Arrow Postmortem: Is Oliver Done Being the Vigilante in Season 2?
Stephen Amell | Photo Credits: Cate Cameron/The CW
[Warning: This story contains major spoilers from Arrow's season finale. Read at your own risk!]
The Arrow season finale literally and figuratively rocked viewers' expectations after killing off a major character and destroying half of The Glades.
In Wednesday's episode, Oliver (Stephen Amell) was able to defeat the Dark Archer (John Barrowman), and Detective Lance (Paul Blackthorne) was able to disable the Undertaking device. However, Malcolm Merlyn had a backup plan. As the second device leveled half of The Glades, Tommy (Colin Donnell) lost his life, Roy (Colton Haynes) tried to be a hero and Oliver lost his reason for being a vigilante. What does this mean for Season 2? TVGuide.com turned to executive producer Marc Guggenheim to get the scoop:
Everyone assumed that you would have Tommy eventually become the Dark Archer. Why did you decide to kill him off instead?
Marc Guggenheim: It really had nothing to do with his trajectory as the Dark Archer. It really had to do with the fact that we wanted Oliver to suffer a loss at the end of the season. When we thought about the characters that he could lose who would have the biggest impact not just on Oliver, but on the show, Tommy was the name that rose to the top very quickly. Tommy's death impacts pretty much every member of our cast. Obviously his death impacts Oliver and Laurel (Katie Cassidy), but there's a closeness between Thea (Willa Holland) and Tommy that we've established on the show, Lance, obviously because of the connection that Laurel has with Tommy and Moira (Susanna Thompson) because of her responsibility with Tommy. He's the one character whose death would have the biggest impact.
Will Laurel feel a sense of guilt over her role in Tommy's death and possibly second-guess her decision to choose Oliver over Tommy?
Gugggenheim: Definitely she's going to feel some fairly overwhelming guilt because people, particularly like Ross and Rachel, can argue whether or not [Laurel and] Tommy were on a break when Laurel slept with Oliver in the penultimate episode. The thing that's pretty much indisputable is the fact that Laurel, by sleeping with Oliver, chose Oliver over Tommy and yet it was Tommy who came to save her. She feels an enormous amount of guilt over, "Did I pick the wrong guy?" These will all be things we're exploring in Season 2. The reason we did it wasn't just to end the season on an impactful note. It really was to create all sorts of different stories and dramatic conflicts in Season 2.
Do you think this could be a catalyst for Laurel to maybe put on a pair of fishnets?
Guggenheim: [Laughs] It's a catalyst for her to do a variety of different things. It's going to drive a lot of what Laurel does in Season 2, both good and bad. Tommy's death will reverberate through the cast of characters and will affect the changes and choices that Oliver makes and that Thea makes. It's going to affect everybody. It's not like you'll never hear Tommy's name never uttered again. If anything, Tommy is a larger presence in death than he was in life.
Is Malcolm Merlyn actually dead? It seemed like his fate was left up in the air. Was that on purpose or do you want to set the record straight?
Guggenheim: I never want to set the record straight. We have a moment in mind for the Season 2 premiere that should give you an answer to that question, but the thing that I always do say — and I said this to John Barrowman and to Colin Donnell — this is a show that does flashbacks. So just because a character is dead doesn't mean we've necessarily seen the last of them on this show.