Arrow Producer Reveals Original Scripted Opening for First Season Finale

With so many people hanging out at home thanks to stay at home efforts to slow the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, people are turning to the internet to find some entertainment and distraction and for fans of The CW's Arrow, series producer and former showrunner Marc Guggenheim is serving that up with all sorts of interesting behind-the-scenes information on the popular DC series. Over the past several days, Guggenheim has shared a number of interesting gems about plans for Arrow that didn't quite make it to screen and among them is a look at what the original scripted opening scene for the Season 1 finale.

On Friday, Guggenheim shared the page of script for that first season finale and explained that they ended up cutting out some of what was on the page in the name of time. However, the idea would pop up again later -- specifically in the show's series finale.

"This was the original scripted opening for Arrow's first season finale," Guggenheim wrote. "We ended up cutting the material for time, but I'd use the same idea eight years later for the start of the second act of the series finale."

Taking a look at the page, on its face it will be very familiar for fans of Arrow, as it sees Oliver on the lifeboat in the North China Sea with his father as well as the other man who survived the sinking of the Queen's Gambit -- their security guy, Hackett. What's different in this scripted scene, however, is that Robert has a full conversation with Oliver, with Robert telling his son how he failed Starling City before Robert shoots first Hackett and then himself. In the opening that made it to air, fans still find Oliver, Robert, and Hackett in the lifeboat but instead of Robert addressing his failings, Oliver is awakened by the sound of Robert shooting Hackett and then, watches in horror as his father puts the gun to his own head and tells him to "survive" before ending his own life.

It's a simple difference and one that arguably doesn't reduce the impact in the season one finale, but as Guggenheim noted, the show eventually came back to that original scene, offering it up in the series finale. This change in how the first season finale was meant to hope isn't the only shift that Guggenheim has revealed to fans in recent days, either. In a recent appearance on the Fake Nerd Podcast, Guggenheim also revealed that originally he had planned for Arrow's ending to see Oliver's death in the finale rather than just his funeral and, in the process, a scene implying that the Emerald Archer's sacrifice inspiring a major new hero: Batman.

"I'll tell you the way I originally planned on it ending," Guggenheim said. "You'll certainly see how this is different and why it's different. I always saw the show ending with Oliver's death, but Oliver's death in the actual finale. Then I kind of had a little bit of a fantasy that Oliver would die and you'd end with some sort of news broadcast talking about his legacy and that would sort of become the voice over."

"And then you would go to this rooftop in a whole other city, and on the cut a thug or some bad guy would crash into the frame, having been punched off-screen," he continued. "And these pair of black boots would come down right in front of him and there'd be a flutter of a scalloped cape and the voice over would say something along the lines of, 'Oliver Queen inspired a whole new generation of vigilantes.' The implication being, of course, that he inspired Batman. So that, of course, didn't happen for a variety of different reasons -- not the least of which is Batwoman came along -- but that was my original conception."


All eight seasons of Arrow are now streaming on Netflix.

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