Fall TV Preview
Arrow Recap Season 4 Episode 21

Arrow's Stephen Amell Hints at a 'Meaner' Season 5, Mysterious Return

Stephen Amell this week laid eyes on the script for the first episode of Arrow Season 5, and he liked what he saw.

The superhero series’ star shared in a recent Facebook Live chat that based on reading said script and then chatting with fight coordinator James Bamford, who is directing the new season’s first two episodes, the premiere “has the opportunity for us to have the most vicious, violent one-shot in the history of network television” — meaning a long, continuous take with no cuts (a la Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.‘s late-season Daisy fight scene, or, in non-network examples, Banshee‘s infamous Nola vs. Burton car fight, or either of Daredevil‘s epic oners over on Netflix).

“If [the premiere] is any indication, Arrow is going to be f–king mean this year,” he added, “and that’s really exciting.” (Amell later made clear, in response to a commenter’s question, that the tone is “not ‘evil,’ just meaner.”)

Amell also teased a “slightly modified version” of the Arrow costume, plus an appearance by “someone that we haven’t seen in two full seasons. So there’s that.” (Before you blurt out, “Sla-a-a-a-ade!!!,” remember that he popped up midway through Season 3.)

Fielding a flurry of other questions, Amell had “no comment” on any Legends of Tomorrow characters appearing in Arrow‘s premiere (which he summed up with the word “legacy”); shared his enthusiasm for The Flash‘s Season 3 premiere title, then said the “Flashpoint” storyline “certainly could” affect Arrow; and when asked, “What about Olicity?,” he playfully hedged, “What about it…?”

Arrow Season 5 premieres Wednesday, Oct. 5 at 8/7c, now leading into the new series Frequency.

Want more scoop on Arrow, or for any other show? Email insideline@tvline.com and your question may be answered via Matt’s Inside Line.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. M3rc_Nate says:

    Impossible, “Arrow” was cancelled after season 2. Is he talking about “Felicity & Friends?”
    For real though, I am right on the edge of just bailing on this show. They will have to shock and awe me with some major changes in season 5 (the biggest being reducing Felicity’s role). The problems with the show are long and storied. I fear Guggi will keep it going on the “organic” path it is on and drive it right into the ground.
    Oh well, I’ve got Flash and boy do I love that show.

    • Dave says:

      Agreed. I know its all for publicity but these “sneak peeks” are not making me more enthusiastic for the new upcoming season
      Cant wait for the Flash to return

    • Kia says:

      I actually left after the first half of S3, ironically because of “Olicity” even though I used to root for them, but I was considering coming back. … Eh probably not.

      • Pamela J says:

        I stopped watching myself mid second season, I do however read recaps from time to time to see if things improved. Felicity does not deserve such a large role in the show, she had a small role in the comic and no romance with Oliver. The show is on the cw, caters to the teen shippers , and doesn’t follow the comic. To be fair arrow isn’t the first TV show or movie about superheroes to do this but I didn’t watch those either.

        • Abdel Aziz says:

          I know Greg Berlanti is busy with Flash Legends and Supergirl but Guggy and Wendy are ruining the show the only cool character left is Thea Roy is gone Cool Oliver is gone Slade is gone Sara is gone and I am guessing they won’t bring Black Siren

          • leila says:

            this “Greg ignores arrow” mindset is dumb. if you did even a little research, you’d know he did the story for arrow’s season finale.

        • Mysterybounty says:

          Mid second season? Season 2 was the best season are you joking?! It didn’t go downhill until after episode 9 of season 3.

      • Tim says:

        I made it through Season 3, but had to force myself to finish the episodes. Do not miss Stephen’s wretched acting.

      • kath says:

        You should really have a look at season 4, it got much better.
        I’ve found that it’s not putting a couple together that kills a show, it’s the stupid reasons for keeping them apart (see: Arrow, Season 3; Castle season 8).
        If the writers can avoid making Olicity melodramatic, it shouldn’t be a problem.

        • Liz says:

          I’d agree with this. Olicity were actually really great together until Oliver lied about his kid and then they fell apart. The drama around that is what made them difficult. If we could scrap the unnecessary drama, they’d be great.

    • Ben says:

      No-one is going to reduce Felicity’s role.

      • Some of the same people complaining they hate this show are also some of the same people who say the same things about Flash and Legends of Tomorrow and Supergirl. They complain because they can.

