Everyone know that superhero movies are all the rage right now. The Marvel Cinematic Universe is booming with a new installment, Guardians of the Galaxy, coming in just a little over a month, and we can hardly go a day without hearing some new rumor about Zack Snyder’s upcoming superhero film Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, which isn’t due for another two years. But the superhero craze isn’t limited to just the big screen. It’s leaking onto television as well.
TV shows based on superheroes or superhero universes are everywhere. Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD debuted least year with a big splash. This year alone, we’ll be seeing a new show from Marvel (Agent Carter) and three new shows from DC (Flash, Constantine, and Gotham). And next year, Marvel will be releasing its first Netflix original show, Daredevil. But before all of these shows, there was already a superhero TV show thriving on The CW. It’s called Arrow, and it’s the subject of Stuff Devon Likes this week.
I had heard of the Green Arrow before, but I didn’t know anything about him. His popularity pales in comparison to other DC heroes like Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman. But I knew that The CW had chosen to make a show about him and that it was proving pretty popular. I was skeptical of the show at first because of the network that it’s on, but I stumbled across the DVD one day at Target and was so intrigued by the description that I just had to give it a try.
Arrow tells the story of Oliver Queen, a young billionaire who spends five years marooned on a remote island after his father’s ship, the Queen’s Gambit, unexpectedly sinks off the coast of China. The series begins with Oliver’s discovery and subsequent return home and tells the story of his transformation from a cocky playboy to a vigilante bent of righting the wrongs of his father and saving his city from the corruption that threaten to destroy it.
Along the way, Oliver tries to navigate his new life at home, his new place at his father’s company, and his relationship with his family, including his mother, younger sister, and surprise stepfather. He also has some personal wrongs to right, specifically with Laurel, his ex-girlfriend whose sister joined him on the Queen’s Gambit when it crashed, and Laurel’s father Detective Lance. Other important characters include Oliver’s best friend Tommy, his bodyguard Diggle and his tech-savvy friend Felicity Smoke.
But the show isn’t just about what happens to Oliver after he returns home. Most episodes switch back and forth between current events and flashbacks to what happened to Oliver during the five years he was on the island. Usually, the two stories are related in some way, and revelations about what happened on the island have important implications for Oliver once he’s returned to Starling City. It turns out Oliver didn’t just sit around for five years on the island. He had companions and went through a lot while he was there, resulting in a very different Oliver than the one who left five years before.
By day, a businessman and reckless billionaire. By night, a vigilante who dons and green hood and puts arrows in bad guys. The story pretty much writes itself. But as Oliver tries to save his city, he discovers more about his father’s misdeeds and just how close to the brink of collapse his city is. He enlists help, makes allies, and also creates a few enemies along the way. The show has amazing plot twists that take a long time to play out but are certainly worth the wait, and that’s what I love to see in a TV show.
Arrow will begin it third season in the fall, and it’s even become popular enough to get its own spin-off, Flash, which obviously centers around Barry Allen, also known as The Flash. I’m getting close to the end of season two, and I’m very excited about where this show is headed. Season one was great, but it was ultimately just and introduction and a setup for some absolutely fantastic plot twists in season two. And I’m sure we can expect to see more next year.
The show has been extremely successful, so I imagine that it has the potential to last a long time. I think five season would probably be ideal because that would give the creators enough time to tell us the full story of Oliver’s five years on the island and what happens in the following five years. It may last longer than that, but then it would lose the parallel structure, and I don’t think that would be as cool. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see what The CW does with it.
Regardless, Arrow is a really cool show that you should definitely check out. It’s got action, romance, moral dilemmas, and even a little business drama, all wrapped up in an awesome superhero show. What more could you ask for? Check out Arrow on Netflix or DVD, and get caught up before Arrow season three and its spinoff Flash debut on The CW in the fall. Thank you guys for reading. Have a great weekend, and I’ll see you Tuesday!