The team behind The CW’s “Arrow” knows how to impress the fans.
On Wednesday night, the show wrapped up the first half of Season 2 with their best episode since the pilot, loading it with jaw-dropping twists and surprise appearances.
One of the big ones was seeing Colin Donnell’s Tommy Merlyn again, as he visited Stephen Amell’s The Arrow as a ghost, forgave his friend and told him to fight on, when Brother Blood’s henchman had The Hood down for the count.
“We were talking about like, ‘Oh, ghosts, and then like three ghosts, who else could he see?’” Executive Producer Andrew Kreisberg told reporters recently about the writing process for the mid-season finale. “We were talking about his dad and we were like, ‘Oh, no. … It should be Tommy! Colin is such a friend of the show and obviously was so important to the success of Season 1, and so much of this season is based around [his Tommy] character and his loss and what a hole he left in the show, so it really fit with this season’s arc of Oliver’s journey from going from vigilante to hero, and the person that he feels like he failed. … In the opening titles like we see Tommy’s grave and for Tommy to like forgive him and tell him to get up and fight… just talking about it I get chills. I talked to Colin the other day and I said, ‘The response has just been so great,’ and he’s like, ‘Any time, dude!’”
In addition to bringing Tommy back for the cameo, in the 40-plus minute episode, Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) was struck by lightning back in his lab in Central City; Slade Wilson (Manu Bennett) turned up in Starling City and was revealed to be the man behind Sebastian Blood (Kevin Alejandro); The Arrow got a mask, and Roy Harper (Colton Haynes) was injected with the Mirakuru serum, set to give him special abilities!
At a recent screening for TV writers, which AccessHollywood.com attended, producers of the show addressed what they have planned next after all of those bombshells:
On How Barry Allen’s Shocking Ending Will Be Addressed In Future Episodes Of “Arrow”: “You definitely hear about — in the back half of the year — you hear about what happened to him in the way you’re hearing now about Star Labs and things like that and the periphery, and certainly in terms of Felicity since she has a connection [to him],” Executive Producer Greg Berlanti said.
On Roy Harper’s Future Now That He’s Been Injected With The Mirakuru Serum: “In 9, we’ll have seen Slade injected and we obviously got a glimpse that he’s taken a very dark path. What’s fun for us as writers is we see what Roy’s potential is to go down that dark path too and one of things that you’ll find out as you go along is that it’s a deep seated anger inside of you that lets you survive the Mirakuru transformation, which [is] something Slade had, which is why he lived and that’s why Roy lived too,” Kreisberg said. “And one of the fun things that’ll be happening in the back half of the year is his relationship with The Arrow and how that changes and how The Arrow basically makes it his mission to not let Roy go down the Slade path and that’s gonna take some interesting twists and turns.”
On How Barry Allen’s Flirtation With Felicity Will Affect Her Relationship With Oliver Queen: “Oliver isn’t quite sure what he feels. Like he knows he feels something for her, but can’t quite define it,” Kreisberg said. “And for Felicity, I think she doesn’t want to like Oliver in a way because she finds him unattainable and in a way he is unattainable… So, I think that while she probably does like Barry, I think she probably throws even more into it because now he’s somebody who is available. And Barry, being as smart as he is — ‘cause [it is suggested that he] is familiar with liking somebody who doesn’t like you back, which is something that will probably be explored further down the road — he sees that about her. I think at the end of this episode, and certainly something we pick up in Episode 10 — because the fallout from Episode 9 carries over into the next episodes as far as the Oliver and Felicity relationship is concerned — Barry has had a profound effect on them and that’ll carry through.”
On Addressing The Recent Twist That Malcolm Meryln (John Barrowman) Is Alive & Thea Queen’s (Willa Holland) Biological Father: “John Barrowman is obviously John Barrowman and there was no way he was gonna stay dead,” Kreisberg laughed. “The story works on so many different levels. For one thing, Moira [Queen] always works best when she has a deep dark secret, and last season we were like, ‘How are we going to top this deep dark secret?’ And in a way, this one’s even better because it’s more personal. So now again, she’s tied to Malcolm, and Thea, ironically, is one of the people who turned out well after last season, so now, you can probably assume that she’s going get hit with a whammy as the season progresses.”
On Katrina Law’s Character Nyssa al Ghul: “She’s a member of the League of Assassins and she comes to town and she’s the next wave of the League of Assassins that comes to Starling City,” Kreisberg said. “She has some interesting secrets as well. So…”
“Arrow” returns to The CW with new episodes on January 15 at 8/7c.
-- Jolie Lash