Entertainment Magazine

Review #3914: Arrow 1.10: “Burned”

Posted on the 18 January 2013 by Entil2001 @criticalmyth

Contributor: John Keegan

Written by Moira Kirland and Ben Sokolowski
Directed by Eagle Egilsson

I have no idea if the writers of “Arrow” knew that this would be the first episode back from the winter hiatus, but regardless of intent, the six week gap from the previous episode to this installment works very well. Much like Oliver, the audience is still trying to regain their footing, especially since the last thing we saw was Oliver getting beaten to a pulp. The mental recovery is more tenuous than the physical one.

Review #3914: Arrow 1.10: “Burned”

I like the notion that Oliver would have to face down his demons and remember, as seen in the flashbacks, that previous process of picking himself up off the ground. As they say: you can’t always choose whether or not you get knocked down, but it’s entirely your choice whether you get back up on your feet. Oliver needs a little prodding from Dig to get him out of his funk, but it’s facing a situation that is properly scaled to his mental state that proves most efficient.

The disgruntled and psychotic fireman at the center of the killing spree doesn’t seem to align with any of Green Arrow’s rogues gallery, but that’s probably for the best. He presents a real and present danger, but he’s not something that Oliver can’t handle on an average day. It’s a surmountable goal, by design, and that also applies to the connection to Laurel. It gives her yet another reason to trust Green Arrow, and she’s certainly turning around on the idea of vigilantes.

That is one of the small ironies of the end of the episode. Laurel is convinced by her father that she should continue to nurture her growing relationship with Green Arrow, because it means she can be convenient bait. And since Green Arrow has shown a penchant for protecting Laurel, it’s a relatively low risk proposition. Yet that very process is more and more likely to bring Laurel to that inevitable conclusion that she, too, should pull on a costume and fight crime her own way.

Usually the drama within Oliver’s family is the weakest element of the show, so I was concerned that so much time spent on his mother and Thea would drag the episode down in the end. Thankfully that wasn’t the case. Knowing that Oliver’s mother is tied into Merlyn’s schemes to such a large degree gives a lot of her choices and reactions a more interesting context, and Thea’s decisions also point to some possible growth.

Every episode seems to take Laurel and Thea closer to the moment when they will realize that Oliver is Green Arrow. The series is still moving at a measured pace, but that pace is a bit faster than I was anticipating. I doubt Laurel will go too much longer before coming the right conclusion, though I’m half-convinced that she wouldn’t say anything to Oliver until she felt it was necessary. It adds a nice measure of anticipation to the eventual reveal.

Writing: 2/2
Acting: 2/2
Direction: 2/2
Style: 2/4

Final Score: 8/10

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog