Arrow Season 8 Episode 9 Review: Green Arrow & The Canaries

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There was a lot on the line for this episode as it is intended to be the backdoor pilot for the new spinoff show, Green Arrow & The Canaries.

Did it succeed in planting the curiousity to check out the latest addition to the Arrowverse should it get a full series order?

Or did Arrow Season 8 Episode 9 fall flat with the high expectations set in place by its predecessor?

Mia, Laurel, & Dinah - Arrow Season 8 Episode 9

It is hard to make a spinoff of Arrow featuring a few of its main characters without making it feel like Arrow 2.0.

And, fortunately or unfortunately, it did. Even the person of the week that needed saving -- Bianca Bertinelli -- has ties to a character from Arrow.

That could be seen as a good thing because, in a way, Arrow's legacy will live on even after it ends.

On the other hand, if it is supposed to feel like its own show, it fell short. Which could also be because of the fact that it was, technically, an episode of Arrow.

But, even the other shows of the Arrowverse that were direct spinoffs of Arrow feel like their own shows, separate from Oliver Queen's show.

Laurel & Mia - Arrow Season 8 Episode 9

Perhaps when Green Arrow & the Canaries has its own proper show, it will gain its footing and leave a unique mark on the Arrowverse.

But, looking at this singular episode, it set up a lot of decent backstory for more episodes to come, and it is a comfort that the Green Arrow will live on through his daughter as his series comes to an end.

Laurel: Your father, he wanted you to be happy, and he, he gave you all this. But I also think he wanted you to have a choice. I am not going to sugarcoat it for you. Being a hero kind of sucks. And it never gets any easier because it is the hardest thing that you can do.
Mia: Then why do it?
Laurel: For me, it gave me a purpose. And that's why I woke you up, so that you can have the chance to realize your own. Mia, this is your city and you're the Green Arrow.

It truly was like watching the Arrow we all know and love.

There were the dilemmas of becoming a hero, the crazy fight scenes, the heart-to-hearts, and the shocking surprises.

When you look at it merely as an episode of Arrow, it was pretty fantastic.

Laurel & Dinah - Arrow Season 8 Episode 9

JJ and Mia are engaged? Zoe is alive? Mia and William grew up together? Dinah has been misplaced in 2040?

It is surprising that Mia wound up with JJ considering that she and Connor had some pretty good chemistry. But, the new duo was not unwelcome.

Shockingly, JJ and Mia were awfully cute together, even after she remembered he was Deathstroke in a previous life.

Plus, there was the unknown tension between Mia and Connor that will most likely have an effect on episodes to come. I have a feeling that there is a love triangle on the horizon that will definitely be the epitome of awkwardness.

Green Arrow - Arrow Season 8 Episode 9

But who knows if JJ and Mia even have the potential for a future together since JJ now has the memories of his old life back -- thanks to a mysterious stranger.

The mysterious "her" Trevor was talking about and JJ's intruder have to be connected, but hopefully it is a new character and not one that we already know. There has to be some separation from Arrow and this spinoff.

Suit up.


There is sure to be a Kylo Ren level of struggle of good side versus bad side in JJ's future. It is more likely that he will choose the bad side, if only for a little while, because why else give him his memories?

Maybe he will prove everyone wrong, though, and choose to fight alongside Mia, Laurel, and Dinah.

But, that is a matter for the first season of Green Arrow & The Canaries.

Mia - Arrow Season 8 Episode 9

Thank God Zoe is alive because her death was too hard to handle. If all goes well, we can expect to see her for more than two seconds on the new show, especially since she used to be a Canary.

Another person we will definitely need to see more often is William, as he has got to be the new Felicity, right? Assuming that he survives his unfortunate kidnapping, he would be the perfect addition to the new team.

Mia: Who is that?
William: Just the star of the Globe, the Gazette, byline, Channel 52, they all want to know if I'm the new Green Arrow.
Mia: Of course they do.
William: Isn't it a little misogynistic that they're not calling you as well? I mean, come on guys, it's 2040.

Did anyone else squeal when they saw that picture of William and Mia as kids? Knowing that Oliver's wish for his kids to grow up together came true is a greatly needed comfort as his death is still fresh in our hearts.

William and Mia's relationship is one of the best things to come out of recents seasons of Arrow, and it would be a shame to waste it.

Dinah Singing - Arrow Season 8 Episode 9

Is there a reason why Dinah was misplaced in 2040 after the Crisis?

There has to be, right? My only guess is that Oliver did it somehow to help Mia when he used Spectre's powers to help create Earth-Prime.

Laurel: And here I thought making you remember your old life would open your eyes to how pointless and stupid your new one is.
Mia: My stupid and pointless life is the one that my father sacrificed himself to give me, don't you dare trivialize that.

Maybe he knew that Mia would be blamed for Bianca Bertinelli's death in the future and wanted her to be the hero he knew she could be.

But, that is only a guess, and anything is possible when it comes to Arrow.

Canary - Arrow Season 8 Episode 9

It turns out that Earth-2's Laurel Lance is the one that survived the Crisis.

Was anyone else hoping that Earth-1 Laurel would be back somehow? Not that the new Laurel's story and character development have not been a joy to watch these past few seasons, but the old Laurel is still missed.

Laurel: Cheers to the Green Arrow.
Mia: To the Canaries.
Dinah: To the future, whatever it holds.

Laurel is her same old self -- headstrong and tough, yet soft when she really wants to be.

It is also curious as to why she will be sticking around in 2040. Is there something she is hiding from in 2020? Plus, shouldn't the future Laurel be roaming around Star City somewhere?

There are an infuriating amount of questions, but I believe that people might just stick around for the answers.

Mia & Laurel - Arrow Season 8 Episode 9

If you really think about it, Arrow has been setting up this spin-off since Arrow Season 7 Episode 1 with the introduction of the future timeline.

It makes sense that they would want to hold on to the success of Arrow as long as they can, and with Green Arrow & The Canaries, they can do that.

But, it is also important for the spinoff to feel like its own show.

There were a ton of amazing moments on the backdoor pilot but also some room for improvement. I have no doubt they can work towards and accomplish that.

Laurel Lance - Arrow Season 8 Episode 9

I just have one last question though -- where was Felicity?

There was not one mention of her, and that did not go unnoticed.

Hopefully Felicity and Oliver are living out their lives together in some other universe where they can finally be at peace. Anything is possible, even when they are both technically (probably) dead.

We will just have to see on Arrow's series finale!

I'll turn it over to you Arrow Fanatics.

Did this feel like a regular episode of Arrow? Who do you think gave JJ his memories back?

What about who kidnapped William?

Let me know in the comments and do not forget that you can watch Arrow online right here on TV Fanatic!

Arrow airs on Tuesdays at 9/8c on The CW.

And we sure would appreciate a follow of our new Twitter account as we work to rebuild our audience! 


Green Arrow & The Canaries Review

Editor Rating: 3.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 3.7 / 5.0 (58 Votes)

Sarah Little was a staff writer for TV Fanatic.She retired in September 2021.

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Arrow Season 8 Episode 9 Quotes

Suit up.


Mia: Who is that?
William: Just the star of the Globe, the Gazette, byline, Channel 52, they all want to know if I'm the new Green Arrow.
Mia: Of course they do.
William: Isn't it a little misogynistic that they're not calling you as well? I mean, come on guys, it's 2040.