'Arrow' Season 7 Is Already Pushing The CW's Censorship Limits

Arrow star Stephen Amell has been teasing a Season 7 that is more intense, gritty, and even shocking than any season before it and it sounds like the show plans to deliver on those promises — even going so far as to push The CW's censorship limits in the process.

In the show's Season 6 finale, Amell's Oliver Queen reveals to the world that he really is the Green Arrow and ends up being sent to a maximum security prison alongside many of the criminals he helped lock up. Fans have already gotten a taste of what that might look like thanks to the teaser shared at San Diego Comic-Con last month, but there's more to be seen. The show's longtime stunt coordinator James Bamford recently told Newsarama that some of those things required a phone call with the network censors to see just how far they could go.

"Beth [Schwartz, Arrow showrunner] and I had a phone call with BNSP, which is our censors... a very lengthy phone call about a particular scene that we never had before," Bamford said. "So, we are really trying to push the limits on the show in the gritty factor. We are trying to go as far as you can go within the confines of our network and what is expected of us and what we can do and can't do. We are not on Netflix, so we will never be able to X, Y, and Z, but we are damn sure going to try."

What the limit-pushing scene is isn't clear, but Amell has been open about Oliver doing something "reprehensible" in the season premiere and depending on just how bad things are, that might be enough to push the limit.

"One scene in the premiere, what Oliver does is reprehensible," Amell said at San Diego Comic-Con. "There's nothing about him that is heroic at all [in the episode]."

Amell elaborated a bit on that idea in a previous interview, noting that he hopes the premiere upsets fans.

“Obviously, you want to lean into things that you think fans would want, right?” Amell suggested in a previous interview. “Concurrently, I’m all for things that make fans mad, because mad is no different than happy. The only thing that I don’t want is indifference. I always joke with fans about my alter-ego, Evil Story Steve. If you were to tell me, you know, that four people died in the season premiere of Arrow in season seven, I’d be very sad … but my alter-ego, Evil Story Steve, would be like, ‘Oh – that’s very exciting; why’d that happen?’"

"So, I think that making fans happy, clearly, is what you wanna do when you’re on a show in general because you want people to keep watching, as long as you’re not afraid to lean into things that may make them go, ‘But why would you do that? I hate that. That’s awful,’ because that’s not actually what they mean. If someone screams out on Twitter, ‘I’m gonna stop watching the show!’ they’re probably not gonna stop watching the show, you know what I mean?” Amell added.

Meanwhile, the rest of Team Arrow will be trying to figure out their own place with Oliver in prison, something that Beth Schwartz said will see the other characters in different places — physically and otherwise.

"Everyone is spread out doing their own thing," Schwartz told Newsarama. "They all get along; everyone has made up since the end of last season, but they’ve all found what makes them a hero to the city that was not necessarily being on the team without their leader. We are going to find them in different roles than we have before."

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The season seven premiere of Arrow, which is titled "Inmate 4587", will debut on Monday, October 15th, at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.