One of the most often-repeated pieces of criticism about the return of Sara Lance in the upcoming seasons of Arrow and DC's Legends of Tomorrow is the notion that it will pull at the thread of character development for Laurel Lance, her sister and replacement as the (Black) Canary.
At Comic-Con International: San Diego this summer, ComicBook.com and a roundtable of reporters spoke with actress Katie Cassidy, who plays Laurel, about what Arrow's fourth season will look like for Laurel, what her connection to the Legends of Tomorrow might be and whether she's hoping for crossovers with her not-dead sister.
How's it feel to be at the first one of these big events where you can talk really openly about being Black Canary?
It's great and amazing. I'm like "Finally! I can say it!"
It's completely fulfilling. This character, this job, this world, this series has been a dream come true and I really wanted to do action and living in this genre, so I couldn't be happier.
Are you working out every minute of every day?
Every minute of every day? No! No, no. I've been working out a lot and really, really hard, but I think it's cool because it makes it that much more realistic and believable. It also feels good to be in good shape and to know that I could kick anybody's ass! [Laughs]
So do you do your own stunts?
I try and do as much as I possibly can. There are obviously...there's insurance involved sometimes, where I shouldn't be jumping off rooftops, which is fine by me, but as far as physically in the fighting, I do as much as I can or as much as they let me. I've been in martial arts training and stuff like that, and training with the [weapons].
Is it a relief to finally be a part of all aspects of the show?
Yes! You have no idea. It was a long time coming, but again I think it was the right thing to do. I think the writers wrote really well for me and it was more believable. As an actor, it was amazing because I wasn't in Season Two the Black Canary overnight. I had to go through hardship and it made it that much more believable and realistic and I was just doing what they were writing and it was that much more helpful for when I finally became Black Canary. It was more legitimate, if that makes sense.
What can you tell us about Laurel's arc this season, and where she's starting in the premiere?
You'll definitely see Laurel a lot more polished, and good at being a quote-unquote superhero. Obviously last season, she was a fighter, she's always been a fighter, but it was a lot more heart. This season, I think it's not just heart; she actually has been training and working on that aspect of herself, the going out at night. It's also been a big role to take on, along with Felicity and Diggle, to take Oliver's position, I think. Whether or not they're capable of doing that, you'll have to watch Season Four, but I definitely think Laurel will play a big part on influencing the creation of Legends.
Are you able to tell us anything about Laurel's awareness of Sara?
No! I can't tell you that! But I think that if Sara got to see Laurel right now, I think that she would be proud of her for all the hard work she's put in. I also think that she would be worried probably, because she loves her sister and doesn't want her sister to get hurt, but I think she would definitely be proud. I know I am!
Are you going to miss the bonding scenes you had between Laurel and Nyssa last season?
Absolutely! Katrina's awesome and I love working with her. I'm hoping she'll come back. It's still television, anything can happen. As of right now, [working with Merlyn] is what's happening, but I have a feeling there will be more to the story.
So you're having a lot of crossover with Legends, then?
I hope so. That would be awesome.