Katie Cassidy's Laurel Lance has a new costume in the final season of Arrow, and its design is oddly reminiscent of a previous Black Canary costume - just not one that's ever been on Arrow. Instead, it looks as if it may have been inspired, in part, by Smallville's take on the DC Comics superhero.
Arrow is headed toward its eighth and final season, and Katie Cassidy will be back as Laurel Lance's Earth-2 counterpart. The character was originally introduced in The Flash season 2 as the villainous Black Siren, and continued to play that role of an antagonist when she was carried over to Arrow, but in the time that's passed, her character has grown a great deal. In Arrow season 7, Lauren completed her redemptive arc, prompting Sarah (Caity Lotz) to give her the Black Canary costume. Laurel left for Earth-2 to became a hero, but returned in the season finale to give Oliver (Stephen Amell) some backup in his showdown with the Ninth Circle. Apparently, Laurel's return wasn't temporary since she'll still be a main character in season 8.
The Arrow season 8 trailer and official photos from the premiere have revealed what Laurel will look like as the show's fourth incarnation of the classic character, and what may be the show's first proper Black Canary. The character's new look includes a black mask over the eyes, a black and yellow color scheme, a leather costume that zips down the front, and short blond hair. This is a far cry from every Black Canary costume that's been worn on the show by Sarah, Dinah, and Earth-1's Laurel. Interestingly, it looks a lot like the costume worn by Alaina Huffman's Black Canary in Smallville. Introduced in season 7 of the Superman prequel series, Dinah Lance was a mercenary who tried and failed to capture Oliver Queen. After a very brief stint as an enemy, Black Canary joined forces with the heroes and became a Justice League member.
Smallville's Black Canary shares the Arrow version's short blond hair and color scheme, though her costume is, of course, a product of the 2000s superhero look, not one that abides by more modern interpretations. While Smallville's Dinah doesn't have a black mask, she does wear black face paint over her eyes, which is another thing that makes the two look so similar.
The costume has ties to other Black Canary costumes as well, such as the one in the video game Injustice 2. The color scheme may also remind fans of the New 52 Black Canary from the comic books. Costume designs for Arrowverse characters are often based on outfits from the New 52 (which is evident with Flash's new look for season 6), so this isn't necessarily surprising. In this case, however, the Arrowverse looked much further than just the comics, allowing her new design to draw inspiration from multiple sources, including Smallville.