Arrow's eighth and final season debuted earlier this week, setting up a pretty epic conflict in both the present and distant future for the long-running The CW series. Part of the episode saw "Future Team Arrow" facing off against John Diggle Jr. (Charlie Barnett) and his Deathstroke gang, which have created quite a problem for Star City. The arrival of J.J. was complicated by the fact that he's adopted brothers with Connor Hawke (Joseph David-Jones), who has been working with this new iteration of Team Arrow basically since its inception. In a recent interview with TVLine, showrunner Beth Schwartz spoke about the fact that J.J. and Connor are clearly at odds with each other, and the "fraught childhood" that brought them to that point.
“[They] have this really fraught childhood that we’ll explain more in the upcoming episodes,” Schwartz explained. “[We’ll see] how they got to this place where … JJ is willing to kill his own brother, and how he went down this path."
While Connor has yet to be adopted by the Diggles in the present-day timeline, both he and J.J. do currently exist as young kids, which makes their eventual paths as adults all the more mysterious.
"I'm only on Arrow for a couple of episodes," Barnett teased in an interview earlier this year. "And you know, it's the last season of Arrow. So, I know -- I shouldn't say, literally I catch myself in these positions where I'm about to drop some information, but I'm like 'Nah, let's take a sec.'"
"I think Arrow has some interesting things coming up, but I don't know if I'm committed to the world, let's say." Barnett added. "There's a lot of worlds going on in Arrow right now."
And while it's unclear how much more of 2040 we're going to see in the future - even with a Canaries-centric spinoff currently in development - it sounds like the next generation of Arrow characters could factor into the future of the Arrowverse.
"It was definitely meant to grow the world that we had already built and to see the next generation of what Oliver and Felicity and our present-day team have worked so hard for, and sort of see what happens in the future," showrunner Beth Schwartz said back in April. "We love those characters and would love to see them go on in some capacity after the show's over."
Arrow airs Tuesdays at 9/8c on The CW.