Abandon Shipping: Olicity, or Oliver/Felicity, the original Fan-Preferred Couple of Arrow. While various ships throughout the franchise's fandom suffered through constantly varying levels of popularity throughout the years, Olicity was the only pairing whose popularity was on a continuous, negative slope, due to its extreme Romantic Plot Tumor consuming Arrow over the course of Seasons Three and Four and reaching near-soap opera levels of drama. This eventually culminated in the notorious ending to Crisis On Earth-X, which is near-universally regarded as the death knell of the pairing's popularity. Notably, one of the things new showrunner Beth Schwartz focused on for Season Seven (which was Felicity's last season on the show) was decreasing the amount of Olicity angst; while this did make the pairing more tolerable, Olicity never recovered its previous mega-popularity and ultimately remained the franchise's most hated ship right up until the end of its series.
On a meta-level, Marc Guggenheim and Wendy Mericle. Arrow went downhill ever since they took over as showrunners that criticising them for their lackluster (and controversial) decisions and writing is what majority of the fans enjoy doing despite their differing opinions over the show's characters.
Also on a meta-level, FelicitySmoak. Due to the infamous ending of Crisis on Earth-X, she alienated many fans to the point of almost losing all goodwill. Unlike Guggenheim and Mericle, this does NOT extend toEmily Bett Rickards. In fact, many of the Felicity-haters actually pity Emily for having to deal with such terrible writing, and view her as another victim of the show's change in direction.
Nate is a geeky historian who gets to travel through time and become a superhero. Ending up in the Old West really brings out this side of Nate's personality. "Raiders of the Lost Art" reveals that Raiders of the Lost Ark is the main reason he became a historian.
Ray's excitement about being a superhero and his fumbling with his own tech are as endearing as ever.
Felicity, once she's in on the secret and surrounded by badasses, still manages to be an Adorkable Motor Mouth.
Just watch Martin Stein excitedly ramble on about time travel and alternate universe. He even nicknames a super villain, much to Cisco's approval. When Rip and some of his teammates were captured by Time Pirates, he gleefully takes on the role of "Space Ranger", a comic that he loved as a child.
Arc Fatigue: The shows have an unfortunate knack for dragging out storylines or withholding reveals for way too long:
The reveal of Sara's killer in Season 3 took nine episodes — it was Malcolm Merlyn, the most obvious candidate. Though he did it by brainwashing his daughter Thea, to give it a bit of a twist.
In Season 4, Team Arrow was clueless for 3/4 of the season on what HIVE's Evil Plan was. Turns out it was to nuke the world.
Season 5 dragged out The Reveal of Prometheus and Vigilante way too long. Prometheus's identity was revealed in Episode 15 (though this is mitigated somewhat by the unmasked Big Bad's extremely positive reception), while Vigilante's identity was held over until Season 6 (due to the actor being unavailable).
Season 6 quickly became infamous for the schism arc — the surviving new recruits of Team Arrow from Season 5, leave Team Arrow to start their own team when they felt Oliver betrayed their trust. Even when Oliver gives them a sincere apology they refuse to come back, which makes the already difficult job of protecting Star City that much harder; naturally events mean the two teams have to work together, but they keep insisting they will never rejoin Team Arrow even with the knowledge that a divided Team Arrow is exactly what the Big Bad wants. It ends with "Collision Course'' on a very sour note: the two can never be reconciled as the choices each team has made thoroughly destroyed whatever remained of their friendship. That being said, the two teams did eventually reconcile...in the last three episodes of the season.
In Seasons 2 and 3, the true identities of Zoom and Savitar were dragged out way too long — though general agreement was that the latter was worse, especially since just about all the fans had guessed his true identity long before the actual reveal. For perspective, Zoom's identity was revealed in episode fifteen. Savitar's was revealed in episode twenty. Out of a twenty-three episode season.
Also in season 2, the identity of the Man in the Iron Mask that Zoom had imprisoned was hidden until the last episode of the season. That being said, it was less grating than the above examples since he wasn't integral to the plot and didn't show up in as many episodes as Zoom did.
In season 4, Ralph's constant cycle of becoming a hero, becoming dissuaded, being pep-talked into heroism again and then promising that he's determined to stop the Thinker before promptly getting scared again so he can repeat the whole scenario in a later episode has proved extremely unpopular.
There are two reasons why Season 5 has become infamous for this: First, it took the team seventeen episodes (nine after the reveal) to learn of Noras relationship with Eobard. Also, Orlin Dwyer's role as the villain of the season was dragged for too long, since Team Flash missed good opportunities to arrest him. He is finally killed after 17 episodes, only for his niece to assume his legacy and secret identity for the rest of the season, only for her to be killed off in the finale so the Final Boss could be Eobard yet again.
