This post contains spoilers for Arrow Season 5
The February 15th episode of #Arrow, "Spectre Of the Gun," opened with a TV-14 warning. Only a few minutes into the episode, viewers saw why: a gunman opens fire inside City Hall, killing several people and wounding a couple dozen more. Even the District Attorney takes a bullet in the shoulder.
After this scene of carnage, the show divided its time between catching the killer and exploring how the citizens of Star City are affected by guns, as well as the issue of gun control.
Marc Guggenheim, who wrote this episode, could have chosen a side himself, forcing viewers to watch him preach through the characters. Instead, he chose to allow the characters to disagree with one another (as people do in the real world), illustrating the reasons for their feelings and beliefs. Curtis' assessment that people shouldn't be afraid to talk about difficult issues was a bonus from Guggenheim.
As the mayor of Star City and a heroic vigilante, #OliverQueen was obviously torn on both sides of the issue; he tells a team of reporters that his view is "complicated." His indecision makes perfect sense, considering the violence necessary to keep the streets safe. But it also makes him question the choices that he's made in life.
One of the best things about this episode is that there was not a winning side; there was conversation and negotiation — and a bill signed that both sides could agree with. In the end, this episode tackled a tough subject in a manner that offers real solutions. No, it wasn't a perfect solution, but it was a beginning.
Though everyone wasn't hugging and agreeing at the end, dialogue had begun, and that can open more doors than one person trying to make their voice the loudest. It was a start.
Kudos to the writers of this thought-provoking, moving episode. Arrow is on its game this season!
What did you think about "Spectre of the Gun"? Let us know in the comments below!