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It’s season 4 time! We are incredibly excited to be back at for another season of Arrow. The events of season 4 episode 1, “Green Arrow”, already give us plenty to discuss and speculate on in anticipation of a jam-packed season. We already got a crossover, we already got introduced to the Big Bad, we already plucked Olicity out of their blissful suburbia. With as much we were shown, we were given just as many questions.
Raise your hand if you thought the opening sequence was some sort of strange parallel universe created by the events at the end of The Flash last season. We all admit that this felt odd, for it being an Arrow episode and all, but at the same time it was interesting to see the contrast of Oliver and Felicity’s adjustment to suburban bliss. It seemed like Oliver was so happy, so free, that he was unable to see how bored Felicity was in that setting. Oliver has fully given himself to this life, of discovering who he is after being The Arrow. But Felicity didn’t have that same, definitive end to her involvement with Team Arrow, so it’s easier for me to see why their mindsets are so different.
Since this is a television show in its fourth year of life, one that has significant lore behind it, I’m not so naive to think that a relationship like this one will last. I’m looking for good drama, good conflict, good growth, and to see the story take these characters in a believable direction. We speculate a lot in this podcast over who is in the grave in the flash forward at the end of the episode, and my reason for that is the same for this situation. I’m a fan of good storytelling, so if this story unravels in such a way that it makes sense to draw these characters apart, I’m a fan of that. I’m a fan of authenticity!
There are subtle points of conflict in Oliver and Felicity’s relationship, and subtle nods to moments of inaction (i.e. Oliver hiding the ring instead of taking the plunge at the end) that point to a season ahead that seems better fleshed out than the previous one. And the same goes for the flashbacks. Even though we haven’t seen much, yet, there’s an inexplicable feeling I have (maybe it’s just hope!) that the direction they’re heading by sending Oliver back to the island has a greater promise of delivering a more substantial story.
If you’re new to the podcast, my fellow hosts and I were a bit underwhelmed by the flashbacks from last season. This is not to say they weren’t well done, but the story lacked much of what made the first two seasons’ flashbacks so phenomenal. The hero of the past became the villain of the present, and the villain of the past came down to being a biological weapon that was brought back into play in the present.
But now Oliver has been volunteered for a mission by Amanda Waller and sent back to Lian Yu to “assess the threat” and “report back”. Before he’s kicked out of the plane, he’s given almost no information on what he’s supposed to do. We don’t know much, but we have seen some incredible drama on the island, so my hopes are pretty high.
And I briefly mentioned this above, and we do address this on the podcast, but the end of the episode gives us a huge peek into a tragedy that’s coming for Oliver. The Shadow went speculation-crazy on this scene! Podcast Overlord and I weren’t able to do quite as much, but we know that many of you probably have great theories or predictions surrounding this very short, very intriguing scene. Why was Barry late? Who died? Who does Oliver want to kill?
My thought, or theory, was that this scene will be part of the segue from the winter finales of Arrow and The Flash into the premiere of Legends of Tomorrow. What I am willing to speculate on, therefore, is the purpose of this death. I think it will be something that inspires Oliver and/or Barry to form a new band of heroes. But WHO?! I guess we’ll just have to keep watching to find out!
Season 4 Episode 2 “The Candidate”
** Featuring the Arrow debut of Mr. Terrific, aka Curtis Holt!
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