TV Show Review: Arrow, Season Five Episodes One Through Three

Arrow returns to the CW for its fifth season and it already feels better than last season. Arrow, for lack a better description, is pretty much Batman with arrows. Sticking closer to the street level, crime fighting aspect of the show is largely why this episode feel so much better.

At the end of last season, they just defeated the magic using Damian Dark and saved the city. This season begins with the Arrow squad all but disbanded (except Felicity) and Oliver on his own again, balancing his time between fighting crime and being the mayor of Star City. New gangsters and criminals move in and Oliver must build a new team of crime fighting allies in order to oppose the new enemies in his city.

There are a lot of new faces this season and they each bring new life to the series. Some bring comic relief, some bring a little more drama. I won’t go into the new team members because there hasn’t been enough episodes to explore each one. However, you can be sure that each will get an episode for the purpose of character development.

What I didn’t like was the formulaic stuff. New mystery villain, shoots arrows. Maybe the big reveal will be something more rewarding and less cheesy than having someone die and then having another misleading red herring every episode that someone is going to die.

Score: 6.8/10 Good start to the season. Looking forward to seeing more team dynamics play out, maybe some scenes reminiscent of what Joss Whedon has done.

TV Show Review: Supernatural, Season Twelve Episode One, “Keep Calm Carry On”

Supernatural… is one of my guiltiest pleasures. I am not the target demographic; I am not a fourteen year old girl. I am quite the opposite actually. However, after years of watching this show, from the very first episode even, I still enjoy this series despite the campy-ness present. I think it’s because I’ve gotten used to the format of the show.

As with many shows, there’s a few over arching plots throughout the season, but what I love most about this show are the standalone episodes and monsters of the week. Many popular new series have a long seasons where every episode is relevant to the overarching plot and which are meant to be binged watched. In this sort of climate, it’s nice to just be able to tune into a show with no idea what’s going on in the season, and still have a good time.

If you haven’t been following the series, God and the Darkness made up and the world was saved. In return, the Darkness brought Sam and Dean’s mom back to life. Additionally, the British arm of the Men of Letters showed up and kidnapped Sam. Not much else happens in this episode as Dean, Castiel and Dean’s mom try to track down Sam. Oh, and Sam get’s tortured a bunch.

It’s a fine premiere and pretty much stick to the Supernatural formula, which is really what we want to see. What I really enjoy is that this is a very street level bad guy, who isn’t necessarily a bad guy. They aren’t fighting Death, or God, or the Darkness, or Satan. It’s just some British people and there’s something nice that it’s just an episode that deals with ground level characters. All that fighting omnipotent entities really took away from the weaker baddies they normally fight.

Score: 6/10

TV Show Review: The Flash, Season Three Episode One and Two

My goodness Barry, you done screwed up the whole damn universe. The Flash returns and Barry has screwed up every damn thing. Unfortunately, by the end of episode two, most of the status quo return and most things are back to normal. It was still an enjoyable two episodes though.

In case you’re not caught up, at the end of last season, Barry had a nervous breakdown and went back in time, saved his parents, and changed everything. I could go further into what went on, but all that really matters is that by the end of the episode, Barry goes back in time, lets his parents die, and hopes that everything goes back to normal.

In the second episode, we learn that not everything has gone back to normal. Some changes that have occurred are the following:

  • Iris and her dad don’t get along. They make up by the end of the episode.
  • Cisco is depressed his brother died. He gets over it by the end of the episode.
  • The alternate timeline that was created because of Barry still exists somewhat and some people are retaining memories from both timelines.
  • Diggle’s child (from Arrow) is now a boy. Diggle had a daughter before.
  • Draco Malfoy (at least the actor who played Draco Malfoy) now shares office space with Barry and is another forensic crime person. Draco also hates Barry and you can almost hear the words “Potter” whenever he says Barry’s name.
  • Caitlin has ice powers now, but she hasn’t told anyone.

I think those are the most important parts. Oh, there’s a new villain for Barry and gang to fight all season.

Overall, I enjoyed the episode very much. It’s always fun to see what ifs play out and how the characters could be portrayed differently. In fact, I would be perfectly happy if they toned down the crime fighting and turned this into a show a la Quantum Leap. Barry could chase some villain through time and parallel dimensions or something like that.

Score: 7/10 Nice opening episode. I’m not looking forward to seeing more of Alchemy, the new villain. I hope they do more universe jumping and time travel instead.

TV Show Review: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season Four Episode One

Agents of SHIELD returns again for it’s fourth seasons and I am very hyped. This first episode reinforces the idea that Marvel’s next big initiative is towards the magical side of the Marvel universe and to promote the upcoming Doctor Strange movie with magic stuffs. I’m a little worried considering how the Inhumans movie kind of disappeared, but here’s hoping we see more of the mystical side of Marvel.

As for the episode, we start where we left off. S.H.I.E.L.D. is an official government organization, the events of Captain America: Civil War have transpired and enhanced persons must register with the government, and Coulson is no longer the director of S.H.I.E.L.D. Daisy/Sky/Quake has gone rogue (as spies often do) and is chasing bad guys on her own. This is where she comes across the Ghost Rider. For those familiar with the comics, this is not the motorcycle riding, Nicholas Cage iteration. This is the more contemporary Roberto Reyes version who drives a car. Most of the episode is spent with Coulson tracking Daisy and Daisy tracking the Ghost Rider. This episode was simply meant as a reintroduction back into this universe and the state of S.H.I.E.L.D.

There is a big fight scene between the Ghost Rider and Daisy which was pretty cool. Unfortunately, Daisy seems to have been powered down since she cannot use her powers without causing fractures to her bones. Boo. I liked all that power she had.

Score: 6.5/10 Fun episode. I’m looking forward to seeing more supernatural stuff and learning more about this Ghost Rider.

TV Show Review: South Park Season Twenty Episode One

I think the biggest problem with the last season of South Park was that the subject matter felt dated. I don’t know if there was a delay or if they just took too long writing episodes, but last season was not good. The issues touched upon occurred way before the relevant episode, leaving to a lot of episodes which I just did not care about. One of South Park’s main draws is to touch upon controversies that are immediately relevant. If the first episode of this season is any indication, then South Park is back on track and back on schedule because all the issues addressed were recent and very funnily addressed.

There were a ton of issues touched upon here, such as the presidential election, trolling on the internet, kneeling at the national anthem in protest, and J.J. Abrams constant rebooting of everything. What I love about South Park is its commentary on how ridiculous current events are and to take those events and dial them up to eleven in terms of ridiculousness. It was a really funny episode and I’m looking forward to how plot threads planted in this episode will play out in the rest of the season.

Score: 7.7/10