It may have spearheaded an all new era of superhero television, but Arrow has fallen on some hard times. The last two seasons failed to reach the series high of Season 2, with Season 4 just being a massive disappointment on almost all fronts. Even though Season 5 has been a big improvement so far, Arrow still has further to go to escape its own shadow. Star Stephen Amell seems to agree, and he recently weighed in on why he thought Season 4 failed to impress.
There's a lull in any relationship, where you have a come-to-Jesus moment, and that happened to me in Season 4. We are a street-level crime-fighting show. We're at our best when we're focused on those things.
Entertainment Weekly (via CBR) is covering the big three-part Arrowverse crossover airing at the end of the month, and they spoke with Stephen Amell about teaming up with the Flash and Supergirl, and the highs and lows of his own series. Amell realized that there were problems in Season 4, and he mainly attributed them to the series switching gears to focus on a supernatural Big Bad.
And he's not wrong. The inclusion of Damien Darhk and the supernatural makes sense on paper, given that the Arrowverse became a whole lot less grounded with The Flash and Legends of Tomorrow. But despite the natural charm Neal McDonough brought to the role, Darhk wasn't the right villain for the show, and it never made sense that Green Arrow -- a guy who's best at shooting arrows that sometimes explode -- could beat someone who was essentially immortal. Let The Flash deal with all the superpowered crazies; Arrow is at its best when it's on the streets dealing with more grounded threats like Slade Wilson.
So far Season 5 is moving in the right direction by refocusing on the roots of the show and dishing out vigilante justice. Arrow has a streak of good episodes going right now, with Oliver's mayoral duties and a plot that ties back to Season 1 proving to be both fun and engaging -- even the flashbacks are good again! Stephen Amell goes on to further acknowledge that if Arrow can play to its strengths, then he believes the series could last for a long time (just look at Smallville for example). However, if Arrow can't find get its groove back, he admitted that this could be its last year.
I do really believe that this season is sort of a throw-down-the-gauntlet year for us, where we're either going to do what we do and do it well or it's the last year.
While that's a scary realization for fans, Arrow is doing alright for itself; we'll see if the good momentum will last throughout the whole season. You can watch Arrow when it airs on Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET on the CW.