“Arrow” Season 1 Review

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I’ve heard a fair amount about the TV programme Arrow over the past few months; mostly talk about how good it is. Yet I was wary about starting it, as I don’t consider myself a fan of comic books (okay, I’ve never actually read one yet…), or at least comic book adaptations – frankly, I think Marvel have just put me off thanks to every Marvel film I’ve seen. But, perhaps DC would change that and I would discover a very well hidden love for comic book heroes that I never knew I had. Even then, I wasn’t all that sure I would ever buy the series, but then I saw the cover of series 1, and that pretty much decided it all for me – I just loved it, and I still do. Trying to put into words what, exactly, it is that I like about it is pretty difficult, but it’s a mixture of the colouring, is outfit, and (of all things), the font used – everything goes so well and is just really enticing; it worked for me, anyway!

I found that the series took a little while for me to get into, although to be fair I did spend a lot of the time on my phone or laptop at the same time as watching it, as I seem to struggle to concentrate on the one thing. Despite that, each episode (23 in all) is extremely addictive, especially with the cliff–hangers they specialise in ending on – they ensure you can’t stop after only one episode; instead, you’ve got to get through at least 5! Which, in fairness, is no bad thing, but it does tend to mean a LOT of late nights (for me, at least) – in order to finish the last six episodes of Series 1, I was up until 2 in the morning. Totally worth it, of course, although I did want to start series 2 as soon as I had finished the last episode…

I’m not going to pretend that this is a flawless series: it’s not. Some of the acting is questionable to say the least, in particular some moments from Stephen Amell (who plays Oliver Queen/Arrow), and the actress who plays Thea Queen just downright gets on my nerves most of the time (but I still like her, for the most part). It also has to be said that Arrow uses every single cliché in the book, and the script is something I could write in my sleep – it’s pretty predictable, I’m afraid. Very few times have I guessed at what was going to be said next, and been wrong – maybe not word for word, but the fact is it’s not the most stand–out script. And yet, that doesn’t bother me as much as it might – it’s still a very enjoyable show. The action is, in my eyes, brilliant, and I love watching the fight scenes.

Even better, not all of the characters are wooden or downright annoying – Felicity and Diggle are, without doubt, my two favourite characters on the show. They’re likeable, funny, and I find they make the show a lot more enjoyable too. I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with Laurel – I swear she changes her mind on Oliver, and his alias, at least every second episode, and after a while it gets pretty tedious. But as surprisingly badass characters go, she’s quite high up there. Helena is another character I kind of loved, and I feel we didn’t get quite enough of her – here’s hoping she’s in Series 2, because she’s just great. I loved her outfit, her appearance, just about everything she said – her in general, really. I like to think I can’t be blamed for that… I mean, look at her!

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One of the best parts of this series is undoubtedly the score, composed by Blake Neely. It’s not too in–your–face, but it’s noticeable and it’s brilliant. I bought it the other night, and although I really like the whole thing, there are some superb tracks that need a special mention: Oliver Queen Suite, Sacrifice, I Can’t Lose You Twice, and my absolute favourite: I Forgot Who I Was. The first time I heard it, I nearly cried and that feeling hasn’t changed yet. For about the past hour, I’ve been sitting here listening to it, and I love it a little more with every listen. It’s beautiful, and I can’t imagine ever tiring of it.

To round my review up, I really recommend Arrow; although it can be ridiculously predictable, and the clichés make me want to cringe sometimes, it has its plus–sides too: it’s addictive (so, so, so addictive), the music is brilliant, the action is great, the outfits are great, and it turns out to be pretty emotional too – I was surprised at how much I cried during the last few episodes.

Also, John Barrowman…

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