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Lesson From Arrow II

I’ve written about the elements I enjoyed about the CW show Arrow, lessons that I took away as a writer. Now it’s probably worth writing about what made me lose interest.

I mentioned in the last post that I get bored with shows and books easily. I’m not what you would call a completist at this stage of my life. Time is just too valuable to stick with an entertainment franchise that is not delivering. Having said that, I was really into Arrow, even when they sometimes jumped the shark (as all shows will). So why did I quit after the season seven opener?

The main reason, I suppose, was Felicity. When she was cute, funny, and off-the-wall I found her adorable. She changed over time, and that is fine. Characters have arcs, and they are not the same people at both ends of the curve. In this case, however, I discovered that I didn’t particularly care for the person who who landed at the far end of the line.

It’s important to note that the writers didn’t owe me a character that I liked. It was not their job to give me what I want, but what their creative vision was. Fan service is the swiftest path to being a hack, after all. It’s not the actresses fault, because I’m sure she delivered the performance that was written for her.

I could have lived with one of the show’s stars that I didn’t like anymore. No problem. However, all the painfully convoluted “will-they-won’t-they” plot lines really got on my nerves. That stuff verges more on melodrama, and I don’t like melodrama. It seemed to me that they only reunited Oliver and Felicity when nobody cared anymore. Well, at least I didn’t care by then.

I’m sorry if this sounds unduly harsh, because these kind of situations are television show standards. It can be handled well, and it can be bungled up. It’s funny, but now that I think about it, this show shared the same faults with the Ross/Rachel relationship on Friends, and the Nyles/Daphney storyline on Frasier. Both shows were very successful, and both are show I bailed on by the last season.

Do you think I’m being fair? Should I have toughed it out for one more season? From what I can see, dropping the show and moving on was very much in character for me.

Published inWriting