First airing in the fall of 2012 on The CW, Arrow quickly became a phenomena and made the character of Green Arrow more popular in the mainstream than he had ever been before. The tale of Oliver Queen and his efforts to save his city from corruption after he spent five years in exile proved exceptionally suited to the standard CW drama format, mixing Hollywood caliber action sequences with a level of romance that has inspired one of the most fanatical fanbases in existence.
Arrow's success led to the establishment of a shared continuity, with new superhero shows like The Flash, Vixen, and Legends of Tomorrow spinning off from the series. The CW shows eventually came to tie-in to DC Comics inspired shows on other networks, such as Supergirl and Constantine. Although this multiverse was called by many names, one name rose above all others, given that Arrow was where it all began - The Arrowverse.
Still, after six years and over 100 episodes, any tightly-plotted series begins to develop cracks in its foundation. With everything Arrow now ties into, it is not surprising that certain aspects of the Arrowerse and its characters have come to seem nonsensical. This ranges from minor continuity glitches to sudden shifts in character motivations that seem antithetical to everything we know about them. Then there are the events and actions that come about purely for the sake of advancing the story the writers wanted to tell.
Here now are 25 Things About Arrow That Make No Sense.
25 Thea Never Found The Arrowcave Under Verdant
The first season of Arrow saw Oliver Queen establishing a nightclub called Verdant as a cover for his activities as The Hood. His base of operations was hidden away in the basement, behind a security keypad that only he and bodyguard John Diggle could access.
When Oliver went on walkabout for several months between season one and season Two, his sister Thea took over management of Verdant and proved to be far better at running the club than Oliver was. Despite this, in all that time that Oliver was gone, she never noticed that there was a storeroom with a security keypad unconnected to the rest of the bar!
24 Team Arrow doesn't believe in magic
The fourth season of Arrow formally introduced magic into the Arrowverse, as Oliver told the rest of Team Arrow in the season opener that their new enemy Damien Darhk had magical powers and that he had seen such things in the past. For some reason, the rest of the team expressed skepticism about this, despite Oliver not being prone to exaggeration.
This skepticism seems particularly nonsensical given how much strangeness Team Arrow had seen involving metahumans over the past year, which are just as unbelievable as magic being real.
Then there's the little matter of Thea Queen having been healed by the semi-mystic Lazarus Pit one season earlier...
23 Laurel Has A Light / Sara Has A Darkness
As Laurel stumbled along the path to becoming Black Canary in season three, it was said that she had a light inside of her that her sister Sara lacked and that Sara wore a mask to hide her demons as much as to help others.
This was a complete reversal from the status quo of both characters in Arrow's second season.
Sara had been depicted as a sweet soul, desperate to leave the life of an assassin behind her, whose codename - Canary - was based on her musical laugh. Laurel, by contrast, gave into addiction and corruption, as she "let the darkness inside."
22 Is Lethal Force OK or not?
The fifth season episode "So It Begins" almost saw the end of New Team Arrow before it had truly begun. Several members of the team had issues when they discovered that, before he became the Green Arrow, Oliver had been a violent avenger known as The Hood, who did not shy away from using lethal force.
Despite this, one episode later in "Vigilante", many of the same heroes who questioned whether or not they could follow Oliver because of his violent past were questioning why they couldn't look the other way regarding Vigilante - another costumed crime-fighter new to Star City, who utilized lethal force!
A.R.G.U.S. is basically the Arrowverse's version of S.H.I.E.L.D. - a covert military group officially tasked with secretly taking down terrorist threats before the public becomes aware of them.
Much like S.H.I.E.L.D. it has never been made clear just what limits there were to where and when A.R.G.U.S. can act.
In the real world, the CIA is forbidden from operating on American soil, just as the FBI is generally limited to operating in the United States. Despite this, we saw ARGUS operating both overseas and domestically in early seasons of Arrow.
Then, in season 6, the group was powerless to move against crime boss Ricardo Diaz, for reasons that were never explained.
20 Inconsistent fighting skills
It has been noted that the fighting skills of Arrow's characters change depending on the needs of the story.
