Arrow debuted on CW tonight, and it fits the formula that has made for some of the most successful shows on the network. There’s plenty of mystery, intrigue, action, drama, romance and sexual tension. Oh, and let’s not forget the superhero angle as well. After all, the show is loosely based on the Green Arrow comic book character that first appeared in 1941. The Arrow is not your classic superhero though, with some alien superpower or genetic mutation. Instead, he’s a billionaire playboy who gets marooned on a deserted island for five years and is assumed dead by his friends and family. His reappearance pits him against people who blame them for the others lost at sea.
Strength of Episode : A
While it seemed a little rushed overall, there was plenty of time to give some background on the main character Oliver Queen (Steve Amell) and give us a glimpse into his strained relationships before his disappearance. The plot development was swift with a couple of surprises I didn’t see coming, and a few I did. The biggest part of the pilot was the introduction of an element that has set up the overarching theme for the series, or at least the first season. If this was any indication, I think we’re in for a lot of action and drama from Arrow.
Strength of Characters: B
Amell does a great job of convincing us that he really is Queen’s alter-ego, Arrow. The rest of the characters, however, are barely introduced and remain somewhat mysterious at the end of the pilot. The one exception is Queen’s ex-girlfriend, Laurel (Katie Cassidy), who gets a fair amount of screen time. That’s not to say that there is no mystery surrounding her, but we do get a better feel for her character than most of the others.
Potential for the Series: Good
While die-hard fans of The Green Arrow comic book series will probably find some faults with the series, I think overall they will be happy with the offering from CW. We’ve got plenty of room for future development, plot twists, romance, and scandal. If CW stays the course with the formula that made Smallville a success, I think there is plenty to look forward to with Arrow.
If you missed the premiere tonight, you can catch another showing of the pilot on Friday night at 8:00 p.m. Eastern / 7:00 p.m. Central. In the meantime, check out the extended series preview from the CW’s YouTube channel. You can also head to the CW website to watch the premiere in full. Let us know in the comments if you saw the premiere and what you thought about it. No spoilers, though!