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Monday, July 4, 2016

ARROW's Stephen Amell Addresses Season 5 & Olicity's Future


Arrow's plan for Season 5?  Going back to Season 1.

TVLine has news of the CW series Arrow from yesterday's Heroes & Villains FanFest at the Meadowlands Exposition Center in Secaucus, New Jersey, where star Stephen Amell addressed the controversial "Olicity" relationship between his character Green Arrow/Oliver Queen and Overwatch/Felicity Smoak (played by Emily Bett Rickards).

Over the last two seasons under showrunners Marc Guggenheim and Wendy Mericle, Arrow's audience has become noticeably divided over the show's central romance, many of whom have complained that the relationship has overwhelmed other aspects of the once-popular show. An escalating online feud developed between Olicity "shippers" and fans who either wanted the romantic elements of the show played down, or who supported a relationship between Oliver and Laurel Lance because Black Canary was Oliver's longtime love interest in the comics.

Frustration with both Olicity and other elements of the show (including last year's depicition of Ra's al Ghul and the continued use of pointless flashbacks that have little relevance to the present-day stories) have resulted in growing negativity toward the series, especially on platforms like Twitter and Reddit, with hashtags like #Nolicity being a good example.

"I was chatting with a couple of fans earlier and they were saying there hasn’t been a lot of positivity and reassuring notions when it comes to Oliver and Felicity’s relationship," said Amell.  "I think that it’s important to remember that relationships on the show don’t have to be only defined by romance.  Oliver and Felicity could have a wonderful, fulfilling, dynamic relationship and not be together, right?"

Olicity shippers in the crowd replied with boos, with Amell responding, "That wasn’t a question, okay?  That’s how the world works!  So we will see where they are this year.  I hope that they’re both in a happy positive place.  Whether that means they’re together or not remains to be seen."

Amell also teased Season 5 going back to the basics in Season 1, remarking "the villain that we are introducing is a direct result of things that Oliver has done in Star City [and] calls back to a lot of things that happened in the first season of the show.  It really grounds the show and really focuses on its core value, which is the battle to save Star City.  The first two episodes [of Season 5] refocuses us on what the core mission of the show should be, and that to me is very exciting.  Plus? Russia."

So yes, there will be more pointless flashbacks.  Just now in Russia.

One welcome change for Season 5 will be John Diggle's "Diggneto" helmet that he uses in the field as Spartan, which has received a good deal of online criticism for its resemblance to the helmet used by Marvel supervillain Magneto and the lack of periphreal vision that one would really prefer when fighting crime.  Actor David Ramsey teased that Spartan's helmet will be getting a "Cisco-created" upgrade, referring to Cisco Ramon, the tech genius on the CW's second DC superhero series The Flash.

Willa Holland, who plays Speedy/Thea Queen, remarked that "I hope that Thea in Season 5 is going to be focusing a lot more on herself…and learning a little bit more about what’s going on inside of her now that she has lost the bloodlust.  She needs to take some yoga classes and meditate real hard, maybe smudge [with sage] the apartment she lives in."

Ramsay also discussed the upcoming four-series crossover between Arrow, The Flash, Legends of Tomorrow and Supergirl, saying "I wanna see Diggle’s expression when he sees Supergirl flying across the horizon.  I want to know what that is."   After his amazement at seeing The Flash use his super-speed, Ramsay added that Diggle is "going to pee on himself right there" when he encounters Supergirl.

Arrow returns to The CW for Season 5 on October 5, 2016.

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