    • Patty says:

      Completely agree with you. This is not Arrow anymore. And thank God we have the Flash.

    • Alex says:

      Just bail. I suffered through Season 4 and as soon as they killed Laurel, that was it for me. #nolaurelnoarrow

    • Liz says:

      It delights me that you hate Arrow so much and yet you’re still talking about it. Thanks for the buzz and the comments. :D

  2. Liz says:

    If he’s talking about Anatoly coming back, that would be freaking awesome! I would love love love that. This and Chad’s casting has me pretty hopeful for season five!

    • rinaex says:

      Eh, I want to come back for Anatoly, but the past two seasons have shaken my faith badly. No doubt they’ll ruin the character, but not before he gives at least one monologue proclaiming how wonderful Felicity is.

    • Reesa says:

      lol, I was thinking Walter? But Anatoly does make more sense going to Russia and all that :-D

      • Liz says:

        I’d love to see Walter again but considering we still have Russia and Bratva to come before we circle to Pilot Oliver, I guessed Anatoly. I love Anatoly. The actor was great in the role too.

  3. Dr. M says:

    Yeah, cause that’s going to make the show better. And add some more of those tired flashbacks.
    If it weren’t for the crossovers I wouldn’t be watching. They aren’t making it easy though.

  4. parstl says:

    I hope he’s talking about the Huntress coming back.
    I agree with other comments that Felicity’s role needs to be cut back. She was a nice relief during storylines the first two years but it’s just become too much. Also please cut or significantly reduce the flash backs which have become a distraction and do ltitle now to move the plots.

    • 134sc says:

      Look Felicity is not going anywhere. She’s the female lead. What they need to do is modify her role. No more Olicity relationship nonsense. Have her help Ollie do his vigilante/hero thing. Have her be a shoulder to lean on. Have her be a damn good friend, with the underlying idea that maybe there’s something more. But most of all give her a compelling story independent of Oliver, so her role as the female lead isn’t dependent on her romantic relationships.

      • Black Canary says:

        Biggest joke ever. Felicity = female lead. I snorted.

        • Kathy says:

          Says the stan of the dead canary; a character so bad that had to kill her off in order to save the comic version.
          No way was the BC that Katie Cassidy gave us going to do justice to the BC

          • How exactly did they have to kill her off to save the comic character when the comic character has thrived during the entire existence of Error, not to mention has lasted the last 70 years and continues to last even with Error’s version “dead”?

          • Oh and the character got her own solo book again during Error’s existence and was acknowledged to be Dinah Laurel Lance in the last issue of the book, despite having been Dinah Drake in the new 52? But you know Guggie & Windy totes killed her off to save a comic character they don’t actually care about because they never gave Laurel her proper legacy based on the character. LOL nah.

        • Lizzie says:

          You can laugh all you want but it’s true. Felicity is the female lead now. She has been for quite some time, too. :D

      • Dj says:

        The problem is the writers have written themselves in to a corner and made it where Felicity doesnt have a role outside of being part of Olicity. Even her role on team Arrow is set up to where Curtis can easily replace her. This happens when you write for ships and not individual character growth.

        • kath says:

          Felicity is not only the necessary communications expert/hacker of Team Arrow (Curtis is like Cisco, an engineer) but she was also CEO of Palmer Tech and she’ll either fight to get the company back or start her own company.
          Before Oliver became mayor, Felicity was the only one who had a life outside of Team Arrow.
          There will always be a role for Felicity outside of Olicity because she’s the only one who can do the tech stuff. The problem on the show was always when there were too many fighters (Oliver/Diggle/Sara/Roy in s2, Oliver/Diggle/Laurel/Thea in s4) all competing for the same space. Felicity is the only character who doesn’t have to.

      • Mo says:

        ‘so her role as the female lead isn’t dependent on her romantic relationships’
        But without her romantic relationship with Oliver Felicity won’t be the lead anymore.

      • Isn’t that what they did this season, though? They gave her the wheelchair storyline (as much as the conclusion of that was a joke) and the storyline with her father. Those were not related to Oliver. Let’s be honest people are going to complain no matter what, just because the show isn’t going the direction they want it to go.
        the problem with olicity is the dumb drama they cook up to keep the apart, not the relationship itself. ” Have her help Ollie do his vigilante/hero thing. Have her be a shoulder to lean on. Have her be a damn good friend”, that’s exactly what she’s been.

