Comic Vine Review

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Arrow #205 - League of Assassins Review

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Can Black Canary escape from the League of Assassins' grip? Meanwhile, Moira's offered a deal to avoid the death penalty.

Oliver often has the spotlight and rightfully so -- it's his name in the title, after all. But "League of Assassins" shifts focus and finally fleshes out Black Canary. Has she just been lingering around to make sure her family's safe and won't reveal herself because she doesn't want them to see what she's become or resurrect so many emotions? Thankfully, the writers avoid predictability with her path and what ensues is an episode filled with a whole lot of ninja action and some legitimately emotional moments. Laurel's still kind of a pain, but that's to be expected given all the weight she's putting on her shoulders.

You can't have an episode called "League of Assassins" and not have some legitimately solid melees, right? There's plenty of that this time around and there's a slight variation each time to keep things fresh. First is a straight up brawl that demolishes a room, then there's a fight for survival in a different location, and lastly, a fight which shows off Black Canary's tactical mind. I have some gripes with the action (we'll get to that later), but overall they're still entertaining and definitely enthralling.

Also surprisingly good this week was the drama. The heartfelt moments between Moira and her family are well-executed (sorry, poor choice of words), but the truly attention-grabbing stuff is whenever Sara or Quentin are on the screen. The script gives both the opportunity to show off their acting chops and reel us in for some feels. There's been a lot of drama which has felt forced or just fell flat over the course of this show, but "League of Assassins" has some honestly gripping material. And Felicity? Well, she just remains lovably awkward. Diggle doesn't get much focus here, but that's fine seeing as next week's episode will apparently revolve around him.

While this was quite a good episode, I do have some gripes. For one, the constant quick cuts and shaky cam makes it seriously difficult to appreciate some of the fight choreography. I know some say it's to "throw you into the chaos," but I'd much rather fully appreciate all of the hard work they're putting into these brawls. Additionally, there's some other minor gripes with the fight. For example, did Oliver really open with a kill-shot to the back of that guy's head? We know he's good, but how'd Oliver know for sure he'd catch that and he's that good? The dude didn't deal with projectiles in their first fight. Yes, it was a cool moment, but seeing as the guy is trying to go non-lethal, a shot to the back would have seemed more appropriate. Additionally, how'd that highly trained ninja not see the blatant rope trap on the ground? And for someone who trained the very dangerous Meryln, the main dude wasn't all that formidable (reflex feat aside), but hey, there's plenty of times where the student has become better than the master and all that, so it's not that big of a deal. Lastly, this show has been hitting us with some seriously great cliffhangers, but this week felt really weak in that regard. Ultimately, it was the "next week on..." preview which was needed to keep the hype going. Honestly, the flashbacks in this one weren't nearly as compelling as the current era material.

The script was impressive and the talent each did a more than engrossing job bringing the emotion front and center. This episode has without question had some of the most powerful moments in the show's history. When it's not all surprisingly good drama and sadness, there's thankfully some fairly rad ninja action to help even the mood. All in all, "League of Assassins" is a darn good episode. Oh, and how awesome was that Batman Begins reference?!

One Spoilery remark: I really hope this isn't the last we'll see of Sara or the League of Assassins. Her departure makes sense, but let's be honest, this was great and hopefully they'll reemerge sooner or later.

Viners, what do you think of "League of Assassins?" Get your elaboration on below. Just be considerate and remember to use spoiler tabs!

79 Comments
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Posted by patrat18

Can this show get any better?

Posted by bladewolf

@patrat18 said:

Can this show get any better?

QFT!

Posted by batsymyplaything

Amazo, and his creator!

Posted by frozenedge

Anybody else noticing Black Canary is looking more and more like Mockingbird each episode she fights?

Posted by CheeseSticks

Another amazing episode! I'm ok with Sarah getting out for a while, we will see more Ollie vs bad guys. Hopefully we will see the conclusion of Deadshot case and more Diggle bro love. Laurel is getting crazier every episode, i love it ahah. First time i'm so hype for the flashback story, i want to know about Ivo, Slade, Sarah, there's so many questions.

This episode is 5/5

And don't worry, we'll see Sarah and the LoA soon probably. I'm pretty sure they'll show up before the season final.

Edited by MadeinBangladesh

so awesome!

Posted by patrat18

@patrat18 said:

Can this show get any better?

QFT!

