Posts Tagged ‘The CW’

Arrow 1As Arrow chugs along, banging through the lackluster first few episodes to – where it is now – a pretty solid back-half of a season that’s put some interesting long-term stories into play, some things are becoming clear.

OK, some things other than “Man, they are not spending a lot of money on this show” and “Vigilantes don’t need peripheral vision.”

Perhaps most satisfying is the show actually displaying some interest in examining and reassessing Oliver Queen’s tendency to murder the hell out of people, and how that lines up with his own slowly evolving morality. Throughout the season, he has moved further away from his Island Trauma, received a humbling pummeling at the hands of his buddy’s Barely-Secretly-Evil-Father, and started broadening his mission to include things other than threatening rich people and telling them how disappointed in them he is.

So the show’s getting to be solidly entertaining while also addressing some larger concerns I’ve had, which means I feel more comfortable addressing smaller things the show’s NOT doing well. By which I mean, any time it mentions something from a DC comic.

It wants SO BADLY to play in the DC sandbox but give the concepts a veneer of Dark Knight-on-a-budget “realism,” and as a result kinda fails at both. And the show knows this! Why else would it keep shouting DO-OVER! so often?  (more…)

The Arrow pilot wasn’t bad, but then, considering it was essentially a mash-up of the first half of Batman Begins (playboy comes back from traumatic adventure abroad with new skill set and objectives, while maintaining playboy persona) with the pilot for REVEEEEENNNNNNGGGGEEE!!!! (socialite with secret plans to upset corrupt order butts up against plotting and fiendish rich people), it was a pretty easy formula to stick.

And yes, I’m kind of partial to Green Arrow, though mostly as a featured character on Justice League Unlimited and the urban hunter period from the late 80’s. Stephen Amell doesn’t get a lot to do to show off, actor-wise, but he manages to switch from “scary and spookily calm” to “vapid party-boy” pretty nicely.

Mostly, though, I like the interpretation of the Oliver Queen character so far: a blend of his early Batman-knockoff days (the playboy-adventurer), the leftie man of the people (Oliver’s plans are a response to Starling City’s depression), the Grell hunter period and even the Andy Diggle Year One miniseries.

And from an overall standpoint, the tone manages to be serious and action-focused without becoming too dour or embarrassed by its comics routes, and not overly stylized to point of becoming distracting.

So yes, “Secret leftie parkour vigilante playboy fights corrupt businessmen, drug kingpins, poverty and his asshole family” probably has some legs, and I’m hoping the next episode is as solid as this one was.

THAT SAID. I have some concerns and complaints, which I will list thusly in no particular order:  (more…)

It’s time for your apparently semi-regular “Tiny Kung-Fu Women TV” column. This time around: CW’s Nikita pilot. The short version: it was blah, then it was eh, then it was maybe.

And then by the last two minutes it gave me something worth tuning into the next episode for.

But I know what you’re all asking: How does it compare to that milestone of Tiny Kung-Fu Women TV, Alias(more…)