    • Mysterybounty says:

      I HATE the Huntress. She is almost worse than Felicity, the only reason she is better is she leaves.

  5. Joey Padron says:

    Good scoop about new season. Good title for season premiere episode. Excited to find out which character from the past is coming back. Excited to see season 5 this fall!

  6. "A" says:

    OMG Tommy/Robert is ALIVE !!! and Olicity NEVER ever happened.
    Flashpoint is in fact heading to Star City … or … is it still Starling City ?

    • How does Flashpoint mean that Olicity never happened? I didn’t realize Barry was so instrumental in their relationship…

      • Mysterybounty says:

        Briggs watch the Flashpoint movie, Arrow probably won’t be affected as they will stay on this timeline but in Flashpoint EVERYTHING changes.

        • That still doesn’t explain how Olicity wouldn’t happen. For all we know, it might actually happen *sooner*.
          That being said, any changes might not last past the moment Barry changes everything back and lets his mother die.

    • Lizzie says:

      Flashpoint is going to affect Flash for one, maybe two episodes tops. And even if it didn’t it would probably only stretch to the crossover and then be fixed. Nothing is going to change.

  7. "A" says:

    Which characters that were in season one and/or two wasn’t in seasons three and four ?

  8. Jared says:

    Stephens Facebook live chats are the best. Love how candid he gets about upcoming episodes and spoilers. Looking forward to next season!

  9. rahajicho says:

    I’m guessing Anatoly since he’s heading to Russia (finally), but I hoping against reality that Huntress returns.

  10. Agent 86 says:

    An appearance by someone we haven’t seen for two seasons? I hope that it’s a talented writer!

    • KatsMom says:

      Lol! This is why I still read these articles, even though I’ve completely given up on the show. Well done…

  11. Not happy with this site's ads. says:


    • KatsMom says:

      Agree. A couple of months ago, I had to install a blocker just to get the site to load. I get that they have to pay the bills, and I actually found some of the ads helpful reminders, but once I couldn’t get anything to load, the ads had to go.

  12. pem says:

    Totally excited for Arrow S5! Really looking forward to Oliver being Mayor and curious to see how the flashbacks go in Russia. Also looking forward to seeing Felicity (and of course some of her friends).

  13. Oh please let it be Sarah. I would freak if we got to see Sarah in the premier and it be referenced later on Legends

  14. 134sc says:

    Maybe it’s naive of me, but I really do think season 5 will be good. From everything Ive read, it seems as though they are just going back to how ARROW was in the first couple seasons. Even if they copy season 2 story beat by story beat that will be just fine. No shame in that. No magic, no superpowers. Just vigilantes and crime lords. If they do that, which it’s seems like they are, I’ll be very happy.

  15. Mike says:

    It’s so strange to me that every time there’s an article about Arrow, the comments are filled with remarks about how Felicity ruined the show and The Flash is so much better – because that seems to be the opposite of the critical reception. I listen to a lot of TV podcasts, and in the last few weeks every big critic seems to be commenting on The Flash’s sharp decline in quality (Variety’s Mo Ryan, Hollywood Reporter’s Tim Goodman, Hitfix’s Alan Sepinwall, etc). But Arrow fans still hold it up as writing the show should aspire to. Do they just see the crossovers? Because I don’t want Arrow to be anything like the Flash and I especially don’t want Barry’s dumb season finale decision to affect the other shows.

    • prada says:

      so, this means that you agree on the fact that Felicity ruined the show?.

      • Mike says:

        Ha – not really. I think the stupid kid storyline did a lot of damage because none of the characters’ reactions to it made a lot of sense (the kid’s mom, Oliver, Felicity, Thea) and the fallout was just a contrived way to break them up. But before that, I actually liked them together. Oliver happy, smiling and making quips was the most he’s seemed like the Oliver in the comics.

        But hey, it wouldn’t be a superhero show without a bunch of fans bitching about a female character…

    • Haha you obviously don’t read any critics, Mike. Seasons three and four were largely panned as terrible. Were some individual episodes great? Yes. But taken together, the series has been a shell of itself.

      • Mike says:

        Actually, I do read critics recaps. A lot of them. At the AV Club, the season’s average grade was B+. Vulture’s average score was 3.8 out of 5. IGN’s season average was 7.9 out of 10. But yes, please tell me more about how this season was “largely panned.”

