Arrow: The Scientist


By Ashley Binion (@ashleybinion)

After months of hype and not so subtle hints throughout Arrow, Barry Allen finally made his grand appearance. “The Scientist” was a purely a set-up episode for Arrow’s  winter finale and served as the gateway into superpowers.

Warning: Spoilers ahead.

To start off, there were so many Flash references throughout the episode that it’s tedious to name them all, but it was fun to see the episode start off with a shot of Starling City and then a crackle of lightning in the background. It foreshadowed how many references there was to come.

Arrow did Barry Allen justice, especially with the accurate monologue about his mother’s death and his father’s troubles.

Grant Gustin was solid as Barry Allen. He was awkwardly adorable and his scenes with Team Arrow, and particularly Felicity, were entertaining. The jury is out on whether Gustin can hold up an entire series, but with a different cast and characters he might be able to grow into the role more and carry an entire series.

Solomon Grundy’s living counterpart Cyrus Gold was able to show off his super strength this episode. So far, the super serum was only teased but this was the first time it was shown in action. It was refreshing to see a villain that the Arrow couldn’t defeat so easily.

It was ingenious by the Arrow writers to slowly build in the possibility of superpowers. Now, when the audience sees someone like Cyrus Gold with superpowers it isn’t entirely unbelievable.

So, Slade Wilson “died.” But, I’m pretty sure Arrow just gave the viewer Slade’s origin story as Deathstroke. In the comics, Slade Wilson was injected with a super soldier serum, and in this episode he was most likely injected with the same serum.  Don’t expect him to be gone for too long.

Also, Ollie noted that Professor Ivo died. It will be exciting to see this play out in flashbacks.

The Moira and Malcolm scenes were cleverly done. At first it seemed like they were up to their same old dynamic with Malcolm bullying Moira regarding a secret. However, this time Moira fought back and brought her own ammunition: Ra’s al Ghul.

It was a welcome shift to the dynamic and actually made me curious to where that storyline is headed. Moira seems to know way more about the criminal underworld than she is letting on. I mean, how else would someone just hit up Ra’s al Ghul? It’s not like you can just call up the guy after looking up his number.

The “party” scene was largely unnecessary. It felt like a waste of quality space that could have been easily used for different plot points. Sure, it established that Moira doesn’t trust Isabel which foreshadows how the rest of the season could play out for Queen Consolidated. Still, it was superfluous.

“The Scientist” was largely a set-up for what is to come in the second part of Arrow’s mid-season finale. For example, another person knows Ollie’s secret now. Hopefully, what they set up in this episode will pay off in the subsequent episode.

What did you think of Arrow’s introduction of the Flash? Did you buy Grant Gustin as Barry Allen?

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

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