Season 4 of The CW’s Arrow has had its fair share of hits and misses thus far, and “Beyond Redemption” on Oct. 28 was no different. The fourth episode of the fourth season, “Beyond Redemption” raised more questions than it answered, and fans must now consider all of the places that Arrow might be going next. Of course, some of those places make more sense than others. So, here is a look at what absolutely needs to happen next on Arrow after the events of “Beyond Redemption.”
Oliver needs some stunt sequences a la Seasons 1 and 2. Stephen Amell is obviously still capable, and the clunky new Green Arrow suit might look more svelte on him if he can show off his skills at doing something other than taking a hit.
Somebody needs to give Sara a change of clothes. She was first drugged in Nanda Parbat and then probably again for the three-hour flight home. Laurel and Thea both had changes of clothes with them. Heck, Nyssa’s closet was probably up for grabs after Malcolm had her locked away. They could have found something to dress her in other than the leathers in which she died. Sara probably started to choke her fully-dressed, nicely-coiffed sister just for the sake of aerobic activity to warm herself up in the basement in which she’d been chained up and left alone like a dog.
Characters need to stop blaming Oliver for leaving the city over the summer. They seem to have forgotten that Oliver couldn’t resume his vigilante lifestyle at the time of his departure. The Arrow was dead, and it’s only thanks to five months of no Arrow and three other masked marauders running around that Oliver has been able to pull off being the Green Arrow. The Arrow was off the table, and Oliver Queen had recently been the subject of a massive manhunt. What on earth was he supposed to do if he’d stayed behind?
An Oliver/Felicity proposal needs to happen in Season 4. With Thea assuming that Oliver’s announcement was an engagement, Arrow calling attention to the slip by having Laurel question Felicity, and Oliver randomly asking his flashback comrade if he was proposing are all guns of the Chekhov variety that absolutely need to go off. If the show is going to keep setting up these teases in Villain of the Week episodes, then the show is going to need to deliver on a proposal sooner rather than later.
Laurel needs to not get off scot free for what she has done to Sara. It doesn’t matter if the next episode reveals that Sara’s soul was being ripped apart in eternal torment before Laurel dug her up. It doesn’t matter if Sara forgives her. It doesn’t matter if there’s a happy ending. Somebody needs to hold Laurel accountable. Big moral quandaries don’t work on television unless the opposite side is represented for longer than an obligatory scene or two, and Laurel not facing any lasting consequences at all would reek of contrived writing rather than make any sort of narrative sense.
Now that the show has effectively called shenanigans on itself by pointing out how objectively unqualified Oliver is to run for mayor, the show needs to stop writing all of the characters except for his girlfriend to pile on him about his inadequacies. It’s bad enough when the bad guys do it and it’s even worse when Team Flash does it; Oliver doesn’t need the good guys on his own show ragging on him in every single episode.
The flashbacks need to be more exciting. If the show tries to make the flashbacks more interesting by making Ambiguously Accented Woman a love interest to Oliver, then the show also either needs to throw an equalizing variable into the dynamic or acknowledge the huge imbalance of power between them. Ambiguously Accented Woman is at Oliver’s mercy in every single way; if the flashbacks acknowledge this as an aspect of Oliver going dark, it could work. If not, the imbalance definitely needs to change.
Oliver needs to continue to play the “five years in hell” card whenever he has to get away with something in his campaign. Arrow is going to need to come up with a way for Oliver to continue to work as the Green Arrow while juggling the schedule of a mayoral campaign, and Oliver heaving a melodramatic sigh and excusing himself because of memories of his five years in hell whenever he needs to make a speedy getaway could work for an episode or two.
John Diggle needs more to do. As great as it was to see David Ramsey able to work with the natural chemistry of the core of Team Arrow rather than against it, the man deserves more screentime than he’s been getting so far. His development should not be the sacrificed just for the sake of newer and flashier elements of the show, and Ramsey has proved himself more than capable of handling meaty material.