So the fifth season of superhero action series ‘Arrow’ has begun production and will be premiering on October 5th. Lead actor Stephen Amell, speaking at Heroes & Villains FanFest, said the first two episodes of the season would refocus the core mission of the show and also mentioned “Russia” (Blastr).

The Russia comment is likely a reference to the flashback story arc for the new season and leading out of what happened in the finale (see my spoilery review here). Now I have not been a fan of the flashbacks since Season 2 – I find they have begun to distract and detract from the main story line – but I thought it would be fittingly appropriate and appropriately fitting to rank all four story lines so far.

So with a SPOILER ALERT for the show so far let’s bite into it:

Arrow FB3
My name is Maseo Yamashiro. You killed my son. Prepare to die…

#1 Season 3 – Big Trouble in Little Hong Kong

So apparently Oliver did not spend all his missing five years on the island. Apparently he went to Hong Kong on an A.R.G.U.S. mission for Amanda Waller. Okay then.

While the location looked good I never got into the new characters and the plot was underwhelming. As I watched this arc I kept waiting to see how they would tie it in to the main story line. And then it was a shared virus. What a waste of time. A perfect example for why we no longer need the flashbacks.

Arrow FB4
Do you see this tattoo? Do you see it? It’s awesome right?

#2 Season 4 – Island of Mystery

I thought this arc was more interesting and entertaining than Season 3 (hence its placing). I liked Reiter as the over the top super powered villain, though was a bit hammy at times. And Taiana as a tragic prisoner was a decent character though I did not like how she died.

And we got to see how Oliver and John Constantine met so that was a nice bonus. But still the main arc was a lot more fun and I was wading through this for the most part.

Damaged
That is some impressive archery form right there…

#3 Season 1 – Birth of a Hero

The first flashback story arc and the one we most needed. We had to find out how the carefree playboy become a murderous vigilante.

We had lots of action and cool training stuff with the hooded Yao Fei. And we also got to meet the cool characters of Shado and Slade Wilson, setting up our number one story arc!

City of Heroes
I do not love Slade, Oliver. It is you that I love

#1 Season 2 – When Friends Become Enemies

As the flashback that was most intertwined with the main story arc, Season 2’s was a heaping can of awesome sauce. We learn the fate of Sara, see the death of Shado and, best of all, how Slade went from being an ally to Oliver’s major adversary.

Every flashback was another piece of the puzzle that all came together in a beautiful action-packed picture. When the flashback is as interesting, or even more interesting at times, as the main arc you know you have a winner. They really should have stopped after this one.

And if the arcs represent years then Russia will be the fifth and final year Ollie was missing. Just drop him off on the island, let him be found and let us move on enjoying the present.

So what is your favorite flashback story arc in ‘Arrow? Feel free to comment below.

For more ‘Arrow’ Season 4 finale you can click here and for my ‘Flash’ season 2 finale you can click here. And for more sharp shooting TV posts you can follow me on Twitter @suprememango012 for updates. Julien is outie like a navel. l8rs

NB – All photos courtesy the CW