Team Arrow may think their troubles are over now that gangster Tobias Church (Chad L. Coleman) is dead, but their problems are only just beginning on Arrow.
In this week’s episode, “So It Begins,” mysterious hooded archer Prometheus will start upping his game and unleash a ruthless killing spree on Star City, and it’s up to Oliver (Stephen Amell) and his original team along with the new recruits to figure out who Prometheus is, what he wants and how to stop him.
“We begin to explore why Prometheus is doing what he’s doing,” Amell tells Nerdist on set in Vancouver. “And to explore why he’s doing what he’s doing, we actually have to go back in our story. Which is interesting and something that I’m very proud that we’re doing in a fifth season because we’re calling back to a lot of familiar parts of our early days in the show.”
While the identity of Prometheus has been a closely guarded secret ever since the Arrow showrunners announced the character’s arrival at Comic-Con, star David Ramsey (who plays original Team Arrow member Diggle) was able to shed some light on the formidable villain wreaking havoc on Star City.
“I can say that he and Oliver have a lot in common,” Ramsey tells Nerdist on set. “Dig gets awed by every piece of the puzzle that comes together, like, ‘Oh! It’s because of that! He’s that!’ What’s great about Diggle is he’s the guy you can depend on. He’s been less of that last season and part of this season, but for the most part he’s the guy you can count on to cut straight to the chase. ‘He’s a bad guy? He needs to be taken down. And that’s it.’ Oliver’s the one that kind of struggles with, ‘Oh, well maybe this. Maybe that.’ Diggle’s always the one that’s like, ‘Listen. He’s a criminal. We need to take him out. Don’t necessarily kill him, but he needs to go.'”
He continues, “So his reaction to Prometheus is the same as it was with Darhk [Neil McDonough], the same as it was with all our other villains. He needs to be taken out, that simple. Diggle’s the straight guy. We can depend on that.”
As if Prometheus wasn’t enough of a threat for Team Arrow to contend with, they are also going to have to deal with the fact that reporter Susan Williams (Carly Pope) discovered in last week’s shocking episode that Mayor Oliver Queen was photographed in Russia during the time he was supposedly marooned on Lian Yu. Seeing as how Susan has had it out for Oliver ever since he was elected, she’s not going to sit on this discovery for long.
“Well it hasn’t really happened yet, but where they go is interesting,” Amell says of Susan revealing Oliver’s long-held secret about his missing five years. “Susan appears to be up to no good, but, you know, in reality she’s just following a very interesting story. I mean, the mayor of the town where she is a news reporter was clearly not on an island for five consecutive years, which — by the way, I feel like it’s about time we did that. I always think back to the first Nolan Batman [movie] with Ra’s al Ghul [Liam Neeson] that says ‘the world is too small a place for someone like Bruce Wayne to disappear.'”
Amell continues, “Theoretically Oliver Queen did ‘perish’ in a very famous incident within our story. I always thought when he was in Hong Kong that someone would stop him and be like ‘you look like Oliver Queen,’ but no. So I’m glad that it’s happening [now]. Hopefully it’s building towards something that we’ve talked about doing on the show for a while.”
While all these threats are forming outside of Team Arrow, at least on the personal front the team is finally starting to get to a good place with each other. In last week’s episode, Oliver and Felicity (Emily Bett Rickards) had a heart-to-heart about how he’s okay with her dating her new boyfriend Detective Billy Malone (Tyler Ritter), even after she tried to keep him a secret from her ex-fiance.
“Oliver was fine, if not slightly confused that Felicity didn’t tell him that she was dating someone,” Amell says. “I wasn’t actually a huge fan of the idea that she wouldn’t say something because of all the reasons that their relationship fell apart last year, which was secrets being kept. So to me when I played those scenes, it was just like, ‘Hey, we work together so if you’re keeping anything from me, anything, why? Is it because you don’t trust me? And if you don’t trust me, is that a problem?'”
And according to Amell, that acceptance of Felicity’s new relationship means it’s time for Oliver to move on and find some happiness of his own.
“It’s time for Oliver to have another relationship,” Amell says. “We had a moment earlier this year and I was speaking with [executive producer] Wendy Mericle and I was like, ‘Look, guys, there’s two things that we’re no longer allowed to write about Oliver: we’re no longer allowed to call him a billionaire because he’s been broke for three years. Not broke, but not a billionaire; he lost his family fortune. So not allowed to say billionaire anymore.’ I said, ‘Currently, we’re not allowed to say playboy. He’s dated one woman since season two and he had a fling with Isabel Rochev [Summer Glau], that’s it.’ I’m like, ‘Stop writing playboy. If you’d like him to be a playboy, then by all means, start writing him like one and then we can do it.'”
So who might be Oliver’s next love interest? None other than the reporter who is currently trying to take him down: Susan Williams!
“I’ve had a couple of scenes with Carly who is doing a great job as Susan Williams,” Amell says. “I do think that there will be some exploration of a certain element of romance between the two of them, and I hope that people enjoy it because I’ve found it to be really dynamic so far.”
So while Oliver has his plate full with his new recruits on Team Arrow, a new threat rising in Prometheus and a potential new love interest who is trying to undermine his efforts as mayor, at least his new Deputy Mayor Quentin Lance (Paul Blackthorne) will be able to take on some of the stress of his day job, right? Wrong. Expect Lance to struggle with his new position while also battling his recent relapse with alcoholism.
“I’d like to think that eventually he will rise to the occasion and deal with what he’s dealing with, but it hasn’t come to a head yet, so to speak,” Amell says. “Generally in real life but more specifically on TV shows, people just don’t fix their drinking problems without something going horribly wrong. I would expect that we’re going to have to hit rock bottom before things start to kick back up.”
What are you excited to see from the next few episodes of Arrow? Tweet me your thoughts at @SydneyBucksbaum!
Arrow airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. on The CW.
Images: The CW