Arrow's "Birds of Prey"-style episode debuted last night, seeing the show's ensemble of female characters rally behind one of their own. And according to a new quote from the series' showrunner, the ramifications of that episode will be felt throughout the remainder of the series.
Spoilers for this week's episode of Arrow, "Lost Canary", below!
In a recent interview with TVLine, Arrow showrunner Beth Schwartz spoke about this week's episode, which put the spotlight on Laurel Lance (Katie Cassidy Rodgers) and the arc she has gone on throughout the last few seasons. Now that Laurel is very clearly on a path to redemption, some had worried if she would be exiting the series, but Schwartz confirmed that that isn't the case.
"Katie does not leave the show; she comes back this season," Schwartz explained. "It appears like [she leaves], but it's not true. She's still [part of the show]."
For Laurel fans, this update is surely a pleasant surprise, considering the long and winding road that led to the events of "Lost Canary". After the Earth-1 version of Laurel was controversially killed in Season 4, her Earth-2 counterpart was introduced on an episode of The Flash, as the seemingly-evil Black Siren. In the seasons since, Laurel has gone from an adversary to an ally of Team Arrow, in part due to her publicly impersonating her counterpart as the District Attorney.
"I think, the team, she could definitely be of service to, if they trust her." Cassidy Rodgers told ComicBook.com last year. "I think that'd be a really interesting situation, if the writers decide to go with that route."
"I think there's room for redemption for her character." Cassidy Rodgers continued. "And I think, what I believe is that if they do reveal more of her backstory, and sort of tell her story actually, there'll be a lot more of an understanding of why she acts the way that she does."
That all was further complicated, however, when Emiko Queen (Sea Shimooka) framed Laurel for a murder she didn't commit, which led her to trying to steal money and resources to leave town. Laurel was stopped by Sara Lance (Caity Lotz), Dinah Drake (Juliana Harkavy), and Felicity Smoak (Emily Bett Rickards), who eventually helped her realize that she could begin to right her wrongs and carve out her own path to redemption -- if that's what she wanted.
Laurel then joined forces with the other women, only to reveal later on how she planned to be a hero. She decided to return to Earth-2 to operate as the Black Canary and begin to right her wrongs, and Felicity gave her Earth-1 Laurel's costume before she left. In the show's 2040-set flash-forward sequence, an older version of Laurel was seen in the Black Canary costume on Earth-1, as she tried to educate Mia Smoak (Katherine McNamara) on how to be a hero.
What do you think of Laurel being back for Arrow's eighth and final season? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!
Arrow airs Mondays at 9/8c on The CW.