Season 6 Post-Crisis, a lot of fans lost their patience with the Mirror Iris plot. Nine episodes have passed with the season ending with Iris still stuck in the Mirrorverse. Meanwhile, the characters didn't notice that the Iris who has been living with them for the past several weeks is not the real Iris despite their past experiences with impersonators, doppelgangers or deceitful members. Barry is suspicious of Mirror Iris at first, but he falls for her blatant emotional manipulations far too easily and for too long. Wally and Joe come to suspect her behavior on one occasion, but they do nothing. When a person, Kamilla, finally finds out the truth, she is immediately replaced by a duplicate. It's only after six episodes that Barry finally realize that something is wrong after Mirror Iris banishes him from his and Iris' loft.
Legends of Tomorrow:
In Season 2, it takes ten episodes for the Legends to figure out that the mysterious evil speedster they're fighting is Eobard Thawne. They could've figured it out much sooner if they had just bothered to ask Barry. It doesn't help that Martin Stein was there during the fights with Reverse-Flash, as well as Eobard's true face being revealed. Also in the same season, Captain Cold was well advertised to join the Legion of Doom, but he didn't show up until episode 15...out of a seventeen episode season!
In Season 3, Kara and her team learning Sam is Reign after sixteen episodes, long after it was already revealed to the audience.
In Season 5, Lena playing Kara while constructing a device to brainwash the world was her main arc in the first half. It takes seven episodes before Kara finally finds out that she is being manipulated by Lena. When the show rebooted after Crisis, rather than reboot Lena's character or further the conflict between her and Kara, she retained her memories and started the whole plan again. This leads to Lena basically spending all her screen time in the lab in the second half of the season. Also, it took 17 episodes for season 5 finally reveal what Leviathan's plan in Post-Crisis is (to sabotage the Obsidian Lenses so they can mass genocide on the humans who are trapped with them). It doesn't help that Lex Luthor finds out about this before all the other characters, including Supergirl.
Ass Pull: In a world where Death Is Cheap whether it be via time travel or occult artifacts, we are treated to several very weak explanations as to why Laurel Lance can never ever come back to life despite all of the above being viable methods; they all amount to it that it would be "wrong".note By wrong of course, we mean Mark Guggeheim not even taking the slightest chance of anything harming his precious Felicity.
Ray Palmer developing his shrinking tech, since a lot of fans complained he was too much like Tony Stark.
When Constantine got cancelled despite a decently sized fan campaign to save it, the series was retconned into being part of this setting and John Constantine himself guest starred in Arrow Season 4, and later made a regular in Legends of Tomorrow.
Katie Cassidy returning to full time status in Arrow Season 6 as Black Siren, since many fans were upset how the production team treated her and Laurel. Subverted to an extent as many fans are still angry that they just didn't bring Laurel back — especially since "Flashpoint" in "The Flash" Season Three or the Spear of Destiny in Legends Season Two provided them with the perfect opportunity to do so — and they came this close to doing it in the Legends finale too.
Producer Todd Helbing's directly addressing the increasingly darker tone Season 3 of "The Flash" took, and openly assured the fandom Season 4 would be returning to its Lighter and Softer roots that had made the show so popular in the first place. Although the execution became controversial as time went on. See Dork Age below.
After the dismal reception of Arrow Season 6, Beth Schwartz took over as showrunner after the wildly unpopular Marc Guggenheim and Wendy Mericle were fired/Kicked Upstairs.
An especially wide-reaching one after the Bury Your Gays on Sara Lance in the Arrow Season 3 premiere. The fans went after this so brutally that the crew actually fully acknowledged that they shouldn't have done it and brought Sara back as a major character on Legends, and from then on the entire 'verse has been one of the most openly sexually inclusive settings in entertainment history. Plus, it even affected their work outside the 'verse, like Greg Berlanti directing Love, Simon.
Superman's suit in Supergirl (2015) was controversial due to looking too plastic, having metallic connectors for the cape, and making Superman look weak. The suit for Superman & Lois was remodelled to have better detail, use less leather, look more muscular and no longer have the metallic connectors for the cape. When it was shown in promotional pictures, fan reception was overwhelmingly positive, with the only major complaint being the Superman logo being too small.
Ray Palmer in general. After initially being controversial for stealing plot focus and romancing Felicity, he settled in this role in Legends thanks to his Ditzy Genius tendencies either making him an annoying Idiot Hero or an endearing Nice Guy nerd.
Felicity Smoak, for the same reasons as her entry in Arrow - half the fanbase love her quirkiness, chemistry with Oliver, and the light-heartedness she brings to the team. The other half think she's a Spotlight-Stealing Squad who is the subject of Character Shilling on all the other shows, to the point of complaining when she's announced to guest-star. Unfortunately, she became The Scrappy for the entire Arrowverse fandom after the 2017 crossover.
