6:38pm PT by Aaron Couch
'Arrow' Finale Splinters Team, Teases Season 4 Villain
[Warning: Spoilers ahead for Wednesday's Arrow season three finale, "My Name is Oliver Queen."]
"How can the show go on?"
That's the question executive producer Marc Guggenheim promised fans would be asking once the credits rolled on season three of Arrow — and he wasn't kidding. Oliver (Stephen Amell) rode off into the sunset with Felicity (Emily Bett Rickards) after killing Ra's al Ghul (Matt Nable), abandoning his superhero identity and leaving team Arrow scattered to the wind in Wednesday's season finale.
Going into the finale, the series had already dismantled many of the things it depended upon. Sara (Caity Lotz) died and Roy (Colton Haynes) left the show after faking his own death to protect Oliver. But there was more to sacrifice in the finale.
The episode could have served as a series finale, if fans didn't know there is much more of the CW superhero universe on the way — with a fourth season of Arrow, a second season of The Flash and new spinoff DC's Legends of Tomorrow all in the pipeline.
For now, Arrow leaves fans with plenty of burning questions:
Oliver is retired? The producers said "identity" was the main theme of this season, and Oliver went through many identities this year as he said goodbye to both the Arrow persona and the possibility of being the new Ra's al Ghul. In the finale, Oliver explained that he no longer needed to be a hero, saying he couldn't be The Arrow anymore even if he wanted to be.
"I told you that I couldn't be the Arrow and be with you," Oliver told Felicity. "I want to be with you. You told me that I've become someone else, and I would like to maybe discover a little more about that person. If you'll come with me. "
Ollicity fanatics have finally gotten their wish.
Diggle is finally getting a mask? Diggle (David Ramsey) will carry on Oliver's tradition of crime fighting in Starling City. Oliver advised him to get a mask, and Diggle seemed open to it.
Who is Damien Darhk? Arrow is setting up the mysterious Damien Darhk as a villain for the next season. He's been mentioned a few times in the show, with Ra's revealing that Darhk is a former member of the League of Assassins who is now on Ra's bad side — which is why he was marked for death in the finale. In comic book lore, he has strong ties to the supervillain organization HIVE.
Will Ra's be back on the show? He looked pretty dead, but that doesn't mean much in Arrow. Ra's will likely be returning next season, with Guggenheim telling The Hollywood Reporter earlier this week that there have already been discussions to figure out how to bring him back to the show, though presumably that could be in flashback form.
Did Ray just blow himself up? Don't worry, Ray (Brandon Routh) is alive and well. He's heading over to the upcoming Arrow/Flash spinoff, DC's Legends of Tomorrow, and that explosion in the final moments of the show was him working on shrinking himself down to the size of an Atom. The man can do more than just fly around in an Iron Man-type suit.
Did Thea just get a superhero name? Thea (Willa Holland) has taken Roy's Arsenal costume, which her ex-boyfriend gave to her in the previous episode. She's ready to be a straight-up hero, and she's got a new name to go along with the suit: Red Arrow. But Oliver prefers Speedy, which is the name of the Green Arrow's sidekick in comic book lore, so that's the more likely choice.
Merlyn is the new Ra's? Yes, Malcolm Merlyn (John Barrowman) is the new head of the League of Assassins, thanks to Oliver passing the baton to him. But will he use his new power for good or evil? We're guessing the latter.
What did you think of the Arrow finale? Share your thoughts and theories in the comments.