After twenty-three episodes of surprises, Arrow's fifth season came to a close tonight. The season finale, 'Lian Yu', brought an insane amount of action, heart, and more than a little bloodshed.
As the battle between Oliver Queen and Adrian Chase culminated throughout the episode, a handful of characters appeared to have met their untimely end. And right down to the episode's closing moments, the finale proved to be 'explosive' in more ways than one.
So going into the show's sixth season, the fates of quite a handful of characters remain up in the air. We thought we'd break down all of the characters we can presume dead, as well as those whose fates are currently uncertain.
MAJOR SPOILERS going forward. Only look if you want to know!
Kovar & His Men
An honorable mention in this episode - mainly due to it happening in the flashbacks - are all of Konstantin Kovar and his men. It was safe to assume that Oliver's last flashback foe would be defeated before Oliver returned home, but it certainly wasn't a foregone conclusion.
As it turns out, Kovar's death was actually inferred earlier in the episode, thanks to a particularly-placed prop.
If you're hoping this isn't the last you'll see of Dolph Lundgren in a DC property, don't fret - he will appear as King Nereus in the upcoming DCEU film Aquaman.prevnext
We've already covered this death, particularly for its effect on the larger DCTV Universe. Malcolm Merlyn sacrificed himself in a pretty surprising way - by standing on a land mine in place of his daughter, Thea Queen. After a tense few moments - in which the members of Team Arrow found a way to safety - an explosion occurred, presumably due to the bomb Merlyn was standing on.
Given John Barrowman's announcement that he would not be returning to the DCTV Universe in the upcoming year, it's safe to assume that Merlyn's death could stick. However, the way the explosion was shown onscreen doesn't fully indicate whether or not Merlyn was a part of it.
Not showing Merlyn's death up close leaves open the possibility for him to return in the present day timeline. As has been joked before within the show, characters seem to come back from the dead pretty regularly, and that certainly wouldn't be implausible for Merlyn. After all, he already faked his death once before, between the season one finale and his return in season two.
But I'm sure you're wondering - how would that factor into the episode's ending? It's entirely plausible, given the amount of time between Merlyn's assumed death and the episode's end, that he could have found a way off of the island. But fans will have to wait and see if that moment actually comes.
It's safe to assume that Merlyn's death will stick - at least for the time being - within the world of Arrow. But don't be surprised if Merlyn lives up to his nickname of "The Magician" and cheats death once again.prevnext
The second death of the episode is tied very closely to Merlyn's - primarily due to physical proximity. Right before the explosion went off, Merlyn was visited by Digger Harkness and Talia's men. It's safe to assume that the explosion occurred during an altercation between the two.
As with Merlyn's death, there's an argument for and against whether or not Harkness is really dead. Harkness, like Merlyn, could have conveniently gotten out of the way of the bomb before it exploded. While Harkness has less of an impact on the DCTV Universe as Merlyn has, he's got a lot of comic history that could justify a return appearance. After all, as his namesake Captain Boomerang suggests, Harkness could easily come back around.prevnext
Yes, after a season of terrorizing Oliver Queen and Team Arrow, Adrian Chase/Prometheus finally met his demise. The villain essentially orchestrated the entire events of the finale, with the goal of dying at the hand of Oliver to prove that "everything Oliver touches dies."
In the end, it took a while for Chase to die, much to Oliver's dismay. During the closing minutes of the finale, Chase took his altercation with Oliver out to the water. After a tense stand-off, involving Oliver's son William, Chase eventually killed himself.
Out of all of the deaths during the finale, this one certainly feels the most permanent. But Chase's effect on the world of Arrow certainly isn't over. Which brings us to...prevnext
Unfortunately, things seem less than peachy for the members of Team Arrow who ended up on the island. The entire current roster of the team - Diggle, Felicity, Curtis, Rene, and Dinah - all remained on Lian Yu when the explosives went off, creating quite an uncertain situation going into season six.
Realistically, it's safe to assume that much of Team Arrow will somehow survive the explosions. It's just unclear, given this finale's surprising ending, as to how - and which combination of team members will remain in season six.prevnext
Slade Wilson - along with Team Arrow - remained on Lian Yu throughout the explosions. But he deserves his own slide here, thanks to the significance his death would have on the world of the show. Even though Deathstroke has appeared sparingly throughout the past few seasons of Arrow, he still remains Oliver's most significant villain. And to put it simply, a death in a mass explosion doesn't feel big enough for the 'flamboyant' Deathstroke.
In addition, tonight's finale established several tidbits to make audiences hope that Slade sticks around. Slade is now free of the Mirakuru serum that led him on his violent tirade during season two, and this sort of 'new and improved' Slade remained one of Oliver's biggest assets during the finale epsiode. In addition, Slade has another reason to remain in the fold - the hunt for his son, Joe.prevnext
Oliver and Chase's battle brought quite a few other characters into the fray, and their fates are still not entirely sealed. The characters in question were actually scattered across the island - Black Siren, Nyssa, and Talia presumably remained in the island's temple, Evelyn last seen trapped by Deathstroke in Chase's cages, and Thea, Samantha, and Quentin with Felicity and Curtis.
As with the members of Team Arrow, it's uncertain which of these characters will survive into season six. But even then, their geographical distance across the island poses the question as to how they survive.prevnext
More Arrow News
The battle between Oliver (Stephen Amell) and Adrian Chase (Josh Segarra) culminates in a final epic battle on Lian Yu. After recent events, Oliver decides to recruit a group of unlikely allies – Slade (guest star Manu Bennett), Nyssa (guest star Katrina Law), Merlyn (John Barrowman) and Digger Harkness (guest star Nick. E. Tarabay) – to defeat Chase. However, Chase has his own army – Black Siren (guest star Katie Cassidy), Evelyn Sharp (guest star Madison McLaughlin) and Talia al Ghul (guest star Lexa Doig) – and the forces collide in an explosive season finale.
Jesse Warn directed the episode written by Wendy Mericle & Marc Guggenheim. It will air on May 24 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on The CW.
Based on the characters from DC, ARROW is from Bonanza Productions Inc. in association with Berlanti Productions and Warner Bros. Television, with executive producers Greg Berlanti (The Flash, Supergirl), Marc Guggenheim (Eli Stone, Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters), Andrew Kreisberg (The Flash, Supergirl), Wendy Mericle (Desperate Housewives, Eli Stone) and Sarah Schechter (Supergirl, Blindspot).prev