TV Review – Arrow S03E19: Broken Arrow

Hello Arrow fans! I’m sure your numbers are waning and waning fast, because this week’s episode was a real doozy. Welcome to this week’s review of episode 19, “Broken Arrow,” otherwise known as “Thank God Ray is Spinning Off Soon Because I Can’t Handle Much More of This.”


Let’s be honest. This episode was a trainwreck. In an series of random scenes with no transition or connection:

  • Roy is in jail for apparently being the Arrow
  • A meta-human is found in Starling city
  • Ray is improving his tech
  • Oliver is angsting
  • More flashbacks that don’t actually go anywhere
  • Merlyn shows up to be cryptic
  • Diggle is the only voice of reason in this entire show
  • Quentin continues his search for proof that Oliver, not Roy, is actually the Arrow
  • Roy proves to be a perfect adorable sweetheart who is too good for this world
  • Ray and Ollie team up
  • Roy is killed in prison
  • JUST KIDDING!! Felicity and Diggle faked his death and… couldn’t tell Oliver… for some reason…
  • Thea is killed
  • She’s actually dead though



These boxes are not checked in any particular order. It’s as if the writers put each scene into a hat and wrote them as they were drawn out.

And they didn’t do particularly good job. This week’s desertion of reason and logic made me wish fondly for that false dichotomy thing they used to do. It was a bit like playing The Floor is Lava. It’s ridiculous, but you join in the illusion. You pretend you have fewer options and higher stakes than you actually do.  Just go with it! Why not?

Whereas this episode of Arrow was a bit like playing chess with a three year old. And not one of those awesome-smart three year olds either. Just an ordinary one. Who’s moving pieces whenever she wants. Wherever she wants. There’s not even any way for you to engage in this game. The rules are out the window.


You think I’m exaggerating? Let’s look a little closer.

Things that made absolutely no sense this episode:

  • The meta-human. If you’re not watching Flash, and I’m not, then the reveal was absolutely laughable. I would know. I laughed so hard I had to pause the episode.
  • Oliver can’t save Roy because then people will know Roy isn’t the Arrow
    • But…. if he saves him… then it doesn’t matter???
    • Like there was literally no effort made to support this claim. They just stated it and hoped no one looked too closely
    • Make a new identity?
    • Wear Arsenal’s outfit?
    • Have Ray make you a suit?
    • Have Ray rescue Roy?
    • As usual, there are about a thousand options, and you’re not looking at any of them.
  • Team Arrow wipes all the prints in the lab and then replaces all the prints with Roy’s prints
    • What
    • Why don’t you just NOT leave any prints?
  • Oliver needs to take over Ray’s suit via neural link so he can do super high-tech things like punching
    • Oliver needs to make every move that Atom’s suit does except for things like walking
    • Like not to be nitpicky but if he can think ‘walk’ why can’t he think ‘punch’
  • There is apparently a law that Colton Haynes can’t be happy
    • Here he goes off another show
    • Oh but he gets to live because he’s a male
    • Speaking of which
  • Thea’s dead now
    • Of course she is
    • Because we can’t have ladies on the show who aren’t romantically interested in Oliver
    • I mean it’s possible they save her but that will be unrealistic considering the wound and how no one knows she’s in trouble
    • And something else will probably suck
    • My money’s on the Lazarus pit but we’ll probably turn an enormous blind eye to all the other dead women.



I feel you, Thea.

I’d also like to take a moment to appreciate the excellent writing behind the line Diggle gives Oliver: “No one close to you has died yet.” Let’s look at the canon for a moment shall we?

  • Dad
  • Tommy
  • Mom
  • Sarah
  • Like seriously I know the point of this line was to say that Ra’s specifically has not recently ended anyone Oliver loves but
  • What a pointless empty line
  • What a pointless empty episode


Sorry Roy. You deserved a much better send-off.

To be honest, I have great difficulty finding any redeeming feature in this episode at all. I have difficulty finding any redeeming feature in this season at all.


Oh wait. Ray Palmer. Thank God he’s getting a different show.


At least next week’s episode has to be better.


Please tell me I’m right.

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About the author

Molly Race

Molly is a 24 year old teacher from the Midwest who currently resides in the West. She likes history, travel, and trying very hard not to set her baked goods on fire. She watches all science fiction religiously and advocates very loudly for good representation in race, gender, and sexuality. She loves antiheroes from the bottom of her blackened little soul.

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