No character emphasizes this better than Laurel Lance during her quest to replace her sister, Sara, as The Canary.
Early seasons established that Laurel had taken self-defense classes and could disable a bouncer twice her size. Season three saw her training with boxer Ted Grant and assassin Nyssa al Ghul. This was not enough to prevent Laurel from becoming easy prey for the muggers of Starling City and she required constant rescuing.
Yet somehow, by the end of season three, Laurel was suddenly able to fight multiple League of Assassin members simultaneously, without difficulty!
19 The League of Assassins' Honor Code
The second season of Arrow revealed that Malcolm Merlyn had faked his passing and gone into hiding to avoid the wrath of the League of Assassins. Merlyn had once been part of the group and his "Undertaking" to destroy the slums of Starling City with an earthquake generator violated their honor code.
It makes sense that a secretive group like the League of Assassins would avoid showy displays like the Undertaking. One can even see them objecting to mass destruction, if for no other reason than it is sloppy.
Yet season 3 revealed the League has no issues with destroying an entire city. Indeed, tradition demands they raze the hometown of each new Ra's al Ghul.
18 Everyone Lies To Their Loved Ones Constantly
While admittedly the superhero genre generally requires a certain amount of deceit, the characters in Arrow frequently cause complications that could be avoided if they were honest to one another. A prime example of this is Laurel's treatment of her father following Sara's passing in season three.
Fearful her father might have a heart attack, Laurel went through extreme lengths to cover-up what happened to her sister.
This goes as far as Laurel dressing like Sara and persuading Felicity to fake a recording of Sara's voice, so "Sara" can talk to her father at a safe distance. Ironically, Laurel is wholly unconcerned what might happen to her father if she met her end as Black Canary.
17 Laurel's Blackmail Plot
"Birds of Prey" saw Laurel being rehired as an assistant D.A. to try mob-boss Frank Bertinelli, after having been previously fired because of her drug abuse. It was later revealed Laurel was only rehired by Assistant D.A. Adam Donner as a means of sparking further publicity for the trial, to set a trap for The Huntress.
When D.A. Spencer revealed that Donner had acted without her approval and that Laurel wasn't really rehired, Laurel threatened to expose Donner's actions to the press if she wasn't given her job back.
Shockingly, DA Spencer agreed to this, despite the fact that a disgraced lawyer with Laurel's history of corruption should have had no credibility as a witness!
16 Arrow Abandons An Unconscious Arsenal
Season three saw scientist Ray Palmer developing a suit of powered armor that he could use to defend Starling City. Palmer soon came into conflict with the city's other vigilantes, forcing a confrontation between himself and the Arrow and Arsenal.
Palmer stuns Arsenal early on in the fight, knocking him out. The Arrow ultimately wins by disabling the power source of Palmer's armor. After pointing out that if he was the monster Palmer thought he was, he would be eliminating him then and there instead of talking, The Arrow makes a dramatic exit, leaving his unconscious and likely-injured sidekick behind!
15 Nyssa Forgets Her Blood Oath of Revenge
"Restoration" saw Laurel and Thea travel to the League of Assassins' base to resurrect Sara. Nyssa al Ghul - Sara's lover - warns them against it, as the Lazarus Pit changes those it brings back and she refused to see Sara' resurrected for that reason. When Laurel does it anyway and Sara returns as a mindless beast, Nyssa swears revenge on Laurel.
Later, in "Sins of the Fathers," Nyssa seeks revenge on Merlyn for his role in what happened to Sara and her father. Despite her blood oath against Laurel, Nyssa does not strike her down when she has the chance in that same episode.
14 The Legal System
Granting that few television dramas are accurate in depicting American courts, Arrow has done a particularly poor job of it.
One example of this is the handling of the case against Moira Queen in "State v. Queen".
The episode sees Laurel Lance being asked to handle the trial against her ex-boyfriend's mother - a conflict of interest that no competent judge would ever allow. The prosecution's case is also built around the unveiling of secret information - that Moira Queen had an affair with Malcolm Merlyn - that blows her defense out of the water. The fact that this evidence was never made available to the defense attorney should have forced a mistrial.