Laurel Lance worked up from The Scrappy in earlier seasons to gaining more fans after becoming the Black Canary, however a fair portion of the fanbase was frustrated with her becoming an Instant Expert compared to the rest of the character's training (going from first outing to mask in barely half a season) and general recklessness endangering Team Arrow (making the entire team hide Sara's death from Quentin, jumping into conflicts in Season 3 and reviving Sara in Season 4). While she never stopped being divisive, her death on the latest parts of Season 4 was widely panned by Laurel's fans and some of her detractors due to being seen as unnecessary and not giving a good closure to the character.
Barry Allen himself, quite possibly being the most controversial of the show leads. People are split between those who feel he's a likeable character who's mistakes are reasonable, and those who feel he's a selfish idiot that really can't be trusted with the power he has.
Oliver Queen, who since the beginning was criticized for being a rather blatant BatmanExpy who suffered massively from They Changed It, Now It Sucks! as a result, not to mention the fact many just found him rather dull and boring, being another brooding Anti-Hero. Other fans however adore him for his sheer badassery and how tortured his life is making him The Woobie, not to mention his near-constant shirtlessness in the early days. This extends to his actor, Stephen Amell; while there are some who consider him one of the strongest actors the shows have owing to several really emotional performances, others consider him one of the weakest due to his comparative lack of range compared to the other actors and leads.
Better on DVD: Despite the writers best efforts the shows' timelines have a tendency to not match at times when airing on broadcast TV; watching them on Netflix or DVD allows them to sync better.
Legends. While may fans are thrilled that Ray got his own show, the announcement that Captain Cold and Heatwave would be starring too was met with less enthusiasm since they are both prominent Flash rogues and many fans would prefer if they just stayed on that show for the moment.
How often the characters cross over. While many enjoy the shared universe, Oliver showing up in the Flash episode Rogue Air caused some criticism because it didn't mesh well with Arrow's timeline of events.
Related to the crossovers - while many enjoy them in general, some fans feel that they are too many cases of They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character for the regulars on their own shows when the crossovers happen, or leaving out characters that would make perfect sense. The was keenly felt in the Invasion crossover in particular when Iris, a reporter, wasn't at a press conference held by the President, most of the heroes weren't at the victory party, and some of the Legends characters were inexplicably missing from their own show for a lot of that episode.
"Duet", the musical crossover. Not the musical performances themselves mind you, everyone is in agreement that the heavy vocal training and talents of high class Broadway/West End/Musical actors like Victor Garber, Jermey Jordan, John Barrowman, Jesse L. Martin, Carlos Valdes, Melissa Benoist and Grant Gustin are very apparent and applauded (especially if you were a former Gleek), but the fact that the Arrowverse has a Musical Episode in the first place is very polarizing. Depending on which fan you ask, it's either loved or hated, there is no in between.
The firing of Hartley Sawyer from the role of Ralph Dibny/The Elongated Man, after tweets from six to eleven years ago resurfaced with him making some very inappropriate jokes. While some believe that his firing was rightful or at least understandable, much of the fanbase rejected the decision due to the tweets being old and accused the showrunners of not acknowledging that people could change, pointing to his activism and the fact that he'd stopped making those jokes years before being cast.
Quite a lot of comic fans have began to see these shows as this, due to the massive liberties being taken regarding characterisation and backstory, not to mention the number of villains who are In Name Only, which only got worse as the quality of the shows' writing plundered. Particular sour points are the Adaptational Wimp and poor use given to Black Canary, the often-insulting usage of Wally West, who's Demoted to Extra in seasons adapting stories where he was the main character, as well as the Vanilla Protagonist treatment given to Barry and Oliver as they avoid lasting development as characters.
Among the show's own fandom, this is largely how Marc Guggenheim's tenure is viewed. After taking over Arrow when Andrew Kreisberg jumped to The Flash, the show was hit by such an infamous degree of Seasonal Rot, becoming overly focused on the Romantic Plot Tumor of Oliver/Felicity, a haphazard attempt at giving Merlyn a redemption arc that just made him come off as more unsympathetic, and a story that just didn't make sense. The problems continued in Season Four, and hit its peak when he killed off Laurel, the Black Canary. Guggenheim's tenure is so hated that the only complete season of his that most fans are willing to acknowledge, let alone praise, is Season Five. Otherwise, it's been more-or-less hit with Fanon Discontinuity.
Continuity Lock-Out: If you don't watch all the shows there might be some viewer confusion, namely: Laurel showed up in an episode of Flash so Cisco could modify her sister's sonic device into the Canary Cry, and when she uses it on Arrow there is no mention how she got it.
Deathbolt is a Villain of the Week in an episode of Arrow who appears in the penultimate episode of the first season of The Flash.
Vandal Savage appeared on the Flash first, so those only watching Arrow have a harder time following.
Eobard Thawne is the Arc Villain of both The Flash Season 1 and Legends Season 2.
