On Arrow Season 6 Episode 11, New Team Arrow makes their debut, while William grapples with learning that his father is still masquerading as the Green Arrow.
Despite having Star City’s prime vigilantes go their separate ways, Arrow managed to have both teams be mature about the split, but ultimately found themselves in a pattern that nudged toward repetitive storytelling and the idea that maybe things involving this Team Arrow Civil War may wrap up sooner than we think.
New Team Arrow and Original Team Arrow Dynamics
As excited as I was to see this new vigilante team work without Oliver and company, both teams seemed to still rely on one another in the field. Now, before I go any further, I think it’s very smart and mature that both teams agreed to share important details when they felt it necessary. After all, they do share a common goal, but the problem with that is they eventually all come back to working together, therefore Curtis, Dinah, and René’s departures carry basically no weight. Sure, each team may have followed different leads, but they all ended up at the same place, fighting alongside one another.
A big problem with this storyline is that New Team Arrow, which is a terrible name, has never really stated why they’re continuing this fight. All three could’ve easily left the world of vigilantism behind and led somewhat normal lives, but they’ve chosen to continue fighting. Is that because they’ve caught the vigilante bug and can’t shake it, or are they really dedicated to protecting the city? René just got his daughter back and doesn’t want to lose her, so wouldn’t now be a good time for him to, you know, stop being Wild Dog? There are moments it just feels as though this new team only exists because they have something they’re trying to prove to Oliver, and if that’s the case they’re doing this whole crime fighting thing for the wrong reasons.
At the end of it all, there’s a very unfortunate feeling that both parties will regroup within the next couple of episodes as one big happy Team Arrow family. It irks me that exploring this team a bit more in-depth seems to be off the table at the moment. Now that could very well change, but it’s hard to expect anything more from these writers when it comes to properly fleshing out certain stories.
William Finding Out the Truth
Things were a bit more interesting concerning William during this episode, not only showing some glimmer of potential for his character down the road, but he also learned that Oliver is still the Green Arrow. Though he’s unsettled by it at first, he finds some resolve in the matter due to some very questionable step-parenting methods from Felicity. While it may be better for the series that William has found out and accepted his father’s nightly activities, it does still seem a bit rushed considering how bothered he seemed to be by it initially.
I’ve mentioned this several times before about how certain characters kind of just go along with what Oliver says and does, just to serve the plot, and it seems that William has fallen further victim to that. I’m not saying that I necessarily want him whining every other episode about his father wearing the green hood, but for someone like William who has already lost so much in such a short amount of time and starting to form somewhat of a proper relationship with Oliver, he would be even more bothered by the fact that this new parental figure in his life could be lost as well. And having him say something like, “If something happens, I’ll have Felicity,” is even more painful writing that’s only used to prop Felicity as this “bad ass, amazing woman” that these people are almost always telling us she is every week. If William is to be an integral part of this show and Oliver’s life, he does deserve his own agency and proper development that shows he’s ready to accept this more dangerous aspect of not only his father’s life but his as well.
Meanwhile, while Arrow Season 6 Episode 12 moved the plot forward in threat of Cayden James, and Black Siren’s presence this season, the 12th episode shoehorned in a flashback that tried too hard to make us feel sympathy for a character that didn’t necessarily deserve it.
The Vigilante Problem
On top of the reveal of Vigilante being a one-note character, his involvement in this plot is completely forced and holds not a single thread of significance, other than to repeat a plot. It seems like the writers have, yet again, written themselves in a corner with the introduction of his character. And instead of really being selective of who this man could’ve been and his motives going forward, it feels like the more he’s on-screen, the more it shows how unplanned and thought out his overall arc was. He’s merely a plot device that’s buying time until his usefulness on the series runs out and it’s a bit tiresome to watch. So much could’ve been done with Vigilante. He could’ve served as a mirror image for Oliver, back in his killing days; he could’ve had his own jagged moral compass when it came protecting the city. Instead, he’s simply a mole in with the bad guys. It’s a wasted opportunity..
Let’s also not forget that it’s also a repeated plot point, one Arrow pretty much shot themselves in the foot with by even including flashbacks of Vince and Dinah’s relationship. Oliver literally came across Dinah while she was seeking revenge on the man who “killed” Vince. Now that he seems to be dead, yet again, Dinah has found herself in the revolving door of revenge, but wanting to go after Black Siren and Cayden James and his other cohorts this time. I’ll admit I felt a slight tinge of sympathy for Dinah, having to watch the same thing unfold in front of her again, but when you realize the writers simply weren’t smart enough to provide a fresher end to their story is incredibly disheartening.
Also, having Black Siren be the one to deliver the horrific killing blow adds even more insult to injury because it now pits the two women against each other. They’ve had their scuffles out in the field, but what was once filler battles will now be filled with rage and vengeance. Arrow has done terribly at producing positive female relationships on this show, so to see that these two women, who just may have more in common than a meta-human ability, now personally going at each other’s throat will be annoying to see. However, it will make for an interesting fallout if Dinah becomes too engulfed in revenge like she did previously.
Side note: Why couldn’t Dinah have just cried the piece of debris away from her to help Vince?
The Beginning of Black Siren’s Journey?
One of the more outstanding moments of the episode was when Quentin showed Black Siren a slideshow of sorts that depicted his Laurel, which overlapped with him telling her that she has the capability of being the same woman. I’ve mentioned previously that for Black Siren’s redemption to truly work, she’s also going to have to want it. It can’t be forced on her. Given her hesitant decision to kill Vince, she may or may not be heading in that direction. We’ve seen moments of Black Siren wanting to hold back, but never actually doing so. What is it about her that causes her to have these brief and subtle moments of good, but results in her letting “the darkness” ultimately take over?
I look forward to seeing where she can potentially go. I won’t rule out her killing Vince a sign that she isn’t ready for change, but I am still cautious on whether or not it’s fully capable. We’ll see in the episodes to come.
What did you think of Arrow Season 6 Episode 12? Sound off in the comments with your thoughts!