Arrow is back surprisingly better than it was the last two seasons. Why the change? Maybe it’s because we got away from the Laurel drama (both on and off screen), Felicity situations, and maybe Diggle and Thea leaving will help the show feel more fluid. I don’t think it’s any of those things personally. I think it’s because the show is getting back to its roots quite literally and in a hurry.

The episode starts off with Oliver fighting and killing again. The action scenes are well shot and fun to watch. I was excited to see Oliver actually start to fight again. He didn’t slap fight like he has in the past couple of seasons and it energized the show.

On the flip side, when the flashbacks start again, the action takes a turn for the worst. I’m not sure if it is because the actors are standing too far apart or what, but it looks incredibly fake. It looks like a dark colored student film. I don’t know why it looks so terrible when the Star City footage looks amazing. I was disappointed by the Russian flashbacks in general just because I stopped caring a while ago. Maybe they will pick up. For the time being, I wouldn’t be sad if they got cut entirely. I know they won’t since this has been a 5-year gimmick in the making.

We meet the new villain, Tobias Church, and he’s pretty cool. I thought his introduction was fine and he seems like a respectable tough guy. He’s smart and he’s working out a plan to take down Oliver. I’m interested to see where the show takes his character and I want to know more about him before I can make any real judgments about him.

Quentin is once again drinking and his character is going through another tragedy. He is seriously the unluckiest guy in the entire show. I’m ready to see his character go through a transition to find himself once again without his wife or two kids. I think Quentin is one of the most interesting characters on the show so I’m glad they’re bringing him back.

The only part of the episode I didn’t like was Felicity. I’m just done with her. I understand why she’s needed, but I think her character changes the tone of the show and creates identity problems. They don’t know how to be serious with her on the screen. Hopefully, they talk more about that city that she nuked. I also hope they don’t try to make her and Oliver a thing again. I think she’s good as a side character, but I wouldn’t be upset if Curtis took more of a role.

Overall, I’m excited to meet the new team. I hope that Arrow doesn’t find another way to screw up. I can’t wait for episode 2. I think I’m going to enjoy this season more than the last 2. That won’t be too hard to beat since they were both dreadful. I also want to know what that Archer is about.

Grade: B+