As Arrow begins season five it finds itself at a certain crossroads. New comic based shows have come along and with the high quality Netflix adaptations like Daredevil and Luke Cage, the show that began it all is lagging behind. It has lost its way, not quite sure which direction to go and if “Legacy” is any indication it seems that Arrow has simply run out of ideas of not only where to go but what to do with its characters, especially Oliver Queen/The Arrow.
The show picks up where last season left off, with Team Arrow disbanded and Oliver taking on the bad guys all alone as The Arrow and in a suit and tie as the mayor. Right away it seems very unlikely that no one is going to make the connection between the two, especially when he keeps showing up late as the supposed leader of the city. Still, this is Arrow so suspending disbelief is all par for the course and compared to other things that went on, this was pretty easy to move past.
There is a new criminal in Star City by the name of Tobias Church (played by the wonderful Chad Coleman) who seems bent on taking over the city by removing corrupt cops, rival crime organizations and The Arrow himself. He kidnaps Oliver and some other politicians in an effort to entice The Arrow to pay him a visit, which he does once he escapes, thanks to the temporarily out of retirement Thea and the always reliable Overwatch/Felicity.
Oliver also comes to realize that the old Team Arrow is probably never going to get back together again so grudgingly begins to formulate a plan for a new team, starting with Mayor Queen’s new task force. This group is put together by trusted cops, recommended by Quentin Lance, back in town and trying to sober up again.
In between all of this is the dreaded flashbacks, this time to Russia to where he must join this group called Bratva so he can fulfill a promise to kill some crime lord….I actually don’t care and despise these flashbacks as they simply do more harm than good but yeah, they took up a nice chunk of this episode.
The most annoying thing of all was the ending, where we were introduced to yet another mysterious archer who likes to kill. Seems there is an endless supply of these characters and again, it plays into the same recycled theme that seems to be present in this episode from start to finish. Heck, we see Oliver do the ‘unthinkable’ again as The Arrow so where does that leave his character?
As first episodes go, this was probably one of the weakest Arrow had ever produced. It gave literally nothing new to the audience except for the fact that shows tone might be getting dark again, which actually is not new…ok, so there was nothing new here, my mistake. I know it’s only one episode but all Arrow has shown me is it’s completely lost its identity and there is a very real possibility that it is simply going to get swallowed up by the competition, who in some cases might not be much better but at least has some sense of what it wants to offer its audience.
Two and a half stars out of five
- Chad Coleman could be a great addition to Arrow
- I like Oliver when he is taking a walk on the dark side
- Arrow seems to have no idea where it wants to go next
- Acting was average at best
- Flashback continues to annoy instead of inform