The Invasion crossover event depends on you being caught up with Arrow (Seasons 1-5), The Flash (Season 3), and Legends Of Tomorrow (Season 2) as some recurring plots from those seasons, specifically Flashpoint and Time Aberrations, play a part in the main plot. This is avoided with Supergirl as the plot of her second season doesn't affect the plot.
Felicity Smoak, all the lived long day. She started out fairly popular as a quirky supporting character, intelligent, but socially awkward. However, when Mark Guggenheim noticed some fair chemistry between her and Oliver, he decided that she was the pinnacle, the representation of all that is good in the world. Immediately junking any remaining plans to have Oliver/Laurel, Felicity's role was significantly ramped up in Season 2; eventually becoming blatantly loved by the show-runners and most of the writers, had more screen-time than anyone other than Barry Allen and Oliver Queen (who are/were the damn lead characters of their shows), had made more crossover appearances than any other character period, was generally treated as infallible even during times that she is being selfish, and was talked up by every other hero in the universe, as well as the other characters. Many fans eventually went on to consider Felicity the "poochie" of the Arrowverse, and this treatment continued even as she gradually became the most hated character in not just Arrow, but the entire Arrowverse.
Dinah Drake, the the second Black Canary. Many fans see her as a Replacement Scrappy for Laurel, and many were unhappy that she was picked to join Team Arrow instead of Black Siren, and a lot of Character Shilling was done to make the audiences fall in love with her — and the production team go out of their way to build her up on social media. They even had Vigilante's identity be suddenly tied to her just to make her relevant. Popular fan opinion was that Guggenheim had her exist just to shut up Laurel fans who wanted a Black Canary. Sara and Laurel both suffered the indignity of being killed the season after they each became the Canary; Sara was the Canary in Season 2 only to be killed in the Season 3 premiere, while Laurel became the Black Canary in Season 3 only to be killed off three-fourths of the way in Season 4. By contrast Dinah became Black Canary II in the second half of Season 5 and managed to come out of the series still alive.
Mon-El, Supergirl's love interest in Season 2. He got far more focus than the main character of the show herself; coupled with the fact the production team admitted he was only paired with Supergirl so she could "fix" him, and later they teased that his return to National City is a big arc in Season Three makes you wonder if the writers forgot who the show is suppose to be about. To be fair, certain revelations in regards to real life matters involving Christopher Wood's real-life wife Melissa Benoist have somewhat mitigated Mon-El; he's still generally seen as a creator's pet, but some fans have stated he wasn't as bad as most thought.
Season 4 of Arrow is widely regarded as the absolute low point of the Arrowverse, even byStephen Amellhimself. The other seasons to get anywhere close to the same amount of flak are Season 3 and especially Season 4 of The Flash.
The second half of Season 6 of Arrow have been regarded as even worse, thanks to a much maligned arc where Team Arrow and the New Recruits have a parting of the ways and spend most of their time fighting each other than the actual Big Bad that completely consumed the season; it got to the point where after the ratings started to drip to less than a million that Guggenheim and Mericle were finally given the boot — Beth Schwartz took over as show runner for Season 7. Mericle is leaving completely, while Guggenheim has been Kicked Upstairs to the role of "executive consultant", i.e. not having as much power as he once had.
Season 4 of The Flash is seen as the low point of this series. To compensate for the mediocre reception of Season 3, Andrew Kreisburg & Todd Helbing sought to bring the comedic tone back, but fans were not pleased with the result since it was more of a juvenile Denser and Wackier tone rather than a balance between drama and humor. Other points of contention were lazy, inconsistent writing, characters lacking lives outside of S.T.A.R. Labs, Ralph Dibny becoming a Spotlight-Stealing Squad with an inconsistent character development, and countlessIdiot Ball moments to help prop up the villain as the smartest man alive. While there are debates over whether or not this season is worse than Season 3, it is certainly a case of Seasonal Rot when compared to Seasons 1 and 2.
Eight Deadly Words: The 'Verse's sixth year infamously featured new characters who got so much focus that they effectively sidelined many of their respective show's original cast members. For Arrow, it's the New Recruits aka "New TeamArrow". For The Flash, it's Ralph Dibny aka Elongated Man. Said larger focus over the established characters did not sit well with many fans and are largely blamed for their respective shows' aforementioned Dork Age.
Many fans prefer to ignore the more notorious examples of Seasonal Rot within the franchise, which has led to Arrow Seasons 3, 4, and 6 along with the second halves of both The Flash Season 4 and Supergirl Season 3 being ignored and dismissed.
The Crisis events have fans who are pretty pissed about how they drag in entire worlds from past DC installments to be killed off just to raise the stakes.
Give any praise to Marc Guggenheim as a showrunner and writer (especially for Arrow) and you are either gonna get burned at the stake, ridiculed, or both at the same time. The same goes for his Arrow co-showrunner Wendy Mericle, and Flash showrunner Andrew Kreisberg after his sexual harassment allegations.
