Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Arrow: Let the MEN Handle This

*This post contains spoilers for the Season 1 Finale of Arrow, just in case I'm not the last one to have finally gotten around to watching it.

     I literally just finished watching season 1 of Arrow after marathoning it all day, so I may not be terribly coherent in this irritated review of the finale, but hear me out, okay? I really like Arrow. I mean, what's not to like? It's Green Arrow, aka Oliver Queen, who happens to be one of the many DC Comics heroes that I have been in love with since early adolescence. It's no secret that I'm a DC Comics fangirl, so it shouldn't be any surprise that I'm really enjoying this show.

     However, I have a pretty big problem with the way the women are treated in the season finale. Essentially, how Laurel, Thea, and most glaringly Felicity are told, "Sure, you could help, but you're girls. Go hide and be safe while the boys handle this."

     I mean, sure it's great that these men are so set on protecting their friends. I would be fine with it if this applied to their male friends too. I mean, seriously! In Felicity's case, she literally volunteers to diffuse the bomb that only she knows how to diffuse and Oliver vetoes it immediately. He had no trouble when Diggle was going to diffuse it. In fact, instead of letting the girl do it, he calls in Officer Lance to do it instead while she talks him through it.

     Thea risks life and limb to go to the Glades and save Roy, literally making her appearance there by hitting a guy upside the head with a glass bottle who was pointing a gun at Roy. Then, when some others need help, Roy tells her he can't let her stay there and help him help them. He tells her to run and she does, making her entire trip worthless and leaving Roy to help the people dying in the bus.

     Laurel's storyline in the finale is the least troublesome, though I honestly still can't figure out why she was in the Glades anyway after literally everyone told her to stay out. Her father begs her to get out because he thinks he'll be going under with the disaster, so I can't find too much fault with her ordeal.

     It just infuriated me watching these extremely capable women treated as something fragile and precious that couldn't handle saving the city like the menfolk. The men, of course, can risk their lives without a question. Oliver doesn't think twice about risking his own life, agrees to let Diggle come with him only after remembering Officer Lance could help, and conscripts Officer Lance knowing full well that he could easily die going in for Felicity.

     So as much as I wanted to, I really couldn't enjoy the finale of Season 1. I expected better of the creators, especially ones that created such dynamic women that I was really enjoying up to that point. Here's to hoping Season 2 rights those wrongs and lets these women reach their real potential.