 4 was a step in the right direction that suffered at the hands of contract negotiations and backhanded business deals.  Season 5 got us back to what we loved about the show in Seasons 1 & 2.

Jack - I think the show was almost on par with the first two seasons and heading in a better direction, but still has a lot of work to put in to correct situations that still remain and must stop messing things up.  Was it a success?  Yes.  Did it redeem itself?  Not yet.

What are you high and low points of the finale, and what do you think about how they executed it?  Any tips or takeaways as to if you were to have handled it?

John - I really enjoyed the season final.  It had me on the edge of my seat and the ending blew me away.  High points would be Slade's redemption, low point would be the Talia V Nyssa fight; I thought it was anticlimactic, it could have been an amazing fight.

Michael - My high point was the way Slade was utilized.  My lows are the fact that we're still dealing with the island and the fact that we're now making a lead character out of Oliver's son.  That's a plot line that I could've done without, to begin with, and has done nothing but cause for messy writing ever since.

Jack - The high was Slade's redemption and the fact that Prometheus went all in all the way until the end.  Low point was Artemis still having no development on this plot they have going.  I enjoyed the Nyssa V Talia fight but i do think it should have been done better with two heads of the league going at one another but they did multiple fights at once taking away from it.  The only problem with this cliffhanger is anyone who watches any television knows they will not kill the entire cast.

What do you think Arrow needs to do in Season 6 to stay on the right path to the quality we once knew?

Marlon - I'd like to see Oliver struggle with what happened to the team on the island and his choice, as well as, see how everyone got off the island.  That would be the first step for me.

John - To continue the success of season 5 into season 6, they need to concentrate more on the action and intrigue, less on the relationships and emotional side.

Michael - Lose Felicity, bring an end to the constant post-Olicity awkwardness.  Have Oliver's son and baby mama go into WITSEC or something and get them out of the show.  Rene/Wild Dog needs new writers because his character has become so one-note, despite the great story arc involving his daughter.  And bring in a villain that can challenge Oliver on a mental level, not just physical or tactical.

Jack - I can handle the emotional side and relationships so as long as they are not so forefront and dramatic.  I also think Prometheus covered the mental aspect of a villain.  However, I do think that the time for Felicity to go has come. Send her to Legends and have her stand on her own again. Curtis needs to be more than a political agenda and Rene needs more dimension as well. Ragman needs focus in general. The problem with ragman is that they botched his origin story. Get canary right this time and stop botching Origins. If there must be a relationship make it Dinah Drake and Oliver, but do it long after Felicity is gone or do one last Olicity drama and have this be the end. I think Oliver needs to face a crime lord on the streets of Star City and have this big bad bring together a rogues gallery of villains of which Oliver has never seen before. More twists, intrigue, and mystery. More stakes. Kill this bullshit version of Artemis.


In conclusion, the fifth season of Arrow has shown us that the show runners have realized their mistakes in the past and are working vigilantly to correct them, as well as, bring us the quality that once was.  They have yet to get there, but they are right on the brink of it and the sixth season is a must watch.  Can they pull off a season for the ages?  Quite possibly.  Join us next year for the Mid Season review to see if they have been able to accomplish the tasks that lie ahead.



Stay Tuned for our next installment of this Roundtable Review series where we give our End of Season Thoughts on Supergirl.

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*Questions originally recorded in June of 2017.*


Written and Edited by, Jack Flowers. Contributions from Marlon Ortega, John Ayre, and Michael Shea

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