13 No Questions About Siren X's Capture
"Fury Rogue," a fourth season episode of The Flash, introduced the character of Siren-X - the Laurel Lance of Earth X. Team Flash stopped Siren-X from using the metahuman Fallout as a make-shift nuclear bomb and blowing up Central City.
The episode was unclear on what happened to Siren-X after her capture, be it at the hands of A.R.G.U.S. or the CCPD.
Either way, it should have raised some uncomfortable questions for Black Siren, who had revealed herself to the press one month earlier, pretending to be the Laurel Lance of Earth One. Such a prominent figure taking hostages at a police station should have gotten major press coverage, but didn't.
12 The Plan To Brainwash Roy Harper
The sixth season episode "Doppelganger" found Roy Harper - who had faked his passing in season three to protect Oliver Queen's secret identity - in the clutches of Ricardo Diaz. It was Diaz's plan to torment Roy Harper into testifying against Oliver Queen in court - all part of Diaz's master-plan to see Oliver Queen exposed as Green Arrow and imprisoned.
Diaz could have saved himself a lot of effort by having the police (who were on his payroll) call a press conference to reveal Roy Harper, alive and well.
It might not have been as showy as putting Oliver Queen on trial, but it would have been faster and just as effective.
11 Dinah Drake's Control Of Her Power
Oliver Queen was impressed when he first saw video footage of Dinah Drake using her metahuman powers in the fifth season episode "Second Chances". He commented that she had far greater control of her sonic scream than both Black Canary and Black Siren, being able to aim it better and modulate its pitch. He was even more impressed when he saw her in action and offered her a position on Team Arrow as the new Black Canary.
Despite this, one episode later in "Bratva", Dinah Drake claimed that she didn't have that much control over her power beyond turning it on and turning it off!
10 Diggle's Working For A.R.G.U.S. As A Civilian
Another oddity regarding A.R.G.U.S. was their ability to seemingly recruit anyone on a short-term basis. While it is not unheard of for military organizations in the United States to employ civilians in a support capacity, this is usually limited to long-term positions in areas such as medicine, construction and cyber-security.
Despite this, John Diggle was recruited to work as part of Amanda Waller's Suicide Squad under the codename Freelancer on two separate occasions. Given his former position as a Master Sergeant in the US Army, there may have been a possible exemption for his acting in a short-term military capacity.
Nevertheless, this still muddied the waters as to the exact scope of influence A.R.G.U.S. possessed.
9 Laurel's Gun-Handling In "Sara"
When Laurel lost her sister, she did not take it well. In fact, the third season episode "Sara" saw Laurel become downright maniacal, stealing a gun from the Arrowcave with every intention of using it on Kodomo - the assassin she mistakenly believed was responsible.
When Laurel got to Kodomo, she pulled the trigger - only to discover that the gun wasn't loaded!
It is unclear what idea is more nonsensical - that Laurel wouldn't have checked to make sure the gun was loaded before using it or that she expected an experienced weapons user like Oliver Queen to keep his guns loaded when not in use - a major violation of basic gun safety!
8 Oliver's New Team in Season 5
As Arrow's fifth season opened, Green Arrow was running himself ragged trying to keep Star City safe with no support but Felicity Smoak. She suggested he look into recruiting and training some of the new vigilantes who had risen up in Star City, but Oliver dismissed this as a bad idea.
While the writing treats Oliver as completely unreasonable on this point, Oliver has some fairly good reasons for being reluctant to form a new Team Arrow.
First, he's still recovering from the loss of Laurel Lance, who was never prepared to be a vigilante. Ollie also doesn't have the best track record as a mentor to wannabe heroes, given what happened to The Huntress.
7 "Sin Eater"
The fifth season episode "Sin Eater" is considered by many to be the worst Arrow episode of all time. This is largely due to a nonsensical plot, which sees three escaped supervillains joining forces to commit multiple robberies, as the SCPD's special Anti-Crime Unit focus their efforts on bringing down Green Arrow instead of the robbers.
