THIS PIECE IS ABOUT CELEBRATING THE HERO, CELEBRATING HER JOURNEY AND SAYING GOODBYE
This is a tough one. I really don’t know where to start or what to really say/write but I have to say/write something cause this is really eating me up inside out. It is weird cause I really didn’t realize how much Laurels character means to me and how much Katie’s associations to this project meant to me. Honestly I took her for granted, didn’t appreciate having her on the show, thought she was save cause of her comic book legacy, thought she was safe cause her story just started. So now the only thing left for me/us is to mourn the loss of our Canary. The Black Canary.
I’ve never been a big comic book fan, I watched cartoons and anime mostly but I knew who BC and Green Arrow were and I got quite excited when CW announced Arrow was coming to our small screens. Still the thing that sold me into tuning in was casting Katie Cassidy getting cast as Laurel Lance. I loved Katie’s previous work and enjoyed her in every project I saw her in and Arrow was no exception. I don’t know why but I am a sucker for strong female characters who can stand up for themselves and Katie’s Laurel was one of those.
But Arrow’s Laurel Lance never had never things going for her. Put in the worst position from the get go, antagonizing the main character who everyone has to sympathize with cause all the shit he went through isn’t a good starting point. It’s probably the worst position for a female lead character in a CW show. Katie’s acting was called wooden and bland, but I always saw a hurt girl trying to coup with the situation ahead. Facing the man who brought so much to her as a young 20something year old can’t be easy. And there is where she caught me with even more. The struggle the pain felt so real to me and that is when I became a fan of the character after loving the actress so much. Another thing that won me over was that even against all the bashing and name calling, she kept being so gracious and optimistic.
Than season 2 happened and Laurel was given the shit card again, her cheating sister returned from the dead and was this super kick ass vigilante. Of course Laurel was once again in the dark about her sisters identity, in the middle of an addiction storyline and again her actions were judged and looked down to. Yet I enjoyed Katie’s performance. She acted the shit out of the material she got, lost weight to show the addiction struggle and had a turn around on her character like U rarely see on television. Of course they downgraded Laurel and made her apologize to Sara, making it look like everyone around her was right, even though all of them lied to her. Yes Laurel was harsh but no one understood her position, her pain, her suffering she was the black sheep. Still this shifty writing, to say at least , delivered one beautiful performance by Katie that broke my heart.
This episode was the beginning of the Black Canary story, the rise of Dinah Laurel Lance to heroism. Many people would say it was the moment Sara gave Laurel her leather jacket but it wasnt. It was this moment when Laurel finally survived that shipwreck and found stability in her life. It was the moment she was able to move on from the self pitty the writers put her in and be the positive strong person she is. Sara’s death was Laurel’s motivation but this is where I think her journey really started. The journey towards the mask she aquired in season3.
Never in Tv history did I see a hero to be get kicked down as much as Laurel did, hit into so many walls and being questioned with so much passion by characters within the show or fandom behind the screen. And this is one of the really rare times the writers did justice to Laurel Lance, her evolution was slow and questioned by everyone but gave her the development, better writing and focus this 70-year-old comic book Icon deserved. I enjoyed every single bit of it, because Laurel kept her sassy attitude but reinforced it with some powerful moves and a great Canary Cry, courtesy of the one and only Cisco Ramon. And even with all these developments there were so many nay sayers. Hating the way she fought, saying her development was rushed and shitting over the way she executed the Canary Cry. And again the only thing Katie had for all those people was grace.
After 3 seasons filled with focus, Laurel took a back seat in season 4. After resurrecting her sister, Laurel pretty much had no story left in season 4 just some meaningful speeches with various characters but no arc on her own. And I was okay with it. She got so much focus during the previous 3 seasons that I was okay with them taking a back seat and letting the others get some development, cause Team Arrow was growing and it was understandable. But never in my wildest dreams would I guess that she was the one in the grave.
After all the pain and suffering she and Quentin had to go through I thought they were safe from more. I still can’t grip my head around it that Laurel Lance is dead and with her all my desire to watch any episode of Arrow ever again. I don’t say people should drop the show, but the storytelling and decision the writers made in the last 2 seasons drove me over the edge of no return. So it is #NoLaurelNoArrow for me.
I didn’t even dare to watch 4×18, cause I am so disappointed and hurt, especially after reading her last known words online.They took it all away from her, the heroism, the power, everything and seemingly reduced her to a simple love interest. People say she was propping Olicity and I wouldn’t really agree, she always encouraged them to be together but it wasnt supposed to be the last words we hear her say. It really weren’t.
And in all my anger and disappointment I will try to focus only on the good stuff and all the great moments I went through with this character. One big thank you to the marvelous Katie Cassidy and even to the writers who established this character I love so much. It was a beautiful journey and I will always remember the whole freaking thing. All of the good and all of the bad, cause all of it is part of her, DINAH LAUREL LANCE aka BLACK CANARY .
To end this story I will quote one of my favorite Charmed spells:
I am light,
I am one too strong to fight,
Return to dark where shadows dwell,
You can not have this Canary!
Rest In Piece, Laurel Lance.