An Arrow Community
Wednesday 8:00 PM on The CW (Returning October 5, 2016)

Can Arrow's consummate hero have it all?

The CW series will dare to answer that question in Season 3, when Oliver Queen attempts to have his cake and eat it too. In this case, that means being a superhero that the residents of Starling City actually respect while also trying to have a personal life. It's harder than it sounds—something that Ollie will learn fairly quickly into the season.

But Oliver's love life won't be the only thing that gets complicated, especially since two of his ladies will actually be getting love interests of their own! I tracked down executive producer Andrew Kreisberg to get the scoop on the new season, including a surprising return from the dead, the future of Team Arrow, and what new villains are in store for Season 3.


Will there be a time jump when the show returns?

We're going to jump the same amount of time that we did last year. It'll be real time. It'll be seven or eight months later. For Oliver, things are good. As we like to say, everything is coming up Arrow. Crime is down. At the end of last year, there was victory. A lot of this season is about what happens when you win and how winning isn't always as easy as it looks.


What does it mean for Oliver now that the city actually accepts him?

In the premiere, Lance actually disbands the anti-vigilante task force in his new role as Captain. The Arrow is free to do his thing and it's different for Oliver. He spent the first two years being hunted and distrusted. Now, he's starting to feel like he has this under control. And then, of course, as Joss Whedon taught us all, you let your characters have a moment of happiness and then you take it all away from them.


You seemed to be setting the stage for Ra's al Ghul to be the villain in Season 3. Is he actually the villain? Can you say anything about the new villain?

It's big. I can say that he's big and he's bad. We're still figuring that stuff out. As far as the Big Bad, there will be Big Bad. Even last year, everybody was a subset of Slade's. Slade was the Big Bad. We will meet other villains along the way, as always. We'll have recurring villains and new villains we're starting with this year and people who are coming back from the previous two seasons.


Felicity and Oliver are going on a date in the season premiere. How do you avoid the TV trope that a hero can't be with the woman he loves just because of his sense of duty?

When you see the premiere and you see how things shake out, you'll come to a very sympathetic understanding of both of their positions. The premiere last year was a microcosm of what was happening for the whole year. In the same way that the premiere of last season was really about Oliver struggling with whether or not he should be the Arrow, in this season premiere it's, "Can I have everything I want?" That quest is going to take up his entire year, and hers.


How much of a foil will Ray Palmer, Felicity's new rumored love interest and head of Queen Consolidated, be to Oliver?

A big foil. It's Season 3, and Season 3 is typically when you add that game-changing character like Buffy did in adding Faith or Everwood did with adding Scott Wolf. First of all, getting Brandon—he couldn't be nicer, he couldn't be sweeter. It's just such a different energy that he's bringing to the show. A lot of what's funny about Felicity and Oliver is that he's so straight and she's the funny one. With Brandon, you get somebody who's as tall, square-jawed, and handsome as he is [and] he's a really funny comedian. He and Felicity can have that verbal repartee that we haven't typically had on the show. As much as the show is getting darker, it's gotten a lot funnier. It's just such a different energy. He and Felicity are really cute together.


Talk about Roy's role on Team Arrow and how he'll feel when he discovers he actually killed someone last season. 

In the beginning, Roy is feeling pretty good about himself too. He's part of Team Arrow. He thinks he's put behind him what happened last season. Like with all of our characters, the past has a terrible way of catching up with them. It's a new and interesting thing for Oliver to really have a mentee, somebody he is training beside. There's really lovely stuff in the premiere like, "You did a good job tonight." When we met Roy, he was living practically on the streets and stealing. To see him have this big brother, I don't think he's really had anybody believe in him. Obviously Thea did, but like a male character. You're happy for Roy in the beginning that he's really found his place. Of course, then we're going to shake his world up.


Sara passed on her Canary jacket to Laurel. Is that a mantle she'll take up fairly quickly? What will her relationship with Oliver look like this season?

As always with all of these things, you can't just put on a mask and go running around. You'll get killed. Laurel is still just an attorney. She's an attorney with a jacket. I think Katie Cassidy fans are going to be very, very excited about her trajectory this year. Laurel is going to have a new love interest this season.


Interesting! Are you bringing back Colin Donnell from the dead?

Kreisberg: [Pauses] No...


