[WARNING: This article contains POSSIBLE SPOILERS for Arrow.]
The big news in terms of superhero shows on The CW seems to be focused more on The Flash than Arrow as critics and fans speculate whether the spinoff series will be as successful as its predecessor - fortunately for Flash fans, early reactions are exceptionally good. However, while many are focused on that show's premiere, Arrow’s evolving story about the billionaire playboy-turned-hero Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) has been developing its third season, which includes casting new characters.
At the end of season 2, Arrow lost quite a few recurring characters: Moira Queen (Susanna Thompson), Sebastian Blood (Kevin Alejandro), and Isabel Rochev (Summer Glau) were killed; Slade Wilson (Manu Bennett) was locked up in an A.R.G.U.S. supermax; Sarah Lance (Caity Lotz) left with the rest of the League of Assassins; and Thea Queen (Willa Holland) left Starling City with her birth father, Malcolm Merlyn (John Barrowman).
Though some of these characters have the opportunity to return - and a high likeliness in the case of Thea whose situation may factor heavily into season 3 - their departures have opened up room for new characters, some of whom the show is currently casting.
TVLine is reporting that Arrow is currently looking to cast four new characters: two will appear in present-day Sterling City and two will be featured in Oliver’s flashbacks. The two new characters appearing in Sterling City are tentatively being called Daniel and Seth, though those may not be the actual character names, while the other two characters are named Toshi and Akiko.
Daniel is a twenty-something entrepreneur working with cutting-edge technology. Though he's in the public eye, he harbors a tragic past that is a catalyst for him becoming a tech-powered superhero. Daniel is also poised to become Oliver’s rival and Felicity Smoak’s (Emily Bett Rickards) new love interest.
Seth is an educated criminal with a talent for chemistry who develops a drug that drains the willpower of his enemies. He could potentially be a recurring villain for season 3.
The new characters for Oliver’s Hong Kong flashbacks, Toshi and Akiko, are a married couple who become Oliver’s handlers in the city. Toshi is a skilled operative with knowledge of weaponry, combat, and intelligence gathering who will become Oliver’s friend and teacher. Akiko is also skilled in martial arts.
From the details in his character description, it sounds as though Daniel may become one of the main antagonists of the season - depending on how involved Malcolm Merlyn is this season. Daniel seems to have a complicated arc that takes him from civilian to superpowered, in addition to a well-developed back story to be explored. However, it’s unclear how villainous Daniel may be. Though he is described as Oliver’s rival, he could either become a villain or align himself with the Arrow and his team - or both.
Seth, on the other hand, is certainly a villain, though it’s difficult to determine whether he’ll be more of a one-off with the possibility to return, in the vein of The Count, or a more integrated antagonist like Sebastian Blood. Seth’s drug, though, may have a bigger impact on the season’s plot than himself. Between Vertigo and Mirakuru, Arrow has dealt with different mind and body-altering substances in past seasons, so Seth’s anti-willpower drug may follow in that tradition.
Less is known about Toshi and Akiko but their character descriptions hint at an overarching story of getting to know Oliver and becoming his mentors in Hong Kong. Since they are described as his handlers, they must be affiliated with A.R.G.U.S. in some way, which may factor into the conflict of the flashbacks in season 3.
Currently, nothing more is known about these characters and the fact that Daniel and Seth may not be those characters’ actual names points toward The CW and the show’s effort to keep as much about season 3 under wraps as possible. The true identities and names of Daniel and Seth may not be revealed until Arrow premieres in the fall.
What do you think of the new characters on Arrow? Let us know in the comments!
Arrow season 3 will air on Wednesdays @8pm in Fall 2014 on The CW.