Arrow is a fight choreographer’s dream, bringing superpowered characters together in awesome fights that go far and beyond what you would expect to see on the small screen.
The series has become widely known for constantly providing some of the most thrilling brawls on television, constantly surprising and shocking us with endless reserves of action creativity.
To celebrate the release of Arrow Season 7, which is out now on digital download, Blu-ray and DVD we’ve put together a list of some of our favourite fights throughout the show!
7) Oliver vs Ricardo Diaz (Season 6, Episode 23)
After breaking Ricardo’s iron grip on the city, Oliver finally comes face to face with his nemesis when trying to save the dying Quentin Lance. The two square up quickly and prepare to take the fight to the true testing ground of any true gritty superhero, a rain slicked rooftop.
After doing away with their weapons, the two are reduced to a brutal slugfest in the pouring rain, dealing out an equally matched beatdown. With gorgeous visuals and great choreography, the fight keeps you guessing by shifting the odds until Ricardo, sensing the fact he can’t keep up the fight, finally gives in to the inevitable and is overpowered.
With an intense score setting the tone, the season six finale ends with a bang that kept us guessing right up until the final blow.
6) Slade takes on Bill Wintergreen (Season 1, Episode 14)
If there is one lesson that the combat master, Slade Wilson, likes to teach, its that he is always ready to duke it over pretty much anything.
Facing his former brother in arms, Bill Wintergreen, Slade fights to save Oliver from captivity, using his unparalleled fighting skills and blade mastery. The two powerhouses clash in a deadly display of knives, explosions and speed that ends with Bill learning why the pointy end is best avoided.
And with Slade being Slade, the fight is brutal, bone crushing, and impressively time efficient to say the least.
5) Team Arrow faces off against the League (Season 3, Episode 22)
One of the most climactic action scenes out of the entire of the third season (and there were many) this battle brings together all of the major parts of season 3’s story.
A duel between Tatsu and Maseo sets an emotional tone, while we see why ninjas think guns are unfair and a VTOL gets flown with an iPad. It’s all of Arrow’s cheeky fun and tragic weight combined into one glorious showdown.
4) Three Ghosts (Season 2, Episode 9)
Cyrus Gold is a beat of a fighter, and unfortunately for Oliver, practically unkillable. After numerous close calls and vicious fights that nearly end in an untimely end for our protagonist, ‘Three Ghosts’ finally provides a climactic end to this brutal super soldier.
Despite his strength and ability to simply shrug off wounds that would kill a common man, Oliver uses quick thinking to lure the brute into a trap. With an explosion, acid burns and a ceiling falling in on him, Cyrus is bested in a display of justified overkill.
With a ghostly pep-talk and a high emotional bar, this was a hugely satisfying end to one of Deathstroke’s finest creations.
3) Oliver’s Gun Kata (Season 5, Episode 11)
It was only a matter of time before Arrow learnt the inherent advantages of the gun. In ‘Second Chances’ we get the joy of watching Oliver cut loose, channeling the power of John Wick in a brutal close quarters gun fight that would feel right at home in a John Woo flick.
Long, unbroken takes and a lighting-fast momentum as more and more mobsters rush in for a chance at a killing blow make this a highlight of the fifth season. The cathartic release of seeing a character use their training to the fullest without holding back makes for a powerful bullet-brawl that’s hard to forget.
It’s a rare moment of excess for Oliver, and we’re sure that it would make Slade proud.
2) Arrow vs Deathstroke (Season 2, Episode 23)
Star City is in ruins, Oliver’s mother is dead and an army of soldiers are tearing a path across his home turf. This was a dark stage to set one of the most beloved season ends in the entirety of Arrow’s long run.
After weakening Slade with Mirkauru cure, Oliver takes the chance to end the deadly assassin once and for all. Despite the loss of his powers, Slade is still a hell of a fighter, trained to the limits of human endurance. Deadly with his iconic sword and unmatched in unarmed combat, this was never going to be easy.
The fight is brutal and bloody, panning in as close as possible to highlight ever visceral hit and painful cut as Oliver desperately tries to survive an onslaught from one of the most dangerous fighters in the DC universe.
Intercut with beautiful flashbacks that took us to when these two titans had previously fought on Lian Yu five years ago, we see a deadly rivalry explode in gritty violence that can end either way.
Despite barely winning, it provides a valuable lesson that you really shouldn’t stab a crazed super soldier in the eye. It’s never ends well.
1) You’re locked in here with me! (Season 7, Episode 7)
Turning the already brutal setting of Slabside prison into a deadly battleground of inmates vs guards, the seventh episode in season seven pairs Oliver and Ben Turner in a struggle for survival against hordes of crazed prisoners.
A gauntlet of violence that runs from one end of the prison to another brings a fitting comeuppance to Brick, a fan favorite villain from season three, and even lets the wonderfully creepy serial killer Stanely blow up his screen time as he becomes completely unhinged in his efforts to become Oliver’s sidekick.
But we can’t talk about the fight without of course mentioning that the monstrous Diaz gets whats coming to him with a shiv in the chest. A real triumph of twisting emotions, Diaz’s smug self satisfaction is shattered after a painful sequence of Oliver being brutalized at his hands, providing a great moment of justice after a long rivalry.
While not the end of the character, it gives us the morbid satisfaction that we all wanted, and once again shows that Oliver always gets the last word. Or stabbing in this case.
If you want to see more superhero action, you check out The Complete Seventh Season on digital download, DVD and Blu-ray which are available now.