Spoiler alert! If you are not caught up on Arrow Season Three, probably not a great idea to keep reading.
The first episode of [Arrow](series:720988) Season Three shocked fans with the sudden and brutal murder of Sara Lance, aka, Black Canary. Much of the season since then has revolved around the mystery of her death, as Ollie hunts for her killer, Nyssa reports to the League and Laurel battles to deal with the anger inside of her. It was no surprise to the fans that Laurel would pick up where her sister left off, and now we have been given the first shots of Katie Cassidy in full Canary gear - and she looks awesome! (And to be totally honest, I'm thrilled that she is a little less...ahem....bodacious than her sister was. It was distracting.)
The death of Sara Lance has become something of a focus for the season, and with the shocking reveal at the end of the last episode, it's obvious that the repercussions aren't just going to be the introduction of Wildcat and the training of Laurel. Whether or not Roy's vision was accurate or not is a separate debate altogether, but it makes it very clear that Sara's killer is connected to the big bad of this season.
And with a new big bad, we also get to see a new force for good appearing in Starling City! From the beginning, some fans were upset that the Black Canary first appeared as Sara, which didn't fit the comic book history of the character, but it seems that the writers knew what they were doing all along. Now that Laurel is taking on the mantle, the viewers have a solid understanding of her character, her motivations, and her relationship with Oliver. This is a much better set up for such a major character than just "here's another superhero", and I love how they have done it. I'm also a huge fan of what this means for Wildcat - that his initial appearance is part of a storyline that involves training a hero. It's perfect.
The question that remains is how and when will Laurel officially don the costume and take to the streets as the canary? I have my own theory on that one, and it's connected to another tidbit of news that dropped today, about the holiday episode coming up, titled: Dinah Lance Returns Home.
Up until now, Laurel has managed to keep the news of Sara's death from her father, fearing for his health if he knew she was gone. With the rest of the family back together for the Christmas episode, I think that we will finally see the reveal of the Lance secret to both parents, either intentionally or not. It would make sense for them to try and reach Sara, thinking that she is still alive, in the hope of managing a family reunion for the holidays. This could lead to the reveal that she is dead, which in turn would (obviously) lead to a very tense situation between Laurel and her parents. Unable to turn to alcohol as she has done in the past, I can easily see Laurel taking her anger and sadness out on criminals, rather than the punching bag at the gym.
I'm expecting flashbacks to happy Christmases past, lots of family tension...and some very interesting familial-love-triangle moments between Thea, Oliver and Malcolm Merlyn.
However it plays out, I'm really excited about this new look for Laurel, and can't wait to see her training in action - perhaps even a battle with Thea!