- Format: DVD Region 2 for the UK
- Number of Disc: 5
- Genre: Superhero,Action & Adventure
- Starring: Stephen Amell, Katie Cassidy, Colin Donnell, David Ramsey, Willa Holland
- Studio: WarnerBrothers
- Release Date: 2015
What’s it about
Determined to right the wrongs of Starling City and sworn to bring justice to those who have failed it, Oliver Queen (aka The Arrow) ¡ª with the help of his iron-fisted right hand, John Diggle, the tech-savvy Felicity Smoak and the newest member of the team, Roy Harper ¡ª narrowly defeats the vengeful Slade Wilson, his onetime ally and mentor on the island of Lian Yu. But like all wars, there are casualties. Sacrificing herself for her children, Moira Queen falls at the hand of Deathstroke, sending Oliver¡¯s sister, Thea, into self-imposed exile with her biological father, Malcolm Merlyn. In Season Three, Oliver faces an even greater threat, when another lethal face emerges from his dark and tortured past.
Season 3 of Arrow is infamous for being of lower quality than the previous two (I’m only discussing this season, if you want to know about the show itself, you should definitely start with the first one), due to the original lead writer moving to The Flash and characters suffering from bad changes and general lack of progression. I used to think like that the first time I watched it. Gladly, I purchased the Blu Ray and watched it again, and I have to say, the first impressions don’t do this season justice AT ALL.
This season severely benefits from binge-watching, since you’ll be less likely to forget plot points and details that you might lose if watching on TV schedule. Another thing that benefits it are repeated viewings, since you will start noticing nuances you wouldn’t have seen the first time. In fact, upon my second viewing I realized the attention to detail and subtle foreshadowing for this season is only rivaled by Arrested Development.
Season 3 of the show kicks off with the eponymous character and his team being on the receiving end of the city’s favor, but things quickly turn dark once one of their allies is murdered, which kickstarts Oliver’s confrontation with one of the most fearless and determined foes from the DC universe: Ra’s Al Ghul, and his League of Assassins, whose end goal turns the city against the Arrow. Meanwhile, Oliver’s personal life is turned complicated with the arrival of Ray Palmer, who takes posession of his company and is a rival for his love interest. Curiously, though, Palmer also holds a certain interest for costumed justice.
The season’s overaching plot is one of the most interesting yet, as Oliver is pitted against a foe who’s his superior in physical and mental strength, but also makes him question his resolve and his legacy. This is all wonderfully complemented by the acting, which is great all around. Stephen Amell has played Oliver Queen since the beginning as a man with almost lost humanity, who’s become emotionally distant and finds it hard to express his emotions, and, unfortunately, this has translated as people thinking he doesn’t have acting chops. On the contrary, every time something so powerful occurs that forces Oliver’s emotions to come out, Amell does a fantastic job. Look at the scene where he’s convinced he’s going to lose the love of his sister forever or the one where he hears his friend has died and he sells those expressions so well you will feel the pain inside you as if it all was happening to you.
While mostly all of the other characters do a good job too, major props should be offered to Matt Nable as Ra’s Al Ghul. He might be off-putting at first for fans of the source material, since he really doesn’t look much like the character he’s playing, but only one episode in and you’ll realize he IS Ra’s Al Ghul and those doubts will dissipate forever.
All in all, this season does a great job in moving the story forward and evolving the characters. Don’t let some bad opinions keep you from it. And if you saw it before and didn’t think much of it, give it a second chance. It gets better.