Filming for Arrow Season Five is underway, and the entire cast and crew could not be more excited. Quite frankly, neither can the fanbase. Ever since the beginning of Season One, I have been extremely curious to learn how Oliver mastered the Russian Language and the secret behind his Bratva tattoo. (He’s actually a Captain in the Bratva, to jog your memory a bit)
We learned from multiple flashback sequences that even though Oliver said he was on the island for five years, he wasn’t completely deserted. In fact, he spent time in other countries on crazy missions for Amanda Waller. Season Four’s flashbacks left off with Oliver stating that he had a promise to keep. The promise he made was to his dear friend, Tianna. In the event that something were to happen to her, Oliver promised to travel to Russia and tell her family what really happened to her and her brother, Vlad.
Due to unfortunate circumstances, Oliver was forced to kill Tianna after she got overloaded with a dose of deadly magic and began to have extremely vindictive and destructive thoughts. We’re going to Russia, fellow Arrow friends, and EP Wendy Mericle is also extremely excited about this.
EP Wendy Mericle and her team to give the back-to-basics approach that star Stephen Amell has lobbied for a real push.
“Absolutely [we’re going back-to-basics],” Mericle told Comicbook.com during an interview at San Diego Comic-Con. “One of the things we talk about a lot is that Season five is an answer to Season one. So a lot of the questions that came out to Oliver out of the gate, about his father, about restoring the city’s greatness, all of those things are going to be explored, and hopefully – not fully settled, but definitely bookended in season five. It also means we’ll be going back to basics in terms of who the bad guys are. We’ll be doing more close-ended stories, more villains of the week, and a lot of the criminals will be coming out of criminal underworld Mafia and Bratva organizations.”
“So have we! We’re so excited!” Mericle said with a laugh. Bratva wasn’t always destined to be the season five flashback, though. “There was always talk, every year, the question would be explored: ‘Is this the time to go to Russia?’ Every year we would all get excited, and then a voice of reason would come in and say ‘do we really want to do that now?’ and we’d have to rethink it. Last year we decided to go to the Island. It was never the gameplan. You start to think about the season in March and April, and you go ‘does that fit?’ It never really fit until now.”
As for looking back at season four, Mericle readily admitted that there were aspects that faltered.
“We really want to get in the mind of a villain, and I think we did that with some success, and there were some things we didn’t do as well as we could have,” the producer said. She praised Neal McDonough’s performance as Damien Dark, though, saying, “If you have a good actor, it can kind of carry you through some things, and he was tremendous.” What she takes away from where things weren’t done as well is simply inspiration “to do even better in terms of the big bad this season.”
Arrow will return for its fifth season on October 5, 2016 on The CW at 8PM/EST.