Thursday, May 31, 2018


The Mary Sue has reported season seven of the CW’s Arrow will have a mostly female writing staff. I’m excited about this because, to be honest, Arrow isn’t exactly must-watch TV for me. I skipped over a dozen episodes after the annual crossover event - I did read very detailed recaps of those episodes - to watch the season finale. I will warn you there are


The sixth season ended with Oliver Queen in prison serving a life sentence. His identity as Green Arrow is now known to the world. To save his city from the malevolent Ricardo Diaz aka Dragon, Oliver cut a deal with the FBI. If they would help him take down Diaz, he would confess to being the vigilante and accept the life sentence. Though the identities of Diaz’s army of corrupt police officers and public officials were exposed and said individuals arrested, this victory came at a high cost.

Diaz is probably not dead because they didn’t find the body after the Black Siren sonic-screamed him off a building and into the dark waters below. He had threatened to destroy everything Oliver cares about, so all Oliver’s loved ones remain in jeopardy.

Acting mayor Quentin Lance was shot by Diaz. He died in surgery. There was a moving shot of his daughter Sara and his daughter-from-an-alternate-world Laurel standing over his body. Keep in mind that Laurel is the Black Siren, who is herself a murderer and was an ally of Diaz until a few episodes earlier.

Oliver’s son William is now without his father. Felicity, who wed Oliver at the end of the crossover event, is the only family that the young man has left.

Let’s not forget Star City is effectively without leadership. I’m guessing some sort of martial law has been put into effect by the federal government until those corrupt police officers and public officials can be replaced, but this leaves the city vulnerable to the inevitable return of Diaz. Also in jeopardy: anyone who enjoys good acting. Kirk Acevedo was mind-boggingly terrible in the role of Diaz. 

My problems with Arrow started long before this season finale. The writer's mantra of “bad choices make good stories” was put to the test as virtually every character made bad choice after bad choice. In short, the show failed that test.

The morality of killing/not killing was a ridiculous ongoing part of the show. Oliver, who has the second highest body count on the series, said he wouldn’t kill anymore, but seemed perfectly okay as his allies killed people. By not killing some bad folks when doing so would have clearly been self-defense, Oliver allowed those bad folks to kill innocent people. If he had put an arrow in Diaz’s eye socket when he had the chance, his loved ones would not still be in danger from that murderous lunatic.

As I finished watching the season finale, I started thinking about what I would do if I were suddenly running the show next season. I did this before I learned about the new configuration of the Arrow writing staff. I mean no offense to that staff with what follows. It is simply a creative test I set for myself.

Here’s what I came up with:

Oliver is a model prisoner and then some. The warden and the guards respect him because they know he saved the lives of countless cops over the years. He trains the guards in physical combat and teaches inmates skills to help them return to productive lives once out of prison. But the government thinks they have a better use for his abilities, offering him eventual release in exchange for him going on missions for them. He would remain in the prison when not on the job for them.

Oliver accepts, but with the condition he not become a government assassin. He knows killing might come with the job, but he insists that he gets to make that call in the field. His partner in these missions? The Black Siren, trying to be worthy of Quentin Lance’s sacrificing his life for her. The partnership will be rocky. She’s used to expediency over morality...and maybe, just maybe, she has started to develop romantic feelings towards Oliver.

Oliver and Laurel’s missions will take them all over the country, not unlike the classic O'Neil/Adams run on Green Lantern/Green Arrow. Along the way, they could meet new heroes, some of whom would play roles is future story lines.

Back in Star City, a new government is coming into place. The new mayor is “Glorious” Godfrey Weisinger. Despite the name, he is not a bad guy. He’s a nigh-evangelic leader determined to create a new Star City based on his moral principals. He’s conservative, but he is not unaware of the dangers facing the city. He won’t be a fan of vigilantes, but recognizes the need for extraordinary individuals to inspect and inspire the people.

The mayor recruits Dinah (Black Canary) Drake to put together such a team. Unfortunately, she will have to start from scratch in that regard. Because of the possible threat of Diaz, almost the entirety of Team Arrow is unavailable for this new team. Felicity, William, Rene and his daughter are in the witness protection program. Diggle is now working with ARGUS. Mr. Terrific is on board, but there is tension between him and the mayor because of Curtis being gay. Thea and Roy haven't responded to Dinah’s reaching out to them. This lack of team members is another opportunity to add new heroes to the Arrowverse.

Star City is seen as vulnerable by rapacious businessmen, powerful political forces and outright criminals and super-villains. Dinah and her team will be thrown into the deep end of the pool.

A new figure will emerge as a seeming ally. The big reveal will be that this man is Ricardo Diaz with a new face, thus eliminating the horrible acting of Kirk Acevedo. Oliver’s friends and family, not to mention Star City, will once again be placed in the most dire of situations. Who can save the city this time?

Yep. This is where we get the band back together. Oliver and Laurel return to Star City to marshal the forces of good in this time of need. Their eventual victory over Diaz will be spectacular and it will be final. For Diaz, that is.

In the aftermath...

Oliver and Laurel get presidential pardons. Oliver is reunited with his family and friends. Laurel, still feeling she has much to atone for, will join ARGUS, thus permitting her character to appear here and in other DC/CW series.

This could be a series finale, but it also be the start of a fresh take on Arrow. Maybe a series about super-heroes working with cops on an official basis. Maybe something else.

For example...

What if a busload of Star City elementary school students were on a field trip to Central City when a certain particle accelerator malfunctioned?

This ends my speculations.

On the other hand...

Since I'm not writing Black Lightning stories at the moment, I would likely be available to spend some time in the writers room of Arrow or any other super-hero series. I think I might have a few more good decades in me.

E-mail me. We’ll talk.

I’ll be back tomorrow with more stuff.

© 2018 Tony Isabella


  1. Tony,

    Diaz is probably not dead, not because they didn't find the body, but because the last episode showed a scene of him and some henchmen in the montage that happened while Ollie was making his I'm Green Arrow speech. So it isn't that he's probably not dead. He isn't dead, the episode said os.

  2. I like the idea of Ollie & Black Siren running suicide squad-like missions. I'd throw Huntress into that dynamic. I'd also figure out a way to bring in an alternate-Earth Amanda Waller. Other than that, I think Acevedo is a good enough actor, but the execution of Diaz was poor. He was no more than a murderous thug ... in a show that's had murderous thugs before. They failed to show/tell why he was more significant than those Arrow has faced in the past. Beyond that, since the Arrowverse is going to introduce Batwoman, they should also introduce Nightwing, since they had an entire episode in Bludhaven. I'd imagine Nightwing would have an issue with all the carnage from the Quadrant that went down on his turf.

  3. It's already been announced that DC's current Batwoman, will be a part of Arrow season 7. Casting has not been decided. Does that change your scenario, Tony?

  4. Wonderful ideas. I'd really enjoy this. Sadly, the contingent of the fandom that insists the show be all about Felicity would *hate* it. But narratively it sounds great, and do-able on a TV budget, which is surely a plus.

    At the very least I wish they'd invite you to write a Black Lightning episode.