Arrow Season 3 Blu-Ray Review


Hey guys! I’m taking a break from my usual Batman duties over at Caped Crusades to bring you a review of a season of the most Batman-like show on on TV (no, not Gotham). Arrow Season 3 comes out on Blu-r ay on September 22, and Warner Bros. was kind enough to give us an advance copy to review.

I think it’s safe to say that Arrow‘s second season was no sophmore slump. A huge improvement over the first season, the show really found its footing and was compelling pretty much the whole way. Was season 3 of Arrow able to continue the momentum set by Season 2 and have enough cool bonus features to make it worth purchasing on Blu-ray? Read on to find out.

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Reviewing the actual season itself, Arrow Season 3 is a pretty mixed bag. The highlights are really great. Brandon Routh is a fantastic addition to the cast and a lot of fun as Ray Palmer. The frequent crossovers with The Flash are a lot of fun as well. While stolen straight out of Batman, Ra’s al Ghul and the League of Assassins is a solid storyline, and Matt Nable is great in the role.

But Season 3 of Arrow also felt incredibly unfocused in a lot of areas. The flashbacks to Oliver Queen’s time in Hong Kong took up way too much screen time and fell incredibly flat. The dramatic first battle between Oliver and Ra’s was great, but the second lacked that same punch because it was like he just decided to be better. It didn’t feel earned. A significant amount of time was spent setting up next season’s villain, Damien Darhk, and felt entirely unnecessary.

And you know what? We are three seasons into this show now, Oliver should implicitly trust his team and vice versa. Him keeping them in the dark about any plans makes no sense this far into the show. So ultimately while there were some good and necessary highlights, Season 3 of Arrow felt like a step backward.

Moving on to the main reason you would buy a Blu-ray of a TV show, the special features. Honestly, I feel like Arrow Season 3 really drops the ball here in a couple of key areas. There is only one commentary track; it’s on the season premiere episode and gives very little insight on the overall season. The special features that are there are pretty interesting (like the one on designing costumes) but why is there one that’s all about the A.T.O.M.’s first fight and not one focused on Ray Palmer’s journey? Why is there one on creating Nanda Parbat and nothing on the nearly season-long rivalry between Arrow and Ra’s al Ghul (and why they felt Ra’s was a good choice for this season’s main villain)? Why is there a panel from last year’s Comic-Con and not this year’s?

Season 3 is also where Arrow‘s universe expanded. Metahumans and a little but of mysticism were introduced. The Flash was born and crossovers happened. Features talking about this growth and what direction it might head in future seasons would have been really interesting. But there’s absolutely nothing discussing this. It feels like a huge missed opportunity.

Ultimately, we have a pretty uneven season that in my opinion is really lacking in almost necessary special features. Unless you absolutely must own every season of Arrow on Blu-Ray, I’d pass on Season 3. If you just want to watch it, I’m sure it will be on Netflix soon enough.

Disclosure: Bam Smack Pow was provided with a copy of Arrow: The Complete Third Season on Blu-ray by Warner Bros. Home Entertainment for the purposes of this review.

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