Wait, I was kidding. What are you talking about?

Colin Donnell is coming back in Episode 302. Tommy will be in the flashback story. We'll be telling the story about how Tommy and Oliver just missed each other in Hong Kong. It's a really amazing story and we're so excited to have Colin Donnell back. It's one of the advantages of the storytelling that we do that even when you die in the present day, you can still be alive in the flashbacks. It was something that we had talked about last year and then when we committed to doing the Hong Kong story, we knew we could really make it work.


How are the flashbacks different this year?

It's really exciting for us because writing the island was not always easy. One of the things we really learned is that there were a lot of episodes on the island where we couldn't get to part of the story yet, so let's run around in circles. Sometimes we ran around in circles better than other times, but with this season in Hong Kong, we're able to tell better stories in the past because being in civilization and not being trapped, you're able to tell a much richer, fuller world. We've really committed this year to doing a lot more of the personal flashbacks. People, by now, are really able to go, "Okay, well, if these three weeks in a row were in Hong Kong and then this one is a flashback to any one of the other characters, whether it's Sara, Dig, or Felicity or Laurel," then they can go on that journey and come back to the Hong Kong storyline without feeling too lost.


How much will Sara play a role in the new season?

She plays a big role in the new season. We have her booked for three episodes and hopefully for more. We love Caity Lotz. She's so amazing. Watching the dailies of her in the premiere and seeing her back, it's always fun to see her. As much as her stuntwoman does, Caity really does get out there on her own and it's fun to watch.


How does Lyla being pregnant change his mindset when he goes on missions?

A lot. In fact, a lot of the opening episodes are about Diggle's changing circumstances and how that's affecting his decisions and how he approaches being part of Team Arrow. There's a lot of conflict between Oliver and Dig about Dig now being a father. There's also interesting conflict between Dig and Lyla because Lyla is still working at A.R.G.U.S., which we've painted as a less-than-savory organization. That tension between Dig, Lyla, and Amanda Waller—as big a part that Amanda is playing in the past, she's playing just as big a part in the present.


What path is Thea on after leaving town with Malcolm?

We always say that if you're ever going to become who you are in the comics, you have to go to the island. Oliver literally went to the island. We always said last year was Roy's trip to the island. This season is about Thea's trip to her version of the island.


Arrow returns for its third season on Wednesday, October 8 at 8pm on The CW.



TV.com's 2014 Fall Preview:
New Shows, Network Schedules, Trailers, and More


Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 5/25/2016

Season 4 : Episode 23

Next Episode

AIRS ON 10/5/2016

Season 5 : Episode 1

35 Comments
Comments (35)
Submit
Sort: Latest | Popular
Thea better be fully trained and armed with serious character development when she returns to Starling.
Reply
Flag

"How much will Sara play a role in the new season?

She plays a big role in the new season."


I'm out.
1
Reply
Flag
Do you dislike Caity Lotz as an actress or Sara as a character?
Reply
Flag
Sara has that weird mouth when she talks.
Something is odd.
Reply
Flag
So how will this unfold with the whole "The Flash popping by to talk" will we see a lot of cross series action between flash and arrow??
Reply
Flag
Now THIS is a show i can't wait for.
1
Reply
Flag
WOW SPOILERS ALERT MUCH
Reply
Flag
As long as they find a way to bring Slade back (I don't care how, just make it happen), I'll be happy.
Reply
Flag
Yey more Sara, Caity kisks ass :)
Reply
Flag
things are looking good
Reply
Flag
cant wait for this to start, hurry up october..
4
Reply
Flag
He hates it, but mentioning Whedon's name is almost like saying someone's going to die.
I have the weird feeling like the only thing bad enough to split Oliver and Felicity is the death of someone close to them, making Oliver realise the same old, boring, "its too dangerous" thing. I'm more worried for Sara in the first episode than I was in the finale, despite what the article says about bringing her back... Thats what flashbacks are for.
1
Reply
Flag
I dislike Oliver and Felicity together. She deserves better than him.

I hate Sara so much and hopefully she will not be in more than those 3 episodes...

