Don’t forget who taught the Green Arrow how to fight. At San Diego Comic-Con, executive producer Marc Guggenheim told fans at the Arrow panel that in the show’s upcoming sixth season, filming now in Vancouver, flashbacks will return albeit in a different format than the past five seasons. More specifically, flashbacks will be character-centric, including a two-part episode focused entirely on Deathstroke.
At Guggenheim told Comic-Con attendees:
“You’re gonna still see flashbacks. It won’t be every episode and it won’t be serialized. They’ll be character specific and I’ll give you one example… as you saw in the trailer Manu Bennett is back for the season premiere and he’s also coming back for a special two-part episode in the first half of the season where we’re really going to be focusing hard on his character, post everything he’s experienced on the show and we intend to do a Slade Wilson flashback story.”
Not only do Guggenheim’s comments confirm that Slade Wilson (played by Bennett) survived the bombing of Lian Yu, but also that the fan-favorite anti-hero will have an important role once again. Bennett debuted as Slade Wilson/Deathstroke in Arrow’s second season as Oliver Queen’s mentor, until he turned into his antagonist. After the show’s second season, Slade pretty much disappeared except for a one-off episode in Season 3. But Deathstroke made a (sort of) surprise comeback in the Season 5 finale this past spring. It was pretty awesome.
Longtime fans will be relieved to know that the show’s writers are dropping the serialized flashback format next season. Although it was a novel format that helped flesh out the Arrowverse in the show’s early days, the flashbacks arguably ran out of steam by Season 4. They stopped being interesting and seemed only to exist to over-explain the plot, although it was super fun to see Dolph Lundgren play a Russian mobster. Deathstroke-specific flashbacks seem like they might also be fun.
Arrow will return to the CW on October 12 at 9 p.m. Eastern.