If you're the type of fan who watch the shows mainly/only for Shipping then it's best if you don't say it to comic and casual fans.
There's also a rivalry between the DC Extended Universe. It was exacerbated when Warner Bros. announced a Flash movie with Ezra Miller playing the Scarlet Speedster (who will also be Barry Allen, according to Phil Lord) just two weeks after the Flash show premiered - a move that was criticized by not only Stephen Amell but by DC's rival Marvel as well. Later continued when the Suicide Squad (2016) film started shooting, as the Squad exists on TV as well. The fact that Arrow's versions of Deadshot and Amanda Waller had to be killed off did not go over well with the fanbase.
It got worse in 2017 after the Flash finale when Barry is forced into the Speed Force to keep it collapsing. Considering this happened only a few months before the Justice League movie premiered and the DCEU's proper debut of it's version of Barry Allen, it seemed that fans fears that WB would force the Arrowverse producers to get rid of Barry to make way for the movie version had been confirmed, at least until subsequent trailers for Season 4 confirmed that Barry would return and remain the lead of the show.
Within the larger fandom itself, there's something of one between Legends and the other shows, primarily The Flash. Some Flash fans blame Legends for stealing, and then killing off, Captain Cold, and later for 'stealing' Wally West, where his appearances got scrutiny for being 'out of character'. Legends fans by contrast regularly mock The Flash for its Seasonal Rot and note that Wally was far better received on Legends, owing to the fact he acted more like his comic and DCAU counterparts and that he could shine without being overshadowed by Barry.
Fans of the comics and fans of the TV shows tend to...disagree. A lot. Thanks to They Changed It, Now It Sucks! and They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character/Plot, there's a few fans who hate the shows for how they could become an ink-stained adaptations for the characters. For fans who love the shows through thick-and-thin that didn't read the comics first, they dismiss a lot of the criticisms and actively wish for them to become an Ink Stained Adaptation, either for familiarity or because they think the shows are better from what they've heard of the comics.
The shows' habit of making Ascended Extras out of minor (sometimes In Name Only) comic characters and Canon Foreigners were widely praised at first. Overtime however, this habit's led to important characters from the respective shows' source material getting shafted (either being Out of Focus or downright Demoted to Extra). This habit actually originally came from Smallville, which showed some heroes other than Superman and some of them became very important in the latest seasons (like Oliver Queen), but Smallville is generally seen as having done a far better balance between focusing on Superman and giving the other heroes their own stories.
The shows are often noted for the Darker and Edgier treatment given to Green Arrow and, to a lesser extent, The Flash post-season 2. Quite often some fans will defend this by pointing to the Mike Grell era or other points in the comics where Green Arrow was rather dark. Of course, even during those periods he wasn't as dark as on Arrow, and even still those are small blips on a character history stretching back to the 1940s.
In general, several of the problems fans complain about in later seasons had already existed in the series of Arrowverse from the beginning: minor or even original characters gaining more prominence than popular heroes and villains from the comics, an excessive focus on romantic plots, the scripts hiding the reveal of the villains' plans to the final stretch, pacing problems, too much "villain of the week", etc. The big difference is that the series were new and the writing was much better. But when even after several years the writers kept insisting on the same mistakes, it is impossible not to notice them.
Gotta Ship 'Em All: Every characters have been shipped in many ways including some crossover like Laurisco/Blackvibe.
For Arrow, fans consider either mid-to-late Season One when the Power Trio of Oliver, Diggle, and Felicity is formed and when Oliver has his first adventure with Slade Wilson in the island, or Season Two when Oliver decided to stop killing in order to honor Tommy's memory, bringing him more in line with his comic book counterpart, as well as the introduction of characters and fantastical elements (Barry Allen, Sara Lance, the League of Assassins, Mirakuru, etc) that would later form the wider Arrowverse.
Season Two of Legends of Tomorrow, abandoning any attempt to have a sensible story in favor of going completely nuts with the fact that they're writing a story about a time-traveling superhero team, jettisoning the widely panned Hawk characters, and replacing the underwhelming Vandal Savage with the Legion of Doom made up of fan-favorite villains from Arrow and The Flash.
While still a divisive series, Season 4 of Supergirl was the first season to be praised by fans from start to finish, thanks to the inclusion of Lex Luthor, Ben Lockwood, Nia Nal and Red Daughter. It contrast to the previous three seasons, which in the opinion of many fans, start well, until they are harmed by Romantic Plot Tumor on the second halves.
Harsher in Hindsight: The fandom's preference of Andrew Kreisberg over Marc Guggenheim, when it was announced that Kreisberg was suspended and eventually fired from his roles as show runner and producer after a wave of allegations over sexual harassment and creating a very toxic work environment. Not that Marc Guggenheim is actually vindicated, especially since he apparently knew what Kreisberg was doing according to Grace DeVoll (the writer of the Arrow web miniseries "Blood Rush").