    • Liz says:

      Totally agree, Mike. In fact, I’m finding it hilarious that all these people who supposedly hate the show and are done with it, still take the time to come to this site and comment on an Arrow article. It’s almost like they’re lying and just talking crap, wouldn’t you say? LMAO.

  16. Journey54 says:

    This show is a big joke now, poor Amell deserves better!

    Kind of pathetic how hard he is trying to get people hyped for it lol

  17. brenna says:

    I’m very excited about everything I’ve seen about Season 5. I hope all the characters are a little meaner and tougher, but still fun. Many people also still love Oliver and Felicity and what has been built between them for 4 seasons and I hope the gripers and complainers don’t influence the show to abandon them. Except for the ridiculous lying drama, they have been fun since season 1.

  18. Gerald says:

    Forget all these negative comments, bunch of complainers. The writing and acting is great on this show and always evolving. I like they way things have progressed. Keep up the good work writers.

  19. Briggs says:

    Serious Question: If you stopped watching the show, why are you still commenting on it? Sounds like a waste of time, to me.

  20. Mysterybounty says:

    Arrow, you used to be my #1 show. I used to anticipate Wedsnday more than any other day, even football Sunday and I LOVE football. Now you have become just part of a day between The Flash and Legends of Tomorrow. Felicity has become and annoying beyond all reason character, she creates dumb drama where none is needed and whines WAAAY too much. Many of the fights have become stagnant and it seems like you would rather show Felicity hacking than Oliver fighting. I will probably watch this season, but only because I love what the show once was and hope it gets good again. Also wouldn’t want to be lost in the crossover event with the actual good shows.

  21. pedro says:

    Arrow is still my favourite but dy should move felicity out dy should reduce her role

  22. GleekThe100 says:

    What about Moira people, I know she was killed off, but she had secrets nobody knew about, even Oliver did not know about them. I am sure it could be Walter, or Moira.
    P.S. Olicity and Felicity haters go to hell, It’s not Felicity’s fault and it’s so not Emily Bett Rickards fault, its the producers/writers fault, but you should not be hating them either. Laurel was stupid in season 2 and 1, but she came to be one of my favorite characters, but am I bitching about it no. I don’t like Olicity either but Olicity is not ruining it, it’s the people who hate olicity, felicity and arrow because they are shouting at people who love Olicity, Felicity and Arrow. I agree it did go down hill, but that is no excuse to give up on it. I ship Barry and Felicity or Ray and Felicity.

  23. kath says:

    LOL that there will be a new Arrow costume. Did they finally realize that the one with the ninja turtle shoulder pads is ridiculous.

    Hopefully the reappearing character from two seasons ago will be Anatoli. I’ve been waiting and waiting for the Bratva flashbacks.

    Not too sure how much I’m anticipating the next season. There seems to be too many new characters especially in the Arrow cave (Oliver, Diggle + one other works best; even Sara meant Diggle’s time was limited).

  24. Britt says:

    First, thank you for the article, I am excited to see the next season and what they have in store for us as the audience.
    The point I wanted to make here is how most people cannot offer a valid argument to prove their point, with attacks on the Felicity character, witty comments such as “this show sucks,” or “I quit watching the show”, How are you proving any thing to any one?
    The facts, and yes they are the facts, are this. If you go to the Arrow Facebook page you see comments of the same design as listed above, people being petty and attacking others for the sake of attacking others, like theirs is the only opinion that matters and everyone else in not entitled to their opinion.
    And yet, if you go the Olicity Facebook page(s), the Twitter pages, etc. you will find a totally different level of comments. There are no personal attacks to the comic book community. There is no one calling them names, telling them they are not entitled to their opinion, etc. On their sites specific examples are listed of why they love the show. They are places of positivity where people go to share everything of GIF’s they have created of favorite moments, to artwork of their favorite characters.
    In the end, quit attacking, quit being miserable and try to be more civil to the writers and actors, please.

  25. RichieS says:

    The new/old character could be McKenna Hall because Star City needs a new PC and she is a detective last we heard. Her and Ollie were pretty hot together so she would be a good romantic rival for Ollie’s affection and her portrayer Janine Gavinkar just lost her gig when Mysteries of Laura was axed

  26. Maker says:

    Felicity should end. Sara should come back as the canary and fall in love with Oliver