The CW’s aim is true with Arrow
So, did the premiere of ‘Arrow’ hit the spot? You bet it did! With four million viewers tuning in to last night’s pilot episode, it may be safe to say that The CW has a bonafide hit on its hands.
Is it just me or is it becoming increasingly harder to distinguish superheroes from one another these days? There’s simply so many out there that one is bound to come across a super-powered character that shares the same amazing abilities with another. Perhaps that’s what makes the ones without powers all the more special. Growing up, my favorite was Batman. However, after taking a gander at The CW’s latest hour-long drama, that may be about to change.
Enter Arrow, the network’s newest action thriller inspired by the Green Arrow series published by DC Comics, you know, the folks that get on Marvel’s nerves. It’s common knowledge amongst my friends that I’m a nerd, but I have to admit that I didn’t know much about the Green Arrow until Justin Hartley brought the character to vivid life in Smallville. The latest version is quite a departure from the warm heroic feeling of yesteryear. Instead of Hartley, we’re given Stephen Amell, a relative newcomer with sharp looks and a freakishly abnormal six-pack. This version of Green Arrow isn’t afraid to kill villains. On the contrary, I think he murdered at least five baddies in last night’s pilot episode alone. That’s saying something. So, how was the show’s debut?
Well, you don’t have to worry. The story is actually as solid as Amell’s abs. Here’s what we know — Amell is billionaire Oliver Queen, who recently returned to his hometown of Starling City after being shipwrecked on an island off the coast of nowhere. After learning that the city has become corrupt, and wanting to settle a few scores with a few baddies, Oliver decides to right a few wrongs … and he’s doing so with a bow and bunch of high-tech arrows. Needless to say, I was impressed. While I’ll admit that the story is nothing unique, it did manage to keep me entranced from beginning to end. The hour was action-packed and I enjoyed getting snippets of Oliver’s past on the island.
I also enjoyed the character himself. I’d never heard of Amell until just recently. Sorry, I gave up on HBO’s Hung halfway through the second season so I didn’t get to see him make his appearance in the third. While I’m sure there are some fans that prefer Hartley’s interpretation of the character, I found Amell to be a breath of fresh air. I could certainly believe him as a ruthless superhero. His action scenes were spot on and I think he has the millionaire playboy thing down pat. It kind of reminds me of Bruce Wayne. I know the writers are going for a Dark Knight vibe, but maybe it would be wise not to make it such a strong carbon copy.
It certainly helps to know that the supporting characters were diverse and just as compelling. I’m intrigued by the fact that it was Oliver’s mother who hired the bad guys to rough him up halfway through the episode, and I also love that the detective on Oliver’s tail is the father of the chick he was busy getting it on with on the yacht before the storm hit. Speaking of which, the chick’s sister, Dinah Laurel Lance, played convincingly by Katie Cassidy, was a real treat. All superhero aficionados know, that in the comics, Lance is the alluring Black Canary. While I doubt we’ll be seeing her superhero alter-ego on the show, I did find Cassidy to add a touch of spice to the episode. Her love triangle with Oliver and Tommy is sure to be compelling. After all, what’s a superhero tale without an elusive love interest?
If there were any flaws to be found, I’d say it was with some of the special effects. Keep in mind that the show is using a CW budget, so things like a yacht being caught in a murderous storm look a little weak. Then again, maybe I’m just being nitpicky. The pilot was awesome, and I’m definitely looking forward to next week’s installment. I’ve been looking for a new show to follow this season. I’m glad I found it.
I’ll be watching Arrow with great interest … even though Amell’s abs leaves me feeling green with envy.