Arrow: Human Target (Review)


By: Ashley Binion (@ashleybinion)
In Arrow’s previous episode, “Penance,” Renee, AKA Wild Dog, was kidnapped by Oliver’s current antagonist Tobias Church. This week, “Human Target” wasted no time in jumping right back into the action.
Warning: Spoilers ahead.
I was surprised by how quickly the series decided to kill off Church. It’s almost too early to get rid of an excellent villain. He’s been the complete opposite of the past few villains. Church’s true intention behind taking down the Green Arrow is one that is grounded in real world problems that could happen in any city. For a show that started out very grounded, it was a nice return to form.
Oliver’s storyline as mayor continues to impress. At the beginning of the season, I was afraid that he was going to treat being the mayor much like he treated being CEO of Queen Consolidated, which was neglectfully. He has shown that he’s grown up in the years since he was in charge at his family’s company. As a result, he is taking the mayoral position seriously and has realized that the Green Arrow and the mayor can symbiotically coexist. This creates a compelling storyline for not only him, but Thea and Lance as well.
Christopher Chance, aka Human Target, was fantastic. Can we permanently keep him please? He provided a unique skill set that proved to be very beneficial for the team two separate times. In the short time he was around, he did more for the team than any of the recruits have done so far.
The more I see of the new recruits, I’m starting to realize something: they are not only there as Team Arrow 2.0, they are there to be a foil to their Original Team Arrow counterparts. In the previous episode, Rory was there to aid in Felicity’s guilt about Havenrock. “Human Target” was Renee’s turn to be Diggle’s foil. Diggle is the mentor Wild Dog has needed all along. Speaking of the recruits, I didn’t miss Curtis at all. I’m starting to think his place is in the Quiver with Felicity, not out in the streets.
Arrow’s Bratva flashbacks are connected to the present day in a significant way that they haven’t been in years. This was due to the shocking revelation that Human Target actually saved Oliver while in Russia and that the reporter is hot on Oliver’s Bratva tracts. There haven’t been shocks like that pertaining to the flashbacks in seasons. Through season three and four, the flashbacks became predictable and as a result, they felt downright lazy. This season, they feel like they have a purpose and are more unpredictable in the way they factor in during the present day. And the fact that we know something that Oliver doesn’t excites me to no end. Side note, the quick Amazo reference was made of win.
This episode dealt with Olicity in a way they haven’t been dealt with all season. It felt weird to go through the beginning handful of episodes without the mention of their past romance. I actually had a theory going that Flashpoint changed their relationship and they never got together. That would have provided an interesting twist that could have allowed the writers to go back and fix past mistakes. But oh well. In the end, the writers made a smart decision to give their relationship some time to breathe and not address it right away. Last season, the couple became way too melodramatic, which actually ended up hurting the show. Judging by the heart eyes they were flashing each other at the end of the episode, I doubt either of them will fully move on. Sorry Billy.
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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