In the grand tradition of Arrow, “Muse of Fire” is a rather mediocre episode. The titular character continues to do little of interest or consequence, as all his storylines wrap up within the hour. Meanwhile, the supposed minor characters do quite a bit with their short screen time, making Oliver and his Green Arrow even more boring. Additionally, Arrow has thrown yet another interesting character from the DC universe, only to wreck their backgrounds and do very little with them.
Like Deathstroke before her, Helena “Huntress” Bertinelli at least makes it out of the episode alive. Unlike Deathstroke, Helena is definitely coming back in the next episode. At a certain point, though, it’s possible that no one wants for the other characters to come back. Fans of the comic books love these characters, which is why Arrow is pandering to them. But, who wants to come back every week to watch cardboard cutouts of their favorite characters stand next to the Green Arrow?
The bizarre double standards of Arrow also continue to show themselves in the Helena storyline. After she is confronted for turning against her mob family, Helena snaps the neck of her father’s right hand man. Oliver is shocked, dismayed, and horrified by this turn of events because now she’s a killer. This comes something like thirty seconds after Oliver snapped the spine of another man. Of course, the difference is Helena wants “revenge” and not “justice.” At least, Helena gets to verbally cut Oliver down. That definitely needs to happen more often.
On the upside, the side characters of Arrow do continue to a shine, though they have perhaps a combined five minutes of screen time. Thea’s newfound relationship with her mother is very well done. At a certain point, Oliver and Thea reversed positions and she’s parenting him. The only problem is that it feels rushed as much of the development happened off-screen.
Additionally, Tommy is still dating Laurel. Although, like “Legacies,” it only works because neither one of them talk to Oliver at all during the episode. That might actually be an improvement. The relationship between Tommy and Laurel is very sweet and well-written. They feel like they’re on the same level while Laurel and Oliver feel like one of them needs the upper-hand. However, the problem with solidifying the relationship between Tommy and Laurel so well is that no one is rooting for Oliver.
Ultimately, that is the problem with “Muse of Fire,” and even Arrow as a whole. No one is rooting for Oliver, anymore. If anything, the audience is starting to wonder why this show isn’t about Tommy and Laurel’s relationship, Thea’s struggle with her dysfunctional family, or Diggle being the hero since he is just good without the ridiculous and unnecessary double standards.