While it could be argued that Green Arrow is a bigger threat, it still beggars belief that the police would let dangerous fugitives flee the scene of a robbery without some sort of pursuit, in order to chase Green Arrow.
Even worse, the villains become emboldened, thinking the police won't touch them because they're so focused on Green Arrow!
6 Ricardo Diaz Working With Cayden James
The mid-season finale of Arrow's sixth season saw a group of Team Arrow's enemies joining to form a team of their own under the command of hacker/activist Cayden James, who plotted to destroy Star City with a high-power bomb after bleeding it dry with ransom demands.
Later, in "The Devil's Greatest Trick", drug-lord Ricardo Diaz put an end to James, after revealing that he had only worked with James to weaken Star City, before making his own bid to take control of it.
Given James' goal, it makes no sense for Diaz to have helped him, given how very close James came to success and that only the intervention of Team Arrow saved the city.
5 Black Siren's Theft In "Collision Course"
"Collision Course" revealed that Black Siren had secretly withdrawn the funds Cayden James had ransomed from Star City from a bank in Corto Maltese.
Ignoring the question of how Siren managed to get the account information needed to make a withdrawal in the first place, there are several problems with this scenario.
The chief one is how Black Siren got to Corto Maltese, when all travel in and out of Star City was shut down. Another problem is why Black Siren - who was only in it for the money - returned to Star City after betraying her villainous allies in the first place!
4 Diaz's Trap For Green Arrow
The sixth season episode "Fundamentals" sees Ricardo Diaz embark on a complex plan to end Oliver Queen's life. After arranging for Oliver to be dosed with the hallucinogenic drug Vertigo, Diaz and his men prepare an ambush for Green Arrow at the SCPD headquarters.
Ignoring how Diaz could accurately predict a drugged Green Arrow's behavior, this plan completely contradicted Diaz's earlier efforts.
He originally wanted to see Oliver Queen disgraced and imprisoned, not wanting to turn Green Arrow into a martyr.
Indeed, when the trap fails, Diaz shrugs it off, saying that he still needs Oliver Queen alive. So why the complex plan to destroy him?
3 Dinah Lance's Change In Attitude
When Sara Lance became lost at sea, it drove a wedge between her parents, Dinah and Quentin Lance. Quentin wanted to move on with his life but Dinah believed, despite all evidence to the contrary, that somehow Sara had survived. Her refusal to give up and Quentin's refusal to accommodate her hopes led to their divorce.
Dinah's faith was justified when Sara finally returned home and reconnected with her family in the fourteenth episode of Season Two.
Despite her refusal to believe that Sara was gone forever, the first thing Dinah says when she sees Sara is that she never believed her daughter would come home again!
2 FBI Agent Samandra Watson Refusing To Do Her Job
Some Arrow fans would say Samandra Watson was the real villain of season 6. The FBI Agent hounded Oliver Queen for months, trying to prove that he was Green Arrow.
At the season's end, with no other options for dealing with Ricardo Diaz, Oliver bargained with Agent Watson - a full confession and a guilty plea in exchange for her help in taking down Diaz.
The idea that Agent Watson would refuse to do her job and bring Diaz to justice in order to force a confession from Oliver Queen led many to conclude that she was on Diaz's payroll. While this would have explained much of season 6, it turned out to be untrue.
1 Diaz Sparing Black Siren
Black Siren turned on Ricardo Diaz at the end of "Docket No. 11-19-41-73". Unfortunately for her, Diaz saw her treachery coming and had armed himself with technology that could negate her powers.
Despite being characterized as a madman who couldn't control his temper and had destroyed other underlings for far less than outright treason, Diaz spared Black Siren's life.
What made this particularly nonsensical was that Black Siren turned because she feared Diaz so much.
She described him as the craziest, most dangerous man that she'd ever known. This from a woman who had been the right-hand of the psychotic speedster Zoom.
What else doesn't make sense about Arrow? Sound off in the comments!