Barry Allen. His powerset makes him one of the most powerful heroes on Earth and when he gets down to business, he can take down heavy hitters like Zoom and Savitar. However, what most people remember him for are his humiliating defeats against opponents who aren't anywhere near as fast as him and seemingly being unable to dodge their attacks when he should easily be able to do so, while being totally reliant upon his STAR Labs Crew to hold his hand and talk him through all his battles. Even in VS threads across the internet where CW Flash is involved, it's not uncommon to see a majority of people vote against Barry in favor of his opponents(some of whom Flash should be able to defeat theoretically) while making jokes about how CW's Flash is the "fastest jobber alive."
Ray Palmer in some circles. Redditors keep a "Ray Palmer Fuck-Up" counter in the Legends of Tomorrow Sub-reddit. They actually got rid of the counter because they couldn't keep count anymore.
The Legends as a whole seem to be this, as there's a lot of buzz about them being ineffective losers who've failed at every mission. In actuality, the only actual 'failures' they've had was the attacks on Savage in the 70s and the 50s, and assassinating Per Degaton, while the team has succeeded in foiling Savage's plot with the Soviets, halted his experiments in the 50s, stopped his use of the ATOM drones, as well as saved the future Star City from Grant Wilson, defeated the Stillwater gang, and defeated and deprogrammed Chronos, the Hunters, and the Pilgrim, and captured Savage while he's at the height of his power. However, their failures are just more memorable.
In particular, Rip's apparent ineptitude at time travel, given his repeated failure to kill Savage before forming the team, and his poor management skills when leading the team, has been the subject of much humor among fans. It was later revealed that the Time Masters had been actively sabotaging his attempts to kill Savage, but even afterwards the team still has a tendency to ignore his plans and just do their own thing (during a mission to protect the King of France from being assassinated, Sara slept with the Queen of France).
More Popular Spin-Off: To say there are many out there who think it should be The Flashverse is an understatement. The Flash (2014) continues to receive the most significant acclaim of all the shows, and is and continues to be the highest rated program, not just in The Arrowverse but on The CW, since it's record shattering premiere in 2014, which still remains the highest rated hour in the history of the Network. The Flash ultimately did become the franchise's flagship show after Arrow ended in 2020.
Never Live It Down: The double wedding, for Felicity Smoak. It didn't matter how much the writers tried to redeem her character afterward, such as attaching her to Breakout Character Black Siren in Season Seven of Arrow and being a pivotal part of the latter's redemption arc. The fans never forgave her for the sheer selfishness of this moment, and it ultimately ensured she would never, ever be fully Rescued from the Scrappy Heap and regain her previous mega-popularity. Even towards the end of Arrow, she was at best tolerated, and remained not just the most hated character on the show, but the most hated character in the entire franchise.
Zoom and Savitar the respective Big Bads of Seasons Two and Three of "The Flash". Neither of them could escape Eobard Thawne's shadow as there was nothing to really distinguish them from Reverse-Flash. Zoom does have his fans, but is still very similar to Thawne in his mysteries and his last moments were criticized. Savitar had a lot of potential that was wasted due to poor pacing and in the end lacked the menace Thawne and Zoom had. They are also seen as one of the reasons why Seasons Two and Three are seen as weaker than Season One — It's the Same, Now It Sucks! came into full play, which is why the Big Bad For Season 4 is specifically not a speedster.
Dinah Drake the new Black Canary in Arrow Season 5, whose powers are the result of the STAR Labs Particle Accelerator. Mainly because she and Laurel's Earth-2 Counterpart - Black Siren both have similar backstories; they went down a dark path after the men they loved died, Dinah's former police partner and Earth-2 Oliver. Yet Oliver doesn't try to redeem Black Siren after his initial attempt, and then Dinah is introduced at the end of the same episode, and her appearance comes off as a very Contrived Coincidence to make her the "perfect replacement" for Laurel, not to mention she's given a lot of Character Shilling at Black Siren's expense. While Dinah's not a bad character per se — she's pretty likable and badass, many hate that she's the product of lazing writing.
Rescued from the Scrappy Heap: Ralph Dibny. While well liked when first introduced for being a breath of fresh air amongst the overflow of Speedsters on The Flash, as well as being found funny, his goofy antics soon proved a little to silly to be taken seriously, and his Spotlight-Stealing Squad tendencies, as well as his Selfish, buffoonish, Jerk with a Heart of Gold characteristics, rubbed people the wrong way. Then he returned in Season 5, and his entire Season Long Arc in Season 4, proved fruitful as his Character Development sat in and he was now a fun and funny, without being too corny, noble and selfless hero, and his dumbness was replaced with him showcasing his skills as detective, and a beloved member of Team Flash. Ups the factors in season 6, with him taking a massive level in Badass becoming the closest thing the Arrowverse has to a super-spy, akin to the likes of James Bond or Jason Bourne.