Quoted For Truth" or "Quit F***ing Talking?

Posted by ULTRAstarkiller

That reference was awesome I hope they scrape up some money and get Liam Neeson to be Ra's.

Posted by Fallschirmjager

I doubt we'll see an end to shaky cam any time soon. The budget and time required to make good fight scenes is more than any TV will really get.

I mean, even TDK trilogy had issues with action scenes in that regard. Sometimes you just have to live with it.

Excellent otherwise.

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Posted by stevencarver_

SO MUCH AWESOME IN THIS SHOW.

So, after these next two episodes, we'll be seeing Barry Allen on screen so..... I'M KINDA EXCITED CAN YOU TELL?

Posted by Pokeysteve
Edited by patrat18
Edited by Pokeysteve

@patrat18 said:

@pokeysteve said:

@patrat18 said:

Can this show get any better?

@batsymyplaything said:

Amazo, and his creator!

Boom!

Nuff said.

I'm really hoping they explore Nanda Parbat too. Maybe throw The Question in there? Richard Dragon?

Posted by patrat18

@patrat18 said:

@pokeysteve said:

@patrat18 said:

Can this show get any better?

@batsymyplaything said:

Amazo, and his creator!

Boom!

Nuff said.

I'm really hoping they explore Nanda Parbat too. Maybe throw The Question in there? Richard Dragon?

I would cry tears of MTF joy.

Edited by Fallschirmjager

@patrat18: @pokeysteve: I could be wrong, but I thought I remember an article back in the summer that confirmed Dragon would be showing up at some point.

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Posted by CitizenJP

This season has been pretty great.

Posted by patrat18

@patrat18: @pokeysteve: I could be wrong, but I thought I remember an article back in the summer that confirmed Dragon would be showing up at some point.

Don't think so.

Posted by samyroc

@patrat18: @pokeysteve: I could be wrong, but I thought I remember an article back in the summer that confirmed Dragon would be showing up at some point.

No mater in the end if that is true mister, you just made my day right now.

Edited by Commander_Kane

Honestly, with Supernatural and TWD dissapointing me a lot lately. Arrow has took the cake for best show on tv, in my opinion. Waiting a whole week just seems impossible this season!

Edited by CuddleBear

why do you do this to yourselfs comic fans? you at least deserve agents of shield quality production. why does DC allow these shows? go make a movie.

Posted by redleader1
Edited by edge007

This show blows Agents of SHIELD out of the water. Each episode this season just gets better and better (and that's saying something since the season premiere was absolutely top notch)!

Posted by ULTRAstarkiller

@redleader1: She told the assassin to mind his surroundings.

Posted by Pokeysteve

@patrat18: @pokeysteve: I could be wrong, but I thought I remember an article back in the summer that confirmed Dragon would be showing up at some point.

Maybe you're thinking of when they announced Bronze Tiger? Dragon would be AWESOME!!

Edited by LordoftheNorth

so green arrow is fighting the league now so green arrow have any of his own villains or are they just going to steal form batman the whole run of this show

Edited by Fallschirmjager

@pokeysteve: I thought they said Bronze Tiger, Brother Blood and Richard Dragon would all show up.

Either way he would be awesome to see for sure.

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Posted by redleader1
Posted by Guardiandevil83

Sarah is a effing beast son!! I love this Woman.

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Posted by JohnnyGat

@patrat18 said:

@bladewolf said:

@patrat18 said:

Can this show get any better?

QFT!

Quoted For Truth" or "Quit F***ing Talking?

Obviously it's Quesadilla's For Thursday

Edited by Loki2u

so green arrow is fighting the league now so green arrow have any of his own villains or are they just going to steal form batman the whole run of this show

Who cares? It's awesome seeing actual villains and heroes in the show....unlike A.O.S where they just name-drop.

Edited by Cyborg6971

why do you do this to yourselfs comic fans? you at least deserve agents of shield quality production. why does DC allow these shows? go make a movie.

Agents of Fail could have a movie budget the size of any blockbuster, but if the script is weak it wouldn't matter. You can't cover up poor writing no matter how good the CGI is.

Agents of Fail is getting the crap kicked out of it by Arrow.

Posted by Cyborg6971

so green arrow is fighting the league now so green arrow have any of his own villains or are they just going to steal form batman the whole run of this show

It's the DCU. What don't some people get about it?

