After a couple years of disappointment, #Arrow is finally back to its best. Season 5 has been a marked improvement; the missteps of the previous two seasons have been well and truly put to bed with a return to form featuring Oliver's battle with Prometheus. The big bad of Season 5 has been a truly formidable foe, which has led to Oliver calling in some unexpected reinforcements.
Slade Wilson and Nyssa Al-Ghul will both return in the season finale to help Oliver battle his latest enemy, and the episode's title implies that he will return to the island where he began his journey towards saving his city:
Yes, the season finale will take place on Lian Yu, and it makes perfect sense — here's why:
It Brings the Story Full Circle
The Arrow writers have spoken at length about how Oliver Queen's origin story was a five-year project, mirroring his five years away from Star City. His journey began after washing up on Lian Yu and struggling to survive; the constant struggles from then on molded him into the man we see at the beginning of Season 1.
Lian Yu became a second home to Oliver; he knew the island like the back of his hand. He even returned to the island after the events of the Undertaking in Season 1 and his belief that he had failed.
The island is a hugely important part of Oliver's origin story, and as the Season 5 finale is the culmination of his origin, it makes perfect sense to bring the story full circle. Oliver's journey to becoming a hero would end where it began, with his friends by his side.
He Would Have The Upper Hand
All season long, Prometheus has mocked Oliver and claimed to be 10 steps ahead of him. Returning to his second home would give Oliver the advantage for the first time; presumably, Prometheus hasn't visited Lian Yu, so wouldn't be familiar with the landscape. This would allow Oliver to set traps and catch him off guard.
In Oliver's time on the island, he learned every nook and cranny of the place and therefore knows all of its secrets. We know already that it's littered with mines, and because A.R.G.U.S. haven't explored the island further than the prison under the beach, many of Oliver's booby traps remain. These traps were set to catch food or protect himself from any dangerous people — if there's one thing we know, this "deserted" island certainly had a lot of visitors.
There's also the interesting development that Slade Wilson and Nyssa Al-Ghul will be joining Oliver's fight. Slade is being held in a prison on the island after Oliver's victory over him in Season 2. In this time his hatred for Oliver will have grown, so it'll be interesting to see what sort of role he will play in the battle. Perhaps he will fight alongside Oliver, as he believes he should be the one to bring Oliver true despair, or maybe he will join with Prometheus.
Nyssa will also be an interesting addition. We've already seen that Oliver has history with her sister, Talia, after she trained him during his time in Russia. We also know that Talia's latest protege is Adrian Chase and the two seem to be working together. It would be safe to assume that Talia will accompany Chase to the island as he has her own grudge against Oliver.
Though Nyssa and Oliver have a strained relationship, she also has a dislike of her sister. It's safe to say that Nyssa would accompany Team Arrow to the island seeking a battle with her sister.
A Lot To Look Forward To
Because of the marked improvement of Season 5, we certainly have an exciting finale in store. After the last two seasons were met with negative reviews from the fans, the production team decided to take the show back to basics. The darker tone returned and the enemies became much more grounded as they were in earlier seasons.
Though many people loved Neal McDonough's portrayal of the charismatic Damien Darhk, the magical nature of his powers were a bit of a stretch for the realistic world of Arrow. This is why Prometheus works so well; Adrian Chase's father was killed by Oliver in his time as "The Hood," and Adrian's thirst for vengeance was a product of Oliver's own making. He wasn't a metahuman or a magically-powered foe; he was essentially a dark mirror of Oliver Queen — what he could have become without his friends by his side.
Team Arrow are a huge part of Oliver's story and will be vital to his chances of success. But returning to the island he called home will allow Oliver's story to come full circle while also giving him the upper hand. The end of one journey will become the start of another!
Are you looking forward to the Arrow season finale? Let me know in the comments!