Getting The Band Back Together
Arrow came back from summer break all moody and brooding, it’s like the show hit puberty during summer break while visiting his estranged dad. The season premiere picked up a few months after the event that closed out last year, and Team Arrow was still splintered. Oliver was having trouble balancing his nightly and mayoral duties, and Star City revealed some less than stellar art.
I get that Oliver has to downplay his riches a bit as mayor, but he could have sprung a little more dough for Laurel’s memorial statue. It looked like the Lionel Richie bust from the “Hello” video. Google it, millennials. He’s also gotta get find a way to talk through his feelings without being so naive. Felicity wants him to find a better way to deal with the team being gone than patrolling alone and missing appointments. Oliver would rather beat up the poor and disenfranchised people of his city while pretending to save it. Well, not pretending. The criminals have bombs.
Star City PD is rife with corruption, and every criminal enterprise is looking to fill the hole left by Damien Darhk’s death. First up is actually a newcomer, Tobias Church (Chad L. Coleman), who wants to unite the criminal organizations under one banner to take Arrow down. If that sounds a little familiar, it’s because that was pretty much Brick’s plan from two seasons ago, even matching his propensity to just beat the dog shit out of people instead of shooting them. Too early to tell if this subtle retread is by design, to hammer home the emphasis on “grounded” action, or if the creative team is getting a bit repetitive. I’m giving them the benefit of the doubt here, only because the hard resent on the supernatural threats has to happen somewhere, it just didn’t have to carry that massive feeling of deja vu.
“Legacy” was clearly looking to set a tone more than kick off a full story for season 5. Oliver has even put “killing back on the table” as a way of making sure his enemies no longer have a chance to hurt the people around him anymore. He blames himself for Laurel’s death, primarily because he allowed Damien to live for so long. He’s not exactly wrong, but it’s a bit of a reach. Even Thea made sure to let him know that it’s a road they shouldn’t go down. Sure, she was just trying to protect herself from the little case of blood lust she’s afflicted with, but still, her heart was in the right place.
One thing that hadn’t changed; flashbacks. We’re now in year five of these things, meaning this is the last stretch before Ollie would have come back from his three hour tour. Looks like we’re going to be spending some time with the Russian Mob this year, and watching how Oliver learned to navigate criminal underworlds.
The Star City in “Legacy” isn’t much better off than when we left it, it’s only that Oliver is supposed to be in charge, but he can’t get a handle on any part of his life. In the end, he’s agreed to put together a new team featuring some already in action vigilantes, including Curtis, who’s well on his way to becoming Mr. Terrific. With the night crew getting back together, Oliver can focus on his personal life, and with Felicity having a new boyfriend, that means we’ll have plenty of romantic drama to follow. At least until they realize there’s another hooded archer running around. Arrow is back to basics in a lot of ways, which may have been the best decision.