‘Arrow’ Character Spotlight: Sara Lance
Published on August 10th, 2016 | Updated on August 10th, 2016 | By FanFest
Sara Lance is without a doubt, one of the most complex characters that we have seen on Arrow. In fact, she is probably my favorite character in the entire series. Not only is her character super complex, she is also quite the badass. Caity Lotz has brought a lot to the screen with this character. We first saw the character of Sara Lance in the Pilot Episode of Arrow Season One. (Fun Fact: Caity was actually not the original actress for the character of Sara Lance. Season One Sara Lance was portrayed by actress Jacqueline MacInnes Wood). Caity took up the role when Season Two hit TV.
Sara was originally portrayed to us as this ditzy college girl, who only thought about skipping school, make-up and boys. Particularly, Oliver Queen. Sara formed a relationship with Oliver, even though she knew that he was dating her sister, Laurel. Sara became so head-over-heels in love with Oliver that she went as far as going on a boat trip with him and his father. Alas, the boat trip was a complete disaster. When the Queen’s Gambit went down, everyone was suspected dead. Including Sara.
Little did the world know, Sara survived. She was ‘rescued’ by a doctor named Ivo just off the shore of Lian Yu. Ivo welcomed Sara onto his crew, and asked her to join his mission of ‘saving the world’ by assisting him in his search to recreate the Japanese drug called Mirakuru. For a year, Sara assisted Ivo on his mission, but still remained dead to the rest of the world. It wasn’t until the beginning of her second year when one of Ivo’s men brought Oliver Queen on board their ship, the Amazo. Sara was in complete shock, believing that Oliver had been dead for the past year. Sara continued to play along with Ivo’s game, until she seized the opportunity to run away from Ivo during a recon mission of Lian Yu and join up with Slade, Oliver and Shado. Sara and Oliver were quick to rekindle their friendship, completely surprised at the fact that the other had been alive for so long. Eventually, Sara and the crew discovered a Japanese warship which carried the Mirakuru drug. They attempted to use it on a very injured Slade Wilson; to which they perceived to be a failure after Slade did not wake up shortly after the injection. Ivo seized Sara, Shado and Oliver and forced Oliver to choose who he wanted to save and who he wanted Ivo to kill.
Oliver chose to save Shado over Sara, and Ivo immediately shot Shado in the head. When Slade returned, now fully pumped with the Mirakuru, Oliver attempted to tell Slade the truth about why Shado was killed. Sara warned Oliver that the Mirakuru had now warped Slade’s mind, and that telling Slade would be the wrong thing to do.
After weeks of plotting Ivo’s defeat, Slade finally learned the truth about what happened to Shado when he, Oliver and Sara attempted to overtake the Amazo. Slade even went as far as holding Oliver hostage and torturing him. After Slade organized a trade with Sara to return Oliver in exchange for the Amazo’s back-up Engineer, Sara and Oliver immediately began to strategize their plan to overthrow Slade once and for all.
The plan was fool proof. A torpedo to the Amazo would end the Mirakuru’d Slade Wilson once and for all. Although Oliver was ‘successful’ in defeating Slade, the plan had a huge snag. Oliver lost Sara, again, and this time he was certain it was for good. When the torpedo struck the Amazo, Sara was swept away through a hole in the ship and into the waters of the North China Sea.
As of this moment, it is very unclear how Sara wound up surviving. What we do know is that at some point, Sara was discovered by Nyssa Al Ghul, daughter of the diabolical Ra’s Al Ghul. Nyssa took her under her wing, and Sara was given the name ‘Ta’er Al Sahfer’ which translated from Arabic means ‘The Canary’. Sara was trained by both Nyssa and Ra’s, and she joined the ranks of the deadly League of Assassins. At some point, Nyssa and Sara became involved in a relationship, much to the disapproval of Ra’s.
Following the earthquake in Starling City, Sara returned home to ensure that her family was safe. Her plan was to do this discretely, but Oliver and the rest of Team Arrow were onto her from the moment they heard whispers of ‘a woman in black leather’ running around the city.
Oliver discovered ‘The Canary’s’ secret, and convinced Sara to inform her family that she was in fact alive. Sara became a member of Team Arrow for quite some time, and she even briefly rekindled her romance with Oliver Queen. She was eventually called back to the League of Assasins by Nyssa.
Some time later, Sara returned to Starling City on a mission for the League of Assassins. She was sent there to confirm the rumors that Malcolm Merlyn was alive. Unfortunately for Sara, Malcolm had wicked intentions for her. He drugged Thea, his own daughter, so that she would be under his influence. Thea then fired three arrows into Sara’s chest, killing our beloved Canary.
Oliver promised both Nyssa and Laurel that Sara’s death would not be in vain, and that her killer would be brought to justice. When Oliver discovered that Sara’s killer was actually Malcolm Merlyn, Oliver couldn’t bring himself to do the wicked deed, for Thea’s sake.
Laurel eventually took up her sister’s mantle, and became the ‘Black Canary’, she then assisted in the fall of Ra’s Al Ghul, as a tribute to honor her sisters memory. In the beginning of Season 4, Laurel had a deep discussion with Thea about how Thea was essentially ‘brought back from the dead’. It was then that Laurel learned of the Lazarus pit, and of its magical powers. After digging up her sisters body, Laurel headed to Nanda Parbat to speak to Malcolm Merlyn (who at the time had become the new Ra’s Al Ghul). She eventually convinced Malcolm to allow her to use the pit on Sara, despite everyone’s warnings.
Sara was successfully resurrected, but something was incredibly wrong. Her soul was missing. Oliver reached out to an old friend, John Constantine, who specialized in the mystical arts. With Constantine’s help, Oliver and Laurel were able to restore Sara’s soul; but even having her soul back could not settle the darkness that was inside Sara. Her blood lust was extremely significant, and she felt it was in the best interest of everyone if she left Star City to find herself.
Sara went into hiding for quite some time, spending her days drinking at rescuing girls from creeps. Eventually, Sara caught the eye of Time Master Rip Hunter and she was recruited (somewhat forcefully) to join his team of ‘Legends’.
Sara debated joining Rip’s team for awhile, but she was eventually convinced by her sister Laurel. Sara accepted Rip’s request, and that was how she became who we know her as today; The White Canary.
Sara currently serves as a member of Rip’s team, and she even formed a brief romance/lust with fellow ‘Legend’, Captain Cold aka Leonard Snart. At the end of Season One of Legends of Tomorrow Sara had just learned of her sister Laurel’s death, and Sara blamed herself for Laurel dying saying that if she had stayed in Star City instead of joining Rip’s team, Laurel would be alive. Rip told her that she was wrong, and if she had stayed, Damien Darhk would have wiped out the entire Lance family. Despite the pain she was feeling, Sara essentially made the right choice.
Legends of Tomorrow Season 2 will return in the fall, and hopefully we will be able to get more of an inside look on Sara’s past, in particular how she became the fighter we now know her as today. One thing is for sure, this girl is a badass. You definitely don’t want to cross blades with her.
Julia recently published her first novel, titled; Anomic. She is currently co-authoring a novel called ‘Snow Falls’. She has a B.A in Communications with concentrations in Professional Writing and Public Relations. She is also in the United States Army Reserves as a Military Police Officer, and is currently in the process of going back to school for her Masters Degree in Business. When she isn’t writing, she is co-owner of a film production studio called ‘Valentine Productions LLC’ and she frequently spends her weekends acting in films, or being a stuntwoman.