The rest sounds good.
2
Reply
Flag
I hate Sara - I still hope that she will be killed - Tommy and Moira are dead - so someone significant will have to die in this season.
Reply
Flag
What about Nyssa? I want more of the flawless beauty Katrina Law. She should be playing 'Laurel'. 'Spartacus: Blood and Sand' has been airing on Syfy along with 'Defiance' and 'Dominion' and it is the best season of that great show, Andy's year, and its when audiences got glimpses of 'Deathstroke' and 'Nyssa' Manu Bennett and Ms. Law., 'Amanda Waller' Cynthia Addai-Robinson doesn't appear until 3rd season 'Vengeance'. I'm sort of wondering how Katrina Law's first episode is going to look on SyFy because in the episode her character 'Mira' is introduced Episode 9: 'Whore' - she is pretty much completely naked in her first two scenes in the show. That white bar is really gong to be working overtime when they air that episode.

It will always be kind of strange to me that the one person in 'Arrow' who didn't get cast in 'Spartacus, but auditioned for the lead after Andy Whitfield's death, is Stephen Amell. He lost out to Liam McIntyre and I think that worked out for the best for both shows.
1
Reply
Flag
I'm pumped
Reply
Flag
date set in computer so i won't miss it.
Reply
Flag
"And then, of course, as Joss Whedon taught us all, you let your characters have a moment of happiness and then you take it all away from them."
Yep, that's pretty much how it goes. I'm excited to see how this season plays out. It'll be nice to learn more about the other characters through the flashbacks. I'm also looking forward to Laurel's role now that she knows about Oliver and his alter ego. Should be pretty good.

3
Reply
Flag
i gotta say i am pretty excited for season 3. sounds like there are some great stuff coming up
Reply
Flag
"We love Caity Lotz. She's so amazing." Mmm mmmm, yes we DO! Can't wait to see more of her and pretty excited to see Brandon Routh in action, too! From the synopsis so far, it's sounding almost like the flashbacks this season are going to be the real highlight of the story.
2
Reply
Flag
"We always say that if you're ever going to become who you are in the comics, you have to go to the island. Oliver literally went to the island. We always said last year was Roy's trip to the island. This season is about Thea's trip to her version of the island."

That's a pretty exciting statement.
1
Reply
Flag
God I hope they finally make Thea an interesting character worth watching.
Reply
Flag
I love this show, but the flashbacks are annoying. I was hoping they would start to rely on them less and less over time, but it sounds like they're not going to slow down with them even a little bit. At least Hong Kong sounds like it will be more interesting than the island.
Reply
Flag
The flashbacks are only as interesting as what goes on in them and who he meets in those flashbacks. Hopefully not with heading back to civilization in the flashbacks, we'll start seeing more familiar faces from the comic world!
Reply
Flag
Yes! While it might have been a spoiler to mention Lance being alive, I'm so frickin' happy about it. I'm a big fan of Paul Blackthorne.
6
Reply
Flag
SPOILER much??? That news about Quentin Lance surviving is a SPOILER and shouldn't be dropped so casually what with it being the season finale's cliffhanger moment.

Okkkkay, so they're leaning full-tilt into the Olicity thing now? Guess they're trying to embrace their CW roots harder.

Thea's role in the comics is to not have existed, is the island she's going to from Lost?
4
Reply
Flag
I think anyone with above room temperature IQ knew that Quentin was going to survive. If you're going to kill a main character off in a season finale then you kill them off in that finale.
If they'd thrown Quentin under the bus, then doubtless Paul Blackthorne would have already lined up other work and news of him being removed as a series regular would already be circulating so there would be zero suspense.
So if there really is no cliffhanger moment, why would CW bother pretending it's a cliffhanger?
1
Reply
Flag
Who pissed in your cereal yesterday, Gully?
Reply
Flag
Staff
The Quentin thing is so weird because they've been talking about him alive and well for a few weeks now, like there wasn't ANY suspense to his fate. They're doing another line of digital comics, and those, apparently, will fill in the Quentin gaps in the time line.
1
Reply
Flag
Ugh, really? I hadn't been paying attention to that stuff, I guess. Well, way to push the status quo, show. I thought they were going to do something ballsy I didn't like but could respect, but they went the opposite way.
Reply
Flag
Staff
It actually reminds when, this time last year, the CW president let it slip that Sara was alive AND the Canary. They just do not care about spoilers, I think.
5
Reply
Flag
Wow I can't wait, this show just keeps getting better with each passing season.
6
Reply
Flag
Follow this Show
Members
25,298