By: Kyle Shultz
After what felt like a long summer break, “Arrow” is finally back on our TV screen & its sophomore premiere is one of the best episodes of the series, so far. The main plot in this episode heavily reminded me of the “Into the Woods” storyline that ran in between the “Blackest Night” series. In those issues, after a devastation hit to Star City, Oliver retreated to the inner woods that had magically grown in the middle of Star City. During his time there, we saw that a woman, Isabel Rochev, was planning on taking over Queen Industries, & had hopes to bring the “Queen” name back, not Oliver, but Robert’s. Turns out that in the comics, Oliver’s dad had an affair with Rochev when she was younger in her home country. Also Rochev in the comics is much older than her TV counterpart, played wonderfully by Summer Glau.
That’s not the only thing that I saw that reminded me of something from the comics. The whole approach with “The Hoods” character/team was very reminiscent of Frank Miller’s “Sons of The Bat” in his “The Dark Knight Returns” series. I’m sure I’m not the only person who caught that, but hey, there is no problem with borrowing a few things every once in a while! The flashbacks are seemingly to be more concise with certain scenes, all while setting up a whole bigger problem for Shado, Slade, & Oliver. It’s interesting to see that Oliver & Shado are developing a relationship, though it seems Slade might have a thing for Shado as well, which turns things even more interesting. Could Slade & Oliver betray one another sooner rather than later? Hopefully answers will be found in the future of this season or next.
I loved the fact that Oliver felt like he had to go back to the one place he never wanted to return to after Tommy’s death. The island changed Oliver in more ways than one, as we can see, & I never thought he’d go back to the island at all. If you pay attention closely though, the opening segment of Arrow’s series premiere & second season premiere, are very similar. From him running in the woods, to the shots of his legs & body being shown as blurs against the trees, to the final shot of him seeing his rescue, this time in the form of Diggle & Felicity. I personally thought it was a nice touch to film it like that.
Thea seems to be a more mature & responsible character now; really glad they are having her buckle down with running Oliver’s club & I hope they keep it that way. I thought they could’ve drawn out the whole her hating her mother situation, but it was nice to see her come around to her senses & realized what she had to do. I’m really excited with how Roy is being treated. He’s out at night fighting crime, Thea doesn’t like it, wants him to quit, he doesn’t want to because he was inspired by Arrow to be this guy.
One of the biggest teases I’ve ever seen in a show happened at the end of this episode. Roy looked like he was in the middle of patrol, talking to Thea on the phone, saw someone in trouble, told Thea he’ll call back, started fighting, & then enter Black Canary kicking all sorts of ass & then just as soon as she is about to leave, Roy asks “Where did you come from?” then she runs from the scene with a Canary cry in the background as she flees. Comic book fans everywhere screamed in excitement when that happened, at least I know I did!! Can’t wait for the proper introduction of Black Canary & to see what else we have in store for Roy Harper, the first two episodes were amazing for him, & Adam has his hands on the review for Episode 02, “Identity.”