With so many beloved genre franchises being transformed into expansive multimedia universes, it’s an exciting (and worrisome) time to be a fanboy or girl. While we recently gained some insight into the future direction of Marvel’s Avengers universe, the bumpy road that DC Comics and Warner Bros. is traveling has been much harder to pin down.
On the DC movie side, there’s Batman vs. Superman in the works – and little promise of anything else. On the TV side, Arrow is doing better than ever, and that show will try to spinoff a Flash TV series – and just this week it was announced that an Hourman TV show is also in the works. With the DCU alive and flourishing on the small screen, there’s been little reason to wonder about potential crossovers with the movie side of things; however, that conversation is about to start, thanks to Arrow star Stephen Amell.
When it comes to comic book movies, fans need very little to run wild with – and it seems as though these days, a suggestive picture posted on social media is enough to get them riled up good. Vin Diesel has used the tactic to great effect, posting pics of Marvel heroes Vision and Groot on his Facebook page, thereby sparking fan excitement before it was officially announced that he would indeed be part of Guardians of the Galaxy. Well, apparently Arrow‘s Stephen Amell has been taking notes, because he posted the following image to his own Facebook Page:
Obviously this has sparked a great deal of speculation, which we can pretty much boil down to four prospective scenarios – each of which we’ll examine:
- Amell’s Green Arrow will be part of a Justice League movie.
- Amell’s Green Arrow will be part of Batman vs. Superman.
- Arrow the TV series will get its own version of the Justice League.
- Amell is just teasing us all.
1. Green Arrow in the Justice League Movie
What’s funny about the image Amell shared is that both of the vintage comic book covers list the same lineup of characters – Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Flash, Green Lantern, Aquaman, Martian Manhunter – and of course, Green Arrow. That’s just a little too on-the-nose to be completely ignored as a tease – especially since the books specifically focus on Amell’s character being inducted into the team. That COULD be a sign of things to come on the TV series (more on that later) – or it could be an indication of something much bigger. Amell previously stated on record that he wants to be in the Justice League movie; was that just wishful thinking, or a foreshadow of what’s to come?
By now Amell is a certified fan-favorite, and those Justin Hartley cheerleaders have long since gone quiet. More to the point: Oliver Queen/Green Arrow is a grounded character who could play well in a Justice League movie, while effectively bridging DC’s movie and TV universes in a way that’s much more effective than Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has been (so far).
2. Green Arrow in Batman vs. Superman
The question at hand is: why is Stephen Amell even teasing fans about this right now? If the last year has taught us anything, it’s that A) Stars are much more self-aware when it comes to social media marketing and promotion, and B) In a time where we’re seeing trailers for trailers, even big superhero casting or movie announcements are teased in advanced of official confirmations. Don’t believe it? Go back a few months and check out when Superman actor Henry Cavill started dropping Batman vs. Superman hints before Man of Steel was even in theaters. Doesn’t seem so coincidental now, does it?
In short: If there aren’t plans for a Justice League arc on the Arrow TV series, then this little “tease” could be a timely hint about Amell’s involvement in DC/WB’s other big project at the moment: Batman vs. Superman.
It’s not too far-fetched: in the last week, both Wonder Woman and Nightwing have been rumored as being part of the film, and with the filmmakers having previously revealed that Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns will have influence on Batman vs. Superman, Green Arrow would be a fitting and logical piece of the puzzle. In Dark Knight Returns, Batman stages a final battle against Superman – and ultimately wins the duel thanks to a Kryptonite arrow fired by none other than Green Arrow.
There’s also been whispers that the Woner Woman appearance could be a cameo presumably set at the end of Batman vs. Superman as a lead-in to Justice League. If that theory holds any merit, than Amell’s Green Arrow could be part of that cameo lineup, as a tease for his future Justice League role. It’s a thin thread, for sure, but it’s possible.
3. Arrow Justice League Story Arc
If it’s a question of timing, then Amell’s little tease could be indication of what’s to come on the next arc of the Arrow TV series. Arrow has definitely expanded its use of the DC Universe in season 2, introducing more iconic heroes and villains, with some big things yet to come in the form of a Flash story arc that will likely spinoff into its own series.
Given that expansion, it’s not at all outside the realm of possibility that a Justice League could be introduced into the Arrow continuity. After all, Smallville did it (see pic above), and with superhero TV series more popular (and lucrative) than they’ve ever been, even a tall order like Martian Manhunter isn’t beyond the budget allowances of a flagship cable show.
Would a Justice League appearance on Arrow be enough? For fans of the show it would probably be great – but in terms of helping DC/WB really make big strides in the franchise universe game, this would not be the most ambitious move to make.
4. Amell is Just Teasing Us
In the end this could all just be Stephen Amell having a bit of fun with fans – or just expressing some wishful thinking disguised as comic book trivia. That would be disappointing – when compared with these other thrilling options – but who could really hate the guy for it? He’s been one of the better superhero casting choices of the last few years, and we’re willing to bet fans want to see bigger, better things for his character. However they may come.
Arrow season 2 is currently airing on Wednesday nights on the CW @ 8/7c.
Batman vs. Superman will be in theaters on July 17, 2015.