Edited by SupBatz

Laurel, oh Laurel. Is it wrong that I want you to disappear and for Sarah to completely take over your role? She is the Dinah Lance we've all been waiting for.

Quinton is winning me over more each week. I'm thoroughly enjoying this new take on his character. Though it's about time that he should find out Oliver's identity. He has enough hints at this point (Sarah's situation and her friendship with Green Arrow, Felicity's connection to both Green Arrow and Oliver).

Sarah's story has me very intrigued. And while it seems we won't be seeing her for a bit, I look forward to seeing more of how she became the woman she is today. And, of course, more Black Canary action.

Ivo's cameo was very interesting. And even the Queens' story is compelling. For a show that had a lot of flaws the first season, I am very impressed at how well the writers are doing making every plot-point interesting.

Gripe: JUST CALL THEM GREEN ARROW AND BLACK CANARY. The Arrow and the Canary just sound awkward and kind of silly.

Next week's preview: Eh. I'm not a big fan of Diggle. I find him to be the least interesting character on the show (okay, maybe Laurel is least interesting but Dig is a close second for me). And it looks like we'll be seeing a lot of him next week. I expect to be more interested in the B-plot than the A-plot. Hopefully something involving Roy.

Prediction: Anyone else betting that Ivo is the one who created Sarah's "Canary Cry" Machine?

Edit: OH! And I'm surprised to see no mention of the reference to Talia! One of the assassins said that the child of Ra's al Ghul wants Sarah dead or alive. Pretty interesting, eh?

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Edited by Sakurafire

This season has been absolutely fantastic. Anyone else bothered about how the characters pronounce Ra's al Ghul's name? Argh.

Posted by kilomac29

I loved the episode but I had the same reaction after the cliffhanger. Just felt like a scene we saw the week before.

Edited by doombot890

you forgot to mention the guy saying "The Child of al Ghul wants you back" or something like that

could we be meeting Talia soon??

Posted by k4tzm4n

you forgot to mention the guy saying "The Child of al Ghul wants you back" or something like that

could we be meeting Talia soon??

Or, I purposely didn't include it because I didn't want to hint at all the surprises :P

Staff
Edited by ThreadPool

@patrat18 said:

@bladewolf said:

@patrat18 said:

Can this show get any better?

QFT!

Quoted For Truth" or "Quit F***ing Talking?

Obviously it's Quesadilla's For Thursday

I always thought it was, "Quite F***ing True".

I'm weird.

Posted by haydenclaireheroes

Here is my review on the episode:

Edited by The Stegman

I love this season! Even Laurel, who I don't like has had some good character building moments. And Sarah is a BABE. It also didn't hurt that she was in her underwear for a portion of the episode.

Posted by MrMazz

Aw now that's an episode of gritty camp superheroic television right there.

Plenty of lore mythology crap wrapped around a nicely strewen about secrete motif.

cheap plug for user review

Posted by LordoftheNorth

@loki2u: ya but when he barly has any of his own characters appearing in his own show i think that is a dishonor to the Character. They aare showing that they dont believe that his cast od characters are strong no their own

Posted by danhimself

I really do hope that Sarah is only gone for an episode or two

Edited by Guardiandevil83

Sarah needs a Spinoff

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Posted by Mercy_
Moderator
Posted by The Stegman
Posted by UltimateSMfan

@johnnygat said:

@patrat18 said:

@bladewolf said:

@patrat18 said:

Can this show get any better?

QFT!

Quoted For Truth" or "Quit F***ing Talking?

Obviously it's Quesadilla's For Thursday

I always thought it was, "Quite F***ing True".

I'm weird.

hahahaha! i used to think it was quit effing talking too till i thought, not everyone is that mean and googled the full form.

Regarding Arrow... my views have been stated by others in the comments, all the positive ones.

Posted by Loki2u

@loki2u: ya but when he barly has any of his own characters appearing in his own show i think that is a dishonor to the Character. They aare showing that they dont believe that his cast od characters are strong no their own

I hardly think it is dishonoring a character when they make a whole tv show about him. And I disagree that they aren't showcasing his own characters. Black Canary, Red Arrow, Merlin, Speedy are all classic characters in The Green Arrow lore.

Edited by MadeinBangladesh

why do you do this to yourselfs comic fans? you at least deserve agents of shield quality production. why does DC allow these shows? go make a movie.

What are you even talking about?

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