To start with, because if this article has more than 100 viewers at some stage one of these people will find their way here: No, [Arrow](series:720988) is not the same as the Green Arrow comics. Yes, it started distinctly different and is working its way towards the Green Arrow we know. What we need to do is remove the stigma that when things aren't 100% the same as their original forms, that isn't necessarily a bad thing.
Anyway, to business! Anyone with knowledge of superhero TV is aware that the CW's Arrow has become quite the hit, with season two met with near universal critical acclaim and love from fans, many going as far as to say it had "not a single bad episode." That's quite the achievement. What it's doing now is even better.
We all know that between seasons we get things like Arrow 2.5 or The Flash Season 0, comics which tell the story between seasons of the show. Despite this, what Arrow has done is actually solidify itself in the current run of Green Arrow comics DC has going at the moment, one of its most well received titles (in logistics, I'm 90% sure it's one of the favourites for sales too, though I'm not entirely certain. If anyone could clarify that would be brilliant.)
A while back popular character John Diggle, Oliver Queen's bodyguard, close friend and confidant in the show, made it into the comics and solidified himself as a fairly major role in Queen's life, even appearing in issues as big as Future's End, where he appears at Oliver's funeral after he's killed in action. (Don't worry.)
This move was met with a lot of positivity from fans.
Now what do we see? Green Arrow #35 features not only Diggle, Batman and Lex Luthor on the cover, but a fan favourite from Arrow- Felicity Smoak. Oliver's tech assistant, friend, potential love interest (no flame wars please) and ultimate massive role in his crime fighting crusade Felicity has made it into the comics.
Why is this such a big deal? Well, because it means that a great many critics can be told to button it and stop whining. You see, common criticism for any comic adaption show is- "But it's not the same as the comics!" And the answer is, no it isn't. But what Arrow has done has been popular enough to warrant incorporating it into the comics universe. It is the most popular take on Green Arrow in the character's history, and so rightfully it has. That isn't a bad nor good thing. If it works- which Arrow clearly does- then bring it in.
Oliver Queen himself in the New 52 becomes surprisingly similar to the one we know in Arrow. His backstory, which is normally similar but quite in flux, matches the show, and his appearance is quite similar to Stephen Amell. The costume is different, but with Arrow's cast and crew teasing a new costume for Season 3 mid way through, that may not be the case for long. Apart from a few less jokes- which it looks like we'll see more of from Oliver in season three just going by the trailer- they're very similar indeed. Stephen Amell, you'll likely know, is considered by many to play a definitive version of the character, with petitions abounding everywhere to include the down to earth, charitable and all round great man in the new DCCU.
It's similar for things like Gotham, where whining is commonplace that the show is not the same as the comics. Measure the show for what it is, not what it spawned from. It is not intended to be a direct translation from the comics, nor should it be. The Flash will be the same, even if it seems to be sticking slightly closer. The concept of multiverses and different worlds and continuity is familiar in comics, particularly DC- that's essentially what these shows are. New takes, just as Batman: Earth One or something similar existing outside of standard continuity is. That doesn't render them automatically bad, and Arrow proves that. It's certainly shaping itself to be a long lasting influence on how Green Arrow will be done in the future, and the origins of Jim Gordon and co in Gotham, or the newer characters and stories in The Flash might just work their way into comics one day too.
Love the comics. Love the shows. Judge them for what they are. But know that sometimes, the show you whine about might just be good enough that it finds its way into the comics and begins defining and changing them, too, like in Arrow's case, and maybe you should've given it a chance. Let me know what you think.