TV Show Review: Arrow, Season 5

Details: Airs on the CW. Twenty-three episodes this season at an hour a piece, including commercials.

At this point in my life, if there’s a superhero in the show, I will watch it. I can’t help it. I just like superhero stuff and I’m too curious to do otherwise. So after the last season of Arrow, I wasn’t expecting much this season. I didn’t enjoy the last season. Fortunately, while this season does make a few of the same narrative mistakes as last season, I generally enjoyed it.

In this season, Oliver realizes he cannot fight crime on his own and attempts to assemble a team. He must also contend with the new big bad, Prometheus, a masked archer similar to Oliver. In the flashback plot line, Oliver goes to Russia and joins up with the Russian mafia.

This show, like shows like Supernatural, has set its formula in stone. You know what’s going to happen. Introduction of a new big bad villain, main plot line, flashback plot line, a new love interest, some Oliver Felicity crap, etc. We know what this show is supposed to look like. The real question is that within that framework, will the subject matter be good? This season, it was good.

The main good points to me were the introduction of new characters. There were lots of new allies for Oliver this season, most of them interesting. Unfortunately, there were also some jarring absences this season that had less to do with the story and more to do with real world contract negotiations and personal issues I imagine. A lot of long time characters, like Thea, just up and disappear and reappear for a lot of episodes for no reason. They really need to do a better job with scheduling on this show.

But I did enjoy seeing Drago from Rocky IV show up as well as all the new teammates. We’ve already spent four seasons learning about Oliver. Why not spend time learning about new characters and introducing new heroes from the DC Universe?

The primary draw of this season was Prometheus, Oliver’s new big villain. It wasn’t even that he had an interesting back story or some new ability, it was the plot twists. Every step of the way there was a new plot twist on top of a new plot twist. Oliver never really had control of the situation the entire season. Even though this was a little cheesy in that Prometheus had one of the finest sets of plot armor I’d ever seen, it still made for good watching.

Overall, I enjoyed this season and look forward to the next one. Finally, the flashback plot lines are over. I always felt those were kind of played out after the first few seasons. The finale also ended on a big cliffhanger and I’m looking forward to how the writers resolve it.

Score: 6.8/10

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