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Paul Blackthorne

TV RECAP: ‘Arrow’ – S4E4 – “Beyond Redemption”

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One of the key elements of Arrow is that its titular hero is trying to transcend the darkness he had to dive into in order to survive and become a stirring symbol of heroism his city needs. Although Oliver Queen struggles in trying to find a way to walk a higher path, he surrounds himself with people that inspire him to do better, and despite their differences, one of them is Captain Quentin Lance. And in a strange reversal of their relationship through most of the series, it was Oliver that found himself looking down on Lance, as the Captain struggled not only with his own deal with the devil, but his daughter’s too. (more…)

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There’s a great weight of expectation on the upcoming fourth season of Arrow. First of all, there was the disappointing return of the third season, which didn’t always seem to know what it was doing, so Arrow has to bounce back from that. Then there’s new costumes, new characters, a supposedly lighter tone, at least one major crossover (with Matt Ryan as TV’s Constantine) and Arrow doing its part to help set up the next spin-off Legends of Tomorrow. The odds are stacked against Team Arrow, and that’s hardly a new position for them, but dare I say that the below photo gallery offers something to get excited about? (more…)

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A couple of years before the comic book movie craze became full-blown, there was a script making the rounds of the Warner Bros. backlot called Super Max. In it, the Green Arrow is sent to a prison full of super-villains, some of whom he put away, and is forced to survive amongst a jail full of the worst of the worst all the while planning his escape and then trying to prove his innocence. During the finale of tonight’s episode of Arrow the existence of Super Max came to mind, and despite the fact that it was written by David S. Goyer, who by this point has as man detractors as fans, it’s always seemed like a missed opportunity. Or is it? (more…)

TV RECAP: ‘Arrow’ – S3E16 – “The Offer”

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Arrow‘s nonsensical, “What the hell’s going on?” season continues, picking up where we left off about a month ago with an offer, or make that “The Offer,” of Ra’s al Ghul to Oliver Queen to lead the League of Assassins. By the end of the hour it becomes very clear that this is an offer that Oliver can’t refuse, or rather he’s being manipulated into a position where he can’t refuse it. “The Offer” itself was an interesting hour, dramatically compelling with top-notch action, but the episode, like much of the overarching plotting this season feels both rushed and sudden, as if character is serving plot and not vice versa. (more…)

TV REVIEW: ‘Arrow’ S3E14 – “The Return”

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It was easy to be cautious when approaching this week’s episode of Arrow called “The Return.” It was a double, if not triple, return with Oliver returning to Lian Yu accompanied by Thea, with Slade Wilson returning to haunt the Queens some more, and, with the flashback, Oliver returning to Starling for the first time since he was shipwrecked. It’s was a minefield of potential letdowns and Easter eggs, a potential contortion of narrative so it would become contrived, and that’s just the flashback. In the present we have to deal with the potential letdown of Slade’s return, since Manu Bennett owned in the role last year and this season’s big bad in the form of Matt Noble‘s Ra’s al Ghul has yet to match up. So how did it all shake out? (more…)

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As a whole, Arrowhas grown by leaps and bounds since its first season. The series has come to rely less on annoying “villain of the week” devices in favor of a stronger season-long arc and has surrounded its hero with a diverse and interesting cast of friends and foes. Last night’s season finale, “Unthinkable“, needed to send Season 2 out on a bang. Which it did, thanks to a solid season’s worth of build up. (more…)

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Two weeks ago, Arrow dropped some serious bombshells. Not only did Slade (Manu Bennet) continue to wage war on Oliver (Stephen Amell), but he revealed to Thea (Willa Holland) her true parentage and told Laurel (Katie Cassidy) The Arrow’s secret identity. Last night’s episode mostly dealt with the repercussions of those bombshells, but the progression of events plodded along in such a way it was difficult to ever really appreciate any developments. There was simply too much going on in “The Man Under The Hood” to give any of its interesting threads the time and energy required. (more…)

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Here we are, back from another hiatus with Arrow‘s second season heading into the final stretch. The Arrow Cave is getting a little crowded, there’s a new villain on the scene, and just about everybody’s reconciling their differences. In fact, while it’s obvious this episode’s title – “Time of Death” – is referencing new villain, The Clock King, it also neatly ties in with everyone seeking forgiveness as it’s something customary to do before you die. (more…)