Arrow: Reset
November 27, 2019 4:02 AM - Season 8, Episode 6 - Subscribe

I loved the white lighting effect of Lyla's teleportation. It was such a visual callback to the comic--a very nice touch!

I'm not one for time-loop episodes so I really appreciated the fact that Oliver and Laurel realized really quickly what was happening and took steps to deal with their situations. None of the typical take-time-to-figure-out-what's-going-on that usually happens in these kinds of stories.

If I had thought about it, I should have expected them to bring back Quentin, but it didn't actually occur to me, so this was a pleasant surprise and a nice way to send off the character and the actor.

Now that Oliver has accepted his destiny, what do we think his fate will be? Somehow I don't think it will actually be permanently dead. I'm pretty sure there is a second act planned for Mr. Queen, so the question is what will that be?

The message that keeps getting repeated is that he has to become someone else, something else. He has a history of being very judgemental--"you have failed this city." It seems that the producing team is willing to do a deep dive into DC history and characters during the upcoming crisis (based on the few reports I've managed to catch about characters and actors to expect). Historically, this show has been pretty liberal about appropriating the storylines of non-Green Arrow characters.

Based on that line of reasoning, my original thought was that they'd make him a Lord of Order. I know it's not strictly part of the Arrowverse, but back in the Constantine TV show, we got a glimpse of the Helm of Nabu, so maybe Doctor Fate could an option. Somehow, however, I don't think that's the best fit for Oliver. Instead, I think there's another entity that works better: the Spectre.

Yes, I know Jim Corrigan also put in an appearance on Constantine, but even if that is considered part of the TV-verse canon, there is comic book precedence for a green-clad hero to become the Spectre's host/alter ego. Mind you, it wasn't Green Arrow, but his hard-travelling emerald pal Hal (Green Lantern) Jordon, but as I said, this show has cribbed lots of plots from other comic characters.

The Spectre is definitely judgy of others and concerned about justice (or at least his version of justice). He's not exactly a light character, or one known to crack jokes, so his demeanor is a good match for this version of Oliver. Taking on the green hood (see even the costume carries on his motif) and cape would allow Oliver to oversee the Arrowverse and step in every once in a while when he's really needed, but it would also give him the excuse to step back and let his super friends deal with their own situations. He might even be tasked by the Monitor of overseeing the repair of the multiverse, leaving him too busy to worry about the day-to-day stuff on Earth-1.

Mind you I'm probably way, way off, but I'd be curious the read what everybody else thinks will happen to Oliver.
posted by sardonyx at 6:34 PM on November 27, 2019 [2 favorites]

Well, the next episode has to be prison, right? Hasn't each episode of this final season been one previous season, in order? We've had homecoming/The Undertaking, Hong Kong, League of Assassins, Deathstroke invasion, Bratva, and the Mayor. So now Lian Yu's going to be season 7's prison setting. Then we've got the crossover which won't count, then the final two episodes, which will probably be Present wrapup and Future epilogue. So the question is, has this just been a farewell tour for a show that's ending? Or have these been puzzle pieces that lead up to something meaningful to put a bow on the series?
posted by bartleby at 7:25 PM on November 27, 2019 [1 favorite]

I like your thinking with the Spectre, but I don't really see it. But maybe because that's due to my conception/headcanon for the Spectre. I always saw them as not a caped crusader, but the Embodiment on this Earth of Comeuppance, in a retributive, sometimes vindictive way; and rather than a demigod or spirit of which DC has many, Spectre's direct superior is supossed to be DC's version of / workaround for talking about actual, like, YHWH-God.

While I can see that for something like Season 1 "You have failed this city" Oliver, I think we're supposed to feel that he's better than that now; and I don't really see him pledging his afterlife to work for the Monitor. But I could see something like "Oliver Queen has to die. But the Green Arrow can live on" [being the Silver Surfer to Monitor's Galactus, going off to do multiverse-repairing offscreen].
posted by bartleby at 7:58 PM on November 27, 2019 [1 favorite]

As I said, I suspect I'm wrong about the Spectre. My recollection of the character is very close to your assessment of him: he was a pretty one-note character. While I'm not too familiar with the Spirit of Redemption plot, I don't think Hal really benefited from hosting Spec, so it wouldn't really be a reward for Oliver, or a great way to spend the rest of his existence, but then again, the show seems to like making Oliver suffer.

Personally, I think it would be a hoot if the powers that be decided that his reward for dying and sacrificing himself to end the Crisis would be to live out his days as the joking, light-hearted, happy-go-lucky, Van Dyke-supporting comic book version of Oliver Queen, i.e. Ollie. (I could never let myself call this version of the character Ollie--it just felt so wrong, even though the comic one has never been anything but Ollie to me.)

I hadn't thought about this season's episodes mirroring the previous season's arcs, so I really enjoyed reading your comment and speculation about what to expect for the next two episodes. Nice work!
posted by sardonyx at 8:41 PM on November 27, 2019 [1 favorite]

Yeah, the thing I've missed in all of CW Arrow is the classic Ollie version you mean. Going all the way back to Golden Age comics, with the Arrowcar and Arrowplane, boxing-glove arrows and all, Green Arrow has always been 'what if Batman, but if he lightened up and had some fun with it? Y'know, took his antidepressants had an awesome girlfriend?' Even in those dark Mike Grell days, GA was still more of a swashbuckler than grim avenger.
I've obviously long ago accepted that this show is something else, but I'd always hoped that it might build up to a final scene of a laughing Ollie, doing an Arrow thing with some sense of joy.

So there's some fan service I'd still like to see.
The Robin Hood hat. C'mon, just once, even in a quick montage of alternate universes. Do it in the crossover, maybe even on Legends, it would fit there.
Oliver and (Felicity now, I suppose) flat broke, living in a small apartment above Sherwood Florist.
I'm sure everyone has their own list.

There's a detail about the WB Batman and Superman Animated Series from the 90's. To set the tone for every image, to produce an atmosphere throughout the shows, the Batman series animators started with completely black paper, only adding colors where needed; the Superman animators worked off of sky-blue paper. CW's Arrow has always been a black paper show. Before it wraps up, I wish there was a way to see 5 minutes of the sky-blue paper version, just to see what that might have looked like.
posted by bartleby at 9:18 PM on November 27, 2019 [1 favorite]

I'd be right there with you, soaking up that kind of fan service like you wouldn't believe.
posted by sardonyx at 9:27 PM on November 27, 2019 [1 favorite]

I appreciate that time loop episodes are now such a cliche that the characters can refer to them in-universe, including generational references to Groundhog Day and Edge of Tomorrow. And I appreciate it that they turned the trope on its ear and the solution was not to get what you wanted (Quentin back), but rather to accept you couldn't ever have that and move on.

I'm totally lost on Lyla and the Monitor and the double / triple / multicross. The idea that Queen has now "accepted" his fate and is just gonna passively play his part is going to last, what, 15 minutes?
posted by Nelson at 7:14 AM on December 5, 2019 [1 favorite]

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