Romantic Plot Tumor: One recurring problem with the shows is that the romance aspect has a strong tendency to overtake the plot. This is felt mainly in Arrow and Supergirl. The Flash (2014) show runners saw this problem and downplay this to avoid the same problem(s), with most fans agreeing that Season 3 is the only season with this issue.
Felicity Smoak. It's odd as she started out as one of the most beloved characters, only for her popularity to slowly and gradually decline due to her continued over abundance of screen time, tendency to make everything about her, and her troubling, toxic codependent relationship with Oliver, which made her seem all the more bitchy, not helped by her blatant status as the Creator's Pet, with Character Shilling unmatched in the entirety of the Arrowverse (Laurel's last words anyone?). Then, after spending an entire half a season trying to pull a Rescued from the Scrappy Heap, came the ending of Crisis on Earth-X, which saw her literally interrupting Barry and Iris' wedding to tack on her and Oliver's (instead of, you know, waiting a couple of minutes), and that was after spending the entire crossover harping why she and Oliver shouldn't get married, and after Barry and Iris' original dream wedding had already been ruined by invading Nazis from another earth at the beginning of the crossover. This action left the audience, and the West-Allens, so completely in shock of her selfishness that whatever remaining good will that she had built up immediately vanished and she became The Scrappy of the Arrowverse, which despite the writers taking strides once again to fix her character, was something she was never able to fully shake off. To the point where when Emily Bett Rickards announced she wasn't returning for the final season, fans were ecstatic; for the actor to finally leave what they perceived to be a terrible role, and for the character to finally be gone.
By Season 6 of Arrow, you can add Curtis, Rene, and Dinah Drake to the list. Oliver spied on them to root a mole who was Agent Watson's star witness; even though Rene wasThe Mole. Even Oliver gives them a sincere apology they refuse to comeback, opting instead to Start My Own, even though they are perfectly aware that Cayden James wants them divided. Striking out on their own doesn't make things harder for Cayden James, in fact it makes his conquest of the city easier.
Vandal Savage is widely considered one of, if not the worst villains in the Arrowverse. This started when the crossoverepisodescombined him with the jealous priest Hath-Set from Hawkman and Hawkgirl's origin stories. This results in a Romantic Plot Tumor that takes away much of Savage's trademark Wicked Cultured nature, as the show instead focuses on his Villainous Crush on Hawkgirl. Plus he's not nearly as old (and thus less experienced) as the comic version who was a caveman. While Legends of Tomorrow tried to reemphasize his malevolence and cruelty, Casper Crump ultimately fails at bringing the necessary menace to the role despite his acting chops (Savage's Adaptational Wimp status certainly didn't help). Savage is looked back upon by both fan and the writers as one of the biggest problem with the first season of the show.
While previous major villains in The Flash are polarizing, Orlin Dwyer (Cicada) is the most hated one, and not in a Love to Hate way. Despite having little motivation and not being strong enough to maintain the tension, he was kept for too long and he only escaped so far due to Team Flash's incompetence. Chris Klein's utter failure to make Orlin terrifying makes him look even worse.
Seasonal Rot: An ongoing problem seems to be is that the longer the shows are on the air they tend to decline in quality:
Arrow: Seasons 3, 4 and 6. Basically, Marc Guggenheim and Wendy Mericle's entire tenure as showrunners, with the exception of Season 5.
Supercouple: Barry and Iris have become this for the entirety of the Arrowverse, for many reasons. Most importantly, the popularity they have with both the fandom and critics, supported in large part by the strong chemistry Grant and Candice share. Also unlike some other couples on tv, the writers take great pains to ensure that the two sidestep or hurdle over pitfalls that usually stagnate other couples having the two face, aside from supervillains and issues as part of a superhero team, very real life problems head on and overcoming them together, simply by relying on one another. It came to a front that their long teased and heavily built up wedding became the focal point and catalyst of Crisis on Earth-X. Not to mention the fact that the two had been best friends all their lives, the heavy elements of destiny in play when it comes to their relationship and in-universe recognition as one of the Arrowverse's greatest love stories. What else can be said of a romance that has spanned multiple earths, at least three timelines and withstood death itself, supercouple indeed.
Good god yes is this a popular sentiment. Especially as Seasonal Rot kicked in for Arrow and The Flash, the shows have alienated a lot of the older comic fandom, in large part because of the massive creative liberties taken with the main characters, their love interests, families, and supporting casts. While at first the shows weren't particularly controversial (largely, while they were different, the 'early days' approach meant people were open to changes on the assumption they'd grow into being more like the comics), however the increased Pandering to the Base treatment lead to the shows swerving the opposite way that many comic fans jumped ship.
Completely and utterly averted in the case of Legends of Tomorrow however. The show is by far the one that has the least to do with any comics, yet it is also often called the best of the bunch, due to the sheer zaniness and utter fun it contains.
