If you think reading is for chumps check out the video review https://youtu.be/zis9MKIfCU8
Hey everyone I’m FergaTroid and welcome to this review of Arrow Season 1, Episode 1, is this a good premiere or a bad premiere? Let’s find out. If the CW has proven anything, it’s that just because a show is shallow, doesn’t mean it can’t be efficient and fun too. Arrow embodies this philosophy, though not quite with the success of some of the network’s other flagship programs. It liberally borrows from myriad other comic book adaptations, but the starkest comparison comes from looking on the other end of the television quality spectrum.
The very first scene of the pilot sees star Stephen Amell being rescued off the island he’s been marooned on the last five years, and he goes from scraggly survivalist to clean-cut playboy before the credit roll is done.
Queen had a lot of time to think and workout while in isolation, ruminating on parting words from his father, who gave his life following the accident so that Oliver might live. His return to Starling City marks the end of his soul searching in the wild, and the beginning of his quest to bring justice to civilization.
Green Arrow started off as essentially just “Batman with a bow” (complete with Arrowcar and Arrowplane), before differentiating himself as a more socially conscious and morally comprised character. None of that nuance or depth could properly be conveyed in 45 minutes though, so Arrow settles for plowing through all its setup in one shot, which it succeeds at, mostly at the expense of its characters.
Amell makes a better Ken doll than a lead, transitioning from wounded beefcake, to prep-school douchebag, to mourning hunk, to mysterious bad boy depending on who he’s sharing the scene with. The flat reading on his expository narration is downright corny and underscores just how little the first episode gives Amell to work with.
So yeah, the first episode of Arrow is dumb, superficial and vapid, but rarely is it boring. Queen is in town for all of five minutes before getting jumped by a gang of halloween-masked thugs (“professionals”, as the police refer to them), which leads to five years’ worth of island fury being unleashed. While the action choreography rarely comes together in a logical fashion, and parkour now seems only slightly less archaic than archery, the scenes are flashy, and make for campy fun, since everyone takes the proceedings with a deathly seriousness. Which was one of the few genuine surprises in the premiere, that Oliver snaps necks as well as he cashes cheques. He claims it’s meant to conceal his burgeoning secret identity, and goons are meant to be disposable, but actually killing people definitely sets him apart from the golden boy on Smallville.
Arrow Season 1, Episode 1 is a good first episode, with solid action scenes and excellent cinematography. Arrow Season 1, Episode 1 gets three stars out of five.