Streaming On: Netflix, CW Seed


Warning: Light Spoilers for Arrow Season 5 ahead.

The CW’s Arrow was a goner before Season 5. The emerald archer felt watered down. Direction, plot, and characters were sleep-inducing. Season 4 was especially hard to follow with a lousy villain. But when all hope seemed lost, the latest season came out. It pulled Arrow out of a humdrum rabbit hole.

Season 5 Changed Everything

As a special treat, Season 5 writers brought back Ollie’s “kill when necessary” attitude. The Green Arrow borrowed some of his tricks from his hood days. This is the Ollie we screamed in joy watching. The Ollie that made everyone DVR the crap out of Arrow to keep up if we couldn’t tune in. Amell’s performance was outstanding this season. As things went on, however, it was apparent that Ollie couldn’t run the rooftops alone.

Team Arrow got a much-needed facelift this season. Along with Felicity, Curtis, and, eventually, Diggle, there are new members. Fresh recruits “Wild Dog” Rene Ramirez (Rick Gonzalez), Artemis (Madison Blaine McLaughlin), and Ragman (Joe Dinical) help further development for Team Arrow. Together with Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell), now the Green Arrow, they liberate Star City from evil.

Later, when Artemis makes a soul-crushing decision, the team is joined by Dinah Drake. She shares a name with the original Black Canary from the comics. Dinah’s addition was spectacular—she was immediately ready to fight and had a Canary Cry. Her dialogue emulated a true relationship with these characters that formed quickly. Seriously, this chick was the real deal. The villain, however, was better.

Arrow finally got another good villain. While Ra’s Al Ghul wasn’t the worst, he wasn’t Deathstroke. Damien Darhk was like a crybaby wannabe magician with control issues. These awful villains almost shut Arrow down. Season 5 cleaned that up by introducing Prometheus. The first half saw a decent villain in Tobias Church, but Prometheus was what Arrow needed. He was a cunning, psychotic wild-card who always stayed a step ahead of Ollie. Prometheus was different than others—instead of taking over Star City he wanted Ollie to suffer psychologically. His personal hate for Oliver Queen formed a deeply personal conflict between them.

But I Won’t Spoil Any Further

Arrow Season 5 is the best Arrowverse season yet. Binge it on Netflix now. What did you think? Is Arrow truly back?

– Leo Rydel
Follow me on Twitter @LeoRydel