The CW’s Arrow has evolved into a very different type of animal over the past few months. Many, including myself, predicted that the show would continue on its upward path of quality, performance and realism. We were wrong.
Admittedly, the performances have been extremely commendable. The show’s actors could have adopted the mindset that being on a CW show– catered to teens and young adults – didn’t actually require their full talent but performances from Stephen Amell, David Ramsey and Paul Blackthorne in particular have shown that the actors have never been the problem with the show and perhaps never will.
The elephant in the room is the show shattering its realistic universe thus endangering the show’s quality and writing.
In a bid to accelerate Laurel Lance’s arc from grieving sister to full fledge vigilante – The Black Canary – one could have adopted many different avenues.
Much like Roy Harper, Laurel could have been exposed to the Mirakuru system allowing her a basis of power and strength to then build and train with thus making her transition to the Black Canary feasible.
The show could have benefitted from a time jump, perhaps a year or two, which would have seen Oliver train Laurel so that her taking up the mantle of the Canary was actually believable. I understand this was a long shot as the writers would have had to move The Flash forward as well.
The third avenue would have been to hold back on Laurel’s transformation and work it over a few seasons. The show has already been green lit for a season 4 and will probably win a few more. Take your time with the character; modern audiences are patient and sophisticated.
Alas, the Arrow writer’s decided to have Laurel transform from a whiney lawyer into a vigilante in a matter of episodes. What changed? A retired boxer trained her for a few sessions. Now, I’m sorry but that level of training does not permit you to stand alongside the Green Arrow or Arsenal in combat. It shatters the realism the show had and the respect I once had for the writers.
I know she’d probably kick my arse but kick the arses of armed Starling City thugs? I think not.
However, it seems the writers are taking huge steps to finally address the elephant in the room – Laurel Lance as the Black Canary.
In recent episodes, Laurel has been taken under the mantle of Nyssa Al Ghul after the heir to the demon found herself banished from Nanda Parbat. Consistent training from the daughter of Ra’s Al Ghul is an extremely good start to her vigilantism and poses believability as oppose to training from Wildcat the boxer.
Now, a new image from episode 14 of The Flash, titled ‘All-Star Team Up’, indicates that Laurel may be getting a power upgrade. The image seemingly confirms that Cisco has manufactured a collar for Laurel – Supposedly one that allows her voice to transform into the high-pitched squeal that renders all around her onto their knees. We saw Sara Lance’s Canary use a similar device last season, so perhaps Laurel is getting a more comic book upgrade.
This new tech, as well as the training by Nyssa, is an extremely second start to the Laurel Lance story after the horrible misstep the writers made with Wildcat. Because the writers have done so well in the past and are doing well with The Flash I have always given them a second chance and the same will be done here.
There has been evidence that they have finally grasped the Laurel we want – she doesn’t whine anymore, she doesn’t make stupid decisions anymore and she’s taken a backseat to Oliver, Felicity, Diggle and Roy; characters that we care about so much more.
After a false start with the Laurel Lance narrative arc, The CW’s Arrow is slowly but surely righting its wrongs. The only other thing they have to do now is elevate Arrow to the same level and eventi-ness of The Flash because its companion series is outdoing Arrow in every way possible.