Call it a comeback? Legacy was a fitting name for the kickoff to Season 5 as it felt like it was picking up the baton from the series’ glory days. Ultimately, this season could spiral down the same path as the back end of Season 3 and most of Season 4. Regardless, there was a lot of encouraging signs that the showrunners took fan issues to heart and have set up the framework to make Arrow great again.
Legacy was a major factor this week. I was glad Team Arrow is still reeling from Laurel’s death. Thea seemed the most emotionally shaken vowing never to become Speedy again. I kinda wish the writers let that vow stick longer than one episode, but it would have been silly for her not to try and rescue Oliver. Quentin Lance spiraled back into drinking.
Paul Blackthorne always excels when Lance is put through the emotional wringer. I was a little surprised that Lance’s subplot was so quickly dropped as the episode progressed. Yeah, Lance had been there before, but he had just cause for falling off the wagon again.
Green Arrow’s actions have inspired like-minded individuals. Wild Dog (Rick Gonzalez) dropped in to help Arrow stop an bomb from going off. There was a nice Vigilante Easter Egg as well. That was a great way to show the repercussions of Oliver’s actions to operate as a hero without always having them debut on the episode they’re initially mentioned.
I wasn’t a huge fan of the idea of making Oliver mayor, but it seems like the show has a good handle on how it can work. Oliver is neglecting his role in front of the people and is essentially using the office to make protecting Star City easier. That’s actually a pretty clever way to approach Oliver’s new position. I’m curious if Star City has a deputy mayor in place and if that will eventually become an out of costume rival for Oliver.
It was a big moment to see Oliver taking the old school killing criminals route. As mayor he’s got even bigger secrets to protect and it did not sound like he would be gun shy in the future despite Thea’s pleas.
Felicity having a love interest that’s not in the Arrowcave immediately improved the Olicity dynamic. Yes, I’m sure this is just an extended tease and we’ll have our share of frustrating Olicity drama. For now, I’m going to enjoy it. Good to see Felicity has no lasting remorse over killing those thousands of people at Monument Point with that nuclear missile.
The show’s take on Mr. Terrific is vastly different than the comic version, but I was hoping for something more substantial to push Curtis towards becoming a vigilante than a simple mugging.
One thing I really liked is that Laurel’s deathbed request wasn’t dragged out throughout the season. She wanted Oliver to find a new Canary to keep her legacy going. I still feel like killing Laurel was a bad idea, but this at least softens the blow of Kid Canary joining the team. Although a far more interesting dynamic would have the Earth-2 doppelganger take Laurel’s place.
Chad L. Coleman made a good impression as one of the season’s main bad guys, Tobias Church. This was a nice departure from his more pacifist role on The Walking Dead. I had a nice laugh when Church taunted the bound city officials with his bat while playing Duck Duck Goose in a clever shot out to the Negan cliffhanger.
Even the flashbacks worked. Oliver is in Russia on a mission to kill a made man. To do that, he’ll need help from his Season 2 ally Anatoly Knyazev and the Solntsevskaya Bratva. I’m encouraged these flashbacks will have meaning beyond a handful of episodes.
And when it came time for the action, Legacy really delivered. The fight choreography was more fluid this episode and the effects looked especially polished. I loved seeing Oliver using more trick arrows this episode right down to a parachute arrow. Those little gadgets help make Green Arrow more unique than every other arrow-slinger.
As for the mysterious black clad assassin? This doesn’t really evoke any thought of Prometheus. I’ll wait a bit to fully pass judgment, but if it is Prometheus he needs a far more interesting costume than raiding Malcolm’s closet.
Rating: 9 out 0f 10
Legacy was a sharp course correction for the series setting up Season 5 on a solid path. There’s always the concern the show will fall back into former bad habits, but this kickoff left me optimistic.
Photo Credit: Bettina Strauss/The CW
Check out the previous Arrow seasons episode recaps here.