This is the inaugural post in our You Should Be… series. We’ll be using it to make occasional recommendations on pop culture properties that we think you should be reading, watching, or listening to.
You should be watching Arrow. This CW adaptation of the DC Comics’s Green Arrow has become a captivating action show with a well-developed ensemble cast that entertains from week to week.
The show didn’t start off strong. Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) had return to his home in Starling City five years after he was presumed to have died at sea in a boating accident with his father and his girlfriend Laurel Lance’s sister, Sara. Instead, we find out that Oliver was held captive on an island and, unbeknownst to any of his family and friends, he has picked up plenty of fighting skills, including a skill at archery, and he’s disguised himself as the Arrow, a vigilante who goes around the city killing people on a list of people who failed Starling City that Oliver’s father gave him before he died.
Before the writers developed the cast, all of the focus was on Oliver. We watched him try to settle back in at home while maintaining his former frat boy party image as a cover for his vigilante activity. We watch him disguise his voice to tell people that they failed the city before he shoots at them with arrows. We see flashbacks to his time on the island. We see him train.
OK, I’m not complaining about the training part. The writers clearly went “Stephen Amell has amazing upper body strength. Let’s have him do the salmon ladder.”
If well-sculpted abs aren’t your thing, the show has plenty of other things to recommend itself with. John Diggle (David Ramsey) was hired by Oliver’s mother and step-father to be his bodyguard and Felicity Smoak (Emily Bett Rickards) is a tech expert who works for the Queen family’s company and they both eventually learn that Oliver is the Arrow. Oliver has less angsty man-pain when he’s able to share his secret with other people and the three of them form a team to fight as many of Starling City’s problems as a team of three possibly can. Caity Lotz joins the show as recurring character Black Canary in the second season to beef up the team and give us a well-written and acted female action hero to watch alongside Oliver’s Arrow. The development of Oliver’s sister Thea (Willa Holland) from angsty teenager to grown woman with righteous anger has also been an interesting development to watch unfold.
Both seasons of Arrow are currently available on Netflix so you should have enough time to watch all 46 episodes before the third season premieres on Wednesday, October 8.
“If well-sculpted abs aren’t your thing,” you are crazy. Because that is the best part of this show. I want Stephen Amell to try out for Ninja Warrior.
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