The CW’s Arrow returns tonight at 8/7c with the first of Season 5’s final five episodes, kicking off with a manhunt that will pit Team Arrow against Felicity and her increasingly sketchy Helix pals.
When last we tuned in, Adrian Chase — having been publicly outed as Prometheus — whacked his WITSEC detail and drove off into the night. This week, as Oliver, A.R.G.U.S. and the cops launch an expansive search for the duplicitous and deadly D.A., Felicity will be tempted to avail herself of Helix’s considerable resources, though what they want in return (“something big, and illegal”) proves a steep price to pay.
“This is the episode where Felicity really finds out what Helix is up to, and who’s she’s gotten into bed with,” co-showrunner Wendy Mericle tells TVLine. “We’ve dropped a lot of hints throughout the season, and Oliver definitely has seen it coming, but everyone has been powerless to keep her from making these decisions.”
“Bent on revenge” and “still mourning the loss of Detective Malone,” Felicity will be forced to “think long and hard about the decisions that she made — and the moral consequences of those decisions.”
Adrian Chase, meanwhile, is not so much hiding as doing what he has done best, all… season… long. “He is always 10 steps ahead, despite the fact that the team got took a big chunk out of him in the previous episode,” Mericle warns. “He’s really good at this chess game, and like any grand master, he’s got a million contingency plans. He’s going to be making his moves regardless.”
Prior to speaking with Mericle, TVLine invited you via Twitter to email InsideLine@tvline.com with any burning Arrow Qs. Here are some of the ones we got answered:
What’s going to be discussed in Episode 20, “Underneath” (airing May 3)? –Athena
That episode entraps Oliver and Felicity in the Arrowcave, where the latter is “really upset” about what Oliver does this week. “Oliover truly cares about her, and doesn’t want her to go through what he’s gone through [once allying with Bratva],” Mericle notes. “But from where Felicity is sitting, that’s total hypocrisy, and she’s going to call him on that.” As the ex-lovers in turn revisit their Season 4 split, Felicity “is going to come out of this with a new understanding of who Oliver is. Everything that happens with Helix is going to force her to reframe everything that happened at Season 4, especially when she looks back at when she walked away.”
Will Felicity’s paralysis ever be revisited? Her plans for the chip? —Danyelle
“You’ll see bit of that in Episode 20,” Mericle says.
Is Oliver and Felicity’s honest, present-day conversation in Episode 20 going to reflect in their interactions from then on? —Menna
“It has to,” Mericle affirms. “She’s been through something now, and she sees him in a different light — and he also sees her in a different light. There’s a lot more mutual understanding, and even though I think it’s hard to top the mutual respect they already have for each other, that goes up as well.”
So far Prometheus has gone after every team member one way or another, except for Felicity. Are there any Chase/Felicity interactions you can tease? —Cynthy
“You will see that happen,” Mericle says, “towards the end of the year, absolutely.”
Will Helix be around possibly into Season 6? —Stephanie
“It’s a thread we leave dangling,” says Mericle.
I know Vigilante won’t be unmasked this season, but will we see him again this season? —Knight of Ren
“Maybe” is all Mericle would offer.
When Thea finally returns, will we she take the Speedy mantle again? —Jenny
“Not this season, no,” Mericle reports. “But she’ll be in the action, for sure.”
What can you tease about Oliver’s birthday party? —S. Rita
“We’ve never celebrated his birthday, though it was one of those ideas that we always talked about doing,” Mericle explains. “We celebrated Thea’s birthday in a very dark way in the past — she crashes a car and then gets under the influence, all kinds of things — but let’s just put it this way: [Oliver’s birthday party, in Episode 22] is a lull in the storm, and it’s a nice moment with the team.”