Arrow is possibly one of the most polarizing shows on TV right now. There is one side that absolutely adores the show, and there is another that hates it. These two sides constantly argue about the quality of the show's writing, the focus on Felicity Smoak and, most notably, the death of Laurel Lance. While these two opposing sides may argue about the show for hours on end, there is one thing that they will agree on: The show has not been the same since Slade Wilson left.
Slade Wilson, a.k.a. Deathstroke, is arguably the greatest thing to come out of Arrow. His teacher/student relationship with Oliver during Season 1 was the highlight of the show's premiere season, but it was his rise to villainy in Season 2 that made him the fan favorite he is today. Throughout Season 2, Slade made a power play to control Starling City before bringing it to its knees with an army of superpowered soldiers. Unfortunately for us, this led to him being incarcerated inside a prison on Lian Yu and the show has failed to reach the same level of success ever since.
Deathstroke's Return To 'Arrow' In Season 5 Has Been All But Confirmed
Slade has only made one appearance ever since his incarceration on Lian Yu and it was speculated that Warner Bros. put him on the CW blacklist along with Deadshot and Harley Quinn. This theory was given extra fuel when Ben Affleck confirmed that Deathstroke will appear in an upcoming DC project, but a recent Facebook photo from Stephen Amell seems to indicate that all hope of seeing Deathstroke return to Arrow is not yet lost.
As you can see in the image above, Amell has shared a photo of him and Deathstroke and has confirmed to a fan that this was shot earlier on today. Now, it isn't confirmed whether this is a one-off cameo appearance or if he has a part in an upcoming arc. All we know right now is that it appears that Deathstroke will appear in Season 5 of Arrow! The producers promised that the show would return to its old roots, and bringing back Deathstroke will definitely do that!
It is interesting to note that Stephen Amell previously teased a "mystery guest" for the upcoming season. He even uploaded a photo of himself, David Ramsey (Diggle) and a figure who was covered up. Just take a look at the background of the photo in question and the background of the photo with Deathstroke.
Deathstroke's Return Could Impact Both 'Arrow' And 'Legends Of Tomorrow'
Could this "mystery guest" be Manu Bennett, the actor who portrayed Slade Wilson in Seasons 1 and 2? If this does turn out to be Bennett, then his return is rather intriguing as the show is currently filming its 100th episode. For the 100th episode, the show will want to honor the legacy of Arrow, and bringing back one of its greatest characters would certainly honor the character, the show, and its fans.
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What is rather intriguing is how Deathstroke is being included in the business end of Season 5. Arrow's 100th episode is Episode 8 of Season 5, and for anyone that knows Arrow's history, shit generally tends to kick off in Episodes 8 and 9 leading up to the midseason finale before the show goes on break for winter.
His inclusion in Season 5 and the expanded role of Merlyn and his Legion of Doom could mean that Prometheus assembles Oliver's Rogue's Gallery to take him down. This would be the safest option for the writers as the show is desperate to get the fans back on their side after a very lackluster Season 4.
It is also very possible that this Deathstroke is actually Grant Wilson, the Deathstroke of the future. We know that The Legion of Doom will be the main focus of Legends of Tomorrow Season 2, so it isn't out of that question to say that Malcolm Merlyn could bring Grant Wilson on board the Legion then send him to the present day to take on Team Arrow.
Whether it is Slade or Grant, a cameo or main role, or part of the Legion or not, Deathstroke being in Arrow will help bring the show back to its glory days. This is a very solid indicator that Arrow is returning to its roots as promised, and I, for one, could not be more relieved.