Arrow: The Recruits – Back to Basics (Review)

Arrow Season Five Logo

Season five of Arrow has, thankfully, gone back to letting the Green Arrow take on the mantle of Mr. Grumpy hero versus the nice chap who wounding the bad guys.  The body count has gone up and in ‘The Recruits” Oliver drops all pretenses of being cordial and tries to bully his new potential team members into learning what he wants.

This is a return to the Arrow of previous seasons, specifically the first two, where everything about Queen was hard core and the episodes had an impressive body count.

After defeating Damian Dhark last season Queen has turned his back on the nicer version of himself.  Arrow has also finally left that island and replaced it with flashbacks of Russia and Bratva.

The old team have departed since the death of Laurel Lance and Oliver recruits some replacements. Wild Dog, Curtis and Evelyn Sharp are given an invite. Tobias Church continues making his move to control Star City and makes a mistake by almost killing Oliver.

Prometheus turns up to kick a little Church butt and tells him to lay off of Queen with a “he’s mine” warning.

Oliver’s Bratva training is followed in flashback and the storyline makes room for John Diggle’s tale of betrayal with his own new recruit.

The altered timeline from The Flash is not mentioned, where Barry Allen’s mucking about with the past changed Diggle’s daughter into a son.  Any changes not mentioned may turn up later however.

Felicity, who has reverted to type after the heaviness of last season, has that nuke rubbed in her face. When Green Arrow approaches Ragman to recruit him to Team Arrow, the new vigilante on the scene reveals he was created in the one town hit by the nuke last year.

Ragman, who was saved by his father wrapping him in magic rags, is a nice addition to the team.  The rest of the new kids on the block will undoubtably need a lot of training before they ever get past ‘B’ team status.

Quentin Lance is hitting the bottle again and even though Thea has offered him the deputy mayor position he may not be able to stop his downward spiral.

It has been pointed out that the flashbacks are wearing  a bit thin.  These have always been a part of the series and while they can be distracting, as well as annoying, they are part of the story.

Yes they are intrusive and more often than not the flashbacks take away from the main plot line .  It may well be that the show will eventually rely less on the backstory as things progress.

The big news this year for Arrow, Supergirl, Legends of Tomorrow and The Flash is the mega DC crossover and apart from Dr. Alchemy and the new Arrow villain Prometheus things will get even more interesting for the super heroes.

Meanwhile Arrow may have a whole new team but they all, even Ragman, have steep learning curve to overcome.  It will be interesting to see who takes Tobias Church down and how Felicity will be affected by the origin story of Ragman.

Arrow airs Wednesdays on CW.


Author: Mike's Film Talk

Former Actor, Former Writer, Former Journalist, USAF Veteran, Former Member Nevada Film Critics Society

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