ByFaraz Muhammad, writer at Creators.co

TV has grown (or comeback) as a mainstream outlet for most creators/producers/directors recently as it gives them more time to project what they want on to their audiences. And they still feel they haven't justified their characters.

Enter the tie-in stories.

From short films to graphic novelizations to (bi)weekly comics, EVERYONE is now taking them on, most prominently: -

  • Injustice: Gods amongst us (Video Game, weekly, Season 4 currently ongoing)
  • Batman: Arkham Knight (Ongoing)
  • The Blacklist (Just started last week, Looks to be monthly)
  • The Flash (Was Bi-Weekly till it ended 2 weeks ago)
  • Mad Max: Fury Road (3 stories so far, weekly)
  • Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D (Ongoing every 3 weeks)
  • Samurai Jack (Just finished its run to the original story 4 weeks ago [FINALLY!])
  • ALL of the MCU (preludes and comics between movies too, And thats all besides the "One-Shots")

And we will explore each (some) of them :D!

For now, let's just keep it together for The Arrow!

First to be clear. I had thought Arrow was just another hyped up TV show like the other ones running at the time. I had just finished all 8 seasons of Dexter (*SIGH* that ending) and was looking for the next thing to binge-watch. Arrow had been showing up in a lot of ads that were popping up. Even IMDB was throwing it to me as a recommendation.

So I took the pill, sorry, pilot...and said "Hmmm! This guy looks like he's...NOT failing this city...much!"

And so started my re-kindling of Deathstroke. No seriously, I loved that arc of his from season 1 to 2...and then season 3...just..."You HAVE failed this Deathstroke!".

OK, that got me side-tracked. Back to the comics. Running at Bi-weekly with The Flash playing one week and Arrow the next, they have run since just before Season 3 started. Appropriately called Season 2.5 with 24 episodes each. Some spoilers might ensue. I told you so just incase you try the boxing glove again!

So, what does the comics offer that the seasons didn't have?! Well, basically ALL of the backstory minor points, like: -

  • How is Oliver trying to buy his company back? His ex-step-dad Walter Steele is helping him. Again!
  • Where is his house/mansion/castle? It got burned to the ground, fighting a survivor of the Mirakuru army!
Oliver Mansion Burns!/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 21
Oliver Mansion Burns!/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 21
  • How was Roy trained? Falling of a plane after getting shot!
  • Where did Bronze Tiger (from the Suicide Squad) go? Killed in action in Khandaq (with a guest starring Black Adam!)

Meh. You got all that at comic-con gossip?! OK. Let's match you with who (and what) else showed up and got referenced in the series.

The Boxing Glove

Your favorite trick arrow was here first!

Boxing glove, FTW/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 1
Boxing glove, FTW/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 1

...and Oliver hated the name.

Dont'...call me...Boxing Glove!/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 1
Dont'...call me...Boxing Glove!/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 1

And this was WAAAY before Season 3 Episode 8 at the Wildcat Gym.

Brother Blood was back

The first Brother Blood, Sebastian Blood's bodyguard, Clinton Hogue, was interviewed by Diggle and Felicity...without a mask (Bitch...with Wi-Fi). That becomes their undoing when Hogue, the new Brother Blood, has them kidnapped to find out who the Arrow really is.

New Brother Blood/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 6
New Brother Blood/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 6

Oliver's Sword(s)

The swords that oliver picked in the fight(s) against Ra's Al Ghul, were first pictured here in episode 14. A new recruit rescued by Nyssa and Sarah from Khandaq (and probably the masked one Ra's Al Ghul gives a little lecture to in front of Oliver before asking him to become the next Ra's Al Ghul). She is given the same sword to kill Khem (Black) Adam.

Oliver's Swords...and the Lazarus pit/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 14
Oliver's Swords...and the Lazarus pit/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 14

Also, refers to the "Lazarus Pit" as "One of Nature's Best-kept Secrets"! And no, this was just alluded to but not concluded in Season 3. Why?!

Where he is going (in flashbacks) in season 4

He's going to Russia! To "cure" a loose Mirakuru soldier, Oliver and Roy go visit an old "friend" - Deathstroke - imprisoned on Lian Yu, in episode 19. He mentions something interesting: -

Where the flashbacks are going in Season 4?/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 19
Where the flashbacks are going in Season 4?/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 19

And since he's been to HongKong (in flashbacks) in Season 3, Guess where he seems to be landing next. That would solve the mystery of his MAD MAD flying skills...and how he got that Bratva captain tattoo! And while we are on that visit...

Oliver "Promising" Deathstroke he will never come back

Precursor to Lian Yu with Thea/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 19
Precursor to Lian Yu with Thea/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 19

and for that to come right before the episode Malcolm pressures Oliver to take Thea to Lian Yu! Almost as if he knew he was going to be released.

(FLASH throw out) There's a "JITTERS" in Starling City

Yep! Shown brightly in Episode 20 - "SC Jitters".

Jitters in Starling City/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 20
Jitters in Starling City/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 20

Even Arkham got called out (almost)

"Ark" something/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 21
"Ark" something/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 21

The Mutant gang from Frank Miller's "The Dark Knight Returns"

The Mutant Gang/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 24
The Mutant Gang/DC Comics: Arrow Season 2.5: Episode 24

And the same deciript city dump!

Sooo, there you have it! I'll be covering The Flash: Season Zero next week!

P.S: That review is my rating for the Comic season, not the actual show!

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