There's been a lot of anticipation for season 5 of Arrow, which the stars and showrunners have repeatedly promised will be a return to the darker, grittier, magic-free realm of the the early seasons. This doesn't mean the show will get any less complex, however, as news continues to come in about new villains and upcoming guest stars.
One of the bigger names to grace the new episodes of Arrow is action movie vet Dolph Lundgren (The Expendables), who will be taking part in the new flashback sequences as a Russian mob boss. The latest images from the CW (via Collider) indicate we'll see another familiar face in those flashbacks. David Nykl returns as Anatoly Knyazev, the leader of the Solntsevskaya Bratva and friend to Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell).
Those images also include a new look at villain Prometheus, who is apparently not related to the comic book character by that name. As Arrow executive producer Marc Guggenheim explained to EW, "[It’s] a new character, someone who fits into the theme of legacy this year that’s going to be driving all of our characters, including the big bad." You can check out the new archer adversary in the pics below, which also include some surprising shots of "new chief of staff" Thea (Willa Holland) in her Speedy gear, and Oliver in what looks like a tricky hostage situation.
A substantial part of the early episodes of Arrow featured Oliver doing his best to balance his normal life with his family and his nocturnal activities as a vigilante hero. Now that most of his loved ones are in the loop (or sadly lost to him), there's less need for secrecy in that way. However, with his new job as mayor, Oliver will have a new balancing act to achieve -- improving Star City through public political action while still fighting crime behind a mask. From the looks of these photos, those jobs are going to overlap, as he also has to battle criminals in his daily non-protective suit.
One of the criticisms of the flashbacks on Arrow was that they started to seem so disjointed from the modern-day story. With the new Russian storyline, that has already been a part of Oliver's current timeline, it looks like we might find some deeper relevance in these trips to the past. There have also been several hints now that the season 5 villains, including Tobias Church (Chad L. Coleman), are connected to Oliver's past. Hopefully those connections will explain how we have yet another bow-and-arrow-proficient villain appearing in the Arrowverse.
The Flash season 3 will premiere Tuesday October 4th at 8pm on The CW; Arrow season 5 will premiere in the same timeslot on Wednesday October 5th; Supergirl season 2 on Monday October 10th; and Legends of Tomorrow season 2 on Thursday October 13th.