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Arrow: The Complete First Season

Starring: Stephen Amell
The CW
This is a great introduction to one of the better characters in comics and Warner is doing the great source material justice.

Stephen Amell stars as Oliver Queen in Arrow. As an entitled, spoiled kid, Oliver grew up in Starling City as royalty. His father’s company, Queen Consolidated was worth more than a billion dollars and that allowed Oliver to get away with pretty much anything he wanted as a teenager. Then, as a young college dropout he embarked on a voyage on his father’s yacht, The Queen’s Gambit. While on the voyage, the yacht crashed and only Oliver managed to survive. He survived, but he ended up stranded on an uninhabited Chinese island. At least that’s what he thought. On the island, Ollie learned some amazing and deadly skills and he fought every day to survive. Eventually, he made his way back to Starling City after five years of being stranded on the island. There’s a key ingredient missing in the story. Before Oliver managed to find his way to the island he was on a lifeboat with his dad. His dad didn't make it, but before he died he told Oliver of his wrongs. Oliver’s father told him that he wasn't the man that he thought he was. He had done bad things and he had planned on righting his wrongs, but since he wasn't going to make it, it was up to Oliver. So returning to Starling City, Oliver came back with a mission to fix the mess his father made and to bring the people to justice who had abused the people of his city - he became The Green Arrow. The first season of the show chronicles Oliver’s trials to save his city and the allies and enemies his he gains along the way.

Arrow is a darker show in the vein of Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight Trilogy. Warner wanted to lose anything cartoonish about the series and capitalize on the serious tone that Nolan made with his version of Batman. Arrow isn't catered to young teens, this is catered to young adults, and that’s what makes it cool. There are some serious themes in the show, there’s drugs, there’s sex, there’s betrayal, there’s torture. And there are some supremely evil people too.

If you have a show like this, you have to have a great cast. Arrow has an outstanding one. Amell starts out the first few episodes a little rough but then quickly comes into his own as the character. Katie Cassidy plays Laurel Lance - a major love interest for Oliver - and she complements Amell very well. In addition to those two, a special mention has to be made for Collin Donnell, he plays Tommy Merlin, Oliver’s best friend. He’s outstanding through the whole first season. Before this show, I had only seen him in commercials, he’s great in Arrow and he made the first season memorable along with Amell and Cassidy. Those are three of the main stars in the show, I’m not even touching on the great work that David Ramsey, Willa Holland, or Susanna Thompson did. They’re all great and the excellent cast has me looking forward to the second season of the show when it starts this fall.

The Blu-ray release of Arrow is stocked with bonus material. But first, you've got to know that it features a nine disc set of both DVD and Blu-ray versions of the first season. In addition to that, there are some great add-ons to watch including a gag reel, a great featurette on the adaptation of the show, an insightful panel, and a segment on putting together the fight scenes for the show. All in all it’s a decent set of extras.

The first season of Arrow was outstanding. Warner Bros. has put together a fantastic action-filled thriller with one of DC’s better comic book characters. For fans of the Green Arrow, of course they’ll love the show, but this isn't limited to just them. This is a great introduction to one of the better characters in comics and Warner is doing the great source material justice.

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