Many fans rejected the franchise being officially named CWVerse, since most of them were more used to name "Arrowverse" despite being unofficial. Fans have argued that Arrowverse would make more sense for the franchise to acknowledge series Arrow as the origin of this franchise or Oliver Queen being the Big Good.
They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character: The shows have a tendency to take interesting, complex characters from the comics and reduce them down to one-shot characters that don't last past one episode. Plastique from The Flash was a big one.
Among main-cast members, Wally West and Black Canary are easily the worst examples, due to them being highly beloved characters in the canon, arguably more popular and iconic than Barry and Oliver themselves, yet were reduced to being Locked Out of the Loop, almost in-name-only civilian characters-turned-under-used sidekicks that were unceremoniously dropped from the show. Not helping matters is how a lot of their history and characterisation was given to other characters (Wally having a lot of his unique traits being given to Barry, while 'Dinah Lance' was effectively turned into three characters, with the one actually called Dinah Lance being the least like her). A major point of criticism among comic fans is their treatment.
Ray Palmer's origin story involves him being in Starling City during Slade Wilson's Siege and watching his wife be murdered at the hands of one of his soldiers. Considering this, it's rather tragic that not once do Ray and Slade ever meet, despite the constant crossovers between Arrow and Legends over the years and Slade's HeelFace Turn. A large part of this is due to Warner Bros preventing Slade from reappearing due to the character's use in the DCEU, but no matter how Ray would've reacted to meeting the man responsible for his wife's death it would've opened up a lot of avenues for both characters.
Unacceptable Targets: Despite her character being The Scrappy, Emily Bett Rickards is generally seen as this except among the more notorious trolls, with many even sympathizing over her being forced to play a previously-beloved and now widely despised character through no real fault of her own. Fandom made it clear: trash Felicity all you want, do not trash Emily Bett Rickards.
Unfortunate Implications: With An Accent has criticized the Arrowverse for their "white feminism". With An Accent denounced Supergirl, Arrow and The Flash of doing a disservice to minority women for committing "counterfeit diversity" (as in, casting white women as women of colour), showing them as unsympathetic villains most of the time, and treating them unfairly in comparison to white women.
Unpopular Popular Character: Laurel Lance, the Black Canary; originally not very well-liked, fans eventually warmed up to her and were outraged when she was Stuffed into the Fridge by Damien Dahrk...and the production team refusing to ever bring her back to life, despite the Arrowverse being filled with occult artifacts and time travel, no matter how badly the fans want it to happen. It got worse when her Earth-2 counterpart Black Siren, the fan favorite to be her successor as Black Canary was snubbed over in favor one Dinah Drake, a metahuman who happens to have Laurel's mom maiden name and Black Siren's power set. Many speculate that Black Siren becoming a regular in Season 6 was done by the production team to appease the fans and stop their complaints. The complaints didn't stop, as it was clear that the producers missed the point: It didn't matter whether she was Black Canary or not, they wanted Laurel back, E-2 Laurel aside.
Vindicated by History: Again, thanks to the growing number of seasons for each show, some past seasons that were initially derided when they first aired are better received with age, especially when even worse seasons air after them. Notable recipients include Arrow Season 3 and The Flash Season 3, both of which were followed by even more reviled seasons, as detailed under Dork Age above.
Win Back the Crowd: Arrow Season 5 after the weaker Seasons 3 and 4, mainly due to a "back to basics" approach, a downplay on the romance, a very well-received flashback arc dealing Oliver's time with the Bratva, a very credible Big Bad, more focus on Oliver and breaking the trend of the Big Bad trying to destroy Star City. The season's only real flaws are the introduction of the new recruits (most especiallyTinaBoland) and them taking the spotlight from the previously established characters other than Oliver and Felicity. Relatedly, Arrow Season 7, Supergirl Season 4, The Flash Season 5, and Legends Season 4 have also all gotten surprisingly positive critical receptions (though audience reception was far more mixed concerning the latter two), which is giving further hope to the Arrowverse eventually moving out of its snark bait reputation online.
The shows tend to have problems when attempting to have the actors interpret older versions of their characters, since the make-up often fails to conceal the obvious youth of the actors.
The shows have a very distinctive approach to costume design, often relying on Movie Superheroes Wear Black and Hell-Bent for Leather, as well as giving everyone a Domino Mask. While this worked for Green Arrow and Black Canary (as the latter did wear black leather in the comics), the overuse of it for characters it didn't fit lead to this. The Flash suit somewhat got a pass as it was a prototype suit, but by Year Six of the verse, he sheer number of people wearing black leather jackets and pants with only mild changes between paint applications and stitching lead people deriding the costume department for how lazy and unimaginative they were. When Batwoman's costume was revealed, many were relieved to see they went with spandex instead of leather and actually resembled her comic book costume.