The last episode of Arrow Season 3 felt as if it could easily have been the series finale. As Oliver and Felicity drove off into the sunset, all was good for our hero, so coming back from their version of Eden was a jarring change in motion for our leading duo.
Season 4 was, well, a bit hit and miss. After throwing us a curveball at the end of episode one, the rest of the season was littered with some strong episodes and individual arcs, but they were often overshadowed and pushed to the side to make way for whatever new drama could be thrown at the new couple.
It wasn’t bad, by any stretch – the moments of brilliance were surrounded by good padding – but compared to the earlier seasons, it fell a little flat. The ‘Who is in the grave?’ conundrum added extra spice, with red herrings galore and a mid-season finale that left us demanding to know if they had actually just killed everybody’s favourite tech-whiz (Spoiler alert: they didn’t).
As bad guys go, Damien Darhk (Neal McDonough) was arguably one of the finest that Arrow has ever had. His cavalier attitude towards killing those who got in his way was divine, and really, you wanted to hate him, but you simply couldn’t. He was the representation of the darkest side of you. With magic. It was changing up the main villain that gave Arrow the edge this year compared to its oldest sister show. It was fresh to see Oliver and company battling something they had no idea how to stop.
Which leads us nicely into the absolute highlight of the season: John Constantine. Matt Ryan, we salute you. You made the flashback story more interesting, and the present day wholly entertaining. The only negative is that there simply wasn’t enough of you.
The brief return of Colton Haynes as Roy was also a welcome breather, and the news that he’ll be returning for more in Season 5 makes us all the more excited for it.
Of course, we can’t not mention the elephant in the room: Season 4 saw us lose one of the mainstays of the cast. No spoilers here, but really it was a bit of a punch in the gut, even though you’d been ready for it from the start.
Season 4 was by no means Arrow’s strongest season, but there was enough in it to make you want to come back for the next round.