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Premiere Review: ‘Green Arrow’ Comes to TV

A nice start to a comic book show that looks to have a lot of potential.

Comic books are once again making the attempt to transition to television.  Though there have been some mild successes (such as Heroes), the majority of these projects are pretty much done before they begin.  Which is why I had high hopes for the Green Arrow adaptation, Arrow when I first heard it was being made.  After watching the premiere episode, those hopes are still with me.

Arrow follows the story of Oliver Queen (AKA Green Arrow), a millionaire playboy who ends up stranded on a deserted island for five years.  Everyone thinks him dead until he finally manages to get rescued and make his return to the real world.  And though he left as a spoiled brat with too much cash, he comes back a bad-ass with a bow and some serious parkour skills.

The first episode takes the viewer right into the show.  There’s the standard conflict with a bad guy scenario, some drug problems with Oliver’s younger sister, a conniving mother, an estranged ex-girlfriend and Oliver’s millionaire playboy buddy trying to get him right back into the lifestyle he left.  But the character has changed and is now dedicated to cleaning up his city in vigilante fashion.

In the course of the premiere, Oliver gets kidnapped by people trying to figure out what he knows about his father’s business (which appears to be shady in some way), Oliver must reintegrate himself into his old life without letting people know he’s now a super hero and Arrow faces off against his first villain.  Much of the background story is slowly unfolding at this point and there is still a lot of mystery left for the future, such as what happened to Oliver on the island, what the deal with his father is and why he’s so motivated to fight the bad guys.

The first episode was a strong open for what looks to be an interesting series.  Most everyone does a decent acting job, the fight choreography is perhaps the best I’ve seen in a while and the show moves along from point A to point B in a quick and orderly fashion.  My only beef was with the narrative, done by Oliver (Steven Amell).  It comes across as a bit goofy and doesn’t really fit in.  Hopefully, they’ll kill this as the series progresses.

As it stands, I’m looking forward to seeing next week’s episode and hoping that it doesn’t fail as so many other super hero shows have before it.  If the writers keep it up, we may have a good and long-running new series on our hands.