'Arrow' Pilot Screening at Comic Con: Revenge, Anyone?
'Arrow' Pilot Screening at Comic Con:  Revenge, Anyone?
Do you like Revenge? Apparently the makers of Arrow do as well, because as far as I can tell, it's Revenge with a male lead. Not that it's a bad thing. It's actually pretty good.

Welcome Back

The show is ostensibly based on the comic book character Green Arrow, who last appeared on Smallville and was played by Justin Hartley on that series. Stephen Amell takes the reins for this incarnation, which sees billionaire playboy Oliver Queen returning home after getting stranded on an island and being presumed dead for five years. A lot of people note that he seems different. Yeah, I'd probably come back a little skewed after playing a real-life version of the Tom Hanks role in Castaway.

Down to Business

Without giving away a lot of spoilers about the pilot, I can say that this is a darker portrayal of Green Lantern than we saw in Smallville. Amell is handsome and charming as Oliver, and he's a fine physical specimen (thanks for those workout scenes, by the way). He clearly has an agenda, which is set up through a series of flashbacks that let us in on the circumstances of his disappearance. His ex-girlfriend is less than thrilled to see him back in town (the fact that he was fooling around with her sister might have something to do with that). Too bad Oliver is spending more time playing a rather violent game of cat and mouse with one of the city's heavy hitters than making amends. Oliver's dead father is the driving force behind his machinations, as we learn toward the end of the episode.

A Sort of Familiarity

So, we have a series with a young, attractive lead who has been away from home for several years. Said lead reconnects with an old love in an unexpected way. The protagonist is rich and can finance any type of retribution imagined. There are older antagonists who could be behind a nefarious plot. There's a dead father who leaves a list of wrongdoers to his adult child. Said child goes about avenging the father on a person by person basis.

Nah, that's not like Revenge at all.

Crystal Waters
Contributing Writer

(Image courtesy of The CW)

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