Suspend Your Disbelief: Arrow

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“You know us billionaire vigilantes, we do love our toys.” – Oliver Queen, Arrow

Arrow is a TV show based-on The Green Arrow, a comic book hero akin to Robin Hood. In the show, after being stranded on a island for five years after a boating accident, Oliver Queen has returned to Star City and vowed to uncover and stop the corruption, taking down villains one by one using his incredible archery skills. Bumping into other famous DC Comics characters along the way, he eventually meets up with Helena Bertinelli, The Huntress, who doesn’t follow the same moral codes (no killing) as Green Arrow. Since neither the Arrow or Huntress have superpowers, their chosen method of getting around are a Ducati Diavel and an old BMW R60/2.

Photo Credit: Diyah Pera

The TV Show
Unbeknownst to his family, Queen was not alone on the island — he was stuck between the Chinese Army and one of their escapees, Yao Fei. Learning survival skills, archery, and all sorts of badassery from Yao, Queen finds hope once again and returns to Star City to complete his mission. After returning and re-establishing his billionaire-playboy slash superhero-at-night lifestyle, Queen runs into all sorts of villains from DC Comics and begins to defeat them one by one by one…

The Ducati Diavel.

The BMW R60/2.

The Bike
The Diavel is a beast of a machine weighing in at 460 pounds with an 1198.4cc engine that produces 162 horsepower with 94 foot pounds of torque. If there was a cruiser that was meant for billionaire playboys, this one is it. So far in Arrow, we’ve only seen Oliver Queen cruising around Star City, and the Diavel definitely has the power to do that with the greatest of ease. Now the Huntress rides something that I find most peculiar for her persona, a BMW R60/2. The R60/2 is a 600cc air-cooled shaft driven engine with BMW’s famous boxer configuration with very visible telescopic forks. With shapes and lines this motorcycle screams the 1950s, its the same era from which the Huntress was created. It is a peculiar choice for the show, she’s usually shown riding insane sport bikes in her comic form.

The Rider
Oliver Queen, billionaire playboy by day and superhero who’s crazy proficient with a bow and arrow by night. Riding a Diavel definitively fits his “playboy lifestyle,” it’s an expensive toy. It also keeps himself distant from his supehero alter ego because a cruiser just doesn’t logically fit some hotshot superhero. Helena Bertinelli is the daughter of a prominent mafia boss, Frank Bertinelli, who ends killing his own daughter’s fiancé after mistakingly thinking that he had collected evidence on him to turn into the FBI when it was really his own daughter. Vowing revenge, Helena begins to use her fighting and weapon skills to systematically take down of her father’s allies from driveways on a R60/2 to hand-to-hand combat.

The Action
We only see Oliver Queen riding around on his Diavel for a few seconds, only to take a phone call from his younger sister to remind him he has lunch with his mother. The following scene is much more impressive showing a drive by shooting of Helena Bertinelli (her stuntwoman) on her R60/2, narrowingly missing Oliver’s mother.

The Reality
The Ducati Diavel is a great bike for Oliver Queen, it fits his playboy personality; its expensive, flashy and loud. It’s unknown as to whether he’ll be using the Diavel as Arrow, but I hope he picks up something more fitting like a sport bike. A sport bike would be much better for those getaways and take downs. As for the BMW R60/2 for Helena Bertinelli, it’s a strange fit for her personality. As a badass burgeoning villain, you’d expect her to be riding something with more performance, as she does in the comic books, not a nearly 60-year old motorcycle. And as for doing drive bys on a vintage bike? I’m skeptical.

Believability: 8/10 for the Diavel and 5/10 for the BMW R60/2

  • Slothrop

    I have a 1958 R60. It’s a wonderful bike. Those are not telescopic forks, though. The Earls fork has a leading swingarm instead, with twin shocks.

  • Robotribe

    Funny. I made the same complaint about the Huntress’ bike choice; totally stupid choice for getting away fast after committing an assassination. A dual-sport would have been better.

    Then again, the core viewership of this show is probably looking more at haircuts, dreamy eyes and/or boobs, so this motorcycle stuff likely moot.

    • karlInSanDiego

      What’s not fast about ANY motorcycle? Even the slow ones are fast. I was stoked to see the old beemer.

      • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.joshua.silverman Daniel Silverman

        I was as well, but its a definitely a surprised considering she rides a sportbike scooter looking motorcycle in the comics…

      • http://profiles.google.com/mugget mugget man

        Assassinations require moar power. It’s science.

        • karlInSanDiego

          Bullseye pulls off this hit in the Marvel Universe, with a Triumph America. Not moar power. More soul! http://youtu.be/au3EtZEla5Y

          • Robotribe

            Whoah whoah WHOAH. Bullseye is in a whole other category of badass assassins. He could do the job on rusty roller skates…going UPHILL. Let’s not compare Barbie in Assassin Party Jumpsuit to Bullseye. The nerd gods weep at the thought.

    • http://www.facebook.com/stempere Sean Tempère

      Hadn’t thought of a dual sport but in my mind getaway bike = motard.
      Painted black, every witness will say it was “some sort of dirt bike” a sportbike can leave a much more precise memory i think with very distinct front ends.

      The dual sport/motard style of bike also has the benefit of being able to start right back after a fall (talking about the bike and not taking injury into account, of course).
      The beemer does have crash bars though (in the picture above, haven’t seen the show).

  • http://www.facebook.com/julian.rita Julian Santa Rita

    I have to disagree on some points. I own both R65 and a litre sportbike. Yes speed can be helpful in a getaway, but so is reliability, ground clearance, maneuverability and not sounding like a wailing banshee as you make your escape. Dual sport would be a good replacement, but the old BMWs are basically
    dual-sports from before there were specialized dual-sports. You could
    cross a frozen tundra on it. Also, that /2 will be nimble enough to zip around city corners without closing the throttles yet it’s rugged enough to leave the paved streets entirely for off-road action, something at which a sportbike fails miserably.

    That old r60 will run with one cylinder blown at any speed on the tach and it’d do it all day long. They’re indomitably rugged war machines and take a beating like an S&M fetishist. The 800cc or 1000cc jugs bolt right up too and you can do every piece of maintenance on it in an hour. They’re rugged, reliable, classy and more than the sum of their spec sheets, but just slow enough to make some epic yet realistic chase scenes. If you doubt me go watch some Indiana Jones, he’s riding a Dnepr which is a soviet R71 clone.

  • http://twitter.com/katrinaamacc katrinaa :)

    What kind of Bike was it that Oliver stole from the man in this episode? Episode 15, it looked like sometype of black dual sport or maybe something else

  • williamduc

    Yes Yes Yes. Love the Diavel! So much so I bought one, not just based off this show but I had a chance to test drive one a year ago and never looked back. I have owned about 15 different bikes, and this is by far the most comfortable. The only thing I don’t like about it is it is hard to justify being a hooligan with such an expensive bike, even though the front end still goes skyward every ride. If you are thinking about this bike, go test drive one! BIG GRIN.