FEATURE: Four Reasons Why ARROW Season 4 Could Be the Best One Yet

While Arrow‘s first two seasons were well received by fans, the show’s third season was polarizing to say the least. Year Three of The CW series received criticism for many creative decisions, from the under-utilization of Ra’s al Ghul to Laurel Lance becoming Black Canary to, of course, Oliver Queen and Felicity Smoak finally becoming a couple. Obviously, the show isn’t going anywhere, and right now, season four looks to be very promising.

There are plenty of ways to make Arrow‘s fourth season better than its third. Don’t make the romance plot so convoluted; focus on a single, cohesive tone and story; don’t waste your Big Bad, and so on. Based on what we’ve seen, I think season four of Arrow has a legitimate shot at being the show’s best year to date. Below, I list four reasons explaining why I think so.

Damien Darhk Strikes

After being teased in the season three finale, H.I.V.E. leader Damien Darhk will antagonize Oliver Queen and company in Arrow‘s fourth season, with actor Neal McDonough playing him. McDonough is a great actor who has plenty of comic book movie and television experience, and seeing him play a full-fledged villain in live action should be fascinating.

One flaw in Arrow‘s approach to Ra’s al Ghul last season was the fact that the Demon’s Head didn’t appear nearly as often as he should have. He appears twice in the season’s first half, then we don’t see him again until Episode 15, and he featured in every episode since. A character of this stature should have had a bigger presence, not one or two appearances and then a few references until his next episode.

However, Damien Darhk will not only be introduced immediately in the season four premiere, he will also serve as a series regular. That suggests he will have a huge presence. Also, producer Marc Guggenheim said that, unlike the show’s past Big Bads, Darhk will be “pure evil,” and his actions will prove that. That is an interesting direction to take, and it could make him stand out from the rest of the series’ foes. While Darhk has big shoes to fill after Malcolm Merlyn and Slade Wilson, he should still be a great enemy, and one who will hopefully improve on Ra’s al Ghul.

The Universe Expands
Arrow has featured many DC Universe characters throughout its run, but season four will have a particularly interesting bunch. Justice Society of America member Mister Terrific will be introduced this season, making him the latest hero to join the universe. Meanwhile, fan-favorite villain Anarky will play a role this year, marking his live action debut. (Yes, fanboys, he was originally a Batman villain; so what?)
Additionally, this year’s The FlashArrow crossover will directly set up DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, with that show’s team expected to appear. Also, in both episodes, Vandal Savage and Hawkman will be formally introduced into this world. And finally, John Constantine from the cancelled NBC series will return in a guest star role on Arrow, fitting into the season’s focus on magic and mysticism.
This lineup of new DC characters on Arrow is certainly impressive. This series has arguably not been as embracing of the more fantastical and comic book-y elements of this universe as spin-off series The Flash. Hopefully, season four can change that with these new characters, among other things…

Sara Lance Returns

Sara Lance/The Canary was a big fan-favorite character when introduced on Arrow in season two, which led to much disappointment when she was killed off, leading to sister Laurel becoming the Black Canary. However, Sara will be resurrected from the dead in season four, leading to a regular role in Legends of Tomorrow as White Canary. The Queen’s Gambit, the AMAZO, and not even three arrows to the chest could keep this character down.

Fans who were turned off by Arrow‘s decision to kill Sara will hopefully return as she’s resurrected. With this decision, we can have Sara kicking ass on her own while Laurel assumes the Black Canary mantle, as was always the plan. So, both fans of Sara and fans of Laurel can be happy. Also, Sara being brought back to life will give the show an opportunity to fully explore the effects of the Lazarus Pit, something which was only touched on last season.

Ultimately, this was a smart, if not predictable, decision made by the Arrow crew. Fingers crossed that this story will not be a mere rehash of the prior “Sara is Alive!” plots (yes, plots) from earlier seasons.

Green Arrow Rises
After three seasons, Oliver Queen will finally embrace his destiny as the Emerald Archer. No “The Arrow,” no “The Vigilante” and no “The Hood.” “Green Arrow” is here at last. Oliver will now sport a new, more comic book faithful costume, while he will be in a happier and more uplifting mood when we see him next. His days of consistent brooding are over. Season four of Arrow will take huge steps in bringing Oliver in line with the comic book version of Green Arrow, or at least, something like it. Oh, and Starling City will now officially be known as “Star City.”
Arrow has been criticized for having a dark, sometimes depressing tone, primarily in season three. However, season four will have a lighter tone; not a drastic change, but a change for the better nonetheless. This, along with Ollie becoming Green Arrow, are signs that the show will do a better job embracing its comic book roots. And that is pretty important if the series wants to keep up with The Flash or DC’s Legends of Tomorrow.
In conclusion, after an iffy third season, Arrow season four should be a massive improvement. From the return and introduction of beloved characters to a promising villain and Oliver Queen becoming Green Arrow, there’s a lot to look forward to this season. Could it surpass season two as the series’ best? Only time will tell.
What are you most excited to see in season four of Arrow?

Founder and Editor-in-Chief of WOBAM! Entertainment.

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