This is where it all began. The Arrowverse has become the biggest thing on the CW Network over the past few years. It started with Arrow and has gone on to spawn The Flash, DC's Legends of Tomorrow, Supergirl, Black Lightning, and Batwoman. But for most fans, the original is still the cream of the crop.
Still, there are some issues. The first two seasons of Arrow rank among the best bits of superhero television ever. But many viewers found the next few seasons to be hugely disappointing. Quality has been up and down ever since. It will be interesting to see what the IMDb users felt about the best and worst episodes in Arrow history. Let's find out what those are.
10 Worst: Lost In The Flood (7.0)
It makes sense that the "worst" section kicks off with an episode from the fourth season. "Lost in the Flood" was the 22nd and penultimate installment of the season. It focused on Damien Darhk and the threat that he posed to the entire world. It was a big step up from the show's previous villains.
There were fine action scenes and some tense drama in the episode. But not all of it worked. Fans seemed irked by things like the redundant subplot of Thea Queen getting brainwashed. Ultimately, the 7.0 rating proves this wasn't a bad edition of Arrow. It just felt lackluster ahead of a finale.
9 Best: The Slabside Redemption (9.5)
This is all the proof you need that there is some great stuff in the later seasons. "The Slabside Redemption" is the seventh episode from season seven and it is a doozy. The early portion of the season centered around the storyline of Oliver Queen in Slabside Prison.
This episode finally saw him get free and it did so with one of the series' most impressive and brutal fight sequences. We got to see one half of a pair of scissors used to carve people up as well as Oliver beating people up with a soda can in a pillowcase. Innovative and violent. Plus, there was that emotional reunion between Oliver and Felicity.
8 Worst: Beacon Of Hope (6.7)
We return to season four with its 17th episode, "Beacon of Hope." Felicity Smoak is one of the most polarizing characters in the Arrowverse. Some love her and Oliver together, while others find her insufferable. The latter group could be why this episode was poorly received.
Felicity is kind of at the center of "Beacon of Hope." This felt like an episode meant to show that Arrow could be lighthearted. The Bug-Eyed Bandit is a cheesy villain, there were plenty of puns and jokes to go around, and things never felt too serious. Apparently, that isn't what most fans want from this show.
7 Best: Unthinkable (9.5)
If you believe that Arrow peaked during its second season, then it stands to reason that this is a major reason why. "Unthinkable" was the season two finale and it featured the showdown between Oliver Queen and Slade Wilson. It was what the series had been building to since Oliver and Slade met on the island.
As great as the battle between Oliver and Slade was, the episode had a lot more going for it. The conflict of whether Oliver could keep his "no kill" promise against his greatest enemy and getting to see the whole gang team up for the fight were key elements. This also acted as a bookend for the series as the flashbacks changed to show that Oliver wasn't on the island for his entire duration away from home. It marked the start of something new.
6 Worst: Canary Cry (6.6)
Season four sure is taking the brunt of the criticism from IMDb. "Canary Cry" was the 19th installment from that maligned season. One of the lingering threads during these episodes was the ominous grave. Fans wondered who died since the season began and we found out that it was Laurel Lance.
That meant "Canary Cry" was dedicated to giving her as big a sendoff as they could muster. Laurel had grown into a highlight of the series but this felt like they tried too hard. The flashbacks to right after Tommy's death seemed heavy-handed and this hour didn't carry the emotional weight that it needed to.
5 Best: Sacrifice (9.5)
When Arrow was at its best, it was firing on all cylinders. "Sacrifice" wrapped up an outstanding first season in climactic fashion. It picked up with the intense scene of Oliver tied up in Malcolm Merlyn's dungeon. This was the kind of faceoff we had waited all season for.
From the flashbacks to the present day, every major relationship was given a nice ending. Thea and Roy, Shado and Oliver, Laurel and Lance, and the list went on and on. But the big emotional moment came when the titular sacrifice was made by Tommy. His goodbye with Oliver was a tearjerker and his death was one of the series' most shocking moments.
4 Worst: Broken Hearts (6.1)
Oh, look. It's another entry from season four. This was the 16th episode, meaning fans got this and the aforementioned "Beacon of Hope" in back to back weeks. "Broken Hearts" marked the return of a villain that almost nobody enjoyed seeing, Cupid. Her affection for Oliver led to the team throwing a fake wedding between Oliver and Felicity to draw her out.
The problem was that this came right after Ollicity broke up. Talk about awkward. Oliver professed his love for Felicity during the scene but it felt a little manipulative and he never truly addressed her concerns. With a lame bad guy and a love story that didn't work, this episode never clicked.
3 Best: The Climb (9.6)
Season three of Arrow is one that fans don't often hold in high esteem. But "The Climb," which was the midseason finale, was an iconic hour of television. The show set itself up for lofty expectations when it brought in famed Batman antagonist Ra's al Ghul but this was when it lived up to them.
After being given an ultimatum to find Sara's killer or watch citizens of his city die, Oliver confronted Ra's face to face. This was the kind of fight the audience wanted from the two. And to have it come so early in the season was a bold move. And that ending? Ra's slices up Oliver and knocks him off a cliff, leaving him for dead. Incredible.
2 Worst: Schism (5.5)
Yes, every single episode on the "worst" side of things came from season four. So it's fitting that the lowest of them all was "Schism," that season's finale. Considering how much of a threat Damien Darhk posed to Oliver and the fact that his plan focused on nuclear annihilation, it's amazing how bland this episode felt.
There was next to no tension despite the stakes seemingly being so high. Oliver's journey felt like it ended in anti-climactic fashion, just like the entire confrontation with Damien Darhk. The whole thing ended on a negative note and nothing the team accomplished felt like a victory. That's not what you want from a finale. It is universally considered the weakest ending to an Arrow season.
1 Best: Lian Yu (9.7)
After all of the bad that was season four, Arrow seemed to right the ship with season five. The finale, "Lian Yu" was the best hour of the series according to IMDb users. Oliver may have found his greatest rival in Adrian Chase. Their fight took them to Lian Yu, the island Oliver spent years on. Desperate for help, Oliver gathered a team of old foes like Slade, Malcolm, and Nyssa to combat him.
It made for a compelling battle. This episode brought the series full circle as it wrapped up Ollie's five-year flashbacks back where it all began. It also ended on an insane cliffhanger. Chase couldn't get Oliver to kill again but he was one step ahead. Oliver saved his son but that meant the island where all of his friends were got blown up. Sadly, the show threw that away by having no real casualties when season six started. Still, this was Arrow at its best.