When I first watched "Arrow," I came to know a character called Oliver Queen. A few episodes later, I came to like a character called Felicity Smoak. Both were gorgeous, both were smart, and both were very likeable. Life was sweet.
A few months later, the two characters' names suddenly became one word that initially sounded fun, but has since then become the bane of my life: Olicity.
My husband often ribs me about my desperate need to "ship" whenever I watch anything with even a hint of possible romance. He's right that the exercise is silly; but hey, It's practically in my bloodstream. Live with it.
Shipping is not a problem. It makes a show come alive; it makes characters far more endearing. It's the non-monetary version of the British populace betting on details of the royal wedding. Shipping gives a certain investment into an event.
Problems arise only when shippers become the target, rather than the result, of a show's writing team. I don't hate Olicity. I find the combination of Oliver and Felicity to be quite acceptable. I do, however, detest how the Olicity revolution has destroyed what was once my favorite TV show on air.
Yes, Olicity has overtaken "Arrow" and made something incredibly powerful and engaging into an utter mess. And, in the process, it's torn apart the two characters that actually set the show apart.
First of all, it has ruined Oliver, making his character growth led by teenage emotions more than by the moral dilemmas so intense in S1 and S2. Instead of being someone on a mission, Oliver has become someone confused about his big boy broken heart.
Secondly, Olicity has ruined Felicity. She honestly plunged from favorite character to most annoying one in a matter of weeks. I loath the writers for destroying the intelligent, beautiful woman she was into a blubbering fool who would throw away a promising relationship with Ray (who is, in my opinion, a far better man) for a fling with Oliver. Writers, please, you have an incredible actress playing a groundbreaking character. Don't ruin both!
Once Oliver and Felicity suffer, the rest of the show follows. Laurel becomes inconsequential, the currently-most-likable Thea gets unfairly ignored, Diggle gets stuck in the middle, Arsenal is written out, and Ra's becomes a mere plot device who strikes zero terror with his irrational, inconsistent decisions.
Sure, the teenage fan girls are happy. But the rest of us discerning viewers? Our patience is running out fast.